How to Get the Best Graphic Design Rates When Outsourcing

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How to Get the Most Profitable Graphic Design Rates When Outsourcing

How to Outsource & Get the Best Graphic Design Rates

Graphic design
May 6, 2022
7 minutes


Outsourcing design can be a tremendous opportunity for your business to save money, time and get quality graphics. Find out what is a good hourly rate for graphic design and how to score the best graphic design rates with two outsourcing options!

Gone are the days when a business could just get away with a logo and maybe a simple website. Modern businesses need graphic design daily to build an online presence, communicate with customers, make sales, etc.

Of course, hiring a full-time designer isn’t your only option. What is a good hourly rate for graphic design? Why should you consider outsourcing?

We’re here to answer all your questions and help you secure a sweet deal for graphic design!

Why outsource design

A recent report from SHRM Research shows that 83% of organizations struggle with hiring graphic designers. Common reasons include lack of relevant experience (35%) and technical skills (35%).

So, more and more companies outsource to cut costs and increase efficiency.

Working with an external hire also means that you can test out more options or consider paths you might overlook otherwise. They can provide an additional boost to an existing creative team with fresh ideas and different styles.

There are several ways to outsource design, but we will focus on two of the most popular options: freelance graphic designers and unlimited design services.

How to hire a freelance graphic designer and save up


It’s a well-known statistic that 90% of designers work as freelancers. So, finding the right blend of experience and talent won’t be an issue.

But what is the hourly rate for freelance graphic designers? The question doesn’t exactly have a straightforward answer.

On platforms like Upwork and Fiverr, freelancer graphic design rates range from under $10 to over $150. Several factors influence the rates, such as:

  • Type of project: a simple social media post usually costs well under $50 to produce, while the average freelance UX designer hourly rate is around $70.
  • Experience: Naturally, you will pay a lot more for an art director than a beginner-level designer. Strategizing and developing complex ideas and concepts requires experience as well as talent.
  • Location: This is perhaps the most surprising area. Freelance graphic design rates for US-based designers are around $25, while average graphic designer fees for designers in the Philippines are around $4 per hour.

So, what is the hourly rate for freelance graphic designers that you should agree to? Depends on what you need and where your focus is.

Say you’re based in the US, and it’s imperative that you work on the same schedule as your designer. Saving on graphic designer rates by hiring someone from another country might end up costing you more. For example, you could waste a lot of your own time on communication. Or you might need to hire another person for last-minute edits when the initial freelancer isn’t available.

In another scenario, you might try your luck with a junior whose graphic designer rates are lower. Although they might have considerable talent, they can often make simple mistakes that you’ll have to pay for. Common mistakes include not delivering the proper formats, not understanding the purpose and use of a design correctly, highlighting the wrong messages, etc.

So, here are a few tips to ensure that you’re paying a fair price for a freelance designer.

Give them a (paid) test assignment

Trial assignments are necessary for determining whether a freelancer can complete your project successfully. Of course, no quality worker will agree to work for free, so it’s only fair that you offer some compensation for the work.

You might want to inquire about graphic designer rates before determining the cost of your trial assignment. Or, you can check out a graphic design price list with typical prices for popular projects. Since a test assignment is usually only a fraction of the work, the price should be 2-3 times lower than the cost of a complete project.

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An ideal test assignment therefore is:

  • Small: A complete project can’t be a test assignment, even if you’re willing to pay for it. Pick a specific portion of the project which can be completed in 1-2 days.
  • Measurable: If you don’t already have a quality assurance system in place, you’ll need to decide how to assess the test task’s quality. You might want to consider things like speed of delivery, whether they followed the brief, or how well the result fits a specific purpose.
  • Shows a specific skill: If you need a web designer, you still can’t ask a freelancer to create a complete website as a test. Instead, focus on testing skills vital for this project, such as wireframing, illustration, animation, etc.

