11 Free must-have WordPress plugins that make client customizations super simple

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WordPress plugins

Fellow WordPress designers and developers: Doesn’t it just make your day (week) when you find the handiest new plugin?* Something vetted by someone who has used it before. Something that wraps up a handful of hacked-together plugins into one sweet bundle. Something that will improve your efficiency and speed on at least 3 of your clients’ websites just off the top of your head. *Not sure what all this plugin-talk means for you? Check out this post and this post

An awesome referral-generating email template to send your clients…right now!

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stencil

Asking for referrals can be pretty nerve-wracking. The good news: If you do it right, you only have to do it once (per client). That’s the biggest value this post has to offer you. It gives you a process that you can follow to get referrals…but it also gives your clients a process to follow to refer people to you in the future. I hate to use the word “training,” but essentially that’s what you’re doing: conditioning your clients to

What NOT to say when promoting your freelance business on social media

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oops

Social Media is notorious for being a hotbed for overly honest confessions, offensive rants, and embarrassing photos you don’t want your employer seeing. To an extent, that’s expected for one’s personal page; it is yours to share what you want. However, when it comes to promoting a business, everything changes. Embarrassing photos become financially harmful, as do unpopular opinions or irrelevant speeches. Even the most innocuous sentiments can be hazardous, such as the case when LeBron James expressed frustration over

What I do when a web design client doesn’t pay me

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free-feeling

When it comes to getting paid, we run a pretty tight ship here at Web123, but it wasn’t always beer and skittles. A few years ago our Debtors used to always be sitting at $120,000+ outstanding. It felt like we were just being used as a bank by a lot of clients and it sucked. Some weeks we could barely pay wages having to beg on both knees for a temporary overdraft just to scrape by (on bloodied knees and

7 Signs you’re approaching business burnout & how to save yourself before it’s too late

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signs your approaching business burnout

So the honeymoon phase is over with your design business huh? Me too. I’ve been running my own business for more than five years and a few months ago, this truth really began to hit me hard: A job where you work for yourself eventually becomes (gasp) a job. 1. You don’t feel creative anymore. One of the fastest ways to know you’re approaching business burnout is to take note of your creativity levels. Do you feel like you have

How to raise your rates without ticking off your clients

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euros-and-dollars

Raising rates can be done in two ways: Rip off the band-aid. Say, “To hell with it!” and raise them now, without warning (or with warning), and let the pieces fall where they may. 2) With the method outlined in this post (recommended if you like financial stability). But I’d like to dig a bit deeper in this article and go back to the “why” of changing prices, because it frames the whole thing differently depending on your answer. So,

Back to the cubicle?! 6 Reasons to work in-house (at least part-time)

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work in-house

A design manager recently told me that he has a hard time finding good freelancers who are willing to work in-house. This is at a very well-respected marketing communications firm in Portland, Maine – a town bursting with designers. Why is he having this problem? All jokes aside about freelance designers living in their pjs, it may be time for you to consider working in-house. Maybe you spent years in a corporate or agency setting with the goal of making

The real reason clients ask crazy, ridiculous things of you

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annoying clients

I’m going to share with you a list of ridiculous demands my company has been asked of by clients recently. I’m sure you’ll nod along. You might even get a laugh or two…or a few tears, if you’ve been pushed close enough to the brink. But afterward, you might swear me your mortal enemy. Confused? Just hang in there and make sure you read this post to the end. It’s important. Have you experienced clients… Emailing at 3am expecting immediate