How Do I Write a Freelance Graphic Design Contract?

How Do I Write a Freelance Graphic Design Contract?

You’ve gotten your first potential client, and are so excited to get to work designing for them, but you realized that you probably need some sort of contract before you get started. 

Or, maybe you’re still wondering if you actually need a freelance graphic design contract?

Or, you’ve had a few clients now, and after dealing with miscommunications, delays, and maybe even missed payments, you’ve decided that it’s time to get a solid contract in place for your future clients so that you can nip those problems in the bud before they even begin.

Either way, we’re so glad you’re here - right on time. But where do you even begin creating a contract for your clients? 

Gather Essential Information for Your Graphic Design Contract

When it comes to writing a contract, there are some essential pieces of information that you will need to know in order to include them: Project Requirements, Objectives, Scope of Work, Timelines, Revisions, and Payment Terms.

Project Requirements, Objectives, and Scope of Work

These pieces of information will come directly from your consultation and conversations with the potential client. What exactly are they looking for, and what are you specifically going to deliver to them at the end of the project? Is there anything that you will not be including in the scope of the project that would be an additional fee? What do you need from the client before you can begin working? The more detailed you can get, the smoother your client relationship will be.

Timelines, Revisions, Payment Terms

These pieces of information all come from your own policies within your business. How many different milestones will you hit in the project? How long will each milestone take? When can your client expect that the entire project will be complete? How many revisions are they allowed to request, and how do you want them to be requested? What are your policies around late fees, and payment plans? These are just some policies that you should be considering as you go into creating your contracts.

Learn What Needs to Go Into Your Graphic Design Contract

Once you’ve put together all of the important information from your client, and from your own policies, you’ll need to learn exactly what goes into a graphic design contract. 

Some clauses you’ll likely want to include would be:

  • Scope of Work and Deliverables - What you’re handing over to your client.
  • Timeline and Milestones - How long each part of the process will take.
  • Revisions and Approval Process - How to request changes, and how many revisions are included. 
  • Termination and Cancellation - How either of you can cancel your contract. 
  • Dispute Resolution and Governing Law - How contract disputes will be handled, should any arise.

Start Writing Your Graphic Design Contract 

Once you’ve gathered everything you need, and you knowwhat to include in the contract, it’s time to start writing! We recommend that you consult with a lawyer to be sure that your contract is legally binding and that it protects your rights, and the rights of your clients. 

Or, if you’d like to skip the work of writing your contract, you can buy one of our lawyer-written designer contract templates. Our contracts allow you to get your contract set up in ten minutes or less. In fact, in the time it took you to read this blog post, you could have already had your contract set up and ready to go!

Amanda Warfield
Amanda Warfield

Amanda Warfield is a simplicity-focused content marketing and launch strategist, author of the book Chasing Simple Marketing, and host of Chasing Simple - a podcast to help creative entrepreneurs uncomplicate their marketing and business. She traded in her classroom lesson plans for speaking and educating creative entrepreneurs on sustainably fitting content marketing into their business, without it taking over their business - so that they have time to grow their business.

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