Is Investing in a Product Design Agency Cost Effective?

Product Design Agency

Product Design

Design Agency

Design Agency Cost Effective Design

Product Design Agency

Design ROI

Written by:

8 min read

Updated on: July 5th, 2024

Toni Hukkanen

Head of Design

Creative Direction, Brand Direction

Are you planning to boost your business with a new product or a design? You might feel overwhelmed by the different aspects of design work. You realize that you don't have enough time and expertise to handle it all alone. This is where hiring specialists become essential.

As design is a vast field including various specialties like product design, animation, mobile app design, illustration and much more, it is obvious that you'll need someone special for this task. You may search through different platforms to find a suitable person with relevant expertise. But at this stage, you will encounter two main groups: freelancers and agencies.

With so many options and profiles you will also notice variation in the product design cost ranging up to tens of thousands of dollars and wonder to whom you should hand over the product design tasks. Keep reading to find out the pros and cons of both freelancers and agencies to decide on which one would be your best bet and why.

What is a Product Design Agency and what does it do?

A product design agency is a creative firm specializing in increasing the visual appeal and brand identity of products and services to gain attention of potential customers.

These agencies usually offer a wide range of services beyond graphic design, often including strategic marketing planning and public relations management. Below we have mentioned what a product design agency do to enhance the design and user experience.

Gain insights into market and competitors

A product design agency starts by understating the needs and goals of client and target audience with the help of in-depth research and discovery calls. This approach helps them in gaining insights into the marketplace and competitors.

Customer journey mapping

To visualize how customers interact with the service or product they create custom journey maps. By doing this they get a chance to improve and optimize certain areas.

Developing wireframes

Wireframes are skeletal layouts of the interface of a product to outline its structure and functions. Design agencies develop these wireframes to help streamline the design process and make it align with the objectives of the client.

Develop conceptual designs

Using their prior research and wireframes, the agency develops conceptual designs to define the look and feel of the product. The final product is visualized with the help of mockups and prototypes before development.

Collaboration with other specialists

The specialists in the design agency usually collaborate with other specialists like SEO experts, copywriters, marketers, programmers and designers for the implementation of their project. To do this, they write a compelling copy, optimize for search engines, code new features and design user interfaces.

Project Management

In the end, a project manager oversees the whole process to ensure timely delivery, quality control along with effective communication between the client and agency. 

A product design agency combines creativity, strategy and technical expertise to devise ideal solutions for clients but can freelancers do the same?

A product design agency and what it does

What does a freelancer do?

Freelancers are just like lone wolves in the creative industry who work independently on projects applying their unique skill set. As they work on a remote basis, they are adaptable to the schedule of their clients.

Another great aspect about freelancers is their budget friendly pricing options that make them a great choice for startups with limited budgets.

In comparison, the design agencies have an expert team with a diverse range of skills. They have a smooth work process and offer comprehensive solutions by making sure to deliver high quality results from beginning to end. But agencies come with a higher price tag as they provide an access to the diversity of creative talent and expertise.

What does freelancer do

Should you hire a freelancer or a Design Agency?

If you are a startup you might lack clear insights on what you need. You may aim for good design but without clear product descriptions, list of variation in the existing products and list of competitors you will feel stuck. To resolve all these issues you will need to hire freelancers or product design agencies. 

To decide on which one you should hire between a freelancer or a product design agency, you need to focus on your priorities, deadlines and budget. If you prioritize flexibility and want to look for a budget friendly option, freelancer may be the way to go. But in order to achieve  better performance from a team of experts without budget constraint, an agency is a better choice for you.

Pros and cons of hiring freelancers

Freelancers are quite efficient in completing projects but hiring them always comes with some risks. Here are some pros and cons of hiring a freelancer for product design project:

Pros

Affordable option

The most important factor that helps in deciding which one is better between freelancer and agency is the price. A freelancer costs comparably less than an agency. You will find them working on their personal computers and using their own tools. So freelancers can be a cost effective option if you are on a tight budget.

