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Become a better designer with happier customers

Friday, July 26th, 2013 by Servage

The freelancer’s recipe for success has many ingredients: designing skill, technical ability, marketing capacities, networking, customer service and so on. In this post, we concentrate on customer service because the freelancer community has a bad reputation when it comes to quality service. People, by and large, think freelancers have no permanent professional identity nor an actual physical address, like a company has. Others think the main intention of the freelancer is to draw money from their customers once and then forget about the client forever. There are plenty other misconceptions, or myths, surrounding freelancers.

If you are a good freelancer and wish to continue as one, it is mandatory for you to debunk such myths. Moreover, it is important to play a responsible and smart role in the industry. I know this is easy to say but difficult to do. The obvious challenge is the single-handedness in our day-to-day operations. Sure, companies have various persons for different roles, so they can devote full attention towards customer service and resolving client issues. In the case of freelancing, it is strenuous to allocate time for customer service, along with the various roles that must occur each day.

Provide Effective Contacts

However, it is not impossible if you utilize some good management, particularly your time management skills. And yet, for a freelancer, being available around the clock is simply not possible. But you can demonstrate your intentions to attend to the problems of your customers by indicating a particular time slot in the day, to contact you. You should furnish your customers with your contact details (phone, cell, instant messengers and other possible channels) and mention how and when to contact you and for which sort of situations. I think these initiatives at your side are sufficient to show your pure desire to serve your customers.

Attend Promptly

Once you provide your contact details, your work is not finished; because clients will inevitably contact you, and if they realize you are not paying them enough attention, they will feel disappointed. They may even spread bad information about you. Therefore, when someone tries to reach you, respond quickly. And if the nature of their problem demands more time, at least let them know you will respond in a timely fashion. If you are simply too busy on another important task, politely ask your customer to wait awhile, indicating that you will reply as soon as possible. Thus, your attitude and approach towards your customers will determine your devotion towards customer service.

Customer Service Management

Once you do attend to your customer’s issues, and have carefully heard their specific problems, it is time to act on them. Since problems vary from client to client, you can categorize them in some logical manner, like update related, maintenance and other postproduction service. If you organize them in a particular manner, then it can be easier to decide which resources, and what time you have for them, so you can smartly manage your customer service schedule. You may devise a customer service calendar where you place your customer’s names and particular issue, and can then give the customer a realistic timeframe to solve their problems. This way, you will not only take care of your customer service in relaxed manner, but also win the trust of your loyal clients in the long run.


Not all customer problems fit into paid work nor into free services, so you have to pre-plan prices for your customer services. Many customer issues are directly related to the contract, so you should have well defined terms and conditions in the contract. This way, the customer can know which is a paid issue and which is free, and up to what period additional free services are provided. Many smart freelance web designers prepare maintenance packages for such services and leave selection for this option on the client. If you are really devoted to customer service, you realize that many problems only demand a few moments and by doing such work for free, it will go in your favor. Bringing an immediate smile on the face of your customer usually results in some good will for you.

References & More Reading

Foundations of Customer Service for Freelance Designers

12 CRM Options for Freelancers

10 Passive Marketing Opportunities for Freelancers



Become a better designer with happier customers, 4.0 out of 5 based on 4 ratings
Categories: Business


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