Tips to Create a Web Design Business Plan

Why do you need to write a web design business plan? Web designers can start working at any time. The job classification is not exclusive, and the technical equipment isn’t that expensive. In every case, but especially if you’d like to have funding for a larger scale business operation, it is always a smart idea to prepare a business plan- even in the area of web design.

Ultimately, whether you will need one depends on your intentions, if you want to scale up your project to an online agency business plan and hire assistants, you would much rather plan everything thoroughly. If you’re just planning on doing some freelance gigs, perhaps the work is better invested elsewhere- but do organize your great thoughts somehow.

Please also check out our guide „What belongs in a business plan“, information about start-up loans and our articles on how to create the individual components of a business plan.


Web Design Business Plan / Online Agency Business Plan Tip Nr. 1: Basic Analysis of Capabilities

You have to start off with a basic analysis of your skills, because they’ll determine your target groups.

You must be very capable in terms of technology and ready to learn new things all the time. Obviously a web designer has created at least one homepage. Useful tools allow you to make various sites. A financially successful web designer knows all about HTML, CMS and CSS, WordPress, Joomla, Contao, and TYPO3. However, soft skills are also important in terms of meeting clients’ needs. Your clientele will increase if you can also offer software development skills and database knowledge. You must have nailed the legal specifics too. It is advisable to talk to a specialized attorney.


Web Design Business Plan Tip Nr. 2: The Target Group

After you’ve analyzed your own knowledge and skills, it’s time to start thinking about your target group. A business development plan entails two options: Either ask yourself what clients will be interested in your skills or first choose the target group and then decide whether your skills are sufficient for its representatives or if you need to acquire more. You should also see if the target group will make a one-time order or the site will require maintenance over a longer term. Is there a tight deadline or will you be able to work at your own pace?


Web Design Business Plan Tip Nr. 3: Analysis of the Competition

After you have established your target group or groups, it’s time to focus on the competition. Is this market dominated by big online agencies or are there many freelancers? Do you need a big office with the right technical equipment or is a laptop enough? This depends on the competition. This issue is especially important to consider when writing a business plan for a small business.


Web Design Business Plan Tip Nr. 4: Before You Start

The target group and competition play a big role in deciding whether to be a freelancer or start a company. If the market is dominated by big agencies, starting a company is worth considering. Alternatively, you could create a network of freelance web designers. The pros and cons are to be weighed carefully against one another.

The Advantages as a Freelancer
If you decide to work freelance, you should check whether you’re eligible for artists’ social insurance. This would be especially beneficial as one earns little in the beginning.
Disadvantages as a Freelancer
If your clients want 24/7 service, it could be difficult to provide as a freelance or to coordinate in a network. It would be more reasonable to found a company and hire staff.

The Advantages as a Company Founder
You’ll be working in a team with your staff, not alone. Check for cheap offices at founders’ associations or lucrative loans for start-ups. High costs are a definite disadvantage. You’ll need office space and good staff. Also, you’re not eligible for artists’ social insurance.


Web Design Business Plan Tip Nr. 5: Location

A web designer is location-independent. There are digital nomads who offer full service all over the world. If you’re founding a company, check if there are good staff in this area and adequate working space.


Web Design Business Plan Tip Nr. 6: Marketing

Online presence is key to your success as a web designer. First you need a website that’ll convince potential clients they’ve come to the right place as know-how goes. It’s also important to be active on social media to achieve recognition more quickly. You could enter your establishment in a comparison portal.


Web Design Business Plan Tip Nr. 7: Start-up Financing

The main problem in the initial stage of business is that potential clients ask for references, which you can’t provide. You need to offer discounts to attract them. This takes time, and then there are also the running costs. As a solo web designer these are negligible.

It’s highly recommendable to prepare a professional business plan as a web designer in the start-up phase. Also, think about how long it will take to build a reputation. Generally this period is 5 years, meaning you’ll start making a profit after that. Please note this in your business plan.

Another obstacle to obtaining financing is when the applicant says he was a freelancer before deciding to start a company. It’s better when you look like a full service agency with 3-4 staff members.

We hope this short article has helped. Please also check out our business plan consulting services or contract us to create a market entry strategy for you.


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