When starting out as a designer, especially a freelance designer, it is easy to focus solely on expanding your design skill set. Learning about design, working on design, and showing off your designs comes natural because that’s what a designer’s suppose to do, right?¬† But many times you may be required to take your creative hat off and put on some business pants in order to become a successful freelancer.

You have to be the marketing department, the sales department, the customer service department, and so on. It can be tough to juggle all these jobs as you start out into unknown realm of freelance design.¬† Lucky for you, there are many experts out there who are willing to help give you the knowledge to run your freelance business like pro without the need for an MBA.¬† I’ve compiled several of the best in the business of talking about the business of design, especially freelance design.

While your RSS reader is probably chalk full of excellent tutorial sites and you’ve got folders and folders of resources ready to go, do you have the marketing savvy to make make a splash with your design business. Bookmark these excellent resources to help you make sense of the business of design so you’ll be ready to take on whatever comes your way:

Freelance Switch

Freelance Switch

One of the best in the business of freelance advice, Freelance Switch offers articles, resources, and more on a daily basis. Their job boards and forum are also great places to find jobs and talk about strategy, business, and other freelancing tasks.

Freelance Folder

Another great blog that focuses on all things freelance. The Freelance Folder offers an excellent community for knowledge, discussion, and ideas.

Men With Pens

Just ran across this site for the first time while doing research but it has all the makings of a great freelance information site. They also offer many services to aid in the pursuit of freelance success.

Seth Godin’s Blog

Not as much straightforward and practical advice but Seth Godin is one of the most respected authors in the business world. He’s authored numerous bestsellers including Tribes, a book on connecting leaders with a group of dedicated followers. There’s a lot of good information to pick up on his blog and if you haven’t read any of his books, they’re fantastic!


Focused mainly on the virtual workplace, WebWorkerDaily offers advice on productivity, networking, and even the lifestyle of a web worker. If you’re interested in expanding your web presense, this is a great place to start.

Guerrilla Freelancing

Guerrilla marketing refers to the unconventional methods of marketing on a limited budget. Mike Smith takes this approach as he offers valuable resources to Freelancers who may prefer to do things on the cheap (which is probably everyone).

Wake Up Later

A blog dedicating to help you make more money online. Brush up on your online business skills with this great blog.

Creative Freelancer Conference Blog

The Creative Freelancer Conference is aimed at anyone in the creative arts field trying to make a living freelancing. The CFC Blog is a companion blog that offers loads of great advice on the business of design, specifically freelancing.

Dosh Dosh

Dosh Dosh is an internet marketing blog that offers advice on social marketing and making money online. I’ve found some really great articles over the last few weeks.

Fresh ID Blog

Fresh ID is a web design and marketing firm that offers a wide variety of identity and design services. Their blog offers a transparent work at how they do what they do. There’s some real nuggets of wisdom that they serve up to help you learn from a company actually doing the work.


Biznik is a community of entrepreneurs and small business owners that work together to better the good of everyone’s business. An excellent place to learn, network, and grow your business skills.

GTD Times

Getting Things Done by David Allen is one of the most recognized productivity books in the world. The online home of GTD offers advice and recommendations for establishing and perfecting essential productivity habits. The boost in productivity will definitely serve to better your business skill set as well as your design ability.

Six Pixels of Separation

Personal branding, new media and digital marketing are among the topics covered by Mitch Joel on his blog about business.

The Netsetter

Another valuable blog by Envato, the Netsetter offers advice for startups and web businesses.

Work Happy

Work Happy is a collecting tank for resources that aid in the business of freelance designers. Browse through the archives for some excellent tools, tips and advice on freelancing easier and more efficiently.

Fuel Brand Network

Last but not least is an entire network of blogs related to all things creative. Writing, branding, coding and more will help you increase your knowledge of anything that is currently lacking in your freelance arsenal. Fuel Your Venture is especially helpful for anyone in startup or web business industry.

Your Turn to Talk

Where do you go to learn about the ins and outs of the business of design? What other resources exist to help you run and manage a business? Do you have any specific recommendations or reviews for these sites? What else have I missed? Share your thoughts, questions, and comments below.

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