If you’re a web designer who’s serious about starting or building your web design biz, I’m guessing there are some glaring challenges and struggles you’re going through.

And if you feel alone in those struggles…you’re not.

There are so many common challenges I hear from web designers who are serious about starting, building and growing their web design business which we’re going to solve here in this special coaching Q&A session.

Alexia, an early-stage web designer who has been stuck starting her web design business while combating analytics paralysis, finally took the leap to join my community Web Designer Pro™ and she graciously allowed me to repurpose a recent coaching chat for you!

We cover:

✅ How to decide what services to offer
✅ How to decide what website platform to use
✅ How break out of the content consuming cycle and actually get stuff done
✅ What pricing model and rates to start off with
✅ How to overcome the dreaded imposter syndrome and more

Again, a big thanks to Alexia for sending in these questions and allowing us to take this publicly because I know she’s not alone. I hope this helped you out as well!

In this episode:

00:00 – Introduction & what we’re going to cover
01:23 – What services to offer
07:43 – Which website platform to use
14:43 – How to go from content to action
21:33 – Pricing and pricing model
28:15 – Overcoming imposter syndrome

If you’d like some more help with getting your web design business off the ground, more free resources are ready for you at joshhall.co/start

Episode #319 Full Transcription

Josh: 1:49
Hey friends, welcome into a very different style episode of the Web Design Business Podcast. In this one, I’m going to share with you some answers to some questions that I got from a new member of my community web designer pro. Alexia is a designer, a web designer who’s early stage early in her business and she’s been designing websites, but she’s serious about starting and launching her business. So when she joined pro uh, if you didn’t know, when you joined my community Web Designer Pro, I always send a personal welcome video to every new member and I ask feel free to send a video back and share with me where you are in your journey and I’ll give you some tips and insights on how to get going, depending on where you are. And she did exactly that.

Josh: 2:34
Alexia sent me some really good questions about some challenges and struggles that she has right now with getting her business started, and I thought they were so good and they’re so common. These questions are absolutely so common for folks who are getting started in web design, particularly with starting their business, so I asked her if she would be cool with letting me repurpose this publicly for you as well, if you’re an early stage web designer who needs help starting your web design business. She graciously said, yep, totally cool with that. So that’s what we’re going to do here. I’m going to basically answer each one of her questions one by one, these top five challenges. We’re going to address things like how to know what tools to choose for you and your business, how to know what to offer and how to know what to focus on, because there’s so many different things you can do in and outside of web design. I’m gonna give you some tips on pricing and share how you can even choose the right pricing model for you, whether you wanna do fixed one-off projects or subscription web design to try to build recurring income. We’re gonna address that. Also gonna help you with conquering imposter syndrome, which is another big challenge and struggle that all early stage web designers face. So we’re going to cover all that and more here and again, I want to thank Alexia for sending in these great questions and these top five challenges and struggles that she has with getting her web design business started to help you as well.

Josh: 3:57
A couple of things else I wanted to mention before we dive in, or a couple other things I wanted to mention. This is also a video, so if you would like to see the video version of this, you can subscribe to my YouTube channel, joshhallco slash YouTube, and I have some more free resources for you who are getting started with your web design business Some brand new resources, actually. So go to joshhallco slash start and you can pick up some free additional resources, along with this conversation here, to help you get started with your web design business. All free, completely free resources for you. Go to joshhallco slash start to get those as well. And, without further ado, here’s Alexia and our little Q&A session, helping her with some of the biggest challenges and struggles that she’s facing, and I’m excited to hear how it helps you as well.

Alexia: 4:49
My top five struggles of a beginner web designer. So my number one struggle would be wanting to do everything. On the journey of becoming a web designer, I originally just wanted to do web design and I thought that was great. But then, researching further, I’m like well, I want to do branding, and then I want to add in SEO, and then I want to add in copywriting, and then I want to do marketing like a full-blown marketing plan, and I overwhelmed myself and now I feel like I’m a little bit further down the road because I want to add all those things in. So for now I’ve decided just to go with branding and web design and then I can add in the rest later. But that was one of the biggest struggles is wanting to do everything and not really playing to my strengths early on. So if you have any advice for that, it would be great.

