Common mistakes designers make

Design has an impact on the lives of everyone, whether they are aware of it or not. From the website they’re using, to the coffee shop they’re visiting, and even the clothes they are wearing, the skill and work of designers has an immeasurable effect on our day-to-day lives. As we usually only see the finished results we tend to take the efforts of designers for granted, but the completed results come from a hard-earned skill that took multiple mistakes before it was perfected.

The time and effort that goes into making a good design doesn’t come without a learning curve, but many designers come to find that the mistakes they can make aren’t only limited to their craft, but to their field as well. With this in mind, we have outlined the most common mistakes designers make throughout the course of their career, and how to avoid making them.

Not Having a Portfolio

Having a portfolio is a key asset to every designer looking for work – it not only showcases your skills and talents, but can also attract potential clients. Avoid this rookie mistake by not only making sure you have a portfolio ready, but to consistently update it with your more recent work.

Displaying All Your Work Instead of Your *Best* Work

A lot of designers who are starting out might be intimidated by not having a lot of proof of experience, and are therefore tempted to include every design they’ve created in their portfolio. Remember: quality over quantity. Your portfolio should highlight your abilities, so only select work that you are proud of and best represents your brand.

Failing to Use a Contract

Contracts are an important part of building business relationships. If you are about to complete work for a client, make sure you nail out the details in writing. A legally binding contract can offers protection to both you and your client. It can also help prevent misunderstandings from occurring, as well as memorializing how and when you will be paid for your work.

Agreeing to an Unfair Wage

Unfortunately, a lot of people have little to no idea as to what goes into creating a good design, so they end up underfunding their design budget because they don’t understand the work and skill that’s required. By explaining to your clients why they should be paying your rates, you not only ensure that you are getting paid what you’re worth, but are also helping future designers get paid fairly too.

Forgetting Your Target Audience

Your individual approach to design is not always going to appeal to everyone, and it’s important to remember that that’s okay! Remember – a great design begins with being able to recognize who it’s for. Once a designer has distinguished who their ideal client is, the process of choosing the best elements for their design (whether it be the layout, typeface, color palette, etc.) becomes more straightforward.

Neglecting to Double-Check Your Work

Double-checking your work is a highly underrated skill – a small mistake can give the impression that your work is careless and rushed, or can even cause a company to experience loss in revenue. You should always double-check (or even triple-check!) for errors to ensure your work (whether it’s sending a quick confirmation email or submitting your completed design) is neat and correct. We recommend taking a quick break, then coming back and reviewing for errors, or even reaching out to another designer to review your work and give you feedback.


It is perfectly natural for designers to be influenced when viewing the work of other designers, but there is a stark difference between being inspired by another’s work versus copying someone else’s idea. While it’s possible to subconsciously replicate a design that already exists, potential clients want original work that is unique to their brand, so we recommend always doing your research to ensure that you aren’t stealing another designer’s unique concept. 

If you do use someone else’s design as inspiration, just remember to always credit the designer or seek appropriate permission as required!

Pushing Yourself Too Far/Taking on Too Much Work

A great design requires balance and skillful planning, and in a similar way, so do our own individual lives. People aren’t meant to handle long, stressful work-weeks, and designers are no exception. Simply put: working too much can have a negative effect on the quality of your work and your mental well-being, which can cause burnout. Finding a happy balance between work and life can be a little difficult, but it’s incredibly necessary. It’s important to set boundaries (such as ending your work for the day by a certain time, taking days off, or refusing to take on more clients) so that you are able to step away and rest.

Should You Start a Freelance Side Hustle?

Written By Liz Achanta
The terms ‘side hustle’, ‘gigs’, and ‘freelancing’ have gained a lot of popularity over the past few years – and for good reason. Ever since Covid-19 swept across the globe in early 2020, a multitude of companies and employees have realized the work that can typically be done in an office setting can just as easily be completed from the comforts of home. With more companies offering the flexibility of working remotely, many people have realized that this has opened a door of opportunity and innovation for those who want to pursue their dreams – and make some extra money while they’re at it.

In a recent survey conducted by Bankrate, 45% of working Americans reported that they had a side hustle. Even more interestingly, 1 in 3 Americans have made their work as a freelancer their full-time job. There are many benefits when you pick up some freelance work, but the most compelling perks are:

A sense of security – 56% of Americans have stated that they’d feel more secure working for themselves versus having a traditional job (according to the State of Independence Report by MBO Partners) which is a 32% increase since 2011.

Extra income – A side hustle can be a great way to bring in extra cash, which can be used to pay off personal debts, put towards a much-needed vacation, placed into a savings account, or invested.

Independence – Freelancers have control over what work they do, when they do it, and who they do it for. Bonus: if the gig can be completed 100% remotely, freelancers also have freedom to work wherever they want, whether it be from their own couch or on the other side of the world.

