Starting your own web design business, like every other business, requires careful consideration. Which aspect of Web design would you like to concentrate on? Graphic design, interior design, web development or web hosting are just a few of the available niches. Feel free to investigate the other niches to find a good match for you.
Once you have decided on a niche, you have to research it thoroughly by putting together a business plan. You need to look at web design from different angles – the opportunity it presents and how your strengths and weaknesses fit into the big picture. A level of experience will serve you well in this area but lack of experience should not deter you. There are a lot of resources available that can help boost your level of experience. You can leverage your inexperience by partnering with someone who is more experienced in this area or you can even choose to employ staffs who are more qualified. However you decide to tackle this aspect, the options are almost endless, choose what suits you best – you may even choose to learn the skills required either by taking a course or teaching yourself (a good place to start is by reading ‘Teach Yourself web design in 21 days’ by Laura LeMay’s).
Your business plan also needs to address other issues such as your financial projections for the year ahead and preferably also for the next five years, a look into what your competitors are doing and how you will position yourself to operate successfully irrespective of your competition. A business plan should be a live document that guides you from point A, which is thinking of starting your web design business, to point B, actually starting the business and running it.
Once you have successfully written your business plan and raised sufficient funds, you then need to put together your equipment for running your business. Of course this will include a computer and a number of different software packages. Since this is a dynamic and ever changing field my advice is for you to research online for the current popular products that are in use. Check out reviews on the products you like so you make an informed decision before making any financial commitment. Start with the minimum that you can get away with and still be able to offer your clients a professional job. As your experience and business grows you may then be in a position to add more packages to your repertoire of tools to increase your service level.
After you have succeeded in setting up and running your business you will certainly need to promote it so your potential clients know where to find you. You can choose to promote your business either offline or online but the latter is the cheaper option and you tend to see results faster. Promoting your business is a skill in itself. If this is not done properly your business will suffer. You can either choose to outsource this very important task if you have enough funds or you learn to do it yourself. The latter option is more desirable to me because no one knows your business like you do and neither will they be as passionate. There are resources available to help you learn the skills needed to successfully market your business which you may want to check out below.