Two graphic designers going over project details

4 Ways to Get Amazing Graphic Design for Small Business in McHenry

Keep reading this blog to learn:

  • How to do graphic design for your business with easy online tools
  • Tips for hiring a freelance graphic designer
  • The benefits and costs of hiring an in-house graphic designer for your business
  • How a digital marketing agency can do graphic design for you

Lost on How to Get Graphic Design for Small Business in McHenry? We Can Help!

Graphic design can seem like a burden, but it’s one of the most important things you can do to improve your sales and establish your brand. It can define how you tell your company’s story and how customers view and perceive your products and services. Additionally, visual information gets to the brain 60,000 times faster than text. That’s too good a reason not to skip out on graphic design!

Think of big-name companies like Apple, Nike and Amazon. You can tell just by their logos what the brand’s vision and personality is. Each brand is unique and can be recognized instantly.

But you’re a small business owner, not a big-name company. Isn’t graphic design and branding out of reach for smaller companies? No, it’s not! You may not have a big budget, but that’s okay. No matter your budget, you can get graphic design for small business in McHenry.

We’ve put together four budget-friendly ways to get fantastic graphic design for your business. These options include:

  • Using easy tools to do graphic design yourself
  • Hiring a freelance graphic designer
  • Employing an in-house graphic designer 
  • Working with a digital marketing agency for graphic design and branding services

Let’s take a closer look at each of these possibilities to see which one is right for you!

1. Do It Yourself with Design Tools for Small Business Owners

The easiest and cheapest way to get graphic design for your small business is to do it yourself! Using the Internet, you can access many different platforms to help you achieve graphic design success. 

Many of these platforms give you access to templates, the ability to collaborate with other team members and good online chat support. 

Below we’ll look at some of these free and paid design tools for small business owners.

Canva: One-Stop Shop for Design

Canva is a free online tool with everything you can think of when it comes to graphic design. Here you can put together presentations, social media posts, videos, business cards, brochures and more! 

Canva also provides templates to give you a shortcut to useful design. You can customize them any way you want by changing the color, images, font or even adding elements to make the design your own.

You can also upgrade to the pro version of Canva. This paid version gives you more access to stock photos, graphic design elements and the ability to save and adjust your brand to any template. 

The downside of using Canva is that you don’t have much flexibility or free range to do whatever you want. You can only choose from their designs and templates. So, to make your graphic design your own, it would be best to find someone to do the graphic design for you.

Vectr: Create Graphics Easily

Vectr is a free graphics editor that you can use to create vector graphics easily. Vector graphics are images or shapes where each line, curve, shape and color are mathematically defined. You can scale the images down for a business card or up for a billboard. 

Vectr allows you to create any 2D graphic for business cards, websites, logos, posters and much more. However, unlike Canva, Vectr does not provide any templates to help you make your designs. 

Piktochart: Visualize Your Data

Piktochart is free software that allows you to create data-heavy content into a visual story that’s easier to understand. With this platform, you can create infographics, presentations and reports to show data in bite-size and eye-catching ways. 

The platform also has templates for you to create flyers, social media graphics and infographics. So, whether you need to explain a process, show off data or tell a story, Piktochart can help you create the perfect graphic.

Their easy-to-use platform makes it so you can input your data and customize it however you want. They provide free illustrations, stock photos and the ability to chart data on the platform.

However, if you want to create more than five visuals, you’ll need to upgrade to the pro version, which costs $14 per month. 

Coolors: Build Your Brand Colors

If you’re looking to build a color palette for your brand, Coolors is a free resource that can help you do that. This platform puts colors side by side to help you visualize how they will look together

Coolors also allows you to generate random color palettes and find colors that you really like. Plus, you can export your palette to see it when designing in Canva, Piktochart or Vectr. You can also check the contrast with your colors and see if it would be easily readable with text.

Unsplash, Burst and Pexels: Free Stock Photos

If you don’t have a photographer or time to take your own photos, stock photos are a nice secondary option. Unsplash, Burst and Pexels all provide free stock photos and videos for you to use in your graphic design. You can find photos that align with your brand or help provide visuals for your website, social media and more. 

iStock: Exclusive Stock Photos

iStock is a paid resource for stock photos. With iStock, you’re more likely to find photos that match your exact need. iStock also features more videos and illustrations you can use to convey your message. 

Even though you may find more options on iStock, the downside is that it comes with a cost. They have packages plans based on how many downloads you would have a month and what quality of images and videos you would want. The basic package with essential images and ten image downloads costs $29 a month. If you decide you need better photos or more of them, the price will increase.

Adobe: Advanced Graphic Design

Adobe provides all kinds of different paid software to assist with graphic design. The three most popular design tools for small business owners are Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign. 

Photoshop allows you to manipulate photos, animate and design graphics. Illustrator is like the free tool Vectr. It allows you to create vector graphics to use in your designs. InDesign brings photos, text and graphics together to create documents like flyers, posters, social media templates and more.