Josh: 5:42
Yes, very common struggle and I think, depending on your background, when you get into web design, one of the biggest challenges is just this, because there are so many things you can do in and around website design. In general, you can go digital marketing route. You could do social media. You could do ads. You could be a full-blown copywriter. That digital marketing route. You could do social media. You could do ads. You could be a full blown copywriter that does web design. You could do SEO. You could do again, branding and logo design and graphic design, like you’re doing here. There’s a lot of different things you can do, but I think you just hit the nail on the head which is your specialty, the type of work that you enjoy doing, that you’re already either good at or have a really big interest in doing. Those are the things to focus on first.

Josh: 6:25
Now there’s two big areas of services here that are really common for web designers who come from a design like graphic design or branding background and that is to do branding alongside websites, and I think it’s totally fine to offer those two services separately and together as a bundle. The reason being is because they often feed in with each other. I came from a graphic design background to where I did logo design and basic branding and naturally the next step would be they want a website. So those can work hand in hand. And if you do web design first and then someone has a terrible brand or they need help with some of the design aspects, you could almost do semi-branding services or add in branding as a refresh, like a rebrand, along with a website. So I’m 100% okay with anyone offering branding and web design as their two main services.

Josh: 7:20
Now let’s focus on the web design side of things, because I know the temptation is to do it all. The reality is you’re probably going to scratch the surface on most of those categories messaging, copy, seo, design, a little bit of marketing. You’re going to do some of those things, and by marketing I mean maybe you’ll set up a lead generator like a contact form or like a lead generator as in, like an ebook or something that somebody would sign up for for your client. You’re probably going to scratch the surface on all those areas anyway. So what I would do when it comes to building websites is just focus on web design and I would offer fundamental SEO, just basic SEO, which is mainly just a matter of site description and tags on the main pages. You don’t have to get wild with messaging and copy yet that’s SEO related but you could just scratch the surface of basic UX, conversion-based design, which I teach in my design course. My SEO course is an SEO fundamentals course, so as long as you’re in Web Designer Pro you get access to all those to brush up on those. So essentially, web design is going to scratch the surface on those other areas just basics. So just start basic. And the cool thing is is if you design a nice site and you have basic design principles in place and very, very basic SEO, that is going to be enough to be able to charge at least $2,500 to $5,000 for your basic plans. And then things like advanced marketing strategies, advanced copywriting, messaging, advanced SEO, potentially ongoing SEO, advanced accessibility, advanced security, advanced optimization, advanced speed all these other things can be add-ons for a later date or different phases in the project, especially marketing.

Josh: 9:09
Building a website is one thing. Marketing the website and assisting your clients and growing their business through marketing is a very, very separate thing, because that opens the doors into being a digital marketing agency, which not all web designers want to do right here. I didn’t want to do that either. But the reality is you can’t do any digital marketing with a terrible website, so the key is to build a website. What I would say is, if you have interest in the marketing side of things whether it be managing somebody’s social media or doing content or ads or whatever it would look like on the marketing side of things, even strategy which side note you’re doing strategy for free, likely right now just building websites, because strategy for marketing and business online, the website is a big part of that. I would say again keep it simple, have that in your mind, that you might be willing to explore that, but at a later date, so don’t worry about it now.

Josh: 9:59
Right now is website design that looks nice and is conversion based, with good design principles, basic SEO principles, and if you do those, that’s going to factor in a little bit of messaging and copy, but again, you don’t need to go too far into that.

