As a result of a recent post on Freelance Folder about increasing your income by narrowing your focus, I made some changes to both my website’s front page and my internal policies about the type of projects I’m going to accept.
My favorite jobs include gallery sites (photographers, artists, designers, architects, etc.), WordPress sites where I can do custom theming, and general design or redesign projects. I’m going to start concentrating on those types of clients and moving away from what I don’t enjoy doing – like the large e-commerce sites. I’d be happy if I never touched one of those again.
Not to say that I won’t do any e-commerce but from now on, it’ll be smaller product lines where I can use tools like FoxyCart, or medium-sized product lines where something customizable like E-commerce Templates or OptionCart works nicely. No more X-Cart or ZenCart; those are some of the most hairy apps I’ve ever seen as a web developer.
I’m using FoxyCart on two client sites right now, and while it did take some back-and-forth on the forums to get it working, I really like it and the clients do too.
One of the things that prompted this was a recent client who wanted a placeholder web page for her new business. She ‘loved’ what I did for her, then three days later had a meltdown about it and redesigned it in Word. She wound up paying me about $500 for a simple one-page placeholder because she didn’t know what she wanted.
I have no desire to do any more work for clients who give me designs to code for them, unless said client is a designer-type themselves. I like working with other web and graphic designers and am happy to code for them, but for general clients, I’ve decided that if you don’t trust me enough to use my design expertise, you shouldn’t be using Red Kite at all. I’m leaning into the design and front-end dev realm and away from so much back-end development work.