As a web designer, you have a creative mind, meaning you’re able to think outside the box and see things creatively that the average person wouldn’t see. In that same token, you’re also very tech-savvy and are able to understand and process the workings of the digital world.
You put those things together, and you have one talented web designer! It would just be nice if your clients would recognize that and put that into perspective sometimes when making their demands, right?
Of course, it would be nice! Can you imagine working as a web designer, being paid very well by all your clients with no hiccups? Or try imagining working as a web designer where you have the budget to do whatever your creative mind leads you to do and the clients totally trust your creative judgment and let you have the last say-so in the final design. Now picture all of that with the bonus of all your clients being easy to work with… sounds like a dream come true, right?
As a web designer, you’ll get one or the other… rarely will you get all of that at the same time. But that’s okay… it comes with the job. Being a web designer isn’t easy, if you really think about it. A web designer has the talent of being able to take an idea that someone has in their head and bring it to life. A client will sometimes have a sketch of how they want a design to look but then, a lot of them don’t and those clients have a hard time even putting into words what they want their design to even look like.
If you’re able to take clients’ ideas (good and bad ones) and bring them to life, then kudos to you! With talent like that, you’ll want to hire a digital marketing firm to get your name out there to establish your brand. You may do great freelance work but when you have a really good track record of satisfied clients, it’s time to really make a name for yourself but in doing so, you’ll need to understand that the more clients you have, the more challenges you’ll face too.
Web Designers Today
If you’re new to the world of web design, then it’s important that you know that web design used to be about making something look pretty and appealing to the eye. Today, web design is all about creating designs that will make your clients’ customers happy, which will, in turn, make your clients happy. But if the client isn’t happy, then life is going to get rough.
Now, with any job, you’re going to experience stress and face challenges… it just comes with working a job where you have clients, especially if you’re a freelancer. According to the Freelancers Union, there is such a thing called freelancer burnout. It’s understandable that you’re not always going to come up with designs that they like off the top and it’s understandable that you’re going to get frustrated with yourself and with your clients but again, everyone experiences that on-the-job stress but regardless, you have to keep pushing because web design is life and any other job just wouldn’t be worth it for you. Take a look at some of the biggest challenges web designers face with clients on a daily basis.
Your clients aren’t very clear on their instructions and what they really want from your design
“I just want it to pop and wow my customers!” That is a typical statement from a client describing what they want in their design from you… very frustrating at times. The frustrating part about it is that your idea of making something “pop” can be very different from what the client is looking for. That statement is the equivalent of Charlie Brown’s teacher talking… “wah whaaah wah wah!”
To get a better idea of how to meet your client’s expectations, give them a short questionnaire. You can have them list four or five sites that they think have the look and set up they like. Also ask them to list four or five sites they think don’t look good. This will help you have a better idea of what they’re looking for and will save you from having to make several revisions later on down the line.
Your clients don’t have a realistic budget or no budget at all
A potential client might contact you and you converse back and forth with them. Now it’s time to talk numbers… You ask them if they have a budget in mind and what do they say? “No not really, how much do you charge?” When you tell them your price, they ALWAYS say that it’s a pretty steep price. That statement lets you know that they indeed do have a budget, it’s just that your pricing wasn’t in their budget. Finances are definitely one of the biggest challenges web designers face with clients; you just never know when a paycheck will come.
Your clients expect you to have their project done within an unrealistic deadline
Clients are so funny sometimes, aren’t they? They will tell you they need three complete websites for a major corporation and expect you to get them all done in two weeks! Okay, that might have been over-exaggerated a little bit but you get the point… clients don’t have realistic expectations for your work. They think all you do is peck away at a laptop and can get it done overnight, and that’s where they go terribly wrong.
Web design is a process that takes lots of planning and continued communication to make sure the design is going in the right direction. Before taking on a client, you have to be very clear upfront on your expectations from them as well. They need to clearly understand the amount of time it takes you to do certain projects, how you work, and possible things that could cause a delay, so they’ll be prepared for any scenario.