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How much does high-quality graphic design cost?
Spoiler: Probably more than you think.

Finding designers that can bring your content and information to life is no easy feat.

Among a sea of email threads, complex hourly rates or boring meetings, it’s fairly easy to waste a lot of time and money.

Find out how much it costs to have professional graphic designers create the visual content you need on our calculator. Or learn about the costs involved in quality design these days in our research below.

Our calculator
freelance graphic designer
Hiring a freelance graphic designer
Hourly Rates
The hourly cost of hiring a freelance graphic designer depends on a lot of factors:
Type of project
Design elements
Experience
Revision process
location
HOURLY RATES OF FREELANCE GRAPHIC
DESIGNER
$
20
LOW-END
(INEXPERIENCED DESIGNERS)
$
45
AVERAGE
$
150
HIGH-END
(EXPERIENCED DESIGNERS)

Hiring a freelance graphic designer allows flexibility and there are options for all wallets.

While the average hourly rate of a freelance designer is $45 on Upwork, you can hire someone cheaper, for as a low as $20/hour. The lower your budget, the higher the pressure to find a quality hire.

On the other side of the spectrum, skilled designers charge on average 23% more than standard and all the way up to $150 per hour. Facing these rates, it’s tough for small businesses and solopreneurs to foot the bill.

Note these numbers don’t include bonuses, overtime, or the revision process that some designers may charge separately. It’s also common for the client to be billed in increments (25% or 50% upfront and the remaining at the completion of the project).

flat fees

Then, there’s flat fee pricing. According to Upwork, freelance designers can charge a fixed, per project fee for a visual.

The price to create one infographic on Fiverr, for instance, varies from $5 to $367. The more research you need in the pre-design phase, the more expensive it gets.

Flat fee pricing should include a predetermined number of revisions. If you are the type of client to require a lot of revisions, the designer may then bill you for the additional hours worked, which can range anywhere from $20 to $150 per hour.

design agency
Hiring a graphic design agency

A design agency is a team of professionals, each specialized in doing a specific type of job. Some agencies are focused in branding efforts, others in social media marketing while others offer a full package of services.

Agencies are usually qualified to deliver a high-quality graphic design project, but are also the most expensive option as they usually work with large budgets (see below).

Some agencies can charge separate fees for the revision process. This is where the hourly rate will likely enter in, which can cost anywhere from $74 to $350.

The key to keep costs at a minimum is to manage expectations and agree what an ideal revision process looks like from the start.

$
3500
PRICE SOME AGENCIES
CHARGE FOR AN INFOGRAPHIC (USD)
$
50000
PRICE SOME AGENCIES CHARGE
FOR A COMPLEX PRESENTATION (USD)
Infographics
view more

Infographics can be even more costly. In a renowned US-based content marketing agency that has worked with clients like Lacoste or Macy’s, $2,000 is the standard cost of an infographic, from start to finish.

Another award-winning graphic design agency charges $3,500 for a single interactive PDF infographic!

in-house graphic designer
Hiring a in-house graphic designer
Hiring a full-time graphic designer is the other option to have your design projects done.
In this case, salary costs will vary a lot depending on where you're located in the world.
- Annual Salary of a graphic designer in USD (January 2019) -
slide for more
map
countryaverage annual base salary (USD)
Switzerland
80,246
Japan
63,560
United States
62,920
Australia
59,644
Germany
56,937
Netherlands
54,840
United Arab Emirates
52,107
New Zealand
51,682
Canada
51,062
Singapore
50,524
Ireland
48,058
United Kingdom
47,180
Italy
47,015
France
46,929
Sweden
41,007
Spain
30,843
South Korea
26,768
China
23,265
Brazil
19,953
South Africa
18,672
Poland
18,195
Indonesia
17,278
Mexico
13,032
India
7,747

Apart from location, a graphic designer’s salary will significantly depend on the level of experience.

In the United States, a senior graphic designer with 8+ years of experience earns about 70% more ($77K) on average than an entry-level one ($45K).

Don’t overlook other design costs. A so-called “hidden fee” that will come with hiring a full-time graphic designer, is that they’ll want a subscription to software like Adobe’s Creative Cloud. The suite includes Photoshop and Illustrator, which will cost you about $34 a month of business subscription fees alone.

The other precious resource graphic design consumes:

Let’s face it: design consumes a huge chunk of time and productivity in any company or business.

On average, Piktochart users need to create 8.6 visual projects every month. Can you imagine the total time involved in these?

Take presentations for instance, a key cog in a company’s internal and external communications. A study with 1,000 European office workers from several industries (banking, IT, energy, automotive, etc) found these eye-striking numbers:

 

time
46
Average number of presentations each employee created per year
11
%
of the average employee’s time spent creating presentations

Let that sink in.

11% of the time you spend at work is doing presentations. And it gets worse: roughly a third of the time employees spend on PowerPoint can be fully automated (formatting, layouts, templates, etc). So much for efficiency!

 

 

How long does a professional graphic designer take to create...
Presentations
A professional-looking presentation can take at least 3-4 working days to create.
Infographics
Launching a successful infographic involves a lot of time in strategizing, ideation, planning. The design phase takes around 4-5 working days.
Reports
The design phase of a complex annual report can take up to 8 working days - including creative strategy, layout, and typesetting.
EBOOKS
Once the copy is done (which can take weeks!), expect anywhere between 7-12 working days to properly design and format an eBook - including cover design and overall layout.
To make all this easier to understand, we've created this summary table with pros vs cons in the world graphic design:
slide for more
pros
cons
pros
cons
freelance designerdesign agencyin-house designer
Cost:
Pay per project only, and costs are lower than hiring an agency.
Experience:
A team of specialists to consult with.
Reliability:
They can be available for last minute changes.
Timesaving:
Can just select a template, add your brand colors and plug-in content.
Communication:
You only have to work with one person, which can eliminate feedback loops.
Add-on services:
They can also come up with a distribution strategy for your visual, if required.
Brand familiarity:
In-house designers will understand, and perhaps be passionate about your brand.
Cost:
Monthly subscription fees start at $12.50 a month.
Reliability:
Could be unresponsive, so it’s best to read up on reviews before hiring.
Cost:
Can be expensive, charging for more fees beyond just visual creation.
Cost:
Will require a full-time salary, hard to justify without a lot of design work available.
Learning curve:
Picking up any new software, no matter how easy to use, can take time.
Brand unfamiliarity:
May not be familiar with your brand, which could result in more revision time.
Communication:
Restricted to business hours, and can be tethered to specific time zones, so there may be response delays.
Experience:
Investment in onboarding and training hours.
No design expertise:
Using software means you don’t have on-call design expertise to lean on.
slide for more
pros
cons
HOW TO SAVE TIME AND MONEY IN DESIGN

So, in all this resource-draining madness, how does one not get tired of heavy graphic design fees? Or of pointless meetings and feedback loops?

There’s a faster way to achieve visual impact on your documents.

95
%
of people who use Piktochart feel it saves time in creating their visual content
Average working days
needed to design...
95
%
of people who use Piktochart feel it saves time in creating their visual content
A presentation
2.3
4.8
An infographic
2.0
3.6
Professional Designer
Piktochart
Oh, and it's cheaper too.
$
431
On average, Piktochart's most prolific users say they are able to save
on a monthly basis
Average working days needed to design...
Professional Designer
Piktochart
Oh, and it's cheaper too.
On average, Piktochart's most prolific users say they are able to save
$
431
on a monthly basis
What are you waiting for?
A new way to design
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