Are you considering working from home, or would like to be a work-at-home mom (WAHM)? Are you reviewing legitimate work-at-home opportunities? Needing additional income? One scam-free business idea is to become a work-at-home web designer. Web Designers create and manage websites for businesses. If you have web design experience, or are willing to learn, it is a fantastic opportunity to consider. It can bring you a decent income to support your family, provide job flexibility, convenience and the chance to be your own boss.
Jodie Burdette is a successful work at home mom who has established a thriving web design business. As the owner of Out Sourcing Pro, she designs websites for businesses such as billing companies, virtual assistants and more. She is based out of West Virginia, but is available to serve clients from any location. Her work at home job in web design has allowed her to spend more time with her daughter.
Ms. Burdette’s online portfolio is available at http://www.outsourcingpro.biz/category/portfolio. Her motto is “Providing the techinical know-how to grow YOUR business.” The following questions provide insight and advice for anyone wishing to work from home as a web designer. Meet more designers at some the best employees from Canadian web hosting.
What inspired to become a Work-at-Home Mom?
I had quit work to stay home with my daughter when she entered fourth grade. She had a reading disability that only them became apparent. (She has since overcome this completely and graduate in the top 1/3 of her class!)
When I decided I wanted to go back to work I found that my time out of the work force made it nearly impossible for me to find a job that paid anything at all, even though I had kept up my skills through charity work. Not to mention there was really no jobs in my area that would let me do what I really wanted to do which was web design. I decided to take a chance and see if I could find work virtually. I have never looked back!
How long have you being working as a Web Designer from home?
I am a huge tech geek and have been building websites for years as a hobby, starting back when everyone had dial-up and sites were all text. In July 2007 I decided to start my own web design company. Two years later I now offer full WordPress customization, full membership sites and forums in addition to HTML websites. I am a shopping cart expert and am about to receive my certification from WAHMcart. I also provide social media and email marketing support. Oh and I am an awesome graphic design artist!
What previous employment experience do you have?
I have always worked in the tech sector. I have even built computers and was among the first to test both Windows 3.0 and Win95. I have also spent time as an administrative assistant so I guess that makes me a rather well rounded geek. I have the tech skills to do the necessary work and the admin skills to run my business!
What kind of training/education do you have, if any for Web Design?
I am totally and completely self-taught. However I seem to have a very intuitive grasp of technology and can learn a new system or program in just a few days. I have tried taking a few classes here and there but inevitably I knew the program or system better than the instructor.
What is your schedule like?
It varies week to week and month to month. Currently I would say about 6 hours a day so about 30 hours a week. But this doesn’t count the time I spend on my own site or on building my business.
How much do you charge?
I generally charge $40/hour but I have several retainer packages that are discounted. I will also give a per project flat rate quote upon request.
Why did you choose Web Design?
As I said before I am a huge tech geek. Plus I get bored easily. This gives me a chance to do something different everyday, learn new software all the time. I can’t draw stick figures so the opportunity to create fabulous and unique websites is a great creative outlet for me.
I can’t explain it any better than that. I genuinely love creating websites and find it fun and thoroughly enjoyable. Why wouldn’t I want to do something that allows me to get paid to do something I love.
What advice do you have for other moms who might want to work from home as a Web Designer?
First and foremost hone your skills Build your site first, this is your first impression and if it is not awesome you won’t get any work Join VA teams they can provide you with work as you try to build your own client base Never say you can do something unless you KNOW you can do it
What skills do you think it takes to become a web designer?
This is such a loaded question any more. It seems like anyone with five minutes on an HTML tutorial and a copy of Front Page wants to call them selves a web designer. There is so much more to designing websites that just throwing stuff together on your screen.
Today a quality website no only attracts visitors it engages them and encourages them to return. It takes skill to create a site that successfully does that. You have to understand Search Engine Optimization, which should be incorporated at the very basic design level to help draw traffic. You have to have you finger on the pulse of the internet itself (and the various hot technologies out there) to know what sorts of tools and widgets to build into a site to keep your visitor on your site and draw them back again and again.
You also have to be able to take what is usually a rather vague idea or dream in someone else’s mind and recreate it. It takes a special kind of intuition to listen and truly hear what the client wants… sometimes how they say something is more important than the actual words.
It is a complicated alchemy to bring all the necessary facets together to create a really great website but when the mix is just right the results can be truly magical.
What tips/advice do you have for other work-at-home moms?
Figure out what it is you really and truly love to do and build on that. Don’t just look for what should be the most lucrative. Whatever you choose to do will end up requiring large amounts of your time (I don’t care how easy or hands off “they” say it is) and if you don’t love what you are doing you won’t stick with it.
What are some of the challenges that you’ve faced trying to juggle family life and working from home?
I have been extraordinarily lucky. My husband is my biggest cheerleader and has stood by my every step of they way and never once doubted I would be successful. Our only daughter was 16 years old when I started my web design biz and she has had a very difficult time with the whole concept of working from home. How could something I do from the couch in my sweats be “real” work. But she come around and in spite of her issues at first has never complained about it much…except to finally refuse to wash any more dishes!!!!
How do you find your clients?
I have a few VA’s I partner with that send their clients web work to me. I also use social media like Facebook and Twitter to attract customers. I am also involved in several forums where me and my business are well known.
What Online Resources/Websites Do you Recommend for other Web Designers (or those that would like to be one)?:
My #1 go-to resource is VA Networking This will sound a bit lame but my #2 resource is Google. When I get stumped a quick Google search usually finds the answer. I also visit WAHM.com’s forum pretty often.
What are some of pros of being a WAHM web designer?
My schedule is flexible, in fact I went to Las Vegas last month and worked a bit (OK not much) while I was there. Other pros include no dress clothes and high heels!, no long drive to and from work. I also save $$$ since I am not eating lunch out everyday! I have met some awesome people! I have gotten to spend a lot of time with my daughter and my husband which I would have missed otherwise. (He works from home too.) My husband now does all the laundry!
What are some of the cons of being a WAHM web designer?
I haven’t really found a downside yet.
What mistakes, if any, have you learned from as a WAHM web designer?
Have a contract from the get go and use it every time with every client. If you don’t get paid don’t be afraid to stop work and don’t wait forever to do so.
Visit Ms. Burdette’s website at www.outsourcingpro.biz to learn more about her Web Design Business. For other work at home job ideas, please click here to read “Legitimate and Scam-Free Work at Home Job Ideas” Also, you might read this article on fantastic home-based businesses. Click here and here for forums and message boards for work-at-home moms and to discuss work-at-home jobs.