Hiring a Freelance Designer: What Entrepreneurs Need to Know

Designing and developing a website or app is tedious work. It requires extensive knowledge of UX, design, and code. While hiring an in-house developer might seem like the best course of action, many small businesses cannot afford to employ such a developer full-time. Therefore, entrepreneurs should consider hiring an independent contractor or freelancer.

There are plenty of platforms on which you can find skilled app designers and developers. But what do you need to know in order to hire the right person for your job?

Here’s a primer on hiring a freelance designer or developer.

Know your business

As the saying goes: you have to know where you are to know where you’re going. Before you start the hunt for a web designer, you must first look at your own business. Who are you? What do you do? What sets you apart from the competition? The answer to these questions will dictate how you start your search.

Think of it this way: you’re selling yourself to a freelancer just as much as they’re selling themselves to you. In order to create a compelling partnership, you must present a knowledgeable, stable front.

Know where to look

Half the battle of hiring online talent is knowing where to look. Fortunately, you have plenty of options. Job boards, freelancing platforms, and even places like LinkedIn are great sources of talent. The key is to know which platforms are reliable and which aren’t.

When choosing a freelancing platform, do your research. Look up reviews of the platform and pay attention to what both punters and workers have to say about it. If a certain platform has a lot of negative press in designer circles, you can assume most reputable workers are steering clear – and you should too!

Know what you want

Hiring a professional is an easy decision when it comes to web development but that doesn’t mean you can hire blind. You have to know what your requirements are for the job. Are you building an app? An e-Commerce website? A landing page? Depending on your answer to these questions, your requirements for a web designer or developer will change.

Do some research into the product you’re looking to produce. What platform are you wanting to use to build it? What coding language is required? Will you need someone who knows UX as well? You may be able to do some of the work for yourself.  For example, consider trying an online logo maker yourself to eliminate the need to find, hire, oversee, and pay a freelancer to complete this relatively simple self-serve activity. This is something you can do in a matter of minutes, and your logo is an important part of branding your business.

What is the main function of your website? Will it manage a large amount of inventory? Will it integrate your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool with your Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system? Do you need a traditional ERP system or could you employ specific ERP features (e.g. advanced inventory tracking and management, assisted payroll, advanced pricing features, and advanced reporting) offered by business software to get the same benefits at a fraction of the cost?

Planning around the functionality of your website is crucial not only to your satisfaction with the site, but also to your customer’s overall satisfaction with your site and service offering.

Know your budget

In the world of web design and development, you get what you pay for. When looking to hire a web designer or developer, always keep this in mind.

Do some research into the going rates of the work you want done. Ballpark a figure and don’t be afraid to aim high. If a going rate for a developer seems too good to be true, odds are it very much is.

Go freelance

Hiring a freelance web designer is no walk in the park. You have to know your budget, your requirements, where to look, and more. Luckily, you now have these five tips up your sleeve to help you figure it out.