A freelancer is their own boss, and that means taking on work beyond their usual scope. For example, freelance graphic designers don’t just conceptualize and create media; they’re also responsible for all the administrative aspects of their projects—and that includes drafting, sending, and managing invoices and payments.
But how do graphic designers bill, anyway? The process is fairly straightforward and is similar to how most other freelancers bill. However, the specifics of it differ from person to person, especially in the way that the work is charged. Usually, graphic designers choose between charging per hour or per project, depending on which structure works best for themselves and their clients in relation to the job.
How Billing Works for Graphic Design
Billing for graphic design work is simple, especially if you use a freelance graphic design invoice template to do it. After settling on payment terms at the start of the job, you start working as agreed upon, logging all the billable expenses as you go.
Once the project is over, or after the discussed billing period, you draft an invoice and then send it to your client for payment. How often should I invoice as a freelancer? It really depends on your needs–you can bill as often as every week or as infrequently as twice for the whole duration of the project (once at the beginning and again at the end).
Pricing for Graphic Design
Knowing how to price your freelance work can be tricky. It’s crucial to find a fair rate, one that corresponds with your skills and experience and works with your target client demographic, all while being enough to sustain your business and day-to-day expenses.
Factors That Affect Graphic Design Pricing
To figure out the right rates to bill your clients, it helps to understand the three main factors that affect the pricing of your work. These include:
Your background in graphic design (including your education) and the years of experience you have working in the field largely determine how you can price your work. The better your credentials and the more seasoned you are, the higher you can charge.
The complexity of the project can affect how much you charge. Jobs that entail more tasks should be charged accordingly. For example, a simple redesign will come out as a cheaper bill versus a project where you’re assigned to design a whole concept from scratch.
Expenses and Overhead
Any costs related to the project, such as software subscription or hiring another designer to help with the work, should be factored into your rates.
While it may be tempting to just define your rates as you believe you’re worth, it’s important to consider the market as a whole, too. If you’re priced too high in a space with similarly experienced designers, you’ll have a hard time booking jobs.
How to Price Graphic Design Work
Graphic designers usually employ either a per-hour or a per-project billing scheme. You can even use either depending on a certain project. Here’s a breakdown of each:
Pricing per hour means that you charge for all the time you’ve spent working on the project. This structure is easier to figure out since its flexibility allows it to be applied to any project. It also ensures that you’re paid for all your time.
That said, per-hour pricing may be less advantageous for more efficient designers who can finish projects faster and it can potentially put a cap on your earnings. It also doesn’t account for the overall value of the project.
Pricing per project can be a bit more difficult since it can vary per job. Plus, the industry doesn’t really have a definite range for each type of work. But once you get a knack for figuring out the value of different projects, the per-pricing scheme can help you turn in more profit. You’re not caged into trading your hours for money, plus you can charge more for projects in which you have higher expertise.
Make Billing Easier With Invoice Ninja
Billing is an integral part of any freelance business as it ensures that you’re properly compensated for the work that you do. Still, between finding clients and doing actual graphic design work, dealing with invoices becomes a tedious task.
Employing invoice software like Invoice Ninja and using graphic design invoice templates simplifies the work–it allows you to focus on more important aspects of your job while being reassured that your finances are properly in check. Try Invoice Ninja for your freelance graphic design business today!