What side hustle best suits you?

The amount of potential side hustles available are nearly endless. According to Upwork, some of the most popular freelancing jobs in 2021 are:

  • Graphic Designer

  • Web/Mobile Developer

  • Digital Marketer

  • Copywriter

However, side hustles can also range from starting a blog, building websites, bookkeeping, starting a dropshipping business, becoming a photographer, tutoring, or even transcribing legal proceedings. With freelancer platforms such as Upwork, Freelancer, Win A Talent, Fiverr, and 99designs becoming more popular, you can try out different gigs to see if there’s anything that you feel is a good fit for you. Trying out these side hustles can offer a low-risk opportunity to test out your business ideas and help yourself grow as an entrepreneur.

If you’re interested in starting a side hustle but aren’t sure how to get started, an excellent way to begin is to pinpoint your own talents and passions. What kind of marketable skills do you have? Do you see people paying for work you’ve done for free? What kind of things are you drawn to in your free time? These questions can lead in the right direction.

Once you have a handle on what you can offer, consider who your ideal prospective client is: what kind of problems or needs do they have, and how can your knowledge and skills help solve their issues?

While it’s not necessary to choose a side hustle in a field that you are renowned for, pursuing something you are passionate about can be a huge positive. You’ll be more motivated when your side gig feels more like a creative outlet and is something you’re good at, versus feeling like more work.

How your .design domain can help your side hustle grow!

Companies and start-ups need freelancers more than ever. Hiring a freelancer makes sense for most businesses, as it helps keep overhead costs down and they get the expertise when they need it. When it comes to designing a new logo, having professional photographs taken of their products, or needing help with making their website more attractive, companies often will turn to the internet to find talented individuals for assistance.

In order to make your side hustle look professional, having a .design domain name will help businesses understand immediately who you are and what you do. Click the button below to see if your domain name is available and get started working on your new side hustle!

Showcase Your Website: Five Ways to Get Found Online

Written By Liz Achanta

Whether you’re just starting out your small business or are a veteran, making sure your business is found online is essential; after all, according to a study by GoGulf, 97% of online searches have searched to find a local business.

So you have a website – now what? In order to make sure your website gets found online, it’s crucial to implement a strong search engine optimization (SEO) strategy. Use the below tips and tricks to make sure your business shows up in the top search results when someone in your area does a ‘near me’ search online.

  • Create a ‘Google My Business’ Account

    Google My Business is a free service that helps you set up a business listing that works with both Google Search and Google Maps. As more and more searches become geographically-specific, when someone types in a relevant search term your business profile will pop up in the results page.

    In some cases, there is an automated listing for your business that has already been created. Make sure you actively claim and verify your business’ information to boost credibility, and ensure someone else don’t gain control of your site.

    Go to the Google Business Profile Manager site to get started!

  • Get reviews from customers

    Once you’ve made that killer Business account, grab some reviews from previous customers to promote your business. According to one study by Qualtrics, 93% of surveyors said online reviews influenced their purchasing decisions, meaning you may be losing customers by not having any reviews!

    Getting Google reviews doesn’t have to be door-to-door sales – although if you have a strong connection with one of your clients, that may be a great way to start. However, posting on your business’s social pages, running an email campaign, or offering incentives for previous customers to write a review are all great ways to get more of those 5-stars!

  • Optimize your website

    Just having a website or a Google Business account doesn’t mean your business is going to show up on page one of a Google search. As a local business, make sure you have a URL and a website that shows how unique your business is: make sure all of your products and services are listed, and that your contact information is consistent across all online channels.

  • Create Local Content

    Sure, writing about generic content on your website may be easy, but as Google algorithms get more advanced, this can result in your content getting lost amongst the other generics. Instead, be an industry or local expert by opting for specific content that will help your website be found – like the “Top 10 architectural designs in Minneapolis,” or “Ways to be fashion-forward on a budget” are great ways to show your website provides more than just a product or service . . . and also provides your website with those important keywords to make sure you show up in local search results.

  • Study the competition

    Who do you consider to be the ‘best of the best’ in your field? How did they get to be that way? Recognizing how your competition stands out amongst the rest is another great way to increase your rankings in search results: go to their website and see how they present their products and services, what keywords they use, and how they engage with their customers. Don’t know you’re your competitors are? Type in generic keywords like ‘website designers near me’ and check out the websites Then apply what you’ve learned to your own website!

New Year, New You: Get your Portfolio in Order for 2022

Written By Guest User

It’s still early enough in the year to take charge of your freelance gigs or artistic career. But does your online presence reflect the best of your work? A professional and impressive online portfolio is of course central to ensuring you thrive in 2022 and beyond.
When it comes to building an online portfolio, the biggest mistake creatives make is treating it as an afterthought. Treat your website as if you were completing a project for a paying customer (yourself!). Keep in mind that your online portfolio is often your audience’s first impression of you and what you’re capable of–so aim for sophistication and style.