Flexibility in working hours

Freelancers provide more flexibility than product design agencies. They can arrange their schedules according to the client's needs and are quick in completing tasks, proving as excellent choices for businesses with tight deadlines.

Speciality in particular design area

Due to their specialty in their respective services you can hire them to complete a particular project. But you will need to hire multiple freelancers from their field of expertise if you are working on multiple projects or have a larger marketing plan.

Direct attention 

You can build a direct or personal relationship with a freelancer for your project. Working with a freelancer will give you more control over the project.

Cons

Limited skills

As freelancers are individuals with a certain skill set, they may not be able to work on every project or marketing plan you offer. For example, if they are specialized in design, they might leave search engine optimization, copywriting, advertising or email campaigns left unattended. So, in the end you will end up hiring multiple freelancers that will cost more than your limited budget.

Risk of reliability

Handing over all tasks to one person often comes at risk in cases of emergency. If the person gets sick or has a personal emergency, your project will be at risk.

Sometimes, freelancers ghost their clients by not responding to their calls and messages. This can also affect the work progress.

Liability to do work

The verification of credentials and qualifications of freelancers is important before you assign them the tasks. In case they fail to meet deadlines or can't meet the project's success expectations, you will be responsible for direct communication with them.

Freelancer vs Design Agency

Pros and cons of working with a Design Agency

To avoid the consequences of hiring a freelancer, you can hire a product design agency for better results. But it also comes with some benefits and a few drawbacks.

Pros

Wide range of skills

In an agency, there is a team of experts who work together on different tasks to complete a project with maximum success. Many creatives gather at one place and apply their skill set to tackle multitude of challenges in the project.

By hiring multiple freelancers, you won't be able to get such results as the success ratio will be low.

Extensive portfolio

Most renowned design agencies already have working experience with other businesses and clients which gives them extensive experience to showcase their portfolio. You can go through their previous work and get ideas about the skills suitable for your business needs.

Consistent quality in projects

The product design agencies are well known for their ability to maintain consistency in delivering quality projects. They can handle challenging tasks in an expert way with great attention to detail.

Formal and professional in their approach 

As most agencies are professional in their working approach they also offer ongoing support to their clients. They will show professionalism in their behavior and ensure everything is running smoothly during the entire project.

Cons

Very expensive

The major drawback of hiring a product design agency is the higher cost. Most of them charge higher rates for their services to cover other costs like office rent, marketing expenses, staff salaries. 

Sometimes agencies offer custom plans and packages that might cost less than what you think. 

Lack of personal or direct attention

As design agencies are handling multiple tasks or clients at a time, there is a high chance you won't get direct attention or much control over your project as per your preference.

The communication rate will also be slow and you will be in touch with project managers rather than with designers.

Why are agencies better than freelancers?

An agency is well aware of how to tackle issues their clients are facing. A good agency always tries to keep their project under their direct control and fully handle the responsibility of the project. 

Agencies with a team of specialists ensure a high level of competence across all areas of the project compared to freelancers. The efficient collaboration within the agency eliminates the need for additional resources. There is ease of communication with clients and within the team.

Most agencies also streamline the legal aspects of the project to make it easy to navigate contracts and non-disclosure agreements compared to dealing with freelancers.

Working with a product design agency can be a wise and cost effective investment for any project that needs expert design and development expertise. If you represent a well established brand and you want to build a powerful and reliable web project, choosing an agency even with costly rates can be better than freelancers.

Why agencies are better than freelancers

How to hire a Product Design Agency?

For the success of your business, you should have a better understanding of the company's goals, budget and team dynamics so you can share all with the agency. It would be better to hire one with a strong portfolio and relevant expertise in product design. Make sure to choose someone who works well in collaboration with a team and has excellent communication skills. An agency who can understand and comprehend your company's goals and objectives is also a better choice.

