The things you wanted to know about WordPress as a designer-entrepreneur, but didn’t know who to ask

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Okay, the headline does look a little BuzzFeed-ish, I give you that, so let’s just get the record straight before we get going. This post won’t be about things like: “You need to build a Twitter following or your business will fail!” nor ”Make sure to use H1 tags on your site to get it discovered through SEO.” No. We all know stuff like that, so there’s no point talking about it any longer. I’m pretty sure that thousands of other posts on

5 More ways to not get cheated by your design clients

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Here’s an idea: people – including clients – are generally not bad, bitter, or overall evil. It’s just the circumstance that sometimes result in us – the freelancers – getting screwed during the process. I really believe this is true, and that there’s just a small number of genuinely crappy people out there who go into a business project with pure intention of screwing the other party. And unfortunately, there’s hardly any protection from those people. I mean, if someone

5 Pro tips for working with clients who know NOTHING about websites

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Every once in a while, we all come across a client who knows nothing about websites and has never even owned one. And although this introduces some unique challenges, we still want to help, right? However, if we decide to take on such a project, it will force us to put in some extra effort. Well, at least if we want to make it successful on both ends (ours and the client’s). So here’s a possible strategy on how to

How not to get cheated by your design clients

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Well that’s an odd headline, isn’t it? Calling out the almighty clients like that? Don’t get me wrong, I’d much rather live in a world where every project reaches its completion and no party gets the short end of the stick at the end of it. But unfortunately, this doesn’t always happen, so we should probably think the possible scenarios through and find some ways to protect ourselves from the ugly. Here’s how to make yourself un-cheat-able. 1. Have a

What to do if you’re always “busy” but never “productive” as a freelancer

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Let me bring you up to speed on something. You won’t enjoy it, but here it goes anyway: People close to you literally hate it when you say, “I can’t. I’m too busy.” That’s a fact. And don’t get me wrong, they may say that they understand, that they know what your work is about.  But deep down inside they’re thinking, “Damn it, I have a job too, yet somehow I can spare those couple of hours in the evening

How spying on your competition leads to bigger and better freelance gigs

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Here’s a quiz question for you: How do you grow your business exponentially? Do you: (a) try figuring things out on your own as you go along and improve one step at a time, or (b) spy on people, stealing their processes and adapting them to your business? I guess you can figure out where I’m going with it. Of course, (b) is the right answer. *** This is part three of a three-part miniseries on how to get started

Why you should “think big” but “start small” on your business

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Without a shadow of a doubt, finding a consistent stream of new clients is the main challenge for most freelance designers, and actually most freelancers in general, for that matter. I guess you’d like to land a deal from Coca-Cola or Chrysler to redesign their whole online presence right during your first month on the job, wouldn’t you? That would be great indeed. But as you’d imagine, it’s not very possible. And that’s a good thing because you probably wouldn’t

Rocking your first year as a freelance designer (Months 1 & 2)

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Honest thought: I love fresh pieces of online advice just as much as the next guy. Especially if they’re about business. Especially if they’re actionable. There’s no rose without a thorn, though, and much of the stuff you can find out there is aimed at folks that already have their systems set in place. For instance, if I have a good working machine for getting freelance design leads then any tip on how to make it more efficient is gold to me! But

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