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Why You Should Outsource Graphic Design & How This Will Help You
Graphic design

#Freelance

#ManyPixels

How to Outsource Graphic Design & Increase Efficiency

Graphic design
March 25, 2022
9 minutes

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Whether you have a design team or not, the choice to outsource graphic design can bring many benefits to your business. Here’s how to delegate design projects to boost productivity and your team’s creative capacity.

Hard work is not the only prerequisite for success, and sometimes it isn’t even a prerequisite at all.

You may have your business’s best interests at heart when putting in all those extra hours and doing the work you’re not skilled at. But ultimately, you’re doing yourself and your business a major disservice.

Companies big and small are discovering the endless possibilities of outsourcing to increase efficiency and cut costs. Deloitte’s 2021 outsourcing survey found that a significant majority of respondents were able to cut costs and improve process efficiency by outsourcing: 88% and 78%, respectively.

Numerous studies have confirmed its benefits, and more businesses realize the potential of outsourcing. However, it’s never an easy decision to make in the first instance. Graphic design is an integral part of any brand. So, being a bit reluctant to leave it to someone outside your organization is understandable.

If you find yourself on the fence about it, we’ll help you decide. Learn how to outsource graphic design right by understanding what type of projects you can delegate and to whom.

Why outsource graphic design?

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Let’s start from the beginning. Why outsource graphic design if you already have a design team or can hire an in-house designer?

No matter the size of your business or the industry you’re in, this can be a tremendous opportunity to scale up and increase productivity. Here are some of the main reasons to outsource graphic design:

Increase efficiency

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An in-house graphic designer doesn’t necessarily mean work will get done fast. Sure, they might work with your business exclusively, but that doesn’t mean they will have the necessary skills for each project type.

Having to do lots of research before completing the first draft or even acquiring some new skills as they go might be a valuable professional opportunity for them. However, it will slow things down for your business.

Outsource design companies employ designers with different skill sets and styles, so they quickly respond to any need you have. Similarly, if you opt to work with a freelancer, you can find one whose previous experience and skills best fit the project.

Get a fresh perspective

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We get this question a lot: why hire someone from the outside if you already have your own team? And time and again, we hear back from our clients that a new perspective on things has been hugely beneficial.

Many people are afraid to outsource graphic design work, worrying that someone from the outside might lack a deep understanding of their brand and needs. But moving forward often means changing or at least adapting to current trends.

Just think of all the iconic rebrands that happened in recent years. Do you think they would have happened if the entire design team was too precious about the old look?

Test more options

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If we said it once, we said it a million times: design is a game of trial and error. Although some people may think that design quality is subjective, it’s actually not the case. Graphic design is always supposed to fulfill a specific purpose.

Each design should have attached a set of metrics (called key performance indicators or KPIs). These tell you how successful it’s been in achieving its intended goals.

With additional design horsepower, marketers can test more options and ultimately get better results.

This is especially true of things like display ads and landing pages. Numerous studies have demonstrated that even the slightest change in design can significantly impact the success of a marketing campaign. For example, changing the color of the CTA button or combining media formats, such as video and images.

Save up

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Here’s another graphic design outsourcing myth that needs to be busted. Yes, it can be costly to outsource graphic design work. Design agencies charge thousands of dollars for a single project. When you work with a freelancer, costs can quickly add up.

But, as long as you know what you need, it’s possible to find a design solution that won’t just fit your budget - it will help you save up.

If you only have seasonal design needs, working with a freelancer on a one-off basis is undoubtedly more affordable than hiring someone full-time. On the other hand, if you need design regularly, there are also money-saving options. Unlimited design, like ManyPixels, is by far the best solution in this case, as we’ll discuss in the following sections.

How to outsource graphic design?

Now that you know what benefits delegating design can bring to the table, you’re ready for the next step. We’ll explore the best projects for graphic design outsourcing and where you can outsource graphic design work.

But let’s start by getting into the right mindset.

How to approach graphic design outsourcing?

If you’re a small business owner, the thought of “someone else” handling the look of your brand (i.e., “your baby”) is terrifying. On the other hand, outsourcing client work as a design agency seems even riskier. What if your clients don’t like the result? How will this impact your reputation, and will it affect your profits?

With four years of experience in the business, we’ve heard every concern related to outsourcing graphics. So, here are a few tips that will help you take that leap of faith.

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Focus on your strengths, outsource your weakness

It’s a wonderful mantra to share with your (perhaps begrudging) design team. Nobody should be expected to be proficient at everything, and that goes for your in-house designers.

