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How to start a design business

Article provided by 1-grid

Starting a web design business is no easy feat, but the rewards outweigh the risks. Having your own business affords you the freedom to work your own hours, having control of your destiny, plus the freedom to earn as much money as you want. Knowing where and how to start is always the tricky and often hardest part. We’re here to give you a few tips on a good point of departure and a few factors to consider when starting a web design business from home. 

What are the benefits of starting your own web design agency?

The benefits of starting your own web design business are;

  • You can do it from home or anywhere in the world
  • The internet is vast, and there will always be new websites to design
  • The scalability of a web design company is unmatched; you can easily scale and grow to include a host of other services

Where do you start your web design business?

A good place to start with any business is being passionate about the industry, and an eagerness to learn. If you want to have a web design agency, the natural thing is to be fluent in web design.

How to be a good web designer?

Web designers combine visual design, UX (user experience), design software and knowledge of coding languages to bring a website vision to life. You don’t have to study to be a web designer, but you do need to have a natural interest in web designing, plus you can do free online web design courses and do thorough research and acquire the necessary skills.

The skills you need to be a web designer are:

  • Understand the principles of visual design
  • Knowledge of responsive design
  • User interface
  • Proficiency in design software
  • Knowledge of coding languages
  • Basic SEO knowledge
  • Business or client management

How do I start a web design business?

Formulate a business plan: A business plan is a roadmap for your business – no business should be without a business plan. It is subject to amendments, but it’s crucial to have an outline.

  • Decide on the services you will offer: Consider your product offering and at what your prices are going to be.
  • Register your business: In South Africa, businesses need to be registered with CIPC, and 1-grid has a seamless online registration process at your disposal.
  • Establish an online presence: Work on your online presence; invest in your website SEO and social media marketing to get your company’s name out there. 
  • Have a high speed and reliable internet connection: A good internet connection is essential for you to be able to run your business effectively.
  • Get the software and hardware right: Get a reliable computer and look into getting VPS hosting because shared hosting is not a long-term solution if you’ll be designing and hosting a large number of websites. 
  • Market your business: A cohesive marketing strategy will put your company on the map.

Getting your business set up is the first challenge, but a bigger one awaits: finding and retaining clients. Online visibility, social media and customer satisfaction will be the determining factor in the success of your business. Ensure that your website ranks organically and that your social media accounts continually engage with customers. Another crucial factor, in your success, will be customer reviews. Always ask for customer feedback plus work to strengthen weaknesses and keep improving.

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