Considering a Freelance Career in Web Designing? Tips on Getting Started
Most people who study Web Developing, Designing, Graphic Designing, SEO or SEM often end up confused about how to proceed in terms of a Career. A lot of them end up working for small firms or Multi National Companies without weighing the potential that Freelancing can offer them. In the end, you might end up wishing that you did something on your own instead of actually doing it.
Through this article let me explain how you can set up a career in Freelance Web Designing, but before that let me share some facts.
India is rapidly getting online and expanding at an amazing rate. There are already over a 100 million internet users in India, and this is barely 11 % of our population. We have over 8 million Small and Medium sized Enterprises currently operating in India, but astonishingly around 5 % of them are online!
That’s approximately 76,00,000 clients waiting for YOU to approach them.
In fact, Google set up a Website, indiagetonline, solely to help SMEs get their business online, but there’s only so much that one can expect from the limited customization features that this service offers.
With all these opportunities out there, you don’t have to be restricted to working for some company. You have the option to be your own BOSS. So let me tell you how you can set up a lucrative business yourself –
The first step – Master your chosen field, be it Designing Web Sites, SEO or SEM Expertise etc. Assuming you’re already brilliant at what you do, and you know you are, the following steps will explain how you can take things ahead in Freelancing:
- All In One : You offer a service to your customers, and you’re quite good at it. But that won’t be enough to sustain in today’s markets. When you pitch to a small enterprise about why he should go online, you’re talking to someone who doesn’t know much about technology or the internet in general. If you tell him that he will have to go through three different people to get himself online (One for a Domain Name, One for Web Hosting and a third party, being you, for Web Design) it may just scare him off. Present yourself as the single person who can take his business online. You could do this by becoming a Reseller for Web Products
As a Reseller, you get access to a suite of important Web Products & Services which you can then sell in your own brand name. You will also have the option to set your own selling price for the Web Products & Services that you decide to sell. Since Reseller Service Providers operate on a wholesale model, you have the benefit to get superb pricing on all Web Services.
- Website : Once you’ve got yourself to a point where you have a few clients, it’s time to build yourself a website. This is essential so as to establish yourself as a serious professional, and present your business to the world. It helps create a memorable brand which makes it easier to advertise and be referred by existing clients. In addition, you can use your website to sell additional services like Security Certificates, Email Hosting Plans, Website Builder Plans and so on. In this case, becoming a Reseller offers an added advantage. You receive a Free Customizable Website which reduces the time & effort involved in building it yourself.
- Technical Support : One of the toughest aspects to deal with is Support for Web Services like Hosting. It is integral and often the most important factor that decides whether your client will love you or hate you. Your client is bound to face issues from time to time because of factors that aren’t in your hands (Example: Your Hosting Provider is experiencing a downtime). This reflects poorly on you, which is why, it’s imperative to select a good reputable service provider known for their service standards. Make sure you select a provider that offers 24X7 support throughout the year. If you’ve made the right choice, all you need to do is inform your
service provider about the problem that your customer is facing and let them handle the situation.
- Accepting Payments : Depending on the type of clients you deal with, offering an array of payment options is essential. Some clients prefer making an Offline Payment such as Cash, Cheque or Direct Transfer. In such a case, display your bank details on your website. Additionally, it would be beneficial to install payment gateways such as PayPal or CC Avenue on your website to offer the option of making a payment using their card. Obtaining this service on your own would have a really high set up cost involved. In this case, you should always check if your Web Services Provider has existing partnerships with Payment Gateways (which would lead to you saving a lot). Reseller Service Providers would easily be able to help you with this as they specialize in helping people set up such Enterprises.
- Sourcing your Business : I can offer a lot of advice, but you decide which idea suits you best and take it forward.
a) Target Niches – You could decide to specialize in one niche. For example, you could approach all the doctors in your city and offer to create websites for them. This helps you become proficient at creating one type of website.
b.) Freelance Portals – Like job portals, there are several websites devoted to helping Freelancers out. A few examples are odesk, elance, guru.com, scriptlance, ifreelance and so on.
By diligently following these sites, you should get a lot of interested clients.
c.) Marketing – Market your business using tools such as SEM and SEO, engage with people on forums and social networking sites, place ads in the classifieds section of your local newspaper. Spread the word!
- Create Partnerships : Never allow a potential client to slip out of your hands because you don’t offer something. Find people in the area who specialize in areas where you don’t, eg If you are a Web designer, you should have a tie-up with SEO and SEM experts. If a client comes to you for these services, you can have them do it and still earn a small percentage of the client. That way, you earn that little bit extra while making sure your client is happy.
- Stay Updated : Read blogs about the industry, sites that discuss new WordPress Themes, different trends in programming languages, design websites etc. Attend conferences as these are superb places to network and meet people that you can partner with.
Before Signing off, I would like to recommend ResellerClub as one of the ideal Reseller Web Service Providers that you could consider partnering with. Their reliable support and ton of features allow you to achieve everything we discussed above. You can Sign Up with them to get more details about their program.
Consider this if you are the kind of person who likes making their own decisions, making more money and being your own Boss. [Img Src : Getacoder.com]