I have a passion for web design, and I want to start a business to get my name out there. The problem is, I'm not really sure how it works. I have a few simple questions:
How should people go about hiring me?
What should I ask the people who hire me?
How much should I charge, since I'm a beginner?
When I've finished working on their website, how would I "give" it to them?
And also, some other tips would be nice. I really want to get this going. Thanks!
How should people go about hiring me?Have a portfolio site w/ contact info. Make an account on odesk or any other sites you can post a resume. If you have past clients/contacts, consider asking for a referral if you have a good relationship with them. Tell your friends to keep their ears open, give them some cards to hand out if they meet someone.
What should I ask the people who hireAs far as flushing out requirements? Pretty much everything. What kind of time frame they were thinking of. What does their budget look like? That will help you determine what you can accomplish in a given time, and how much time you can spend on each aspect, etc. Figure out if its a simple static site or a database driven site. They'll probably tell you most of what they want, but ask anything you can think of to flush out anything they may have overlooked.
How much should I charge, since I'm aDo you have a portfolio? That helps leverage yourself and is your best marketing tool next to referrals. I've had jobs as low as $15 an hour when I was a student/beginner. People I know started out around 30/35 when they were in college. Whatever you charge, it needs to be enough to be worth your time. If you feel you're not being compensated fairly, you'll deliver a lower quality product and likely drag your feet.
When I've finished working on theirCreate a Letter of Intent/Agreement to state what services you are providing. Usually the client will provide a server/hosting account that the site can be built/launched on. Figure it out before you build the site with the client.
website, how would I "give" it to
Personally free websites have only gotten me into trouble. When you commit, free or not, people still expect you to do 110%. Favors seem to just get me into trouble, so I don't do favors anymore.
Always charge 50% before starting the project, then the other 50% before releasing the final product. If you can do that, then you willn't go through the growing pains of 75% of freelancers in this industry.
Plan on spending a week on each website and charging a reasonable rate that will allow you to pay your bills and buy some food for the family.
But most of all, don't quit your day job.
my advice for you is to go free on a few projects to get your portfolio on its feets, once you have live websites with satisfied customers they will spread the word about you and your services.
I am statrting in the same business, and this is the only marketing tool that worked for me. I did my first project in exchange of a service, I was paid $99 for the second one and $150 for the third.. but I have generated leads from these tiny projecs and I am working right now on bigger ones