This is my complete guide to hiring the best freelance designers on a budget.

Getting quality designs at a budget price is a tough ask...

but after personally going through thousands of design portfolios I have the solution for you.

In this article we'll be looking at the top platforms which offer the best of both worlds, price and quality. 

Let's get started... - Filipino Talent

It's no secret that higher quality means a higher cost, but outsourcing has completely changed the game. 

Onlinejobs is a platform that connects freelancers from the Philippines to Clients.

Why the Philippines?

It's because freelancers in the Philippines are hard-working, talented and most are fluent in english. 

By outsourcing to the Philippines you can expect a lower salary range from $3/hr - $10/hr.

As with any country the higher your budget the higher quality of talent you can expect.

If you're looking for an awesome designer I recommend setting your budget at $6/hr - $10/hr.

What's the catch?

Although outsourcing to the Philippines is cheaper, there's a smaller pool of designers available.

This means you should expect to put more time in for finding, vetting and managing designers.


  1. Great solution for business owners looking for high quality designs on a budget
  2. Filipino freelancers are trustworthy, hardworking and talented


  1. Not great for business owners short on time - more time required for finding, vetting and managing designers
  2. Upfront cost of $69 to use the platform

How Onlinejobs works

Onlinejobs works like any other job board. 

You post a job, specifying your job description, salary range and type of employment your looking for e.g. freelance or full-time

After you post you'll get offers within 1-2 hours from Filipino freelancers

At this point you'll be able to vet and interview the designers to see if they're a good fit for your job.

Pixel True - Design Agency With a Twist

Pixel True provides a high-quality design service without all the headaches that comes with finding, vetting and managing designers.

Affordable fixed pricing, no contracts and zero headaches.

Their services are great for businesses who are short on time and don't want to go through the hassle of hiring talented designers themselves.

With Pixel True, you'll work directly with a Talented Designer and a Project Manager on their easy-to-use platform. Websites, apps, graphic designs and animations - Pixel True has got you covered.

Great for

1. Business owners who want a high-quality website design that converts at an affordable price

2. Great for busy business owners - Pixel True handles vetting, hiring and managing of the designers.

Not Great for

1. Small one-off projects - Pixel True is a is cost effective for big projects like website designs not for smaller projects.

How To Get Started With Pixel True

Try one of our plans for 14 days where you'll get access to a designer for 2/4/6/8 hours a day.

Once subscribed you'll be able to post your first job request.

Add your first job request

Once you've posted your design request you'll be assigned a dedicated Designer and Project Manager to begin work immediately.

Your Project Manager and Designer assigned to work on the design request

We'll provide daily updates on the job request and you'll be able to provide your feedback directly on our platform.

Designer provides updates each day. Provide feedback directly on our platform.

Once completed, we'll upload your files where they can be downloaded immediately and we'll move onto the next job in the queue.

Download files immediately upon completion

You can try Pixel True's services risk free for 14 days.

Upwork - More Talent Available

Our strategy for Upwork is similar to Onlinejobs.

With Upwork we'll have access to more countries that we can hire from.

The countries I recommend based on the quality of designs, fluency in english and price are:

  1. Philippines
  2. Eastern Europe - Ukraine, Georgia
  3. Vietnam
  4. Indonesia

The average salary on Upwork for a graphic designer is $25/hour.

For the countries mentioned above you should expect to pay a salary from $7/hr - $15/hr.

Upwork is also equipped with a ton of useful double edged features that will save you time:

  1. Reviews from previous clients (expect to pay higher for freelancers with good reviews)
  2. Payroll managed through their system (Charges 3% for every transaction)


  1. Access to designers from a range of countries
  2. Review and payroll system
  3. Talented Designers on the Upwork Platform


  1. Higher price for talented designers
  2. Upwork will charge you an extra 3% on all payments
  3. Lower job applications - expect around 5 jobs applications per job post
  4. Time required to vet and manage designers

How to post on Upwork

The first step is posting your job. Here you can include your job description, budget

You'll also be able to target freelancers from specific countries

Once your job is submitted, you'll receive offers within 2-3 hours. Expect to receive only 5-8 offers.

Dribbble - Talented Designers

Dribbble is one of my favourite places to hire talented designers.

That's because the quality of work on Dribbble is the crème de la crème of the design community. 

You'll have an easier time finding talented designers here but expect to pay a higher price than Onlinejobs and Upwork.

As with Onlinejobs and Upwork we'll be targeting specific countries. Again I would recommend designers from:

  1. Philippines
  2. Eastern Europe - Ukraine, Georgia
  3. Vietnam
  4. Indonesia

We're looking at $10/hr - $20/hr for a high-quality designer from these countires. This is great considering designers from the US/EU will set you back $80 - $100/hr.


  1. Talented Designers


  1. Expensive
  2. More time required to find, vet and manage designers

How to Find Designers on Dribbble

The first step is finding designers in your target country. You can do this by googling the following "<Country> Dribbble"  

This will bring up a list of designs from your targeted country.

Once you've found a designer you'd like to work with, go to their profile and reach out to them via email.

Final Verdict

Which option you should go for really depends on your circumstances.

If you're looking for a decent website and you're willing to put the time into finding, vetting and hiring a designer - I would recommend going with Onlinejobs.

However, if you're short on time and are looking for a high-quality website that converts. I would recommend our services at Pixel True. You can try our services risk free for 14 days

April 21, 2021