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Step by step to become a freelance designer

Are you creative, full of energy and have a trained eye for design? Good prerequisites for freelance designers. Let's go? It's not that easy. Nearly.

Get started creatively

Choose your design focus.

Let your creative ideas run wild if you want to turn your design eye and your sense of beautiful things into a profession. As a freelancer in the design field, it is important to find your own niche and build your portfolio based on that in order to stand out from all the art directors and graphic designers. To do this, start with the selection of design services that you would like to offer. This includes, for example, the design of logos, flyers, websites or apps.

Workplace and tools

Set up a workspace that meets your business needs.

An office or desk is required as a freelance designer. Of course, if you're the right type for it, you can work from any café that has WiFi. Various design tools such as sketch, Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign.

What about tools for time and self-management? Here we have something:Freework. The mobile-first platform with time recording, invoicing and tools for client management. Freework was developed for freelancers from all areas and is therefore also relevant for designers. Philipp, freelance designer from Munich, uses Freework for his daily work and integrates the app into his workflow. Check out his story here:

Set prices

Create a pricing strategy.

Set your prices based on your skills and experience. Do you want to be paid by the hour, per day or per project? Stay competitive, but don't sell yourself short. Many designers charge an hourly rate for smaller projects and a flat rate for larger projects. Remember, design work can be tedious and time-consuming. Also consider things like project size and design requirements before determining the cost of your service.

Acquire customers

Build a customer base.

Design work is required by virtually every business and organization. Every company needs a strong logo and a website that, at best, is even more beautiful and optimized than the others. Start with projects for friends, family members, and smaller local businesses. With every further job you can gain new experience and expand your own portfolio. If you prove yourself, customers will stay with you. In the best case scenario, personal, yet professional relationships are created with customers who trust in you and your work. Job portals like Upwork, Fiverr or Freelancer can help you a little when searching for and finding your first jobs.

Reliability and communication

Communication is key

Did you land your first job? Awesome. Always make sure that you always meet all agreed deadlines and deliver at the agreed rates: Reliability is particularly important at the beginning - you first have to prove yourself as a beginner, then you will be forgiven for any mistakes. Professional, friendly and clear communication is of great importance for good cooperation. So get in touch with your customer quickly as soon as changes occur, such as higher total costs or increasing time required for a task.


Create invoices and get paid.

Signed, sealed delivered and project completed? Billing time! Freework simplifies this last but important step at the end of a project. Your invoices are generated automatically based on your time tracking and your fixed hourly, daily or project rate. With a click on "Send" it will soon be: Pay Day!