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  1. #1
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    part-time web design business tips

    I want to keep my fulll time job, but I want to test the waters of my own web design business to start. Anybody have any suggestions on starting a part-time webdesign business. Do you tell your clients you are doing it part-time? Any body have done this before? I would like to build the business up, but keep working till I have enough clients to go full time.

  2. #2
    SitePoint Zealot chihpih's Avatar
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    i do that , if they dont ask you dont tell them anything.
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  3. #3
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy
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    If they ask, be honest with them. When I worked a job and freelanced on the side I was usually pretty up front with my clients, but I don't think there's anything wrong with not telling them if they don't ask (as long as you can do the work and be responsive to them)

  4. #4
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    My clients are all aware of my "real job" as a webmaster. I actually consider it a selling point. None of them seem to have an issue the real job taking precedence either. Just be up front so that they understand where your priorities lie. After all, they'd rather know where and what you're doing when you're not working on their project rather than wondering if you've obsconded into cyberspace when they can't reach you.

  5. #5
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy bluedreamer's Avatar
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    Part time can be a problem. Imagine a scenario where a clients shopping cart site stops working for some reason. They try to contact you but you're out at work and won't be home for another 8 hours. In the meantime they are losing sales and are getting worried. This won't create a good impression on you or your business and you may end up losing that customer.

    On the other hand you could concentrate on doing sub contracting work leaving the responsibility with someone else!

  6. #6
    SitePoint Addict soccerfriend's Avatar
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    i think depends on the project... no one would like to hire a part time business man for a big project that requires support and maintance on the day-to-day basis
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  7. #7
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy
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    Quote Originally Posted by bluedreamer
    Part time can be a problem. Imagine a scenario where a clients shopping cart site stops working for some reason. They try to contact you but you're out at work and won't be home for another 8 hours. In the meantime they are losing sales and are getting worried. This won't create a good impression on you or your business and you may end up losing that customer.
    Although this isn't a problem limited to part timers. Even with a full time freelancer, you can't expect 24/7 service from me - I still need to sleep, so if their cart goes down at 1am, they are still going to have to wait until 9am before I can do anything about it. This is why it pays to have a good company handling and monitoring all the hosting for you - if the site goes down, they are there 24/7 to deal with it automatically.

    But I agree, part time web developers will certainly have a distinct disavantage working with many normal '9-5' businesses as they will expect to be able to pick up the phone during normal office hours and reach you with queries etc.

    In theory, it's much better to lay all your cards on the table and be upfront in telling them that they can't expect to reach you during standard office hours - it may not be a problem, especially if you price accordingly and they know that's why you are cheaper.

  8. #8
    SitePoint Addict jessebhunt's Avatar
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    MadMac13:

    I did exactly what you are considering. I worked a full time job for 3 years while growing my web development business. I just recently quit my job and now I'm working for myself fulltime.

    When I was doing both, I would generally only mention my full time job if a client asked me about it.

    It was my experience that mentioning my full time job too early in a client-relationship could cause problems. However, if it didn't come out until the relationship was well developed, it didn't have any effect.
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  9. #9
    A Smarter Way to Web! zivo's Avatar
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    Post Part-time done by many

    I started out part-time and eventually took it to a full-time business, though that was not initially my intent. I did work on the side, on a freelance basis, as a way of keeping my brain solid, as my full-time job was turning it to mush!

    Drawbacks to it are mostly on your time - you are working on your side work after a full day's work, then that time can be limiting and not necessarily your best work. It does offer you a glimse into working on your own, but not in a real setting as you don't have to worry where your next meal is coming from!

    My suggestion would be to ask around here and others who have started their own business, get the SitePoint kits on starting your own Web design and SEM businesses, and make a plan. If it makes sense to you, go forth!

    mp/m

  10. #10
    SitePoint Evangelist sysice's Avatar
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    I've had a few people ask about this, and I think out of all my clients only one probably wouldn't have used me if I wasn't doing this full time.

    He already had a set of successful e-commerce sites and was having problems with his current developer getting anything changed. He was willing to spend the money, but they weren't on top of things, so his concern was that if I wasn't doing this full time, he wouldn't get the service he needed.

    I would say you can do it, but be honest about it and assure them that you will have the time to dedicate to it.


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