Josh: 10:13
Handle the basics first and you’ll. You’ll make your services better and better as you move forward. And then again, if you’re doing branding or design, absolutely, if you feel comfortable with that and you’re good at that and it’s a specialty use that for now as a way to lead in to web design. I would have those packages separately and bundled together branding and websites separately and as a bundle and that’s a great way to start your business. And remember the quote what got me here won’t get me there. So you may start with design and branding as a big service of yours, but eventually maybe you’ll go full websites and then that’ll open up more time to do marketing for your clients if you’re interested in that, if you want to help them with email marketing and ongoing online marketing strategies. So I hope that helps. Keep it simple, just phase one. Keep it simple. Get some projects under your belt and then you can expand from there if you want to, if you like those types of services.

Alexia: 11:10
Otherwise, you could partner up with people who are the experts in those specialties. Number two would be picking a platform. I’ve designed websites on WordPress and Webflow and I really like those, but then I’m constantly bombarded on TikTok and on YouTube with, you know, wix Studios. The best thing, or everyone should go to Squarespace or show it is another one that pops up all the time. Every you know, every new designer should start on show it, and that’s the way to go.

Alexia: 11:35
So I kind of have this look as if the grass is greener on the other side, and so I’m kind of wanting to dive into everything, and then, all of a sudden, I’ve got my hands in everything and I can’t. It’s hard to run a business and really get the processes out of the way if you’re trying to be in everything all at once, and so since joining Pro, I’ve decided to go with Divi and WordPress so that I have a community to back me up in case I do need help, and I just think that that would be a more streamlined process. So I’ve gone with that. But if you have any advice for picking platforms or, I guess, weeding out the noise of jumping to more and more platforms all the time, that would be great.

Josh: 12:19
Probably the number one challenge and struggle for anyone getting into web design today is choosing the platform, and I understand that. I’m very empathetic to that, because if I were getting started today, it’s a lot tougher than when I got started back in 2010. There weren’t many options but, as you rightly said, there’s a lot of different options now. I think the number one thing to remember is that there’s a few metrics to think about when deciding what tools to use, and this is the same for website builders and for project management tools. For any other subscriptions or tools you’re using. There’s a few key things to look at. One is the tool itself. Do you like it? Do you enjoy it? Does it feel you know early on? Does it feel like I enjoy being in this tool? And in the case of Divi, uh, it did take me a little time to come around to Divi, but then I was realizing like I just want to. I I liked Divi. It just resonated with me when I got started back in 2014 with Divi. So I liked the tool. It felt comfortable. I, I just I got to know the interface well and I just enjoyed using it over a lot of the other builders at that time. So that is like key, you got to enjoy the tool you’re using. The second aspect is the community. Like you said, the community itself. Inside of my community, web designer pro, we are agnostic to a lot of tools, but there’s still a large percentage of members who are using WordPress and Divi and a few other builders in there, including Bricks, elementor, breakdance and some others, so that’s a really good support system to have behind you. Now we do have members using ShowIt and Squarespace and Wix Studio and others, but I think in that case, if you have a support system that you know is behind you whether it’s Web Designer Pro or any other premium web design community or free communities or Facebook groups that’s the second point is you want to look at the community behind the tool.

Josh: 14:09
The thing that separates WordPress from any other website platform is the community. WordPress, by nature, is a community of people. That’s the one thing that separates it from everyone else. It was built by community, and WordCamps and other meetups around WordPress are the thing that really keep it going. It’s such an organic thing. It’s also why WordPress is still I think the last I saw was like 44% of the internet it is still a massively popular platform. It’s going to take a long time for other platforms to get the reach of WordPress, and I think community is the thing that keeps it going. So that’s a big factor and it’s one reason I would start with WordPress, because there is such a support system behind it. And then the company You’ve got to look at the company behind the tools you’re using. So, as I said, wordpress, yes, it’s run by Automatic. They’ve been around for a long time and the fact that the community is behind that and that it’s nearly half of the internet says it’s going to be around for a long time.

