How to Hire a Good Freelance Graphic Designer


Graphic design is one of the most sought after skills in the modern workplace and is a skill that can be applied to almost every working industry. It’s also a skill that has been around for centuries since the dawn of typography and imagery and has evolved over the years to inherit all manner of styles, cultures and ideas. If you’re building a website, working on an advertising campaign (digital or otherwise) or are simply designing a logo for the launch of your brand or business, you’ll need graphic design freelance skills at some point in time.

However with such a high demand there comes the inevitable bloat of supply. Like any creative project, you’ll need to find the right fit for what you need. This can be quite overwhelming when you’re presented with a host of graphic design freelancers or companies that are all offering the required services, though it can be hard to know whether they have the experience, style or resource you need.

Within this guide we’ll take you through some key pointers to consider when looking to hire a good freelance graphic designer and where to find freelance graphic designers. It can be easy to get overwhelmed with the talent out there so the steps below can help you to pinpoint your search and find the perfect graphic designer freelancer for whatever your project.

What Kind of Graphic Design Do You Need?

Visual identity. User interface. Logo design. Art and illustration. Web design. Motion graphics. There are countless schools and specialisms that exist within the graphic design vertical. Some graphic design freelancers may be generalists that broach across there different specialisms. Some may hone in on a niche and be leaders in one field of graphic design, specialising in one key service an doing it very well.

Niche specialists may charge more if their true leaders in their field, though on the same token multi-skilled generalists may use this as their own USP. Depending on what it is you’re after, you may want to consider going for a niche specialist who is particularly prevalent in one area of graphic design to ensure you’re getting he most in terms of quality.

Establishing Budget, Timelines & Scope of Project

The scope of graphic design can vary from simple image polishing to a complete re-branding project or a long-term advertising campaign. That’s why it’s important as a first step to be clear with yourself and your freelance candidates as to what exactly you’re looking for in terms of spend, scope and project timeline.

Let’s say your looking for the design of a new homepage. Now not being a graphic designer yourself, it may be hard to estimate exactly how many days or hours needed to complete this task, taking into account a couple of rounds of revisions and feedback from team members.

In this situation, if you have a clear brief in terms of what it is you want delivered, then you send a few feelers and get a few quotes from different suppliers to see what the lay of the land is. Perhaps send through some examples of what it is you want from elsewhere, and use previous wireframes and mock-ups if you have them. You may have an exact budget allocated or you may be working towards a ballpark figure, though contacting a few different experts in the field and getting a few quotes and timeline options can help you consolidate this.

graphic design print

Proof in the Pudding: Case Studies

Once you’re clear with what it is you’re seeking in terms of graphic design goals, timelines and budgets and you’ve gotten the lay of the land in terms of available talent, it’s time to move onto the phase of reviewing sample work and case studies. Any good graphic design translator worth their value will proudly display their best curations of previous work on their freelancer profile. If they have a separate website displaying previous work for clients then even better, especially if they built the website themselves!

If you like a graphic design freelancer’s work on display well enough though are still unsure whether they’re right for your brand or business, reach out to them and quiz them further. Find out if they’ve worked in similar industries to yours in terms of previous client work, or whether they’ve taken on specific projects that are relevant to what you’re after. For many graphic design freelancers less is more, meaning work they display on their public profiles may not be all they have on offer.

Start a dialogue with them one to one to sound if they understand your brand by exploring further previous examples of their work. As part of this process some you can ask if the freelancer in question is willing to send out some mock-ups and ideas through. This of course turns things into a more formal, albeit minor pitch process so make sure you’re transparent with the freelancer you’re talking to on this and ensure they’re happy with committing to providing some ideas before the work gets started.

Remember, if you’re unsure where to start, explore the PeoplePerHour CERT system and sort your graphic design freelancer search by members with “Top CERT” or “CERT 5 and higher” to filter by trusted freelancers first (learn more about CERT here). You can also filter freelancers by popularity within your search on the platform to get a quick view on freelancers most popular with buyers over time.

Hopefully this phased process will help you understand how to hire a good freelance graphic designer, where to find freelance graphic designers and get cracking with your project. It’s a busy world out there in terms of design, and it’s more important than ever to get it right and stand out amongst the crowd.

Continue Reading