Web designers are people too

This week a client sent me a brief for a new project. To demonstrate the concept, he had Photoshopped my photograph into the mockups. My own face staring back at me was strangely beguiling. The document neatly specced out of job and ended with “thank you for your time Geri”.

I was stunned. This simple, low-fi personalisation probably took less than 5 minutes yet was heartfelt and engaging. This person really cared about what I thought, clearly had a sense of humour and was enthusiastic about their product. This is the sort of the client I love to work with, let’s create something great together!

While I’m not saying everyone needs to get handy with the lasso tool, I can’t help but despair at many of the new project requests I receive. They typically look like this:

Don't be a dick

As a provider of a creative service the most important thing for me is to get on with my clients. If we share a similar vision, ethos and values I find the project runs smoothly, the end product fits and brief and everyone gets happy.

If you’re excited about a new product or service, then tell me about it! What are your goals, who is the target market, why is it different, what are your brand values, what makes your customers love it? If timelines and budgets are pushed then I might be able to help get things back on track but only if I know you’re taking the time to get it right. Surely your new venture is worth more than a quick hack?

Remember, web designers are people too. I might be selling you a service but on the flip-side you’re selling yourself as a client. Would you walk into a car dealer and shout “HOW MUCH DOES A CAR COST?”, then moan about how you don’t have enough money for the Maserati but they should give it to you anyway because your last car let you down?

I'm a freelance UI/UX Designer from London.

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Comments

  1. great article. I’m a back end web developer but find much the same with some clients. People like to do business with people they like (basically get on well with), clients would do well to remember that in life and in business.

    Reply
    • Cheers Louie – completely agree! For me, getting on with a client and sharing the same vision and ethos is so important. I can usually tell from the first two lines of a new project request whether I’m going to be the right fit.

      Reply
  2. Geri,

    Thanks for sharing this… We’ve found that in the busy busy of the digital age, that personal touch counts for a lot, especially when you take your customers offline.

    This sums it up perfectly though, absolutely hits the nail on the head
    “Would you walk into a car dealer and shout “HOW MUCH DOES A CAR COST?”, then moan about how you don’t have enough money for the Maserati but they should give it to you anyway because your last car let you down?”

    Im going to print that out!

    Reply
    • Thanks for the reply. As clients and users become more tech savvy I find they’re generally sending more thoughtful design briefs. I do still receive the odd “I have a £500 budget and want a website like Facebook” query but thankfully less often these days!

      Reply

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