The Cost of Graphic Design

That’s a common question, but not really the right question because to answer it correctly, you have to ask about five more. It’s not any different than asking “What does a car cost?”

Well, what kind of car? Sedan, sports car or SUV? Import or domestic? Gas or hybrid?

The better question is, “What is the VALUE of graphic design?” There is no better way to determine a proper framework for affordable graphic design than to understand how important the project is for your brand.

For instance, a brand logo is a critical piece of key art that will define your brand visually for years to come. While it may not take a good designer a long time to create a comp sheet of samples, it likely took them 20 years in the business to get the creative mojo that allows them to think and work quickly. It’s part of the reason why graphic design freelance rates fluctuate so wildly, and that makes it difficult for companies to make informed choices.

That’s why we typically avoid using graphic design rate sheets or price lists on our Website; each project has its own level of importance, its own impact and its own personality. Ranking a job like so many cans of beans is as insulting to your brand as it is our creative staff. Our culture is about relationships, and understanding as much as we can about our clients so we can match our best solutions with the optimum graphic design rates for your specific projects.

When a client asks us about cost, we do our best to understand the scope, use of the graphic design they are requesting and work to find options that meet all their criteria, including affordability. Many freelancers and big national agencies charge massive premiums for their work because they can. They are not selling graphic design as much as they are selling the prestige of working with their firms — something that puzzles the rest of us who believe that providing world-class professional creative services at fair, affordable rates and turnaround times is the height of value.

Your graphic design needs are not cans of beans on a shelf. They are individual projects that are designed to engage, educate and inspire your potential customers to act on the promise of your products or services. They need to recognize your brand’s personality, resonance and value. Moreover, whenever they see any of your logos, branding, advertisements, signage, banners, Web ads or social media, they immediately recognize it is you, your products or services. In those contexts, getting the job done right with professionals who understand you and your brand is the highest value possible.

Your customers don’t care if your creative imagery was designed by a freelancer or a graduate of the Louvre’s artist apprentice program and you shouldn’t either. Instead, work with designers who make it their mission to engage you and develop a comprehensive understanding of your needs and your budget.

Only then will you be able to ask “What is the cost of graphic design” and also wind up with an answer that will be sure to make you smile.


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