Here are a few things you can do to make the hiring process smooth to find the right solution for your business:

Start with clearly defining your needs

You can simply start with clearly defining your project goals before finding an agency. Make a list of services you need such as branding, marketing, website design or product development. Narrow down your search to find the one with the most relevant expertise.

Conduct thorough research and shortlist agencies

Search for agencies with a proven record of services you are looking for. Also check the testimonials shared by their clients. For this purpose, you can take help from online directories, referrals from colleagues or industry experts about the particular agency.

Review their portfolios and case studies 

Thoroughly review the portfolio and case study of shortlisted agencies. Choose agencies that offer creativity, innovation and strategic planning in their product design.

Go through the agency's experience in your industry

Ask the agency about their previous projects that are similar to your industry or make sure they have the ability to understand the unique challenges and find suitable solutions in your specific industry.

Arrange meetings or calls with the agency team

To get a sense of expertise, connect with the agency team to learn about their communication style and working process. Address your project goals, budget and timeline to ensure your objectives align with the agency's resources.

Discuss the project scope and deliverables

Discuss all the essentials to ensure the agency team understands your expectations and can realistically meet your project needs within the agreed upon timeline and budget. Question them about their methods of project management and revisions to build a chance of smooth workflow.

Review contracts and agreements

After selecting the company, review their contract carefully before you sign it. Give attention to the main terms like intellectual property rights, scope of work, confidentiality clauses, and payment schedule. Also, try to go through the terms and conditions of the contract.

Maintain transparent communication channel

Maintain clear and transparent channels of communication such as email updates, regular meetings, or project management tools.

Get involved in monitoring progress

Stay involved in the project during the entire process by monitoring the progress by reviewing deliverables and giving feedback to the agency. Try assessing their work on a regular basis to make sure the quality isn't compromised at any stage. If any issues or changes you want to address, let them know.

Evaluate results based on your objectives 

Once the product design project is complete, evaluate the results based on the objective and goals. Give detailed feedback about the agency’s performance and also recommend areas of improvement. If the work is up to your expectations, give them testimonials or referrals to help boost its reputation to attract more clients.

How to hire a product design agency

Final Thoughts

While the upfront cost of hiring a product design agency may seem higher than working with a freelancer, it is important to note the long term value they provide. For larger and more complicated projects that require diverse skill sets it is smarter to choose a design industry. On the other hand, if you have a smaller project to work on that requires personalized attention, it'd be great to choose a freelancer. Considering the price and quality of work, investing in a product design agency is cost effective compared to freelancer. However, you can make a decision based on the unique requirements and budget constraints of your project as a business owner.

ARTICLE #45

Is Investing in a Product Design Agency Cost Effective?

Product Design Agency

Product Design

Design Agency

Design Agency Cost Effective Design

Product Design Agency

Design ROI

Written by:

8 min read

Updated on: July 5th, 2024

Toni Hukkanen

Head of Design

Creative Direction, Brand Direction

Are you planning to boost your business with a new product or a design? You might feel overwhelmed by the different aspects of design work. You realize that you don't have enough time and expertise to handle it all alone. This is where hiring specialists become essential.

As design is a vast field including various specialties like product design, animation, mobile app design, illustration and much more, it is obvious that you'll need someone special for this task. You may search through different platforms to find a suitable person with relevant expertise. But at this stage, you will encounter two main groups: freelancers and agencies.

With so many options and profiles you will also notice variation in the product design cost ranging up to tens of thousands of dollars and wonder to whom you should hand over the product design tasks. Keep reading to find out the pros and cons of both freelancers and agencies to decide on which one would be your best bet and why.

What is a Product Design Agency and what does it do?

A product design agency is a creative firm specializing in increasing the visual appeal and brand identity of products and services to gain attention of potential customers.

These agencies usually offer a wide range of services beyond graphic design, often including strategic marketing planning and public relations management. Below we have mentioned what a product design agency do to enhance the design and user experience.