Josh: 15:10
Could you say that same thing about a lot of the other platforms? Yes, in some regards, but there’s still a lot of questions about new platforms and, more specifically, with WordPress, with builders. This is a biggie, because the reason that I have still stuck with Divi apart from me still enjoying the interface and, yes, there’s some clunkiness and I’m excited about Divi 5, which is going to be a game-changing new chapter for Divi One of the reasons that I have stuck with it is because of the company Elegant Themes, which is behind Divi, has been around for a long time and they are a trusted, reputable company that has a lot of trust and loyalty behind them and even you could say what you want about the pros and cons with Divi, they’re trying to make the best absolute product possible for a lot of people. I don’t know how many sites are using Divi, but it’s a lot. I mean. I think they have over a hundred thousand customers, or close to, at this point. So it is in good hands and some of the other builders, while new, while really exciting, one thing you might want to think about is like, if you invest in a tool, if it’s brand new, I would probably maybe invest in that and no Divi or another builder that’s more established as well. That because you don’t want to build your business off of a tool that’s eventually going to go by the wayside.

Josh: 16:24
Oxygen is a builder for WordPress that, unfortunately, the the tool, the creators of that, from what I know, created break dance, which looks really cool and it’s really interesting. It has piqued my interest, but unfortunately I don’t know how they’re supporting Oxygen now. So if anyone built their entire business on Oxygen, the question will be well, how far is this going to go? Is this tool going to grow with me? That’s the one question you have to ask yourself. Is this tool going to grow with me? So long-winded answer with those big three things to consider the tool itself do you like it? Does it suit you and your customers? Is the community good behind it? And the company do you trust the company?

Josh: 17:05
I think, in short, it’s always good to start with WordPress, because WordPress is, by nature, one of the more complex type of platforms to build websites on, which means if you decided to use ShowIt or Wix, studio or other ones, they’re probably gonna be a lot easier to pick up.

Josh: 17:18
So, in short, if you can use WordPress and you have a trusted builder like Divi or Elementor or Bricks or Breakdance, then other tools are going to be easier to partner up alongside with your main tools. I have a student right now who is doing WordPress sites and Showit sites as her main tool and she just kind of picks and chooses what tool depending on the client situation. So I think you’re in really good hands, learning WordPress first and learning Divi, and then again you can always add more tools to your repertoire and have a different platform. But you rightly stated you don’t want to have too many platforms, because you’re a jack of all platforms and master of none. I would say, two platforms at most that you know and two builders. So Divi and Elementor, divi and Bricks. Whatever it’s going to be, don’t stretch yourself more than a couple of platforms and a couple builders, on WordPress specifically.

Alexia: 18:09
Number three would be consuming content with lack of action, and I’m super guilty of this. I’m a consumer by heart. I love to consume content videos. That’s why I have YouTube premium and I always usually have an earbud in my ear listening to a podcast. I love being in the idea and the thought realm and the oh, this could work and this could work. But then taking action, that’s a different struggle. So if you have any advice on how to go from content to action, that would be great. Thank you for sending over the course pathway. It’s really going to help me. Just take me on a path instead of me just like jumping at little bits and little clips and YouTube videos. It’s really going to help with that. So I appreciate that so much.

