The Modern Challenges of Starting an Independent Web Design Business

My career as a freelance web designer began in 1999. In those days, web was an older medium. Most businesses had just started having an online presence (if any). And websites were generally simpler in terms of the technologies they used.

Fast forward to today, and evolution is amazing. While knowledge of CSS and HTML is still a requirement, every other aspect of the job seems to have become more complex. In addition, the market is saturated with competition.

For those looking to start a freelance web design business, the level of difficulty has never been higher. But the appeal of freelancers has not diminished. Designers are still looking forward to the many benefits and freedoms that come with realizing the finish.

As a new volunteer, how can you be successful today? Let’s look at the challenges ahead and how to successfully meet them.

Client Expectations Are High

In the earliest days of the web, having a website was not enough for many clients. That is not true today.

Clients are smarter on the web than ever before. They have become accustomed to shopping on Amazon and navigating on various web applications (banking, social media, etc.). So, they often have a better understanding of the look and functionality they need for their website.

That is not to say that they need to understand what it takes to do the job. Their expectations further reflect what the industry giants are doing. Good or bad, people want what others have.

As a volunteer, part of your job is to understand the needs of the project. From there, you will need to articulate the pros and cons, as well as the best methods for its implementation. This is an area where you are likely to spend a lot of time, making project estimates more difficult.

How to Successfully Challenge
Often, communication is the key to success in terms of client expectations. Give a realistic view of what the project requires and how much it will cost.

It’s also fair to point out any questions you may have that are predicted. For example, if an expensive feature does not provide much benefit, it is worth taking the time to explain why. In addition, there may be negative consequences for accessibility that need to be addressed.

This lays a solid foundation for the project and accomplishes two things: It builds trust and helps manage expectations.

Extremely Competitive Market

An organization looking to build a website has more options than ever before. There are a significant number of volunteers or agencies to choose from. And if geography isn’t a concern, the possibilities could be global.

Then there are a variety of DIY website building products. These providers offer turnkey solutions that do not require web design expertise. Simple websites can be built with little effort, although the quality of the finished product can vary. However, these solutions may be suitable for those on a limited budget.

If you are just entering the industry, the competition can feel overwhelming. It’s hard to stand out in a crowded market for the industry’s seniors – let alone newcomers.

How to Successfully Challenge
This is where specialization comes in handy. It does not apply to booking each project – the right heads. You do not have to cover every inch of the market. Instead, pile up your own little corner of it.

This requires a more targeted approach. Find the types of clients and projects you are interested in, then market yourself accordingly.

However, it is worth noting that this is a long-term process. So no need to panic if you are not sure what your niche will be. The more experience you gain, the more likely you are to discover the path you want to take.

A crowded path.

Websites are Increasingly Complex

Back in the day, newly ministered volunteers used to start with small, low-cost projects. It’s a great way to fill your portfolio before moving on to bigger and better things. This may not be as viable now, thanks to the increasing complexity of how websites are built.

There are even smaller projects. But it is becoming increasingly difficult to find ones that will turn a profit and provide such a valuable experience. Instead of digging into custom code, you are more likely to spend time tweaking WordPress theme settings and some plugins.

The rest of the equation in the number of technologies in use is deceptive. Content management systems (CMS), static site generators, and JavaScript frameworks seem to be growing on trees these days. Every time you turn around, you feel pressured to learn and adapt.

As an individual volunteer, you only have so much time to dedicate to learning. That is if you really want to make a career in web design. Keeping up with trends is an ongoing battle.

How to Successfully Challenge
The fact of the matter is that you do not have to know everything. And you certainly do not have to learn all your skills at once. It is an ongoing process.

This is another area where specialization pays off. Choose a handful of technologies that interest you (even better if they help you make money). Learn the basics and add to your knowledge as your career progresses.

In addition, you will have the opportunity to evolve. You may find new tools and techniques that will allow you to continue to grow.

Design concept posters on a wall.

How to Address Today’s Web Challenges

The landscape of the web design industry has changed significantly. So, the challenges of starting an independent business have also increased.

Volunteers are entering a mature market, rather than a growing market. Client expectations are higher than ever. Experienced designers and developers, as well as DIY website builders, provide more intense competition. And the technologies involved are huge and increasingly complex.

While it may be scary, these are challenges you can face right. The key is to pay attention to the details and plan for where you want to go.

There will inevitably be ups and downs. But he is still able to build a successful independent web design career.

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By LocalBizWebsiteDesign

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