Gain insights into market and competitors

A product design agency starts by understating the needs and goals of client and target audience with the help of in-depth research and discovery calls. This approach helps them in gaining insights into the marketplace and competitors.

Customer journey mapping

To visualize how customers interact with the service or product they create custom journey maps. By doing this they get a chance to improve and optimize certain areas.

Developing wireframes

Wireframes are skeletal layouts of the interface of a product to outline its structure and functions. Design agencies develop these wireframes to help streamline the design process and make it align with the objectives of the client.

Develop conceptual designs

Using their prior research and wireframes, the agency develops conceptual designs to define the look and feel of the product. The final product is visualized with the help of mockups and prototypes before development.

Collaboration with other specialists

The specialists in the design agency usually collaborate with other specialists like SEO experts, copywriters, marketers, programmers and designers for the implementation of their project. To do this, they write a compelling copy, optimize for search engines, code new features and design user interfaces.

Project Management

In the end, a project manager oversees the whole process to ensure timely delivery, quality control along with effective communication between the client and agency. 

A product design agency combines creativity, strategy and technical expertise to devise ideal solutions for clients but can freelancers do the same?

A product design agency and what it does

What does a freelancer do?

Freelancers are just like lone wolves in the creative industry who work independently on projects applying their unique skill set. As they work on a remote basis, they are adaptable to the schedule of their clients.

Another great aspect about freelancers is their budget friendly pricing options that make them a great choice for startups with limited budgets.

In comparison, the design agencies have an expert team with a diverse range of skills. They have a smooth work process and offer comprehensive solutions by making sure to deliver high quality results from beginning to end. But agencies come with a higher price tag as they provide an access to the diversity of creative talent and expertise.

What does freelancer do

Should you hire a freelancer or a Design Agency?

If you are a startup you might lack clear insights on what you need. You may aim for good design but without clear product descriptions, list of variation in the existing products and list of competitors you will feel stuck. To resolve all these issues you will need to hire freelancers or product design agencies. 

To decide on which one you should hire between a freelancer or a product design agency, you need to focus on your priorities, deadlines and budget. If you prioritize flexibility and want to look for a budget friendly option, freelancer may be the way to go. But in order to achieve  better performance from a team of experts without budget constraint, an agency is a better choice for you.

Pros and cons of hiring freelancers

Freelancers are quite efficient in completing projects but hiring them always comes with some risks. Here are some pros and cons of hiring a freelancer for product design project:

Pros

Affordable option

The most important factor that helps in deciding which one is better between freelancer and agency is the price. A freelancer costs comparably less than an agency. You will find them working on their personal computers and using their own tools. So freelancers can be a cost effective option if you are on a tight budget.

Flexibility in working hours

Freelancers provide more flexibility than product design agencies. They can arrange their schedules according to the client's needs and are quick in completing tasks, proving as excellent choices for businesses with tight deadlines.

Speciality in particular design area

Due to their specialty in their respective services you can hire them to complete a particular project. But you will need to hire multiple freelancers from their field of expertise if you are working on multiple projects or have a larger marketing plan.

Direct attention 

You can build a direct or personal relationship with a freelancer for your project. Working with a freelancer will give you more control over the project.

Cons

Limited skills

As freelancers are individuals with a certain skill set, they may not be able to work on every project or marketing plan you offer. For example, if they are specialized in design, they might leave search engine optimization, copywriting, advertising or email campaigns left unattended. So, in the end you will end up hiring multiple freelancers that will cost more than your limited budget.

Risk of reliability

Handing over all tasks to one person often comes at risk in cases of emergency. If the person gets sick or has a personal emergency, your project will be at risk.

Sometimes, freelancers ghost their clients by not responding to their calls and messages. This can also affect the work progress.

Liability to do work

The verification of credentials and qualifications of freelancers is important before you assign them the tasks. In case they fail to meet deadlines or can't meet the project's success expectations, you will be responsible for direct communication with them.

