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Growing a Lifestyle Business – Freelance UX/UI + Web Design

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GWan

Bronze Contributor
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Nov 18, 2017
45
115
Toronto
Hi everyone,

I'm creating this thread to document my progress as a freelance UX/UI + Web designer.

Here's a bit about me:
I've been a full-time UX/UI designer for the past 2 and 1/2 years, mainly working on SaaS web applications. I think I'm a pretty good designer, and know that I have the skills to do great work as a freelancer. I've been doing freelance on and off for the past few years. Joined Fox's course back in November 2017. Had some early success with it, but wasn't disciplined enough. You can view my previous progress thread here.

Why I want to do this:
When I joined Fox's program back in 2017, I had a job that I really hated. This really motivated me to work hard on my freelance business. However, I always had this tiny thought that if I got a job at one of those "cool" tech companies (work from home, free lunch, lots of vacation, etc.) that my life would be set. Fast-forward May 2019: I got a job at one of these companies. For the first few months everything was great, work was fun and not boring. The honey moon phase soon ended, and I was back where I was before. Sunday blues, and looking forward to Friday all week. There wasn't anything wrong with the job either, it's just that I got bored. This is when I realized that a 9-5 is not for me, I require freedom from time constraints to do my best work.

My goal:
My goal for 2020 is to make $100,000 CAD from just freelancer and eventually become a full-time freelancer.

Current progress:
$12,467 / $100,000 CAD

The number is weird because one of the payments was in USD from a US client (converted to CAD)

What I'm currently working on:
Last week a client contacted me on Upwork. I don't really use it much anymore, but for some reason they gave me top-rated status on there from jobs I did back in 2017-2018. Because of this, potential clients do contact me on there sometimes. I got on a call with the client and closed a deal for $5000 CAD for a 5 page website redesign.

I have 2 potential projects in the pipeline from a pretty successful freelancer who subcontracts work to me. The US payment I talked about above was the final payment for a project I finished for him in January. He's great to work with, and the projects would be around 10-12K CAD each so I'm hoping they work out.

I haven't really been doing any marketing/lead generation, and am a bit worried that eventually I'll have no work. I'm planning to start a blog and post more of my work on designer websites. However it's hard to find time between a full-time job and working on freelance projects.
 
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GWan

Bronze Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
Nov 18, 2017
45
115
Toronto
Here's a quick summary of what I've been working on this past month:

$5000 Website project
I just got the final payment of $2500 for the $5000 website I was working on. It was a website for a travel agency, which got me quite worried because of the virus. I didn't want the project to fall through so I got the website done way ahead of schedule. I also over-delivered by coding the front-end of the website (it was originally only supposed to be design work). They really appreciated it since they're going through a difficult time.

Hourly work for a previous client
Last year I did some subcontract work for another freelancer. The client wanted some small changes done, so he subcontracted the work out to me. I estimate it will bring in around $1000.

I do have some more free time now since I completed the $5000 website project, so will spend more time on finding new leads this month.

Updated revenue:
$14,967 / $100,000 CAD
 

GWan

Bronze Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
Nov 18, 2017
45
115
Toronto
Just got paid for a few hours of small changes for a previous client ($390 USD = 551 CAD). Updated numbers below

Updated revenue:
$15,518 / $100,000 CAD
 
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GWan

Bronze Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
Nov 18, 2017
45
115
Toronto
Hey everyone,

It's been awhile since I last updated. I haven't been as focused as I should be on the freelance business, but will change that starting now.

I recently purchased Ran Segall's 6-Figure Freelance course for designers. It's been really eye opening and has taught me how to run my freelance business properly. The main thing he teaches is to niche down to a certain industry/client and become known as an expert in that industry. I've chosen early-stage startups that need UX/UI design or web design work as my niche. I've already redesigned my website to target this niche, and plan to start posting articles to improve my website's SEO.

Here's what I've been working on since my last update:

Hackathon Website for $1500 (Complete)

This was a client that I've done websites for in the past. They run a few hackathons a year, and usually are just looking for a simple one-page design and logo. They're great to work with.

Working as a subcontractor for an agency (On-going)

This year I started using Webflow heavily to develop websites. I attended an online Webflow meetup last month and met 2 guys that run an agency. I connected with them and started working on a project with them this week. We're starting with hourly pay until the scope of the project is more defined.

I also did some minor website changes for an old client ($50.00).

Updated revenue:
$17,068 / $100,000 CAD
 

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