As a freelance designer, you know that having your own portfolio website is one of the best ways to secure new clients.
However, did you know that there are tons of free WordPress plugins designed to make your website faster, easier to manage, and more secure – even on a tight freelance budget? Even better, many of these plugins are designed with freelancers in mind.
When you build your WordPress website, make sure you include these essential plugins for a fast, attractive, lead-generating site!
Ten Free WordPress Plugins for Freelance Designers
From payment processing to site security, these top free plugins will keep your design website safe, secure, and easy to manage.
Make it easy for your clients to pay you with the Stripe Payments plugin. This will allow you to take credit and debit card payments from customers, in any currency.
You can set up a payment page to direct customers to on their invoices, or use the plugin for immediate digital downloads such as How To design guides with a Buy Now button.
There are some fees associated with Stripe itself, as there are with any payment processing platform. However, this free plugin makes it easy to accept credit card payments at a low cost.
Modula is an image gallery plugin for WordPress that allows you to truly customize how you present your visual content for a professional finish.
You’ll be able to easily resize photos freely, without keeping to locked or pre-set sizes. A drag-and-drop upload means it’s incredibly fast to transfer a lot of images to your website, and there is even a premium upgrade for video content, too.
Your freelance design website will have plenty of images on it – and that can slow the load time down. A slow site isn’t user friendly on desktop, but on a mobile device it’s even worse.
The free AMP for WordPress plugin creates mobile-friendly pages to speed up load time. It will also make the most of Google’s mobile-first ranking strategy to make sure you’re seen in search results more frequently.
Possibly the most well-known free plugin for WordPress, JetPack handles a wide range of tasks to speed up your website, improve usability, and highlight potential problems.
It offers a range of essentials from in-editor spellcheck to a custom URL shortener, cloud-hosted website statistics to in-built email subscription options. With the Publicize function you can even automate posting of your content to six major social sharing platforms, saving you time and simplifying your marketing strategy in the same action.
The great thing about JetPack is that it has been created by Automaticc, the people behind WordPress. That means you’re guaranteed to always have a version that works with every WordPress update.
A contact form is aboslutely essential if you want to generate leads for your design business.
There is a basic WordPress form available without a plugin – but for stylish and highly customizable forms, try the free Gravity Forms plugin. Edit the design and field options to match your brand style, and capture any data with ease.
Your website handles more data than you may think – so it’s essential to have a security plugin to protect sensitive information.
VaultPress protects and logs any login information. This will help you to identify if your WordPress site has been hacked, as a common way for hackers to take advantage of content-based sites is to gain access and install their own backlinks.
You can also protect your information with a backup, allowing for easy restore should anything sinister happen to your website.
One of the easiest-to-use drag and drop builders on the market. Elementor provides a feature-rich, front-end page builder that let’s you take your design to a finished product in minutes without touching a line of code.
8. WP Review
What was once a premium plugin has since been released – with premium features – as an entirely free application for WordPress. The app creators simply wanted to give back to the WordPress community – there’s no catch.
Create reviews with star ratings on your website to build authority with client testimonials. Whenever you’ve completed a project with a new client, ask them to send you a review. This will build your review page as well as prove what an amazing designer you are!
Make sure you provide every website visitor the opportunity to spread the word about something they like about your site. The free Social Share Buttons plugin allows you to choose what people can share from your site, and onto which social platforms.
You can easily design any button type to fit well with any WordPress theme, which adds to your professional branding to help new clients take you seriously.
Show off your previous work on one page with the easy and responsive Pizzazz Portfolio plugin.
Set up your portfolio and add to it as it grows over time with this simple plugin. Website visitors will be able to access your entire portfolio on one page, making it easy for them to determine if you’re the right freelance designer for their project.
Get Paid to Build Your Portfolio
Build your freelance design website with all of the free WordPress plugins above and you’ll end up with a stunning site that will generate leads…
Unless your portfolio is empty.
Make sure clients know how incredible you are as a designer by adding to your portfolio whenever you can.
If you’re struggling to connect with your first clients, try out Boonle: we connect businesses looking for designers with students and new design graduates.