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Hackernoon logoBest Freelancing Websites for Graphic Designers [Top 5] by@CiaraMcCarron

Best Freelancing Websites for Graphic Designers [Top 5]

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@CiaraMcCarronCiara

Ciara is the Writer and Journalist. She loves to deep dive into the ins/outs of the technologies.

Designers play an important part in any company. Whether they are working on product design, website design, brand creation, advertising banner or many more. A customer comes to know about the business from websites, brochures, email templates, and other channels.

Hence, if the design is not good and doesn’t go with your business niche, then there are high chances that you may lose a major chunk of your RoI (Return on Investment).

The pay scale for designers is very less even though they play a major role in making their company a brand. This leads many designers to choose other job alternatives in addition to designing. The field is vast and designers can earn potential income from the Internet if they know how it works. In the last decade, there is high demand for the Graphics as well as UI/UX designers on lots of freelancing platforms.

Today designers can build their careers easily in the graphics design field if they follow proper path and focus. There are many graphics designing companies and websites that hire graphic designers as remote or inhouse to work for them. Here we have compiled best-earning sources for graphics designers in 2020.

1. Dribbble

Dribbble is one of the best income sources for graphics designers. In this platform, designer needs to upload their past creative work and projects. By showcasing their work on Dribbble, they can increase their followers and can attract potential clients.

This platform allows you to directly connect with clients and once you have done a project you get paid on the platform without paying any commission to Dribbble.

The designer can easily expand their work globally. Even on this platform designers have a high chance to get paid as the hourly OR fixed costs from well-known reported designing companies. Things to note here is increasing follower and upload creative art.

- How to Get Started in Dribbble ?

1. Designers first needs to register themselves on Dribbble. Some of the things they should keep in mind are that they should never use fake names OR any other fake information. Because Dribbble is a professional platform and doing such kinds of things would only reduce their credibility.

2. During a registration time, Dribbble asks for a username. Make sure to enter the best suitable username for your business. Initials like “XYZ” OR “XYZ111” username clearly signal a fake profile. So, even though you are right your wrong selection of username, your whole earning source might be destroyed.

3. Once you will fill all the information, then you have to select your goal to use Dribbbble. If you have a goal of earning you can select a button named “I’m a designer looking to share my work”. You need to verify your email address before proceeding further.

4. Now, after registration just like other platforms, Dribbble won’t allow you to upload your portfolio directly. Here you have permission for uploading your design but it is private and can only be seen by you. Hence to show your work to Dribbble community, you need an invitation.

5. You have to be invited to use Dribbble. To get an invitation, you need to first type “invites” in search bar. Here you find many designers who have a number of invitations. At the bottom of the design, you will get information about the requirements by that designer to get an invitation. Follow that process and you get invited. Now you are allowed to upload your art which publically shown by the Dribbble community. Things to be kept in mind is to use creative and well-made art to get a faster invitation.

- Here are a few tips for how a designer can make Dribbble as main income source

Dribbble is a platform where designers can make a huge amount of money as possible. There is no shortcut to be get paid overnight. You need to build a relationship with other designers. So try to follow other designers as per your niche and build connections. From my experience, when you follow someone then they would definitely look at your profile at least one time.

1. If your profile is impressive, then they wouldn’t mind to follow you back. First, make some interesting illustrations or designs so that the person who lands on your profile has something to see. Because if your portfolio would be empty and if your profile doesn’t have any creative art then you will lose your followers.

2. Be as consistent! Upload at least one creative work per week.

3. Use creative thumbnail. It plays an important role in CTR. If your thumbnail not satisfied to click then you will lose your earnings.

4. Try to be creative. Dribbble is not paid, they have a rule of showing creative art on the front page. If your art is creative, then you have a high chance to be featured and this leads to high profile followers and a higher chance of project leads.

5. Be as active as you can. Comment and follow people! Show that you are the most active soul in Dribbble. This will again appeal to other designers to look at your work.

6. Follow the job page of Dribbble. Here if you pitch them, then they first came to your profile and if your art satisfied their needs then you will get hired for their works.

7. Be passionate about your art and design, as Dribbble loves the one who is passionate about design.

8. This platform is majorly focused on mobile app UI, website UI, UX, Animation art and other similar stuff. Uploading this category of art will lead to a higher chance to get hired.

9. The last tip is to post your art when more audiences are live. For Dribbble the best time to upload artwork is 10:00 a.m. CET.

2. Behance

Behance is a social media platform for designers owned by Adobe, where clients and graphics designers meet directly and designers don’t need to pay any commission to Behance. This is a free platform where the designer needs to upload their portfolio, explore creativity and get paid.