 Here are the most important things to keep in mind to make sure your portfolio is exactly what you want potential customers to see.

  •  Clean and crisp. The first step to building a dazzling yet professional portfolio is to make sure your website, especially your homepage, does not look cluttered. You don’t have to jampack every single thing you’ve done into a single site. Instead, pick your absolute best 5-10 examples. Think of quality over quantity. Your goal is to pique their interest then land a discovery call.

  • Have clear goals. Depending on your objectives, you either want to make sure your portfolio clips showcase your specialization, or your wide-range. Do you only design for country cottage homes, or can you take on contemporary and industrial projects as well? Do you consult for a niche category like vegan food, or are you more of a generalist who can consult across the entire food and beverage industry? Make sure you’re sending the right message to prospective clients.

  • Make it low-maintenance. While you want to make sure your portfolio looks stellar, you also want it to be easy to maintain, refresh and operate for the long-term. Pick a template that does not require you to have to build the website from scratch or shift everything around in order to keep it updated.
  • Aim for picture perfect. Follow the basic elements of design and user experience. The format should flow from one webpage to the next, giving potential customers the opportunity to explore your work and learn more about you. All images should be high-quality. Fonts should match your branding, and complement the overall site. (Why use Comic Sans for your elegant wedding planning business?)


  • Word power. More important than the font is the content. Images can say 1000 words about your brand, but don’t undermine the importance of copy-editing. Proofread every page to ensure there are no typos, and that everything is grammatically correct. Download Grammarly if you need a crutch, or hire an editor if writing is not your strong suit.

  • Credit where it is due. Even solopreneurs have to show they are team players. If you worked on a team project that involved other people, it doesn’t hurt to mention or credit them. For example, if you’re a freelance journalist uploading a PDF of a major magazine spread, why not add (and link to) the photographer and stylist for the story? This shows you’re collaborative by nature. Better yet, your peers will appreciate you for it (and perhaps recommend you to others for future projects.).

  • Get the right eyeballs to your site. Don’t keep your beautiful portfolio a secret. Post it to social media, list it on business directories and share it via word of mouth. The most strategic way to grow online is to focus on SEO, or search engine optimization. Focus on adding keywords that are relevant to your product or service. Be sure to pick the right domain name that matches your name or business. These simple steps help you rank high in Google search results, and soon your portfolio will become an online resource for inspiration.

Build your Brand: Enhance your digital image with a personalized domain name

Written By Liz Achanta

Whether you’re starting a company or making a personal portfolio website, creating a personalized domain name is a powerful tool when building your brand. A domain name is the text that a user will type into their browser window to reach your website, and it’s one of the first digital interactions a consumer will have with your company.

Did you know? According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, the number of small businesses in the U.S. increased 2.5 percent from 2020 to 2021: the competition for consumer attention is hotter than ever, which makes it even more critical for your brand to stick out amongst the rest. Check out these pointers to make the most of your personalized domain name!

What’s in a Name?

It’s no secret that the human attention span is decreasing. And with more businesses competing for market share, owners need to be more creative to grab consumer’s attention. That’s why having a short, unique-to-you domain name is a strategic way to help your customers reach your website faster, and more frequently.

Things to remember when building your personalized domain name:

  • Short, descriptive names are best (e.g., or

  • Avoid numbers and hyphens; and choose text that is easy to type

  • Make it memorable: there are millions of registered domain names, so make sure yours stands out

Add Credibility to Your Website

There are a lot of scammers out there, so having a personalized domain name can give peace of mind to you and your customers. A strong and simple domain name can convince customers that they’re at the right place, your site is secure, and that their data will not be misused. With that being said, make sure your domain name is catchy and hard to misspell, or your customers might end up in the wrong place.

Reinforce Your Brand and Your Marketing

Having your or your business’ name in your domain means increasing brand recognition. Make sure you put your domain name on everything that comes from your business: by leaving more impressions on your customer, you will reinforce and strengthen your brand’s digital presence, resulting in more traffic to your website.

Buy Your Domain Name Now – or Someone Else Will

Domain names are limited, and once you buy a domain name it’s yours until you decide to stop paying for it. With the rise of small businesses, there’s a significant chance that someone will have a name similar to yours. If someone researches your business’s name and you don’t own that personalized domain, they’ll be more inclined to go to the other site – and who knows what type of website that could be.

What are you waiting for? Check out our domain name search to see if your domain is available and take that first steps towards building your successful brand!

Embracing Modern Aesthetics: The Influence of Design in Online Gambling

Online gambling has undergone a visual revolution in recent years. Casinos and game developers now understand the significance of design in captivating players and creating memorable experiences. In this article, we’ll journey through the world of online gambling aesthetics, exploring the impact of modern design on casino websites, games, and the psychology of players.