Outsourcing isn’t taking away opportunities from in-house employees. It’s a chance to fill up any loopholes and make your team more efficient.

Establish priorities

It’s vital to understand what you want to get out of it before choosing an outsourcing service.

Is it quality design at a lower price? A variety of choices? A specific type of design that you can’t do in-house?

Not only will this help you narrow down the choice of the best outsourcing solution, but it will also make the subsequent processes much smoother.

Give detailed briefings

This is probably the most helpful piece of advice we can give to anyone considering graphic design outsourcing.

A detailed creative brief can significantly reduce the time needed for the final design. If you work with freelancers, this can also mean fewer revisions. Since many freelancers charge extra for revisions, a well-crafted brief can also be a way to stay within the budget.

Designer's Work Tracking Checklist

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

Aside from all the technical specifications (brand colors, logo, the purpose of a project, etc.), it’s always a fantastic idea to include some references. Let your designer know what you like and what you don’t.

Our unlimited design service makes this step much easier, thanks to our custom design request management system. Check out this article to find out how you can make design requests with us within minutes!

Stay in control

Apple is a brand synonymous with superior design. And while most of their manufacturing is outsourced, design is done in-house.

This is a clever strategy to learn from. You can outsource virtually any creative task, but remember that the primary stakeholder is still you. That means you should be the one to make certain executive decisions and provide a creative direction for designers to follow.

What to outsource?

The short answer to the question above is “everything.” With plenty of trusted freelancing platforms and dozens of quality design companies and agencies, you can rest assured that it’s possible to find skilled workers online.

However, some tasks are more suitable as design outsourcing projects than others. Here’s a quick list.

  • Social media posts: Every business needs them all the time. Don’t let your social media become dormant because you’re stuck waiting on graphics.
  • Display ads: As we mentioned earlier, use the additional creative output to test different iterations of ads to ensure optimal performance.
  • Illustrations: This is a specific skill that not all designers are proficient at. Illustrations come in various styles and can fit virtually any industry, from children’s education to business consultancies! A skilled illustrator can help you compile an illustration library with designs you can use on marketing materials, websites, and more.
  • UX/UI design: If there’s one area where outsourcing can be a real money-saver, it’s UX/UI design. It’s a complex and sought-after area of design, so getting all your UX/UI designs for as little as $549 per month is a fantastic opportunity!
  • Print design: Not every business needs print marketing collateral, but hiring a print design expert can save time and money for those who do. Although you can find some templates online, hiring a pro and getting something custom is always better.

Where to outsource creative graphic design services?

Find out how and where to outsource your graphic design needs

Download our guide to find a solution that suits your business

Let’s look at a few of the most popular types of graphic design providers, along with their main pros and cons.

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Freelancers

If you want versatility and specialized skills, freelancers are the way to go. You can find skilled talent for virtually any type of design. Use a reputable platform (Upwork, Fiverr, Freelancer, etc.) to avoid scammers.

Although freelancers are a flexible solution and can be highly affordable for one-off projects, they aren’t the most viable long-run solution. Costs accumulate quickly when you work on a per-project basis, and many will charge extra for revisions.

It’s also the most time-consuming option since it takes a lot of time to find and vet freelancers. Also, bear in mind that you might not be their top priority, so that you can expect some delays in project delivery from time to time.

Design agency

A design agency is the most comprehensive outsourcing solution if you can afford it. From branding to massive multichannel campaigns, including complex video production, agencies usually cover it.

It might be the right choice for a big one-off project, but you will need an in-house employee or a different outsourcing option for your day-to-day.

Online design companies

Also known as unlimited design companies, this modern outsourcing solution is a perfect blend of professionalism, flexibility, and affordability.

You pay a fixed monthly fee for all your design projects. Many of these services (including ours at ManyPixels) cover a range of design projects, from logos to animation and landing pages. So you’ll probably have all your needs met.

See some of ManyPixels’ best design works

Get the ManyPixels Design Library 2022

The price range is between $300-$600, which is a fraction of the cost of a single project with a traditional design agency. The average hourly rate for freelance designers is $25 per hour. So you get a month of support and design for the price of around 20 freelancer hours!

Ready to outsource graphic design and drive efficiency?

Ready to discover a much better way to get your design needs sorted? Awesome!

Go straight to our pricing page to pick your plan and get started with our online design service today. Or, if you have any questions, book a FREE 1:1 consultation with one of our reps.

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Danica Popovic

March 25, 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.