Freelancer vs Design Agency

Pros and cons of working with a Design Agency

To avoid the consequences of hiring a freelancer, you can hire a product design agency for better results. But it also comes with some benefits and a few drawbacks.

Pros

Wide range of skills

In an agency, there is a team of experts who work together on different tasks to complete a project with maximum success. Many creatives gather at one place and apply their skill set to tackle multitude of challenges in the project.

By hiring multiple freelancers, you won't be able to get such results as the success ratio will be low.

Extensive portfolio

Most renowned design agencies already have working experience with other businesses and clients which gives them extensive experience to showcase their portfolio. You can go through their previous work and get ideas about the skills suitable for your business needs.

Consistent quality in projects

The product design agencies are well known for their ability to maintain consistency in delivering quality projects. They can handle challenging tasks in an expert way with great attention to detail.

Formal and professional in their approach 

As most agencies are professional in their working approach they also offer ongoing support to their clients. They will show professionalism in their behavior and ensure everything is running smoothly during the entire project.

Cons

Very expensive

The major drawback of hiring a product design agency is the higher cost. Most of them charge higher rates for their services to cover other costs like office rent, marketing expenses, staff salaries. 

Sometimes agencies offer custom plans and packages that might cost less than what you think. 

Lack of personal or direct attention

As design agencies are handling multiple tasks or clients at a time, there is a high chance you won't get direct attention or much control over your project as per your preference.

The communication rate will also be slow and you will be in touch with project managers rather than with designers.

Why are agencies better than freelancers?

An agency is well aware of how to tackle issues their clients are facing. A good agency always tries to keep their project under their direct control and fully handle the responsibility of the project. 

Agencies with a team of specialists ensure a high level of competence across all areas of the project compared to freelancers. The efficient collaboration within the agency eliminates the need for additional resources. There is ease of communication with clients and within the team.

Most agencies also streamline the legal aspects of the project to make it easy to navigate contracts and non-disclosure agreements compared to dealing with freelancers.

Working with a product design agency can be a wise and cost effective investment for any project that needs expert design and development expertise. If you represent a well established brand and you want to build a powerful and reliable web project, choosing an agency even with costly rates can be better than freelancers.

Why agencies are better than freelancers

How to hire a Product Design Agency?

For the success of your business, you should have a better understanding of the company's goals, budget and team dynamics so you can share all with the agency. It would be better to hire one with a strong portfolio and relevant expertise in product design. Make sure to choose someone who works well in collaboration with a team and has excellent communication skills. An agency who can understand and comprehend your company's goals and objectives is also a better choice.

Here are a few things you can do to make the hiring process smooth to find the right solution for your business:

Start with clearly defining your needs

You can simply start with clearly defining your project goals before finding an agency. Make a list of services you need such as branding, marketing, website design or product development. Narrow down your search to find the one with the most relevant expertise.

Conduct thorough research and shortlist agencies

Search for agencies with a proven record of services you are looking for. Also check the testimonials shared by their clients. For this purpose, you can take help from online directories, referrals from colleagues or industry experts about the particular agency.

Review their portfolios and case studies 

Thoroughly review the portfolio and case study of shortlisted agencies. Choose agencies that offer creativity, innovation and strategic planning in their product design.

Go through the agency's experience in your industry

Ask the agency about their previous projects that are similar to your industry or make sure they have the ability to understand the unique challenges and find suitable solutions in your specific industry.

Arrange meetings or calls with the agency team

To get a sense of expertise, connect with the agency team to learn about their communication style and working process. Address your project goals, budget and timeline to ensure your objectives align with the agency's resources.

Discuss the project scope and deliverables

Discuss all the essentials to ensure the agency team understands your expectations and can realistically meet your project needs within the agreed upon timeline and budget. Question them about their methods of project management and revisions to build a chance of smooth workflow.

