8 Vital financial terms all freelance designers should know

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If you graduated from art school, a trade school, or even with a liberal arts degree, you know that they don’t teach you how to go into business for yourself. Suddenly, besides designing and dealing with clients, we’re thrust into this world of accounting, bookkeeping, and finances. After all, a business that doesn’t make money is just a hobby, and it doesn’t put food on the table. Unless you can afford an accountant, you learn about the financial side of

If this was my last blog post ever…

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This last week was an interesting one for me as the owner/founder of this blog. Why? Because someone with a pretty fat wallet contacted me and we discussed the option of selling this site. After a lot of discussion, we decided not to go through with the deal (for a lot of reasons) and I’m happy to say I’ll be here at GDB for the foreseeable future! But it got me thinking about what I would say if I had

How to deal with high-maintenance clients (and not ruin the relationship!)

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Have you ever had one of those clingy clients that calls daily? Twice daily? Sunday afternoon? Do you save their number in your phone just so you can press “ignore” when you see them calling (for the third time in two days)? If you haven’t, you’re lucky! (If you have, leave a comment on this post telling us about your clingy client experience!) Clingy clients, as I call them, are a huge distraction. Not only are you taken away from

The death of the call to action in design?

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After writing a post recently about turning site visitors into paying customers, I received the following comment, which I was happy, yet surprised to see: I think “Call to Action” is overrated and overused nowadays. I’m not a big fan of “Buy it Now!” buttons and In-Your-Face action bubbles. If you need a Call to Action button for a potential customer to be able to find a way to contact you, rethink your website design. I was surprised to read

Where will I see you in 6 months?

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If you’re anything like me, you probably set a lot of goals. If you’re running your own business, you simply have to. But it seems like the more I talk with people, the more I learn that they set goals for one week from now or one month from now. And I personally believe that’s why many goals we set fall through: we don’t step back and look at the big picture. Let me illustrate Take the following goal for

What to do when you can’t finish a project on time

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Freelancers and entrepreneurs are optimistic by nature. If we weren’t, we’d do the bare minimum in life to get by. We wouldn’t be running our own businesses. We’d be working at some low-paying job, enough to put bread and milk on the table and then we’d sit and watch TV after work every day. Usually, that instinctive optimism is phenomenal–leading us to do things we never imagined we could. But other times, optimism can overload us. Have you ever been

Two critical legal concepts all freelancers have to know to be safe

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Life would be so much easier if all we had to focus on was dropping creative awesomeness on the world, wouldn’t it? Alas, such is the life of a freelance designer…the wearer of many hats. Today’s hat is boring. You’re going to want to gloss over it, skim it briefly and hope the next GDB post is more entertaining. But you really, REALLY, shouldn’t, because today’s post could save you a huge headache. I’m talking brain-splitting migraine – failing to

4 Major web site problems that are costing you clients

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Many of us find new clients by word of mouth. In fact, any time I talk with a group of GDB readers, that’s where most of your business comes from. You make a client happy, fulfill their need, and they refer you to a friend, fellow business owner or colleague. And the cycle continues. But did you know you could be losing potential clients through a few hidden problems on your web site? Because when a client refers you to