The downside to Adobe is that it costs quite a bit and takes a long time to learn. The software has many different tools that take time to understand and utilize. The free tools mentioned above are more user-friendly and cost-effective for beginners. Most professional graphic designers and marketing agencies are highly knowledgeable about Adobe programs and can help you get the most out of them.

All of these different kinds of software might overwhelm you. If that’s the case, you may want to consider hiring someone that already knows how to use all of these in graphic design! Fortunately, there are a few more ways you can go about graphic design for small business in McHenry. We will look at those options next.

Graphic featuring tools for graphic design for small business in McHenry


2. Find a Freelance Graphic Designer

Freelance graphic designers are professionals who take on design projects from a few to many different businesses at a time, depending on the designer. Hiring a freelance graphic designer is ideal if you need to complete a one-time project or will only need design help every once in a while. Some examples of special projects might include new business cards or a design for a packaging label. 

When hiring a freelance graphic designer, you’ll want to choose someone who you can work with again and call when you need help.

You might be wondering – what can a freelance graphic designer do for my business? Skilled freelancers can combine creative talent and ideas with professionalism to make your brand stand out. There’s also some psychology in the mix too! What colors make a potential customer feel uplifted? Which visual cues build trust in a brand? A quality freelance designer will know.

How to Find a Freelance Graphic Designer

There are a few ways you can find a freelance graphic designer to help you with your projects.

Fiverr is the first place you should look for a freelance graphic designer. This resource is a website where you can specifically look for freelance creative professionals. 

With Fiverr, you can filter what specific services you’re looking for by budget and by timeline to find the designer perfect for you. So, if you’re looking for someone to design a logo for your business, you can look at designers who specialize in creating logos. You can also post a request and receive “applications” from designers who can do the project for you.

How to Coordinate with a Freelance Graphic Designer

It may be kind of uncomfortable hiring someone you don’t really know to create designs for your company. After all, your company is your baby! There are a few ways you can ensure the designs work. When connecting with your freelance graphic designer, make sure to:

  • Specify what you want in your designs
  • Also, make it clear what you don’t want
  • Tell your business’s story
  • Visualize your ideal customer
  • Define your brand’s message, what you want to tell customers
  • Encourage regular and frequent communication

While it may be nice to hire a graphic designer for a one-time thing, it might be more beneficial to hire someone who’s dedicated to you and your company. Freelance graphic designers are usually juggling multiple projects at a time and may not have the bandwidth to give your company the attention it deserves. So, a long-term hire may be a better choice for dependable, quality results. 

3. Hire an In-House Graphic Designer

An in-house graphic designer will be a worthwhile investment for your company if you know you’ll have a consistent need for graphic design. The hiring process will help ensure that you’ll know who you’re hiring and that they’ll fit into your company culture.

In-house designers tend to have a better understanding of a company’s brand than freelancers since they live and work in it every day. Hiring your own graphic designer will increase their commitment to your brand and what you envision for the company. 

The designer will also likely have a greater drive to achieve the company’s goals. This drive will motivate them to put their best foot forward and hopefully make their work feel more authentic. Unlike an outsourced designer who may be working with many brands, they are likely to be more invested in your project and success

Of course, recruiting and onboarding the right new designer can be a time-consuming process. You will need to put the word out, sift through applications and interview multiple candidates before you find the right one. Plus, you’ll also need to onboard and train the graphic designer. So, you’ll have to put in some significant time upfront, but it will pay dividends down the road.

Person using color palettes, notebook and laptop to create custom graphic design
A graphic designer will dedicate themselves to you and your brand!

4. Utilize an Agency for Graphic Design & Branding Services

If you want to save time and get professional graphic design, your best bet is to hire a marketing agency with an in-house graphic designer. The agency will be able to handle all of the graphic design projects for you as well as any other digital marketing services you need to help your company. In this way, a digital marketing agency like Frontier Marketing can save you time to run your business.

The process of working with a digital marketing company for your graphic design is simple. The agency will take time to get to know your company, your goals and your vision for graphic design projects. Examples of projects include reusable social media graphics, new logos and branding or any graphic design you’ll need to adjust over time. 

After getting all the information, they’ll put together a proposal plan to go over with you and get your approval. The agency’s graphic designer will then get to work on your project and keep you updated on the project every step of the way. So, you can sit back and enjoy amazing results from your own personal design team.  

Need Help with Graphic Design for Small Business in McHenry?

As you can see, small businesses can do a lot to get graphic design, no matter the budget! Whatever works best for you and your business is what you should do. If you have the time and interest in creating your own graphic design, go for it! Or, if hiring a designer or an agency will help you, there are many ways you can go about it. 

If you’re looking to hire an agency, Frontier Marketing is here to take the stress off your shoulders. Our in-house graphic designer can create captivating and impactful designs for small businesses in McHenry and the Chicagoland region!