How is your portfolio organized?

I’m creating my freelancing website and need to organize my portfolio.

Do you find that potential clients browse by item type (logos, business cards, web banners), or do they browse by genre/industry/style (corporate, health, feminine, ect)?

Also any tips on making the overall look of the portfolio polished and consistent is greatly appreciated. I have a lot of one off projects that don’t all go together and am trying to figure out how to make it flow nicely.

Thanks designers!!

It’s been a long time since I’ve updated my portfolio, so it may be outdated.

FWIW, my portfolio is organized first by “art development” which includes campaigns and illustration, second by electronic media single pieces, and last by print media single pieces.

I’d say it depends on the type of work your after, your target market, your experience, etc. Nomomemright answer. But I’ll say this, the biggest mistake I see freelancers make is showing too much work. Only show the best of the best.

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Potential clients look at and want to know more about what is relevant to their needs. Most potential clients don’t fully understand what we do and they’re not especially interested in browsing through an online portfolio consisting of a bunch of miscellaneous things that seem irrelevant to those needs.

If they’re looking for someone to help them with PowerPoint slides, that’s what they’ll be looking for and they’ll want to dig deeper than just seeing images. if they’re looking for someone to design a book, they’ll be looking for that and need to be persuaded that you’re the right person for the job.

Turn the tables and look at it from their perspective. If you shop for a pair of shoes online, do you casually browse through everything Zappos sells or do you refine the search and focus on just the type of thing you want. I see no reason to think potential clients browse for their needs any differently.

Sounds like you’re saying they would brows by item type.

That’s how I figured people would search. Like if they want business cards, they would visit the business card section.

I think you should consider thinking of the hierarchy of your website/portfolio.

Having broader categories such as Branding, Print Work, Web Design; and then within those categories having a breakdown of individual pieces.

Ex: Branding as a main section, when clicking on this section you can show your projects for logos, collateral, marketing pieces, etc.

Also- my portfolio teachers always say keep in mind that real estate in your portfolio is limited. You not only want to show your best designs, you also want to show projects that are “beefy”. Meaning rather than just showing one business card you designed for a company, you want to show a large project that has multiple pieces.

I sort mine by type but also have some case studies for clients who I have done a lot of work for.

So, Logos would be one page, but also XClient would be another page. That way potential clients can see all my logos in one hit but also see examples of how I’ve designed a range of pieces for one brand.

Case studies are the best way to do it.

Think of your ideal client. What are they hiring you for? Don’t answer “everything” because you know you want to focus on the projects that you’re happy with and provide a profit.

Pick no more than 10 or so projects that showcase how you’ve gone full circle with that project. You’ll want each case study to include:

  • Title/type/client’s name
  • The problem presented to you (i.e. They needed a brochure to help advertise a product X)
  • The solution you offered (i.e. "I worked with them to design a brochure and digital flyer for sales staff)
  • The end result (i.e. The approach helped the company advertise product X in a new way)

The idea is to tell the story your client wants to hear. A story that shows your thoughtful, professional, and the ability to utilize your skills. Many designers have a tendency to create a catalog of types of work, which is strange to me… since we always have to get the backstory on a piece before we can critique it. Give your backstory in the description and let the visuals speak for themselves.

sometime its really hard to manage the skills but keep trying is the best way thanks…

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