May 8, 2010 Off

Common Mistakes Designers Make for Winning Over Clients

By in Design, Web Design

Winning over clients is about half the battle when it comes to web design. Of course, without them, we don’t have much of a career at all. Even the best freelancer, company, or web designer can try to get a hold of a client, and only be successful about 10% of the time. However, there are many designers that may have worse luck when it comes to clients. What happens when you’re not getting any responses? Are you doing something wrong?

Clients do pick and choose according to certain criteria, especially if they have a lot of applications to go through. So how can you make sure you increase your chances of winning them over? That’s exactly what this post is about. In this post we’ll go over a few application tips for finding the right client, and for how to win the job.

1. Make Sure You Meet the Requirements

Especially when there are many applicants to one web design job, not having all the requirements for the job is enough for the client to delete your request without a second glance.

Read the job description thoroughly before applying. If you meet most of the requirements, that’s still not enough. Applying will likely just waste your time, because you must meet them all. Spend your time and effort on jobs where the client can see that you can do it.

2. Have a Resume

Resumes are indeed not required for many online jobs, especially when it’s just on a contract basis. However, whether it’s required or not, resume’s make you look like a professional. Plus, they are an easy and organized way to show off your accomplishments. Just like when applying for a salaried job, a resume is where you can brag as much as you need to so you can win over the client.

Also make sure the resume is designer-worthy. Cheesy resume templates and terrible typography are fine for another field. When design is your specialty, show off that you know better. Design a letterhead for the resume yourself; use great type, spacing, headings, etc.

3. Show Some Personality

In a cover letter or application content, show off your personality. Don’t copy and paste your ‘best pitch’ in a bunch of jobs and expect to get a response. Individually reviewing and applying to each job makes a world of difference. You can then show that you understand the project, the client’s problem, and display what kind of personality you’d be like to work with.

4. Use A Proper Proposal

Write a professional proposal for any job you’re applying for. Especially do this if it is a bigger job. It can also help to give a detailed quote so the client can compare prices, and see how you break your prices down. The clearer you are about how you’re going to solve the client’s problem, the more likely they’ll be sold.

Plus, using a professional system like this will definitely weed you out from all of the amateurs trying to apply. This is a great way to at least get a second look at your application.

5. Choose the Right Length

When a client has a list of applicants to search through, they don’t want to read through an entire essay on why you’re the best choice. At the same time, they don’t want to read through an application that’s so vague their unsure of whether to get back to you or not.

Make sure to choose an appropriate application size. A few paragraphs are usually enough, on top of a list of your examples/best work. If there is more information, attach it separately as the proposal, quote, resume, or whatever other documents.

About: Kayla Knight:
Hello, my name is Kayla Knight, and I am a web designer and developer based in Iowa, Usa. I focus on user-centric, beautiful, simple, and functional web design. You can check out my portfolio here: KaylaKnight.com.

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