Review contracts and agreements

After selecting the company, review their contract carefully before you sign it. Give attention to the main terms like intellectual property rights, scope of work, confidentiality clauses, and payment schedule. Also, try to go through the terms and conditions of the contract.

Maintain transparent communication channel

Maintain clear and transparent channels of communication such as email updates, regular meetings, or project management tools.

Get involved in monitoring progress

Stay involved in the project during the entire process by monitoring the progress by reviewing deliverables and giving feedback to the agency. Try assessing their work on a regular basis to make sure the quality isn't compromised at any stage. If any issues or changes you want to address, let them know.

Evaluate results based on your objectives 

Once the product design project is complete, evaluate the results based on the objective and goals. Give detailed feedback about the agency’s performance and also recommend areas of improvement. If the work is up to your expectations, give them testimonials or referrals to help boost its reputation to attract more clients.

How to hire a product design agency

Final Thoughts

While the upfront cost of hiring a product design agency may seem higher than working with a freelancer, it is important to note the long term value they provide. For larger and more complicated projects that require diverse skill sets it is smarter to choose a design industry. On the other hand, if you have a smaller project to work on that requires personalized attention, it'd be great to choose a freelancer. Considering the price and quality of work, investing in a product design agency is cost effective compared to freelancer. However, you can make a decision based on the unique requirements and budget constraints of your project as a business owner.

ARTICLE #45

Is Investing in a Product Design Agency Cost Effective?

Product Design Agency

Product Design

Design Agency

Design Agency Cost Effective Design

Product Design Agency

Design ROI

Written by:

8 min read

Updated on: July 5th, 2024

Toni Hukkanen

Head of Design

Creative Direction, Brand Direction

Are you planning to boost your business with a new product or a design? You might feel overwhelmed by the different aspects of design work. You realize that you don't have enough time and expertise to handle it all alone. This is where hiring specialists become essential.

As design is a vast field including various specialties like product design, animation, mobile app design, illustration and much more, it is obvious that you'll need someone special for this task. You may search through different platforms to find a suitable person with relevant expertise. But at this stage, you will encounter two main groups: freelancers and agencies.

With so many options and profiles you will also notice variation in the product design cost ranging up to tens of thousands of dollars and wonder to whom you should hand over the product design tasks. Keep reading to find out the pros and cons of both freelancers and agencies to decide on which one would be your best bet and why.

What is a Product Design Agency and what does it do?

A product design agency is a creative firm specializing in increasing the visual appeal and brand identity of products and services to gain attention of potential customers.

These agencies usually offer a wide range of services beyond graphic design, often including strategic marketing planning and public relations management. Below we have mentioned what a product design agency do to enhance the design and user experience.

Gain insights into market and competitors

A product design agency starts by understating the needs and goals of client and target audience with the help of in-depth research and discovery calls. This approach helps them in gaining insights into the marketplace and competitors.

Customer journey mapping

To visualize how customers interact with the service or product they create custom journey maps. By doing this they get a chance to improve and optimize certain areas.

Developing wireframes

Wireframes are skeletal layouts of the interface of a product to outline its structure and functions. Design agencies develop these wireframes to help streamline the design process and make it align with the objectives of the client.

Develop conceptual designs

Using their prior research and wireframes, the agency develops conceptual designs to define the look and feel of the product. The final product is visualized with the help of mockups and prototypes before development.

Collaboration with other specialists

The specialists in the design agency usually collaborate with other specialists like SEO experts, copywriters, marketers, programmers and designers for the implementation of their project. To do this, they write a compelling copy, optimize for search engines, code new features and design user interfaces.

Project Management

In the end, a project manager oversees the whole process to ensure timely delivery, quality control along with effective communication between the client and agency. 

A product design agency combines creativity, strategy and technical expertise to devise ideal solutions for clients but can freelancers do the same?

A product design agency and what it does

What does a freelancer do?

Freelancers are just like lone wolves in the creative industry who work independently on projects applying their unique skill set. As they work on a remote basis, they are adaptable to the schedule of their clients.