Behance is one of the best platforms if the designer wants to expand its work worldwide. Make a relationship with designer and graphics designing firms, if they found you best fit for their work, then they will hire you on an hourly basis OR fixed cost.

- Prerequisite of Behance

1. Designers needs to register themselves in Behance with all mandatory information.

2. Verify your email address and try to fill all possible fields of your profile.

3. Connect your social profile with Behance.

4. Upload at least 10 well made, unique and creative showcase.

5. If you have worked in a team, then you can add your team members to your profile. Adding a team member indicates your profile is active.

- Things to keep in mind to get hired soon in Behance

1. Just like Dribbble, Behance also allows to add your description along with your art. It will give an idea about know what actual art is all about. Confusing and copied description lose leads, lose followers, lose appreciation for showcase and might have a chance that your account gets banned. You need to put catchy, grammar free, plagiarism-free, well-structured description.

2. Again as we have discussed that thumbnail is a placeholder of your original design. A well-made thumbnail can attract more visitors to your profile.

3. Care about everything from quality (size, shape, icon, fonts, color) instead of quantity if you want to come on the front page of Behance.

4. Use 1400 pixels OR wider images for the Behance showcase.

5. Behance has cool features that might not be present on the rest of platforms i.e you can put animated things, video, content and many more. Use these all features to get your profile up and running.

6. Behance doesn’t accept a watermark image, this will lead to rejection of design and ban your account.

7. Also, Behance allows you to put additional information like keywords, meta description, and company authorized with. Use these options to provide enough information to search engine and designers to what showcase all about.

8. Put your showcase in the right category.

9. Comment and appreciate other designer’s projects. As a result, you can get more views on your projects, appreciation for your projects and more followers.

10. Try to get awards for your projects by Adobe.

11. The best time to upload your showcase in Behance is 9:00 a.m. GMT+3. Because most Behance community belongs to the Russian Federation.

3. Uplabs

Uplabs was launched back in 2015 and got massive attention from the designer community. It is the world's largest community of creative designers for sharing their work, grow their network and get hired. Here, designer uploads and showcases their past work and build a relationship with graphics designing companies and other designers. 

Designers gets a reward and appreciation from another designer to get their design featured on the homepage of Uplabs. Featuring on the front page is not mandatory but it gets the attention of many graphic designers, companies. 

- Procedure need to follow before ahead in Uplabs

1. Register and verify your account first in Uplabs.

2. Fill your profile with all mandatory information.

3. There is no limit for uploading artwork but a recommended number from us is 10. Because uploading at least 10 art will good to getting started with.

4. Add well-written description, keyword, and category for each shot.

5. Wait for getting a badge. This will help you to get your profile valuable. 

6. You’re enabled to upload other designer work but keep in mind you have to mention in the description that you are submitter, not creator otherwise Uplabs will ban your account.

7. Uplabs have a totally new concept i.e. you can upload a design that you want to sell. All things from marketing expenses, transaction expenses are taken care of by Uplabs.

- Tips for Uplabs success

1. Don't hurry to get followers and likes in the Uplabs like Dribbble and Behance. Because Uplabs does not have features for this. If you want to build relationships with designers, you need to message them personally in Uplabs. Don't message them that sounds too generic like a sales pitch. For a start, you just need to provide value by talking about their design stuff and appreciating their design. This will help you get the attention of your profile. And more liked designs will help you get the badge.

2. Try to earn as many badges as you are able to. This will lead to featured for a longer time in Uplabs featured page. A tip here is that show your best creative work which aids you in getting a badge as soon as possible.

3. As we discussed, Uplabs have also features of selling your design which is absent in Dribbble and Behance. Take advantage of these features as new sources of earning comes along with getting hired.

4. Don’t comment on other designer posts for the sake of fake appreciation, otherwise, Uplabs have a strict policy for this and they will ban your account without any notice. They will know when you are manipulating.

4. Merch by Amazon

Merch by Amazon was launched at the end of 2015. This platform is specifically built for designers and helps them to monetize their design. But this platform has a totally different business model for monetizing work compared to the above three. Merch by Amazon is one of the best platforms to get a massive income for a designer if done in the right way. Here designer needs to create a design that fits on Tshirt, Hoodies, and other products.

Listing your designed product, material, print, and ship all will be done by Amazon. In one word, upload your design and leave the rest to the Amazon. Once your designed T-shirt gets sold, you will get royalties i.e payment for your work. It is a cool merch platform where a designer has no need to panic about the material to ship process. Thus, it has become one of the best sources of income from 2015.

