Skills Needed for Web Designers to Work as Freelancers

Some of you who are aiming to work as Web Designers will want a career freelancing.

When working as a freelancer, the first thing to face is the sheer number of tasks you need to undertake. One has to do everything - from sales, to schedule management, clerical work etc, by yourself. Naturally, the ability to manage yourself is also necessary.

In this article, we will introduce the skills necessary for Web Designers to work as freelancers.

The IT Industry Guide is a collection of articles and resources by Internet Academy, Japan's first learning institute specialising in the Web. Here, we introduce you to industry insights in an easy-to-understand manner.

Table of contents

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Recognise your business skills and added value

First of all, let's identify your strengths.

It is important to have skills that are widely required as designers, such as Graphic Design and UI Design, coding, handling markup languages, and WordPress theme creation. However, by deepening your skills in fields like Web Marketing and programming, you can broaden your range of work by acquiring added value.

The next thing to do is decide the colour of the website and make other creative decisions. Using a graphics software such as "Illustrator" or "Photoshop", Designers decide the color scheme of the website, the arrangement of logos and icons, etc. All of this work is carried forward while consulting with the client.

Web Designer's business technique

Freelancers needs to do their own sales and promotional activities in order to get a job. First of all, let's learn the minimum business rules and manners necessary for society.

Initially, it may be convenient to use crowdsourcing and matching sites as sales platforms. You will find various levels of projects that needs work, ranging from major IT companies to individuals.

While acquiring work experience, you will encounter many people. Because we sometimes expand our business on the basis of personal connections that you have established at work, socialising is also important.

Another consideration in the case of freelancing, is the control of workload. If your workload is too heavy, the quality of work may drop. Do not fill your schedule with so much work that you start worrying about incoming work requests. Sometimes you have to muster the courage to refuse work.

Portfolio production

A portfolio is a collection of work that showcases your talent.

A portfolio is essential in order to highlight your design skills to clients and get a job opportunity.

For a portfolio profile that fulfills the role of a resume, let's introduce you and your career as basic information, along with any qualifications and awards you may be honoured with. It is better to include such things as the names of websites, a description of the concept, an image illustrating the result, and details about your role in the project.

Throughout the portfolio site, please be aware that the structure of the website can represent techniques you are good at, such as color scheme, layout design, code, etc.

Consult other experts for supplementary work

When you become a freelancer, your supplementary non-creative tasks will also need attention. When using crowdsourcing services etc., it may be easier to concentrate on the original job, but outsource jobs like handling orders, estimates, delivery, payment of work to the system.

For businesses that require specialized knowledge such as accounting, we recommend consulting with experts, and resolving according to the circumstances. It is important to create an environment where you can concentrate on creative work.

Self-management is indispensable to freelance

It is no exaggeration to say that high self-management ability leads to higher work quality. A shortage of sleep not only reduces work quality, but also health and overall quality of life. Good sleep and nutritious meals certainly make a difference, as well as creating a regular life rhythm.

Web Designers tend to fall short in the exercise department. Moderate exercise helps not only maintain health, but also concentration and work efficiency. Also, by becoming conscious of switching between work and private time, it makes it less likely to succumb to stress. Try to make a conscious effort to move around.

When working in freelance, there is no one to take over the job for you. Paying attention to your health and physical condition and looking for work in a consistent, professional manner leads to increased trust from clients.

In conclusion

The charm of working as a freelance web designer is the freedom to use your own time. Also, since your skills and performance are directly linked to your income, people with high ambition will feel like this is a worthwhile choice.

Please identify your strengths and career direction, and define your aim and work process. Consider occasionally upgrading your skills every once in a while by taking a new course, so that you are able to handle a wide range of projects, and stay updated with new technologies.