When you design a particular site, it’s not just about the entire design process; you also have to deal with clients, develop a skill in time management, and learn how to channel your stress (yes, it can be very stressful at times).
Truth is, there’s so much that comes with running a web design business. You have to learn how to run an enjoyable and profitable business that won’t drive you crazy and take over your life.
Below are some of the things most Web Designers in London recommend that will lead to a more sustainable and less stressful creative business:
1. Start organizing your files
You may think that taking a ton of screenshot and saving it in your desktop will make you remember things, but it won’t. If anything, it will just mess up your desktop and you’ll then be flooded with random screenshots here and there.
The solution? Having a system for all your files. Not a lot of web designers use this technique, and that makes them forget where certain files are. It may seem like a minor issue, but things like these can cost you a client. Taking time to organize your computer files will help you speed up your work flow. You don’t even have to do it everyday; just schedule a certain time once a week and you’re good to go.
2. Systematize your design process
This should be a no-brainer, but surprisingly, it’s the one area of business that most designers neglect to do. Most web designers go straight to editorial calendars and social media schedulers – but streamlining your design process comes above all those things.
Here’s a tip: spend around 30 minutes to write down your entire design process; starting from the initial inquiry right through the moment where you and your client part ways and ask yourself these questions:
i. What could be reinforced?
ii. Are there holes in the design process?
iii. What could be changed to simplify the procedure?
iv. What steps could be merged to lessen the whole process?
3. Utilize a project management tool
If you’re still starting out as a freelance designer, you may think that managing all your clients through emails is okay. It may be at first, but sooner or later you’ll come to realize just how chaotic it can be.
Here’s a piece of reality for you: can you manage to go about hundreds of emails along dozens of threads every time? Can you remember where certain information were sent? Are you sure you didn’t miss anything? Just thinking about it makes you stressed out, right?
Chances are, you and your client will both be confused. It will be difficult to find something your client said over a week ago, and organizing their log-in info can also be incredibly hard. Worst of all, it will make you look unprofessional. Now, you surely wouldn’t take that risk, would you?
If you want your clients to see you as the pro that you really are, you will need to utilize a project management tool to seamlessly organize all the things you need. With Project Management tools, you and your client can store all files, communication, login details, and notes in one organized place. Now that’s convenient!
4. Set-up an inbox system
Sometimes, organizing your inbox seems feel like you’re doing a work out – but for your brain.
There are two solutions to this problem: you can either get a convenient plugin tool, or you can go the plain and easy route and use the built-in features that Gmail has to get you organized. If you don’t already know, Gmail allows you to use labels, folders, and stars to prioritize your emails.
5. Client Relationship Management Tool
A lot of web designers forget to do this one crucial thing that can really boost their business: web design London client follow-up.
When you forget to follow up with your past clients and see if they need more work, you’re certainly missing a lot! If your precious clients liked your service, they will likely say yes and hire you again. That’s why client follow-up is very very important.
However, remembering this on your own sometimes be difficult. After all, trying to grow your business while having to accomplish all ongoing tasks is hard to balance. The solution to that is to use a Client Relationship Management tool to either inform you from time to time, or automate the process completely.
6. Start delegating tasks
When people are advised to hire an assistant and outsource, the idea of paying someone else always come to mind. The initial reaction would be to decline as you can’t possibly afford to pay another person. But then again, if your goal is to scale and grow your business, you eventually need to outsource and start delegating tasks; this allows you to focus more on other important things for your brand.
The best way of being productive and getting as much done as possible with the limited time that you have, is to seamlessly organize things. Use these tips and start growing your online business now!