A few weeks ago, while attending my local meetup, a quiet discussion was struck up by two free lance web designer about finding the “right project”.  One designer stress the need to get paid. The right project was based on how much he was getting paid.  It did not matter, if the client needed the project or not.  Money!  Money was the main ingredient for the right project.  The other one stress a client, which they had a connection.  She was very interested in Senior Placement Living.  These were her ideal project.  When questioned about how much, was she charging, it was not a huge issue or concern.  She was just happy to work and create web sites for senior citizens.  So what is my best ways to pick the Right Project?

Does the client sound realistic?

When you are discussing the project with the prospective, does the client have a vision?  What goals and objectives does the client have?  Where does the client see their organization in three years…in five years.  Who is the client’s competitors?  What difference does the client’s organization have over their competitors?

Who is the client’s target audience?  Who is an ideal customer?  If you client has the answers to these questions, then their is an investment in the organization.  The client must know the ins and outs of their industry and have a plan to succeed.

What is involved in the project?

After you have a consultation conversation, look at your notes.  Make sure you are able to create the features and functionality needed for a successful project.  If you need to practice on some of the features and functionality, well set up a demo site.  Work on making sure you can develop all the features and functionality.

Sometimes, you might need to bring someone on board.  Someone, who is more knowledgeable about certain plugins and themes.  You need to keep learning about your craft.  If you are not working on a project, then you need to keep working on the skills.  Read.  Practice. Learn. The one fundamental practice of all successful free lance web designer is we believing in constantly learning, and developing our skills.

When can you complete the project?

Use the application, Asana.  This is a project management tool.  You can set up and keep your client’s involved in all the stages of the project. Make sure to let the prospective know about your process.  Check to see if this is an important element for the client.  It should be.  Show me a client not interested in what you are doing, and I can show you a bad client.  Communication is the key to making sure that you are selecting the right project.

Make sure everything is written down. When you can expect payment.  When you will forward the deliverable to the client. In short, when can you complete the project. Never over promise, but always over provided.

Choose Wisely

Never choose a project based on price.  Some of the worst mistakes occur, because the free lance web designer only takes projects which cost this or that.  Never choose a project which can hurts your lively hood.  Why would you invoice a client a couple of hundred dollars, and the cost of the project is over a couple of hundred dollars.

The other day at one of my local meetups.  A fellow hobbyist was having some issues with his Divi site.   He was trying to incorporate a member’s section.  After providing several plugins, he was at a lost. We discussed Restrict Content Pro. We discussed MemberPress. He quietly told me that this was a pro bono site.  He did not have the money for the membership plugin.  There are several free versions, but neither of them would allow him (without a lot of customization) to successfully finish his project.  My advised was to ask his client to purchase the plugins.

You have to choose wisely.  Remember picking the right project is about establishing a good relationship between you and your prospective client.

Image courtesy of Jose Aljovin.


JDS WebDesign is a Web Design and Brand Marketing Agency located in Marietta, Georgia.  We create AWESOME on line presence for Start-ups and Influential People/Organizations.  To learn more about us or how we can help you and your organization, you can contact us.