Set up deliverables and timeframe

What is the hourly rate for a freelance graphic designer you need to pay if you don’t know approximately how long the project will take?

Designer's Work Tracking Checklist

Learn how to work effectively with designers: from writing a brief to giving feedback and tracking work.

The best way to find out is to agree on what they have to deliver and when. An experienced designer knows how quickly they can deliver a project and give you a rough estimate.

Agree on the number of revisions

Of course, no project comes without hurdles. Revisions are a necessary part of any design project. You need to make sure that these are factored into freelance graphic design rates.

Suppose you’re paying on a per-project basis. In that case, freelancers will usually specify the number of revisions you’re allowed to make for free and let you know how much additional ones will cost.

Of course, this can be pretty difficult to predict. That’s why it’s a much better idea to pay on a per-project basis for complex projects, such as website design or logos and branding.

Find out how and where to outsource your graphic design needs

Download our guide to find a solution that suits your business

How to get the best graphic design rates with on-demand services


Securing fair and dependable freelance graphic design rates requires quite a bit of planning and research. Luckily, there’s a much better way to get affordable graphic design rates for high-quality work.

The answer? Unlimited design services.

Here’s a quick reminder of how the service works:

  1. You pay a flat monthly fee for unlimited requests and revisions.
  2. Access a team of designers with diverse skills and styles.
  3. No contracts, so you can pause or cancel your subscription anytime.

There are many terrific online design services out there, including ours at ManyPixels. So, here are a few tips to ensure you’re getting the best rates and service.

Check out the scope of service and portfolio

With a vast scope of services, there’s a pretty high chance that an unlimited design service can meet your needs.

Still, before subscribing to a particular service, check whether they can keep up with your needs. Make sure the service also offers flexibility in scaling up or down.

At ManyPixels, we allow clients to add extra designers to their plan for greater output or return to the original pricing plan. We also have a separate Dedicated Designer Plan which allows clients to work with a single designer that prioritizes their work and is available via Slack.

Pick a preferred method of communication

You know this is critical if you’ve ever worked or collaborated remotely. Straightforward communication with designers is essential, especially if you don’t work in the same timezone.

Most unlimited design companies employ designers from across the globe. So, there’s a pretty good chance you and your assigned designer will be on totally different working schedules.

However, this doesn’t have to be a big obstacle.

Many unlimited design services have their own custom platforms for client-designer communication. This also allows clients to store designs in one place and easily access them at any time. Some companies offer communication via Slack, Trello, or other similar platforms. So just look out for whatever works best.

Compare graphic design rates

Of course, it goes without saying that before choosing a service, you’ll want to know how much the competition is charging.

Truth be told, the graphic design prices for most of these services are pretty similar. Ranging from around $400 to about $1000, they usually offer several pricing plans that provide clients with slightly different opportunities.

In the grand scheme of things, the differences of $50 to $100 really shouldn’t be a make-or-break factor for your decision. You should only really use this aspect to vet out the “wannabe” companies. These usually charge unreasonably low fees and frequently provide low-quality work.

Remember, unlimited design companies are terrific long-term design partners. So, it’s much more relevant to consider whether a company’s style, experience, and policies are a good match for your needs.

Learn how to get started with our unlimited graphic design service

Download the ManyPixels User Guide — you’ll find all the useful information there

Ready to outsource design profitably?

No need to spend hours comparing freelance designer rates and evaluating portfolios!

Partner up with ManyPixels today and discover how to get affordable, quality design without the hassle.

Check out our pricing page for an overview of all available plans or book a 1:1 demo session with one of our reps. It’s your opportunity to ask us any questions and discover how ManyPixels makes a tailor-made solution for virtually any business!

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Danica Popovic

May 6, 2022

Having lived and studied in London and Berlin, I'm back in native Serbia, working remotely and writing short stories and plays in my free time. With previous experience in the nonprofit sector, I'm currently writing about the universal language of good graphic design. I make mix CDs and my playlists are almost exclusively 1960s.