Josh: 18:59
All right, well, welcome to the Web Designer Club, because every web designer struggles with this. I think when you’re a web designer, you’re a learner by nature and you’re a tinkerer. You’re a figure outer because that’s what we get paid for. That’s how we do our jobs. There’s so many different technologies we’re using where we’re going to be very apt to learning and figuring things out. But, yes, at some point you got to reel yourself in and you have to go into do mode. You got to go into whatever’s going to pay the bills, whatever’s going to fill my bank account. This is very timely. I just got off a coaching call with somebody who struggles with this, who is just a learner lover like, just loves learning, and I’ll say the same thing. I told her that I’ll say here, which is you almost have to, at some point, give yourself a bit of a challenge, whether it’s like a 30 day challenge or a 60 day challenge, where you don’t learn anything new as long as you’ve got enough. Learn Like if you’ve learned enough to where it’s time to implement. You need to shift gears from learning and taking in content to putting out content or putting out implementation. And again, it doesn’t need to be a long season, but even if it’s just, or even just a week or two weeks where you’re like, okay, this is creation time, this is implementation time, everything I’ve learned so far, I’m going to make a priority list and item of these and I’m going to implement the other aspect with this which I’m so glad you mentioned the course pathway that I have set out in Web Designer Pro, because I have a suite of web design courses that are specific especially for those starting out with like a start here, go here, go here, go here. I have that roadmap in place because it is the path that I would take if I were starting today with both learning and implementing, so that to say, you don’t need to like, go through my suite of nine web design courses and then implement, no, go through the Divi and WordPress beginner course, which that course is by nature meant to for you to like, go lesson by lesson and build alongside me. Then we go into usually the design course or the process course, because both of those my process course shows you how to plan, build and launch a website 50 steps complete. That alone is going to make you worth starting at $2,500. Just the Divi, wordpress beginner course and my process course will get you to where your starting point should be at least a couple thousand dollars. You back that up with my design course, which teaches you UX and conversion-based design for websites, and then my SEO course, which is my fundamental course that for SEO. Those will get you to a place where you should be charging no less than starting at $2,500 up to $5,000 in in beginning packages.

Josh: 21:41
So do those first, but learn and implement as much as you can. If you’re in a course now, in your case, if you’ve already learned a lot and there’s so much in your brain, you gotta like you gotta siphon that out and start implementing immediately. Which is why I would recommend, if you’ve already learned a lot, give yourself a week or two weeks where there’s no learning and you’re just implementing. You’re just working on your site and you know. If you need to do a tutorial or go through course lessons occasionally, that’s fine, but I just mean you don’t want to read several books and do nothing but digest podcasts and watch YouTube videos and not actually do something out of that. So it’s one reason I still love courses because courses are and they should be and this is my motto as a course creator. It is an action plan. That’s really what it is. It’s not information as much as it is categorized information built to get you an outcome. So you go through my design course. By the end of that, you know how to build conversion-based designs. So it is very action-oriented. Same with all of my courses. So I would have that approach as you go through a course stop and implement, stop and implement.

Josh: 22:51
When I went through a podcasting course, when I launched my podcast, I came out of the gate super strong and I’m still doing it four and a half years later and I still love it. Because I went through a podcasting course Pat Flynn’s Power Up Podcasting and I literally went, lesson by lesson, and I created my name, I created my artwork, I create. I chose Buzzsprout to be where my podcast gets distributed from. I created my description when I went through the description lesson, like, I tried as best as I could to learn and implement while going through a course. So I would have that same approach, particularly with courses.

Josh: 23:26
And when it comes to outside content and content that’s more like breadcrumbs and little pieces of information I would turn everything off for a week to two weeks, maybe even 30 days, just to go through one particular topic and implement. You will be shocked at how much time you will save and how much you’ll get done if you’re purely focused on output for a little while and again, it’s not forever, it’s just a little bit of time. I still subscribe by their seasons where I am learning and reading and listening a lot more, and then there’s times where I am just in output mode. I just recently got done building my new course scale your way and I was in output mode. I was writing. I was doing mostly writing like course work, course specific output I did not take. I didn’t read anything new by then.

Josh: 24:19
I was very low on, like the, the amount of content I was taking in. Um, still listen to some podcasts and stuff, but even a lot of the content I was taking in I was very interested in scaling resources. So I listened to a lot more scaling podcasts. I brought in uh uh uh, a guest expert, speaker and web designer pro who talked about scaling and that primed a lot of ideas. So if you’re taking in content, make it related to what you’re doing, but focus on your output at all costs and just give yourself a window. Do a little. Do a little challenge. 10 day challenge, two week challenge nothing else except for this particular topic. Get it done and watch how good you feel when you have some output.

