In today’s economy competition is rougher than ever and even before this economic down turn I had mentioned how competitive the field of graphic design was getting and how more and more job listings were looking for multi-talented designers. By this I mean many employers want you to not only be a graphic designer, but also a web designer with knowledge of multiple coding language and much more.
If you are freelancing from home than you will need even more skills to make the most of your home business so you can bring in as much steady income as possible. Below are some areas I recommend designers branch off into once they have a solid foundation in design. Even having basic skills in these areas will help a ton!
1. Web Design
Web design is probably the most valuable skill to have as a graphic designer. It will open up a large new client base for you, allow you to create and update your portfolio site and much more. Being fluent in web design and multiple coding languages will not only make it easier to keep steady work from home, but will make you much more attractive to potential employers who are looking to cut costs by finding multi-talented designers.
Designers often have backgrounds in fine art such as drawing and illustration, but end up putting their focus on commercial graphic design which can create a disconnect from their fine art origins. Keeping your illustration skills sharp or becoming a better illustrator will allow you to create more creative designs, do freelance illustration work and even sell stock illustrations online! Plus you can save money doing your own illustrations for your graphic and web designs.
3. Online Marketing
Online marketing is an essential skill for anyone looking to make the most of their freelance design business. Knowing the latest marketing tactics will help you gain exposure, name recognition and more clients. There are dozens of easy ways to increase traffic to your portfolio site and not taking advantage of them would be a very big missed opportunity!
4. Search Engine Optimization
This is an often over looked skill for any business. Anyone who has an online business presence should research search engine optimization and even if you pay some one its good to know what its all about and how to do it correctly. Bad search engine optimization tactics can hurt your site badly and produce no results, but good SEO can provide you with a steady stream of new clients and really take you to the next level
Starting a blog is probably the easiest and best thing you can do to increase awareness of your portfolio. Knowing about web design, online marketing and search engine optimization, which we mentioned above will help you turn your blog into a powerful and useful tool as opposed to a waste of time. You need to research blogging before hand, optimize your blog, post regularly and promote your blog posts in order to achieve maximum results.