The power of graphics to engage and catch audiences’ attention to a brand has resulted in high demand for freelance graphic designers. Most start-ups and small businesses realize this need to have engaging graphics on their site and social media handles but fail to act on it. Reason? The high-cost factor. Good designers come at a high price and not every freelance graphics designer is worth every penny spent. So, how do you find quality freelance graphic designers who can help you get the designs you are looking for at a price you are comfortable with? Let us help you with that 🙂
How to Get Quality Designs from Freelance Graphic Designers
1. Define What You Need
This is the most important step in the entire process. Yes, you read that right. The most important step is not getting the right freelance graphic designer, rather, it is understanding what you are looking for.
Most people go about the process the other way around – finding the freelance graphic designer first and then expecting the professional to give them something they like. No wonder so many projects fail or at the very least leave a bad taste in the mouth for both the client and the freelancer.
The reason this is the most important step is that each of us has different design sensibilities. Few of us like pop art with vivid, vibrant geometric designs, while our friends might like muted floral patterns. Some might prefer bold colours like red, yellow, black, while someone else might prefer pastel shades.
In other words, design preferences are different for each of us.
To begin the process of finding a freelance designer at a great price, start by defining what you need and how you want it to look.
Do you need a logo, a hoarding, a brochure, a pamphlet, a website, a banner, or a magazine cover? Each of these and other marketing and branding collaterals have their own unique requirements.
For example, if you need a logo, you need to start by looking at some examples of great logo designs that you have liked. Understand what that logo stands for and what does it convey. Now think of how do you want your logo to look like, what thoughts do you want it to convey to the audience? Should it be a graphical representation of the company name or a stand-alone design that personifies the brand by itself? Do you want a tagline at the bottom?
Putting these thoughts down on paper will help you define and then redefine what you are looking for. As we said, each design has its own unique requirements. For example, the audience you target is a key requirement for something like a brochure. Whether you hand it out when you visit the client in person or share it with visitors at a fair will have a big say in the design.
Once you know what you want, it’s time to start looking for freelance graphic designers.
2. Take a Look at their Portfolio
It is important for you to look at a graphic designer’s portfolio to understand their expertise levels. The type of work they have done, the finer elements of their work needs to be given special attention.
It is important that you spend some time here. Each graphic design portfolio will have its own story. Some may have been put up just to show the graphics designer’s abilities while some may be the work they have done for other clients. Also, remember that getting to a design is a progressive journey. The first drafts are refined to get to a good second draft and then refined a bit more to get to a final product.
Also, in case of work done for a client, the work you like may have been refined due to the customer having a look at the graphic designer’s portfolio and work and proposing changes. As such, it is good to look at the sample work created simply for the portfolio, as they show the real abilities of the designer.
3. Understand their style
Each professional has his own creative design identity and style quotient. Some of you may like it and some of you may not. It is better to shortlist a designer whose work leaps out to you from the portfolio rather than someone you think (and feel) has done just ‘okay’ work.
Though it is true that with a good brief, any designer will be able to curate various types of creative designs, it also helps if your design sensibilities gel with that of the freelance graphic designer. This way you will be able to communicate better and the professional will understand what you are talking about right from the word go.
4. Find out their expertise
Most graphical designers will have some graphical software expertise like CorelDraw, Photoshop, Illustrator, Xara, Maya, AutoCAD, etc. Each of these is for different uses.
Someone with an expertise of Maya will be great for 3D modeling but perhaps not that adept in Photoshop or CorelDraw which are the standard industry software for graphic design. Similarly, someone with AutoCAD expertise will be great with architectural designs and perhaps not with 2D graphics design.
But these are suppositions as most freelancers try to stick to a few software only as it given them more expertise rather than trying to become good at all of them and not quite succeeding. If you happen to come across a person who does great work and has expertise in multiple software, then you may have found the perfect designer for yourself.
You can also read: 5 Reasons Why You Should Hire a Professional Logo Designer
5. Talk to them (in Detail)
After you have seen the portfolio, it is time to talk to the designers. Tell them at length about what you want. See if they have done something similar in the past. If they have, then nothing like it.
Also, ask about important matters such as what type of designs they are really good at. Most freelancers prefer to focus on certain types of designs. For example, some may only do logos and visiting cards or website UI design while others do only brochure designs. A graphics designer who only does print design work may not be great for creating logos. Similarly, someone who designs website UIs may not be willing to do brochure designs. Consequently, it is important that you know what kind of work they specialize in.
The designer should also pass the rights of the work to you. Once delivered, you should have absolute rights to do any changes to the design as you deem fit. Remember to clarify this point with the freelancer.
6. Discuss Prices
It is important that you discuss prices. Most freelancers will be able to give you a costing that is within your budget. A freelance graphic designer may be willing to give you discounted prices if the work is certain and you plan to engage them on a long-term basis.
An important point to note here, as you well know, brilliance comes at a higher price. If you want nothing but the best, then you have to pay for it. The best designers are not cheap. As such, it is sensible not to bargain too much if the work is substantial or requires a deep thinking process. Bargaining for lowest possible prices ought to be avoided. Most people forget that when they discuss prices with professionals, they are not buying vegetables but rather buying something that will help them build a brand and even help them earn lakhs and crores in the long run.
Nevertheless, if you want a lower cost than what most designers quote, then the steps above will help you get the best designers within your budget.
7. Define Timelines
The final point is an important one. The best designers are always busy. If you have a short deadline, then it makes sense to clear out your deadlines with your freelance graphic designer and see how soon they can do your work. Be specific about your deadlines so that the work is delivered to you well in time.
UrbanClap Helps you find the Best Graphic Designers.
We have over 5000 graphic designers listed on our platform. You have the flexibility to choose from a wide range of graphic designers who are highly qualified and have amazing work portfolios.
The best part about Urban Company is the affordability. You can hire the best designers at great rates and be sure about the quality of their work. You can discuss with them the scope of the project and your end expectation and then go ahead with the project.
You can also read : Importance of Graphic Design in New Age Media