8 Mins
August 12, 2022

3 Key Bits Of Advice I Wish I Knew When I Was A Freelance Webflow Virgin

Jack Redley

It’s hard to know how to begin when you’re a Webflow freelance virgin - you have done some practice websites, rinsed the Webflow University tutorial videos, watched so many Chris Do videos that you dream about the man… But now what?

You want to look like you know what you’re doing, but you are maybe feeling a little confused and lost. I know I was when I first started freelancing.

Since you’re reading this, I assume that’s the position you are in. If I was sitting across from you right now, here’s the advice I would give you.

1) Niching doesn’t just mean by industry

I started off my freelancing journey by trying to get clients by niching by industry.

First, it was environmentally conscious businesses which was a complete disaster. The niche wasn’t really a niche because every company claims to be environmentally conscious whether they are or not so I was internally conflicted about whether I was actually helping the environment if companies approached me (which they very rarely did).

Then, I switched to yoga since yoga instructors were environmentally conscious, lovely people to work with and I hadn’t seen another freelancer in that niche so I thought it would be really productive for me. The huge problem with this is that no yoga instructors that approached me needed a custom website nor wanted to pay me more than £500 for it.

I spoke to Ethan Suero (who I interviewed in Episode 4 of the podcast) and he explained to me that you can niche by platform. Webflow is a niche in itself currently.

Only 0.6% of the internet is Webflow websites while Wordpress is 40%! Webflow’s growth trend is incredible - developers are seriously in demand since agencies and companies are looking for Webflowers.

When I changed my website and social medias to only focus on Webflow websites (rather than a specific industry niche), I got more inbound inquiries from clients and agencies.

So, by literally niching by platform, you can get tonnes of work. It’s not like you literally just need to have “yoga instructor websites,” or whatever other industry niche there is.

Nb. This is NOT to say that niching by industry is a bad/stupid idea. It’s just important to note that it’s not the only way to niche and get work!

2) You can freelance for clients and/or agencies

I used to think as a freelancer, I needed to find individual clients. As a result, I was spending more time trying to get work rather than actually doing any creative work. This meant my portfolio wasn’t growing nor was my skillset getting deeper as a Webflower.

What I overlooked is that you can freelance for agencies! Why do I recommend doing this:

  • This work is more consistent since successful agencies are getting more consistent projects than you are as a young freelancer. Do a good job for them and you will get consistent work.
  • You can have more consistent cash flow as a freelancer working for agencies. I have found projects are generally more consistent and as a result, freelancing has been easier.
  • You work on bigger projects for a vast variety of industries which is fascinating to see behind the curtain
  • You can put the agency work in your own portfolio. This will help you have more recognisable names in your portfolio than you would get on your own as a new Webflow freelancer. (You obviously need to give credit to the agency for the parts of the project they did and check you can put this work in your portfolio).
  • You can still have a freelance lifestyle since you can work as a freelancer for multiple agencies and can accept and turn down projects depending on how busy you are.
  • You get to see what their process is not just for client work, but sales process, marketing process and project management.

I know when working for agencies, you don’t earn as much money BUT you learn how to freelance successfully so much faster. I see this as a great investment in your time in the long run.

Want to know how to get agency work? Read this.

3) You will grow faster by asking people ahead of you for help

I used to have a lot of anxiety reaching out to people ahead of me for help.

I guess I thought that no one would care if I asked them for advice or support - as a young, timid freelancer, I didn’t have much self-confidence.

However, I quickly learnt that the vast majority of people in the creative industry are more than willing to give you 30 mins of their time to have a call and answer questions you have for them. In fact, it’s really flattering getting a message from a stranger saying that they wanted to know how you got to where you are in your career.

Often, after the conversation, the more experienced freelancer or agency owner I had spoken too would send me jobs, articles or put me in contact with someone else that could help me.

I recommend working out who you want to be more like, or who has skills you want to learn from, and simply reach out to them with a flattering message asking for a call on social media. Sometimes, one one call can change your trajectory as a freelancer dramatically.