001. Your Most Important Client!
I admit it. I’m a redesign addict!
I think this is my 5th redesign of my site in 3 years. To me that’s a lot, probably too many. I used to get pretty bored on a Sunday night and decide that my portfolio site looks dated, so I'd just redesign the whole thing right then and there, no strategy, no development and barely any time thought about the copy. I didn’t think I needed the same attention as my paying clients. But your own site is probably the most important project and you are your most important client (is that too cliche?).
But this was all before I went full time freelance. My first priority was me, then my job, then my social life, then my freelance work, and THEN my portfolio site. I still don’t think it should be quite in that order (check back soon for another post on this specifically), especially if you are planning on being a full time freelancer one day, but that was truthfully the order of my priorities. But when I decided I wanted to work for myself full time I made one big mistake, I didn’t change the priorities. My priorities still went: me, freelance work, social life, portfolio site. Which is almost completely backwards!
When I transitioned to full time I didn’t have a solid foundation to build on. My website only showed my projects, clients didn’t know my capabilities or anything really about me or my values. Clients had so many questions when they came to me about projects and I didn’t really have an on-boarding process for them. I found even just getting to the kick off stage of a project took so much energy that I knew I needed for the project itself! So I knew this redesign had to be different, it wasn’t just a Sunday night project. It was weeks worth of research and strategy to purposely relaunch a brand that barely existed in the first place.
After this overhaul I now have a site that gives potential clients enough information for them to decide if they want to work with me. I have an on-boarding process that’s a breeze and I all this valuable energy for my clients brands. This site now has a solid foundation. Now I ‘m not saying that I’ll never redesign or restructure my website, and that’s what I love about digital design, it’s ever evolving, nothing is set in stone. My site can grow and adapt as I learn what my potential clients need from it.
- Maisie MacDonald, Creative Director, Maisie Heather Studio