Still, confusing? Let’s take an example. Let’s say you have uploaded your design (You need just design only). Once it will be approved by Amazon they will make a listing of your image along with your selected products (T-shirts, Hoodies, Tees and much more). If your buyers found your design best and buy that product than you will get commission for your work.

Normally, you will get royalties around 39 to 48% from Merch by Amazon i.e if your designed t-shirt is $16.67 and get sold 900 times a month then you will earn $5400 ($6 royalties per sold i.e 900 *6). I hope you are clear on the business model of Amazon Merch. It is a giant earning source and best-automated income source for 2020. Not only this, but it is also by far the easiest Income platform.

- Merch on Amazon process

1. To go ahead in the procedure, you need an account.

2. Once your account gets approved, you are allowed to upload your art.

3. For uploading an art, you first need to select one product ( t-shirts, sweatshirts, long sleeve t-shirts and the back of pullover hoodies) that you want to design for. 

4. Now select color, add a relevant tag, add price and at last add description and you're done.

5. Once your design gets approved, Amazon lists your product design and market, print, sold and ship. In the end, you get royalties.

- Tips for Merch by Amazon

1. Amazon has a tier system to upload a design and avoid spam. It is like rewards, you can get initially upload limit of 10 design at tier one. If you upload design very unique and get sold high then your account gets upgrade to a higher tier level. A tip here, upload 90% of your tier limit with well-made design and try to get a higher level. A higher level tier allows you to upload more designs and more profit for you.

2. Refer to other well-known designs that got sold at high rates. You can get an idea about which design gets sold high on Amazon by having a look at BSR(Best Sellers Rank). A tip here is an analysis of which design gets sold high and how that design is unique from the rest. From this, you can get ideas about which design is the most liked by the customer and you can put extra effort into that design.

3. Shopping websites with a clear description with bullet points increase the chance to get sold high by 39%. A tip here is, highlight many USP(Unique Selling Proposition) in bullet points.

4. Use tools like DS Amazon Quick View, Merch Informer, Pretty Merch, Merch Buddy, MerchTool to ease the process of research and save your valuable time.

5. Designhill

Designhill is one leading graphic designing marketplace which connects businesses, graphics designer and individual in one single place. Till now, this platform is expanded in 52 countries and has 1,25,000 designers. Here you can refer contest OR individual projects and pitch them to hire you just like other freelancing platforms. 

Also, you can showcase all your past works in your profile. This again helps designers and businesses to get ideas about your work and help them to take a decision of hiring.

Keep note, Designhill introduces a unique business model which helps designers to earn more by various options available into it. Designers need to select the best suitable model which can help them to monetize their design.

- Know how Designhill helps you earn money

1. First, you need an account to get started with. Fill all details available in profile, verify your account and upload your past works. 

2. Now you have five models to monetize your design. Let’s start with the first model “Design Contests”. Here business owner places their needs under Designhill categories. All you need to do is check each contest and their needs if you are interested in design, then start to create a design and submit it before the deadline. Each contest has prize money and if your design wins, then you get a prize. 

3. The second model is “Graphic Design Services”. Designhill allows you to create your custom graphics gig. This gig is listed in service listing. If someone is interested in your gig, then they hire you for their works.

4. The third model is “One to One Design Projects”. Just like other freelancing projects you need to first review project details and if you are interested then you can pitch directly to clients. Here the chances of direct leads are high, you can set your own price and gets high paid.

5. The fourth model is “Tasks”. Here you allow browsing hundreds of design tasks. You can choose task as per your niche and gets paid directly.

6. The last model is  “Ready-made Logo Store”. If you have an old OR newly created logo and looking to sell it, then this model is best for you. Upload your logo and Designhill listing your logo on the shopping list. If your logo gets sold you will get paid for it.

Final Thoughts

- These platforms are the best-earning source for 2020. Most designers don’t know what these platforms do and how it works. Take advantage of low competition and get paid higher.

- Refer to designs created by the various graphics designer on the mentioned platform. This will help you to get ideas about what design works and whatnot on these platforms. Once you will get ideas about what design works, you can put your extra effort to succeed.

- Consistency is the power of success. You need to be consistent to upload your showcase regular. This will help other designers and businesses to keep their eye to your profile and your design.

- Build a relationship with other graphics designers by a comment on their designing work and follow them. This will lead your profile to get followed and your design gets appreciated. In the end, a high follower gets extra attention to your clients and increase the chance to get hired.

- Upload a variety of graphics work i.e Logo, Brochures, Landing Page, Mobile App UI, and others. Because you don't know what do clients need if they want specific work and you have uploaded many showcases similar to clients are looking for, then this will help clients to make their decisions properly.

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Ciara is the Writer and Journalist. She loves to deep dive into the ins/outs of the technologies.

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