Freelance, UI Design

21 useful tips for designers


I have collected more than 20 helpful advice which could help you to manage your designer life.

21 useful tips for designers
Freelance
UI Design
Author: Szabolcs Bakos

This article's idea based on the fact that I have gotten a lot of emails from designers who are seeking my advice in terms of their carrier guidelines. 

So I decided that, instead of answering emails individually, I will write this article. I gathered my most helpful advice which could come in handy for everybody whoworks in the design industry. I hope you will find them very useful and you will be able to use them wisely in the future.

Let's see it:

1. Price your work and yourself correctly

Design is very important service in today's world. Show your customers what you know and for how much you do it.

2. Price your services based on your personal values and experiences

Try to estimate the value which you provide to your clients and not the length of time you spend on the work.

3. Don't allow your clients determine your prices

If you forced to work bellow your price range, neither you nor the customer will be satisfied on the long-term because you will become frustrated and you will not offer the right quality. If your clients don’t agree to give you the price you require, let them go.

4. Let’s create a portfolio site

The most important thing is if you are a designer to have a cool portfolio. If you will have time and energy you should create one. In case if you if you don’t have HTML skills choose a portfolio site (Behance, Dunked) where you can quickly and easily present your work.

5. Do not accept too much work at the same time

Designers tend to fall into the mistake that they do a lot of work at the same time, and usually they lose the focus and fail the deadlines. Take less work at a time and so you can maintain high quality.

6. Solve problems with design

Focus on the problems of the clients, finding the right solution to their needs, instead of selling the current trends. 

7. Always try to do the best

No matter that, you work on a small or large project; always try to get the best out of yourself.

8. Always present your ideas

The design that you create will not sell itself. Always explain your design ideas. Do not send unfinished design plans for your clients, if you do not want problem for yourself.

9. Have a proven workflow

Create an effective workflow for yourself that you can use in your work. It will speed up your design process.

10. Always keep the deadlines

Never promise things for a customer if you cannot keep your words and the deadlines.

11. Make sure your customer is prepared to work with you

Always make sure that the customer is aware of the requirements, dates and materials you need. If not, talk with him specifically what are your requriments to start work with him.

12. Do not work without a contract

The contract protects everyone. You and your client. Always write a contract.

13. Forget crowd-sourcing websites

If you want to run a successful designer career, then forget crowd-sourcing websites. I would not explain why. Simply forget about these sites.

14. Start a blog

As soon as you can start blogging and write down what you know. The blog is currently one of the most effective online marketing tool in the online world.

15. Be always kind

I know it's not always simple but try to establish conflict free relationships with your clients. In many cases I also struggle with this. The client is the boss.

16. Learn to say no

Learn to filter your potential customers and choose who you want to work with. If you do not like the project for some reason  (price, task, time), say no.

17. Practice as much as possible

There are plenty of articles, videos, tutorials on the internet that can be used to learn a lot of design related things. But you will learn the most, when you work on a project.

18. Do not compare yourself to other designers

There are a lots of talented designers out there. Do not compare yourself to others, rather try to get the most out of yourself. Try to learn new things everyday.

19. Learn form other designers

Every day, take some time to study the work of other designers, because you can learn a lot from them.

20. Learn some marketing

You can be the best designer in the world, but you'll be the poorest if you do not apply successful marketing strategy because it could help you position yourself well and it could give you the power to sell yourself to your customers.

21. Sell yourself not only your portfolio

Tell your customers about yourself, who you are, what your story is, how can you help them with your skills. Some fancy portfolios will not always help you get new customers.

22. Bonus: The experience matters not the talent

The more experienced you are, the better you will be in your profession.

If you have any suggestions, ideas, tips to update this article, do not hesitate, please get in touch with me. I will gladly update this post with another useful advice.


Bakos Szabolcs, UI/UX Designer

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My name is Szabolcs Bakos, I am a self-taught freelance UI/UX Designer. My professional focus areas are the web-based user interfaces, web applications and responsive websites.



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