The Visual Appeal of Online Casinos

Website Design

The first impression matters, and for online casinos, that impression begins with their website design. Modern online casinos invest heavily in creating visually appealing websites. Sleek layouts, high-quality images, and intuitive navigation contribute to a user-friendly experience.

User Interface

User interface design is crucial in ensuring that players can easily access games and features. Streamlined interfaces, responsive menus, and well-placed buttons enhance the overall usability of the casino platform.Game Graphics: A Feast for the Eyes. We have collected the best casinos with the best user interface and design, Alberta casinos are considered to be the most sophisticated and advanced in terms of design and graphics. So be sure to check them out.

Slot Games

Slot games have evolved into visual masterpieces. Stunning graphics, intricate animations, and thematic designs transport players into different worlds. Modern slots are not just games; they are immersive experiences.

Table Games

Table games like blackjack and roulette have also received a design makeover. Realistic 3D graphics and smooth animations make players feel like they’re sitting at a physical table in a luxurious casino.

Live Dealer Games

Live dealer games combine the convenience of online gambling with the authenticity of a land-based casino. HD video streams and well-designed studio environments create a sense of immersion that traditional online games can’t replicate.

Creating a Sense of Immersion

3D and VR Technologies

The integration of 3D graphics and virtual reality (VR) technologies takes immersion to the next level. VR casinos and games allow players to step into a virtual casino world, enhancing the realism of the gambling experience.

Thematic Game Design

Game developers often craft titles with specific themes, whether it’s ancient civilizations, fantasy realms, or movie franchises. These themes are not merely cosmetic; they enhance gameplay by creating engaging narratives.

The Psychological Impact of Design

Color Psychology

Colors have a profound effect on human psychology. Online casinos use color schemes strategically to convey trust, excitement, and comfort. For example, red may evoke feelings of excitement and energy, while blue promotes trust and calmness.


Sound plays an integral role in creating a captivating gambling environment. Casinos employ carefully composed soundtracks and audio effects to immerse players further into the gaming world.

Mobile Gaming: Design on the Go

In the fast-paced world of online gambling, players increasingly turn to their mobile devices for gaming on the go. Mobile gaming has revolutionized the industry, allowing players to enjoy their favorite casino games wherever they are. One of the key elements that have contributed to the success of mobile gaming is its emphasis on design tailored for smaller screens.

Responsive Design

Responsive design is at the core of mobile gaming success. It ensures that casino websites and games adapt seamlessly to various screen sizes and orientations. Whether you’re using a smartphone or tablet, the user interface remains intuitive, and the graphics are optimized for your device.

User-Friendly Interfaces

Mobile gaming platforms prioritize user-friendly interfaces. Buttons, menus, and navigation are designed to be touch-friendly, making it easy for players to browse games, place bets, and access account settings with a simple tap or swipe. This user-centric approach enhances the overall mobile gaming experience.

Visual Appeal

Visual appeal is just as important in mobile gaming as it is on larger screens. Mobile casino games are crafted with high-quality graphics and animations to ensure they look stunning on smaller displays. Whether you’re spinning the reels of a slot game or placing bets at a virtual blackjack table, the visual aesthetics are captivating.

Cross-Platform Compatibility

Mobile gaming design also emphasizes cross-platform compatibility. Many online casinos offer both mobile apps and responsive websites, allowing players to choose their preferred way to access games. The seamless transition between platforms ensures that players can start gaming on their mobile devices and continue on their desktop computers without missing a beat.

Streamlined Gameplay

Mobile gaming design aims to streamline gameplay for players on the go. Game controls are simplified and optimized for touchscreens, ensuring that players can place bets, spin reels, or make decisions with ease. This streamlined approach maintains the excitement of casino games while accommodating the limitations of mobile devices.

Fast Loading Times

Mobile gaming design prioritizes fast loading times. Mobile players expect games and casino websites to load quickly, minimizing wait times and allowing for uninterrupted gameplay. Efficient design and optimized assets contribute to speedy performance on mobile devices.

Push Notifications

Many mobile casino apps utilize push notifications to keep players informed about promotions, bonuses, and new game releases. These notifications are strategically designed to engage players and encourage them to revisit the casino, adding an element of convenience and excitement to mobile gaming.

Security and Reliability

Mobile gaming design also encompasses security and reliability. Players must trust that their personal and financial information is secure when gaming on their mobile devices. Robust encryption and security measures are integrated into mobile casino apps and websites to ensure a safe and trustworthy gaming environment.


In the modern landscape of online gambling, design is not merely an afterthought; it’s a driving force behind player engagement and satisfaction. The influence of aesthetics can be seen in every aspect of online casinos, from their websites to the games themselves. As technology continues to advance, players can expect even more visually stunning and immersive experiences in the world of online gambling.