Another great aspect about freelancers is their budget friendly pricing options that make them a great choice for startups with limited budgets.

In comparison, the design agencies have an expert team with a diverse range of skills. They have a smooth work process and offer comprehensive solutions by making sure to deliver high quality results from beginning to end. But agencies come with a higher price tag as they provide an access to the diversity of creative talent and expertise.

What does freelancer do

Should you hire a freelancer or a Design Agency?

If you are a startup you might lack clear insights on what you need. You may aim for good design but without clear product descriptions, list of variation in the existing products and list of competitors you will feel stuck. To resolve all these issues you will need to hire freelancers or product design agencies. 

To decide on which one you should hire between a freelancer or a product design agency, you need to focus on your priorities, deadlines and budget. If you prioritize flexibility and want to look for a budget friendly option, freelancer may be the way to go. But in order to achieve  better performance from a team of experts without budget constraint, an agency is a better choice for you.

Pros and cons of hiring freelancers

Freelancers are quite efficient in completing projects but hiring them always comes with some risks. Here are some pros and cons of hiring a freelancer for product design project:

Pros

Affordable option

The most important factor that helps in deciding which one is better between freelancer and agency is the price. A freelancer costs comparably less than an agency. You will find them working on their personal computers and using their own tools. So freelancers can be a cost effective option if you are on a tight budget.

Flexibility in working hours

Freelancers provide more flexibility than product design agencies. They can arrange their schedules according to the client's needs and are quick in completing tasks, proving as excellent choices for businesses with tight deadlines.

Speciality in particular design area

Due to their specialty in their respective services you can hire them to complete a particular project. But you will need to hire multiple freelancers from their field of expertise if you are working on multiple projects or have a larger marketing plan.

Direct attention 

You can build a direct or personal relationship with a freelancer for your project. Working with a freelancer will give you more control over the project.

Cons

Limited skills

As freelancers are individuals with a certain skill set, they may not be able to work on every project or marketing plan you offer. For example, if they are specialized in design, they might leave search engine optimization, copywriting, advertising or email campaigns left unattended. So, in the end you will end up hiring multiple freelancers that will cost more than your limited budget.

Risk of reliability

Handing over all tasks to one person often comes at risk in cases of emergency. If the person gets sick or has a personal emergency, your project will be at risk.

Sometimes, freelancers ghost their clients by not responding to their calls and messages. This can also affect the work progress.

Liability to do work

The verification of credentials and qualifications of freelancers is important before you assign them the tasks. In case they fail to meet deadlines or can't meet the project's success expectations, you will be responsible for direct communication with them.

Freelancer vs Design Agency

Pros and cons of working with a Design Agency

To avoid the consequences of hiring a freelancer, you can hire a product design agency for better results. But it also comes with some benefits and a few drawbacks.

Pros

Wide range of skills

In an agency, there is a team of experts who work together on different tasks to complete a project with maximum success. Many creatives gather at one place and apply their skill set to tackle multitude of challenges in the project.

By hiring multiple freelancers, you won't be able to get such results as the success ratio will be low.

Extensive portfolio

Most renowned design agencies already have working experience with other businesses and clients which gives them extensive experience to showcase their portfolio. You can go through their previous work and get ideas about the skills suitable for your business needs.

Consistent quality in projects

The product design agencies are well known for their ability to maintain consistency in delivering quality projects. They can handle challenging tasks in an expert way with great attention to detail.

Formal and professional in their approach 

As most agencies are professional in their working approach they also offer ongoing support to their clients. They will show professionalism in their behavior and ensure everything is running smoothly during the entire project.

Cons

Very expensive

The major drawback of hiring a product design agency is the higher cost. Most of them charge higher rates for their services to cover other costs like office rent, marketing expenses, staff salaries. 

Sometimes agencies offer custom plans and packages that might cost less than what you think. 