Alexia: 24:58
Next would be the do I do a subscription model or flat pricing? I think the pricing question is in there. Um, I loved your podcasts with Steve Sharam and it opened up a whole new like um mental idea for me of subscription web design, and so I really love that. But I don’t know if that’s the route I want to go. First. I like it because for one subscription you’re getting that reoccurring income to. I’m still a little iffy on pricing, on like charging thousands of dollars for my web design, even though I’m confident in it. Um, that that pricing, I get a little hesitant, uh, with saying hey, saying hey, here’s a $3,000 proposal. So I feel like subscription would kind of cut that down. But then again I don’t know if I’m ready to handle the subscription web design portion. So any advice on flat pricing or fixed pricing versus subscription would be really helpful.

Josh: 25:59
Yeah. So this is a big wave and it’s understandable while why this model is so popular subscription web design and Steve Schramm, the king of subscription web design, is a good friend of mine and if you want to build recurring income and you want to build a solid, stable business model, recurring income and subscription base is the way to go. But I will say the thing about subscription web design and Steve will tell you this too it is a long game approach and it takes a long time to get to the point where a subscription model is paying you monthly what most web designers would need to be able to pay the bills and have profit and cover expenses and taxes and everything else. So while I love that model and I love recurring income, I would do that at a phase back, like a level back. I would still. If I were starting today, I would start with fixed projects 50% upfront, 50% upon completion, with a hosting and maintenance or you could call it a care or support plan as the recurring income, because that’s going to start to build and add up. And even if you’re only doing 50 or a hundred dollar a month care plans, if you’re doing $99 care plan and you get 10 clients. That’s a thousand dollars a month recurring in the project they may have already paid five or $10,000 for. So it’s going to even out and it’s a lot easier to build your business quickly with bigger upfront costs and projects. Again, I think there’s a really valuable time and place for a subscription. But if it were me, I would start with fixed costs with a hosting and maintenance plan as your recurring income, or again, you could call it a support or care plan. But marketing services, ongoing SEO, ongoing copy those are separate. Those are separate retainer and ongoing subscription services. What I would do is, once you feel really good about your services, you’ve got results coming in. We’ll talk on pricing here in a second.

Josh: 27:52
But when it comes to a full on subscription model, what I would do is add that in as a lower ticket offer, as a fallback plan. So I would have your packages. What I teach is to have three categories of services build, support and grow. Those are the three categories Build websites for $2,500, $5,000, $10,000. Support them with care plans that are anywhere between $100 and a few hundred. And then growth services, which you could just start with just honestly, just strategy, just doing a call every quarter or every year with your clients and then you can add more marketing services eventually. And then a subscription service is ideal for a fallback plan.

Josh: 28:33
So if a client’s like, ah Josh, we can’t do the 5,000, you could say, well, we do have an off an option that, uh, is a little more basic, but it would at least get you to where you, we could have the website up and you could have the essentials. We have kind of a templatized service for this and it’s a subscription based, so you could do this over 18 months. We could break down a $3,000 plan over a year and a half and whatever that amounts to. That way you would at least have that coming in. Let’s do it. So 3000 or 18 would be 18 months. That’s 167 bucks a month. So you could say we could at least do this. It would be a little bit different than our custom fixed plans, but for 160 bucks a month or even if you wanted to make that like one, 99, we could do that for 18 months and that would at least get you this site that we could start to build and we’d be able to support you through this time and then after that maybe you’re you’re able to go up from there. So it’s subscription is a great way to ease into it. As a fallback plan. You may even hide from your main website and just offer it occasionally.

