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One of the things I love about being a designer is the flexibility of potential income sources. Actually, I would recommend choosing only two or three and focus just on those. Ok, this one is pretty obvious, but there are a couple of important things here I wanted to mention.
However, working on your own is not for everyone and we all know the perks of being hired. A lot of companies can afford six-figure salaries for good designers. Designers are not just there to put a nice looking coat on the finished product anymore.
Design plays one of the main roles in every digital product development. If you find a really good company to work for check out hired. What else would you need to become a successful designer in the industry?
The downside is that you work for someone else and have to report to someone above you. A lot of designers value independence and complete freedom, which I totally understand. Custom projects for clients is probably the most common way how designers make money. It is very rewarding for sure and you can make good money quickly. It can help you to get a lot of experience as a designer and have an opportunity to work with different clients and teams on various projects.
Perhaps you can even hire a VA or a junior designer who can help you with all the small tasks. You can also make some extra money by referring work to other freelance designers or developers check out crew.
Otherwise, it might be pretty hard to scale it up while remaining a solo designer. Making money from selling your ebooks or courses is not that easy, though.
It takes a lot of time and effort to build your audience first. You have to establish your name in the community as an expert to gain credibility. Once you put all the pieces together and collect enough emails I launched my ebook with 4, subscribers , you can start thinking about making a product for sale.
Even then, you have to remember that teaching such a fast changing craft like web design is really hard. However, you have to think about teaching as a long term investment.
Every new article, every new tutorial, every new ebook you write will accumulate a certain number of followers and email subscribers over time. The amount of time you have to spend on making new products may be the same, but the profit will be much higher every time.
Teaching valuable skills might be your best way to bring people to you and build your own community. I know a lot of people say you can release a course on Udemy. However, this may not be as easy as it sounds. You will still have to promote your own course, because guess what, there are hundreds and thousands of people just like you.
I used to sell my own WordPress themes both through the Theme Forest market and later my own theme shop before I joined StudioPress. There is always a high demand for website templates.
Besides the website templates there are tons of other digital products you can make and sell like icons, illustrations, patterns, product mockups, textures, logos, stationery templates, wireframe kits, etc.
Whatever you use in your own work, there are probably thousands of designers that may need it too. Remember that customer support comes with selling any products. People may have questions on how to use it or something may not work as intended if they use older software.
Again, I would recommend to start building your own audience and selling your design materials through your own website. I personally buy a lot of design materials and stock photos from there. If you run your own website or a podcast about design, then selling advertising or joining affiliate programs can be another way to make some extra cash.
How to Be a Profitable Online Graphic Designer
Market only products that you really use and truly recommend. A single affiliate link here and there on your personal site can get you a couple of free dinners a month. Of course, consulting is also client work, but I wanted to give it a special place on my list.
They may already have a visually well-designed website, but they need to just make it better, get an opinion from someone from the outside, optimize for conversion or improve the user experience.
You can even productize your service to make the entire selling process easier for both you and your clients. As much as I love pushing pixels and the creative phase of working on projects, I think consulting is a great alternative to regular client work.
I love the fact that I can provide a lot of value for the client with less effort and in a shorter time. On the downside, you still have to take care of your own billing and administration. Remember that your authority will be the most important sales factor, so you have to work on your personal brand first.
If you love working on custom design projects for clients, go for it. If you hate working with clients, you may want to try teaching design and selling your own digital or physical products. I'm the Lead Designer at Rainmaker Digital. I teach how to make simple, smart, and effective designs that better connect websites to their audience.
Get access to my email newsletter and all of my exclusive design tools, assets, Genesis child themes and more. The Essential Web Design Handbook is a complete guide to designing simple websites from initial ideas to the final Photoshop project files. February 16, at One thing I would add would be merchandise aka e-commerce.
On demand printing is easy to set up… and any designer can make money either with their own brand or designing merchandise for other brands. When you sold themes on themeforrest, how much support did you offer? Been thinking about selling themes there but I do not think I could have worked with all the support issues that people would have created when they tried to change the theme files.
Were the themes done with a menu so users could indulge in all the worlds options in one place?
Or were they more bareboned? I just have to start uploading stuff, making preview images and writing the dreaded readme. Do you have any tips for how to best write a readme. With those questions out of the way. Great article, shows that even I have a multitude of ways to earn money even without clients. I just have to get and work towards it. February 16, at 3: YES … I get asked this question … A LOT.
February 16, at 9: February 17, at 6: April 6, at 5: Your email address will not be published. Powered by the Rainmaker Platform. I may be an affiliate for products that I recommend.
How To Make Money Online With Graphic Design - Geek
If you purchase those items through my links I will earn a commission. You will not pay more when buying a product through my link.
8 Ways to Earn Passive Income as a Graphic Designer
In fact, I oftentimes am able to negotiate a lower rate or bonuses not available elsewhere. Plus, when you order through my link, it helps me to continue to offer you lots of free stuff. Thank you, in advance for your support! Rafal Tomal Web Designer and Genesis Developer. Design Tools Ebook Blog Log in About Contact Menu. Join Over 20, Designers and Get Free Access to My Design Tools Designers Area is a free membership where you can get access to my email newsletter and all of my exclusive design tools, assets and Genesis child themes.
Get Free Access Now. You might also like Join Over 20, Designers and Get My Free Design Tools Get access to my email newsletter and all of my exclusive design tools, assets, Genesis child themes and more.
Learn to Design Beautiful and Simple Websites using my simple and proven methods. Comments Malaika Rubin says February 16, at Thank you Rafal Tomal. Really nice article and useful information you shared. Thank you for sharing. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published.