3 Tips to Make Your Design Firm Stand Out

How to set your creative services firm apart in a very crowded marketplace.

1) Provide More Value Than Just Design

The web design industry has become a crowded space, for sure. On one end of the spectrum, you’re competing against top-level firms with teams of talented designers and programmers. On the other, you’re competing against your client’s nephew who took a web design class in high school.

The key is to provide value that goes beyond making a website look pretty. If you can teach a client how to turn their website into a tool for attracting and converting their ideal customers and produce tangible, bottom-line results, then you make yourself invaluable.

2) Focusing on a Specific Niche Can Help

Focusing on a particular niche can certainly help you understand the industry and the industry-specific needs of a potential client. You have a better chance of scoring that client in let’s say, the manufacturing industry if you have knowledge from a previous manufacturing client about strategies that have worked and didn’t work. Just make sure you’re avoiding any conflict of interests between clients.

But at the end of the day, the principles of attracting the right users and giving them an enjoyable, intuitive experience that solves their problem is universal. Brilliant web design is brilliant web design, regardless of niche.

3) Offer Services You Excel At

I think it’s easy to get caught up in the used car salesman approach to web design where you offer up all kinds of add-ons to sweeten the deal. “I also do marketing…and social media…and I’ll even wash your dog!” The problem with this approach is that you may be able to offer a ton of value with your beautiful design aesthetic, but your Twitter knowledge may be lacking. Don’t say you’re a jack-of-all-trades unless you really are!

With that being said, if you can provide real value to your clients in more than one area, then it will save them the time, money and headaches of finding someone else to do it. Just be wary of offering up services that you’re not qualified to be offering up, especially in the age of instant public feedback. You may get away with it for a little while, but your clients – and potential future clients – will see right through it in time.

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