Lack of personal or direct attention

As design agencies are handling multiple tasks or clients at a time, there is a high chance you won't get direct attention or much control over your project as per your preference.

The communication rate will also be slow and you will be in touch with project managers rather than with designers.

Why are agencies better than freelancers?

An agency is well aware of how to tackle issues their clients are facing. A good agency always tries to keep their project under their direct control and fully handle the responsibility of the project. 

Agencies with a team of specialists ensure a high level of competence across all areas of the project compared to freelancers. The efficient collaboration within the agency eliminates the need for additional resources. There is ease of communication with clients and within the team.

Most agencies also streamline the legal aspects of the project to make it easy to navigate contracts and non-disclosure agreements compared to dealing with freelancers.

Working with a product design agency can be a wise and cost effective investment for any project that needs expert design and development expertise. If you represent a well established brand and you want to build a powerful and reliable web project, choosing an agency even with costly rates can be better than freelancers.

Why agencies are better than freelancers

How to hire a Product Design Agency?

For the success of your business, you should have a better understanding of the company's goals, budget and team dynamics so you can share all with the agency. It would be better to hire one with a strong portfolio and relevant expertise in product design. Make sure to choose someone who works well in collaboration with a team and has excellent communication skills. An agency who can understand and comprehend your company's goals and objectives is also a better choice.

Here are a few things you can do to make the hiring process smooth to find the right solution for your business:

Start with clearly defining your needs

You can simply start with clearly defining your project goals before finding an agency. Make a list of services you need such as branding, marketing, website design or product development. Narrow down your search to find the one with the most relevant expertise.

Conduct thorough research and shortlist agencies

Search for agencies with a proven record of services you are looking for. Also check the testimonials shared by their clients. For this purpose, you can take help from online directories, referrals from colleagues or industry experts about the particular agency.

Review their portfolios and case studies 

Thoroughly review the portfolio and case study of shortlisted agencies. Choose agencies that offer creativity, innovation and strategic planning in their product design.

Go through the agency's experience in your industry

Ask the agency about their previous projects that are similar to your industry or make sure they have the ability to understand the unique challenges and find suitable solutions in your specific industry.

Arrange meetings or calls with the agency team

To get a sense of expertise, connect with the agency team to learn about their communication style and working process. Address your project goals, budget and timeline to ensure your objectives align with the agency's resources.

Discuss the project scope and deliverables

Discuss all the essentials to ensure the agency team understands your expectations and can realistically meet your project needs within the agreed upon timeline and budget. Question them about their methods of project management and revisions to build a chance of smooth workflow.

Review contracts and agreements

After selecting the company, review their contract carefully before you sign it. Give attention to the main terms like intellectual property rights, scope of work, confidentiality clauses, and payment schedule. Also, try to go through the terms and conditions of the contract.

Maintain transparent communication channel

Maintain clear and transparent channels of communication such as email updates, regular meetings, or project management tools.

Get involved in monitoring progress

Stay involved in the project during the entire process by monitoring the progress by reviewing deliverables and giving feedback to the agency. Try assessing their work on a regular basis to make sure the quality isn't compromised at any stage. If any issues or changes you want to address, let them know.

Evaluate results based on your objectives 

Once the product design project is complete, evaluate the results based on the objective and goals. Give detailed feedback about the agency’s performance and also recommend areas of improvement. If the work is up to your expectations, give them testimonials or referrals to help boost its reputation to attract more clients.

How to hire a product design agency

Final Thoughts

While the upfront cost of hiring a product design agency may seem higher than working with a freelancer, it is important to note the long term value they provide. For larger and more complicated projects that require diverse skill sets it is smarter to choose a design industry. On the other hand, if you have a smaller project to work on that requires personalized attention, it'd be great to choose a freelancer. Considering the price and quality of work, investing in a product design agency is cost effective compared to freelancer. However, you can make a decision based on the unique requirements and budget constraints of your project as a business owner.

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