Josh: 29:36
Um again. If you go that route, what’s going to happen is you’ll likely be tempted to make subscription the only option which you can do. But you almost need to be in a place in business where there’s less risk to do that, because it is a much slower growth style plan. It’s a lot easier to make $10,000, $20,000, $30,000, $40,000, $50,000 when you’re doing $5,000 websites or $10,000 sites and you get those big waves of income. I would start that way than go from there Pricing real quick.

Josh: 30:05
You mentioned not feeling confident on pricing, and rightfully so. If you’re brand new, that’s okay. It’s okay to feel like that. The thing is, you go through my courses, you will and should feel immediately more confident to price at again a minimum of $2,500, $5,000 being the main range, because if you know Divi and WordPress well, or whatever tool you’re using, you know your process for planning, building and launching websites. You know good design principles and you have even a basic eye for design after going through my design course. You know basic fundamentals of SEO, which you could go through my SEO course in a half a day if you wanted to cook through it.

Josh: 30:46
That right there will get you to a place where you should be able to confidently charge between $2,500 and $5,000 for websites. And then, as you get further, along with knowing CSS, if you need to, or knowing a little bit about the backend of websites, which I have courses on both of those from a website design best practices standpoint, you’re good to go. And then my courses for my, the business course and my maintenance plan course. Those will get you into the place where you can build your recurring income, up your rates and then work on your client experience side of things which also make you more confident selling projects, cause not only are you selling websites, but you’re selling an experience for your clients. That’s when you’re really going to start to feel good about charging 5, 10, 15, 20k for projects. So there you go. Start there, little wins, a little bit of confidence, week by week. Next thing you know you’re a $10,000 starting at web designer and you can enjoy six figures, which is really nice.

Alexia: 31:41
And number five, overcoming imposter syndrome. Even though I feel confident in my designs and my ability and my process for my clients because I’ve done freelance for about a year now a year, year and a half Um, I still have that hesitation and that imposter syndrome, even though I’ve had satisfied clients and, um, I’ve really, I just it’s, it’s, it’s hard, it’s like there’s, it’s like I’m on a path and I see where I want to be and I’m not there yet, even though I’ve come so far. Um, so if you have any advice on that, it would be so helpful. And again, thank you, josh, so much.

Josh: 32:20
So imposter syndrome. These are such great questions. By the way, I just, alexia, really laid out some amazing questions here and I’m so excited that she was cool to send that video in and have me be able to answer each one of these, in particular, because these are the main challenges that most all starters are feeling. So if that’s you and you feel like an imposter, you are not alone. The thing about imposter syndrome is, if you are new to something, you are an imposter. So, honestly, like you should feel it wouldn’t be right if you weren’t feeling that. I mean, if I, for example, I don’t know Shopify, if I, like, started today and put myself out there as a Shopify designer, I would feel like an imposter because I know web design but I don’t know Shopify personally. But as you get to know something, you very quickly lose that feeling of being an imposter when you start to have actual knowledge and actual results from something. So, honestly, go through my courses and I know it sounds like it’s a softball question, I don’t mean to sound douchey with that, but like, if you feel like an imposter with design, you feel like an imposter with SEO, you feel like an imposter with Divi and WordPress and knowing what to do when you build a website. My Divi beginner course, my process course, my design course and my SEO course will literally alleviate all those feelings. And yes, you’re not going to be an expert compared to other web designers who are further along, but you know who. You will be an expert to even just knowing the basics of those topics your clients, because your clients don’t know anything about any of that. If they do, they barely know what a website is or what SEO is. They certainly don’t know anything about conversion-based design. If you tell your clients you know a lot of conversion-based design techniques are going to be like uh, what was that word you said? Like you are an expert to them. That’s what’s most important.

