Sortfolio helps bring clients and web designers together. The application provides users with a search tool that allows them to filter by city and budget. Designers can list their company information as well as their best samples so the user can see what they have done before contacting the company or individual. Contact details are also included so the user can email the company or visit their website if they wish to do so. Web designer pages can be shared on Twitter or printed. The user can add companies that interest them to their favorites list so they can return to their top choices when it is time to hire. Web designers can have their company listed on the Sortfolio directory to reach out to new clients.
Sortfolio was developed by 37Signals. The website provides users with a decent snapshot of each web designer. Screenshots and images are presented in a large size along with any text content the company chooses to include. The site currently includes a large number of cities in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, India, Germany and a collection of other countries from around the world. Surprisingly, most locations have at least one or two web designers listed.
The main draw to Sortfolio is its extensive coverage area. The site is essentially a dressed up collection of advertisements for web designers. That works just fine for anyone who is looking for this service, but doesn’t make Sortfolio stand out among the many other design classifieds websites. It is Sortfolio’s lengthy list of cities in numerous countries that makes it appealing to users who might not find anyone local through alternative resources.
Sortfolio gives the designer’s work center stage. Each listing is presented with an image and snippet to go with it. This is a breath of fresh air compared to the standard text list of classified ads some sites use. Each designer’s page includes a collection of larger images to go with very small text descriptions and contact details. The user can see what they need to see to decide if the company meets their needs (at least from a creativity perspective).
A web designer can click the light grey “Login to Sortfolio” link in the top, right hand corner to create an account. A small blue link below the login box on the next page invites the user to create a Sortfolio account. The next page contains a form that asks the user to add a picture of their best work along with a short description. The user is also asked to supply their company name, logo image, the budget range they typically work within and city or metro area they service along with an optional email address and URL. After submitting the form, the user can choose to upgrade or publish their basic listing as is.
Users interested in hiring web designers are not required to pay anything to do so. Sortfolio provides free access to search its directory without an account. The user only has to pay any fees charged by the web design company they hire. Web designers can create a free basic listing that includes an image and a few basic contact details. A Pro listing is available for $99 per month and includes a larger interactive display advertisement, up to six large images, logos and placement above the free listings.
Sortfolio is intended primarily for web designers who want to expand their client base. Users can set up a free listing (and who wouldn’t want to do that?) or pay for a Pro listing. Internet users interested in hiring the services of a web design company can search the site as well. Users will only find designers on Sortfolio, which makes the large images presented on each listing even more valuable to those who are looking to hire.