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    I read that people find clients through word of mouth but I don’t know many people where I currently reside so I wonder the best way to find paying clients in this situation.

    Right now I am finding business that I think could be improved with my skills, creating a sample site and showing them the result. I am charging $300 per site which I know is low but reasonable since I don’t have a portfolio. I want to build a portfolio of about 10 or 20 sites before I think I will be taken seriously.


    Whatever you do, get a portfolio together first. Create websites for friends or yourself if you don’t have anything to show yet. Having an online presence is key.


    Once you have a portfolio online, how do you market yourself? SEO, PPC?


    Then Craigslist


    1 or 2. But it’s not like he’s losing anything from searching


    My friend and I started a little freelancing web design company while in TAFE (A colledge-like thing in Australia) getting our Web Dev/Design diploma’s.

    Our first paying client project was a gigantic 60-something page monster which we only charged $1500 due to just starting out. I say “only charged” because most other people here would charge 3x that for the project size, $1500 is huge and very exciting when your a student, trust me :)

    Now everyday I read articles saying you absolutely must have online portfolio ect before anyone will hire you. Not true.

    We had no website / portfolio at all, we set up a meeting with a client who’s website was very outdated and arrived on time and prepared. After introducing ourselves we told him we were a new start-up and would be able to charge much less than most other people to help get us off the ground, he was very supportive and enthusiastic about the whole thing.

    As another example, 2 of my friendly competitors who are currently attending the same class also don’t have a portfolio, one has a splash page, the other just has a placeholder-design they are both actively getting work as well.

    As long as you are technically able, and can show you know what you are talking about you can get clients. NEVER over-promise something if you aren’t sure you can deliver on it.

    From that one project we have had 3 other paying clients just from word of mouth, and it keeps spreading.

    Just look at the local business websites, almost all the sites around here are still ancient table-based sites made years ago and give them a call, or go drop by in person. Emails won’t be as effective until you have something to show, as they are more easily dismissed.

    Best of luck!


    do not compare australian prices for web-design with world standards.

    all i can advice to drake, is to use freelance boards.. elance used to be a good place to start.
    just google it and you will definitely come up with something.


    I did? *headdesk* :O

    Oh the “most people here would charge 3x more than that”? You have me intrigued now, maybe I did just assume incorrectly.

    60+ page website, multiple forms, custom-built php system for posting used-products, there is more, but just based on that where would you guys start as far as a quote? (include country / area)

    Back to addressing the original question for the OP, and to clarify why I even listed a price, I was trying to state that yes undercharging for your first projects can help but don’t undercharge too much otherwise you will:
    a). Be walked all over on
    b). Be perceived as cheap and unworthy
    c). Both


    It’s all about luck. I did one simple website for a friend of mine, who’s a photographer. I’ve been overrun since then. :-)

    Start doing some sites for people you like, without charging. It even makes you feel nice to help ;-) Then if you are lucky, he or she will have a bunch of friends in need of service, and after you have made sites, relatively cheap, for all of those, you have a pretty solid portfolio.

    I haven’t gotten to make my own portfolio yet – I just reference the sites I’ve made in emails to those who write me. (I guess that’s uncommon for freelance designers – at least the start-up ones – my clients are coming to me, I’m not doing much (if anything) to get them)

    So – use your network would be the only advice I could give…


    Social networking is also a form of advertising yourself. Use it to your advantage.


    “So far at least in my area it’s nothing but people who that think $200 websites are expensive”

    I agree, this is all I have seen so far, PERIOD!

    People expecting me to work for like £2.50 an hour.


    So far at least in my area it’s nothing but people who that think $200 websites are expensive
    hahaha, i’m familiar with that :)))))


    You can by a theme at themeforest and than put in the content wich is about one day of work…200 would be a nice figure


    @yomoore, not everyone wants a site that hundreds of other people have as well



    Not everyone wants to drive a bmw.

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