Josh: 34:11
The key on the honest key to overcoming imposter syndrome is to not compare yourself with other web designers, especially other established web designers. If you come into Web Designer Pro, there’s gonna be a variety of web designers in all stages and it’s really good to learn from the folks who are pro status and have been doing it for a long time, but you should not compare yourself to them. You should aspire to know, like to be where they are eventually and to learn from them, but you should not compare yourself to them, and I know how easy this is to do. I don’t want to make anyone feel stupid, for for feeling like that because it’s so easy to do, but you are starting here, you’re at the, you’re at the early stages, so I don’t even want you to compare yourself with other early stagers, because they may have specialties that you don’t have, and the thing is is you may be blinded to how much specialties and talent you have in certain areas that other designers don’t have. Like, I used to feel like an imposter when I met developers who were so good at development and could do amazing things, but you know what they sucked at, often Design or sales. Like there was a reason most developers were working for other agencies because they couldn’t sell, they weren’t very nice or they just didn’t have a good communication presence. I did, though I was actually naturally better at that terrible at development, and it took a long time and a hard process for me to learn even basic CSS, but then I realized I’ve got my own superpowers. So you’re not going to know your zone of genius and know your superpowers right away, but what I would say is just be vigilant about what type of work you enjoy doing, because you’re going to realize you’ve got a lot of superpowers and a lot of talent and specialty in certain areas, and that’s okay. Focus on those. That’s going to help you with imposter syndrome as well, because somebody who’s really good at these areas may be terrible at the areas that you’re good at. So that’s the big key Do not compare yourself to others at all.

Josh: 36:12
Especially, don’t compare yourself to those who are much further along. What I would do is look at your progress. I mean going through trainings and like my courses are going to help you. Not comparing self is going to help you. The third piece of that is look at your progress. Compare yourself to where you were yesterday. So, Alexia, if you go through my design course and then you build a website based off of what you learned, you this week is going to be drastically different from you a couple of weeks ago. So that’s who you compare yourself to. It’s like, oh my gosh, look at the progress. I’ve made One site that I took a little bit of training. Or even if you just looked at a site that you really like and you mimic your designs off of that and just have a test run, just design a site based off of a site you like. That will feed into your design eye and make you a better web designer, and you’ll be amazed how much better you are just a couple of weeks after the former you. So only judge and compare yourself from the prior you, and that’s the key to to imposter syndrome, one of the main keys. So I hope that helps.

Josh: 37:15
Again, it’s natural you should feel that Everyone getting started. Even if I were to start something new, if I start playing pickleball, I don’t know anything about it. I’m an imposter, I’m the beginner, but I’m going to learn what I can and go from there. I’m actually not learning pickleball, but just example. I’m going to stick with tennis, but hopefully that helps either way. So there we friends. I hope you enjoyed that.

Josh: 37:40
Again, thanks to Alexia for taking some time to put these questions together in a really succinct manner and for being open to sharing her challenges and struggles publicly. And the reason I told her she could totally feel comfortable with doing this is because she’s not alone. Anytime I help out an early stage web designer, these are like the four or five most common questions. So hats off to Alexia for being brave enough to put these challenges and questions out there for everybody and I hope it makes you feel again that you’re not alone. These are all the struggles that we all face and there’s a lot of struggles getting into web design now that are different than getting into web design 10, 15 years ago.

Josh: 38:17
So I hope my insight here helped you getting started in your web design journey Again a very different style format. I’d actually love to know if you enjoyed this. If you did, if you like these kind of Q and a coaching style sessions, I’m very open to doing more things like this, maybe even have a listener Q and a eventually. So leave me a comment. Go to joshhallco slash three, one, nine to drop me a comment and let me know if you like this and if you’d like some more.

Josh: 38:42
And, as I mentioned in the intro, I’ve got a free resource for you, loaded with more tips and insights and help for you to start your web design business or even if you’ve just started your business. But it’s just a bit of a bit of a messy show going on. Go to joshhallco slash start to pick up some more free resources from me to help you start and build your web design business. Joshhallco slash start. And again. I’d love to hear from you. Have you enjoyed this? All right friends. Well, if you did, I hope it helps and I’m excited to help you more when you sign up for my free starting resources at joshhallco slash start.

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