So many of us, myself included, think a lot about our budgets when we’re working on our websites and projects. When you’re worried about spending too much, it’s only natural to look for shortcuts. You may look for a slightly cheaper writer and do some extra editing or look for free plugins with similar functionality to paid ones you were looking at.
I’ve personally found that it can be better for me to hire a lower priced writer since even $40/article writers deliver a final product I’ll be editing my own personality into. I like my content to have a bit of me. If I’m going to be doing the editing anyways, paying $10-15 works out a lot better for me. Graphics are an entirely different situation though…
You have a few options here:
- Make your own graphics.
- Use a template and add your own pictures and text.
- Buy some on Fiverr.
- Hire a graphic designer.
Well, since we’re bloggers we know enough about good content to take even subpar content and make it great, but if you don’t know how to use Gimp or Photoshop (or even if you do in some situations) you can’t just edit the graphic to look better.
Your graphics decide a lot about what people think when they land on your website, sales page, or blog. It’s one thing to have simple graphics, it’s an entirely different thing to have completely amateurish graphics (at least when it comes to your header/book covers).
Now, since I’m on a pretty strict budget I try to use minimal graphics. I stick to headers and ebook covers unless there is something I really need. For my Facebook cover image I found a large stock photo and I cropped it to be the right size. It isn’t branded but my personal picture (that most recognize me from) is my profile picture.
When I do need graphics, I don’t skimp out and buy cheap graphics. I have a guy I work with that has a nice price and creates some pretty awesome. The downside is that he normally has a 4 week waiting list to get work done, so if I can’t wait I’ll head over to Fiverr and pick someone to make a placeholder. Sometimes you even get lucky and find someone you like over there. I got my header on Smooth Blenders from Fiverr and I like it enough I’m actually keeping it.
I don’t think super amazing graphics are completely necessary, but having something that at least looks nice and professional is important because it’s the first thing your visitors see. It helps them shape their opinion. You can’t brand yourself as an expert if your graphics look like they were made in Microsoft paint. If you’re on a budget, search Fiverr or oDesk for someone who makes nice looking graphics but plan to replace them because it’s had to find anyone on Fiverr who creates truley professional looking stuff. Alternatively, barter services! Find a graphic designer and trade article writing or any other skill you have to get the best of both worlds!