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Free Printable Design Brief Templates [Word, PDF]

    For many in the design business, a design brief is an essential document that outlines all aspects of a requested project, such as a timeline, design concept, and target audience. But while it can be a valuable tool for the entire collaboration process, this is only sometimes the case.

    The key here is to know when you should use a design brief. This is why we have decided to compile a list of situations when it comes in handy – and those when you should avoid using it altogether.

    Design Brief Templates

    What Is a Design Brief?

    Design Brief
    Design Brief

    A design brief is the essential starting point for any project. It’s where you get to define your goals, your audience, and your project’s constraints.

    It’s an essential tool that helps you to avoid mistakes and misunderstandings with your designer or developer. It’s also a great way to make sure that everyone understands what they are expected to do.

    So what exactly is it? A design brief is a document explaining how you want your website or app to look and feel. It includes all the specific details like colors, fonts, images, layout, and more.

    Why Do You Need a Design Brief?

    You need a design brief for many reasons. It helps you to convey your vision, it helps the designer to understand your needs, and it will help you to communicate effectively.

    A well-written design brief is essential for any successful project. If you want your project to succeed, you need a good understanding of what the client expects from the project. The design brief should include all the details about the project and its objectives. This way, you will be able to choose an appropriate designer who will be able to meet your expectations.

    The most important thing about a design brief is that it must be easy to read and understand. The language should be simple as this can confuse even seasoned designers! Make sure that everything is correct in your brief because they can give an impression of an unprofessional company.

    A good design brief should also provide enough information about the target audience, budget, and deadline so that the designer can properly prepare his/her design ideas before meeting with you in person or over email/phone call/Skype, etc/

    Who Writes a Design Brief?

    Design briefs are usually written by the person who will be responsible for managing the project. This may be the designer or an internal business manager or executive.

    The process of writing a design brief can be very helpful in clarifying what you want from your design or marketing project. If you’re working with someone else to write your design brief, make sure to review their final version with them before sending it out to potential vendors or freelancers so that they have a clear understanding of what you need from them as well as how long they have to complete their work by (if applicable).

    How to Write a Design Brief

    A good design brief should be clear, concise, and easy to read. It should set out what you want from your designer and provide as much information as possible so that they can do their job properly.

    Here are some tips on how to write a good design brief:

    Introduce the business

    The first thing you should do is introduce yourself and your company. Your client needs to know who they are working with and if you have any previous work they can refer to, which will help them trust your expertise. Also, let them know what kind of experience you have in creating this type of design project or other similar projects.

    Define the project scope

    The next step is defining what exactly need to be done. You should include everything from graphics, layout, text content, etc., which will keep both parties on track. If any specific requirements need to be met or deadlines for completion, include these as well.

    Define your audience

    You must clearly understand who you want to target with the design. This determines the type of message you want to convey through your design brief. The visual language should be simple and cool if you are targeting teenagers and young adults. However, if your audience is made up of senior citizens or toddlers, then it becomes important that the visuals are easy to understand and not too abstract.

    Cover Your Competition

    Next, research other products on the market that serve similar purposes as yours. How do they compare to yours? Which ones appeal more to your target audience? Why do they prefer those over yours? You can also take inspiration from these existing brands by incorporating similar features into your own product or service!

    Establish goals

    A good design brief should have clear goals and objectives. What do you want the design to achieve? Is it to boost sales? Or gain new customers? The goal of the design will determine how you can go about making it happen. For example, if you want to increase sales, you may need a website that is easy to navigate or a shopping cart that doesn’t require much information from customers before they can make their purchases.

    Take a tab of existing designs.

    Preliminary research about existing designs can help in determining what works and why. It also helps in spotting mistakes that should be avoided in future designs. If there are no existing designs that meet your criteria, then this is where creativity comes into play!

    Write the schedule

    Another thing you need to do is set up a schedule for your project. This will help keep things organized and ensure that everything runs smoothly. Once you have decided on the schedule, share it with everyone involved in the project. This way, everyone will know what needs to be done at what time so they can plan their schedules accordingly.

    Determine the budget

    Once your schedule is set up, it’s time to determine how much money you want to spend on this project. You can either create an internal budget or work with an agency or freelancer specializing in graphic design or website development services. The amount of money you spend depends on how big or small your business is and whether or not you have sufficient funds available for this type of investment.

    Compile Design Brief Components

    Finalize by compiling all the components of your design brief into one document. This includes things like client information (name, address, contact info), project status (start date, end date), overall objectives/goals, budget limits/constraints/restrictions, document formatting requirements (if any), etc. These items can come from multiple sources, such as emails or phone conversations with clients or colleagues who are familiar with the project details or through research on similar projects completed by other designers.

    How long should my design brief be?

    The length of your design brief will depend on your industry and how much time you have allocated for it. If you have several weeks to work on it, then it might be best to write a longer, more detailed one. If you don’t have much time, you can keep things short and sweet. A good rule of thumb is 1-2 pages maximum. This gives enough detail for your designer but only takes up a little of their time reading through something they may not need (or want).


    A design brief should be a snapshot of your client, their business, and their aspirations. Everything the designer does and says about the project is based on the brief. Get it right, and you will always get it right. Always.


    How do I write a design brief?

    When writing a design brief, clearly outline the project goals, target audience, schedule and budget constraints. Provide background on the client with useful research insights. Maintain an organized structure with distinct sections covering objectives, key details on visual elements, content, functionality and technical specifications expected.

    What a good design brief looks like?

    A good design brief concisely captures the vision and needs using a well-structured format: Upfront project overviews and goals, organized details on essential elements like visual identity, content expectations and site maps, technical specifications required, realistic timelines and constraints acknowledges, approvals protocols outlined.

    How do you write a brief template and example?

    A design brief template contains sections for project overview, descriptions of the client/target users, outline of content needed, technical abilities required, visual preferences and sensory elements, discussion of competitors or inspirations, any provided brand guidelines, annotated examples if helpful, deadline and budgetary limitations called out upfront.

    What are the 5 parts of a design brief?

    The 5 standard design brief sections are: Project Background Audience Personas Content Requirements Technical Specifications Visual Preferences

    What is the difference between a design brief and a creative brief

    A design brief focuses specifications for physical print projects or digital product visual aesthetics and user experiences. It spotlights graphic elements expected. A creative brief concentrates larger branding objectives and consumer messaging strategy direction expanded upon in aligned marketing communications and campaigns.

    How long should a design brief be?

    An effective design brief concisely captures requirements in 2-3 pages typically. More complex RFP projects may warrant 10-15 pages. Summary overviews describe objectives at opening, supported by well-organized details in scannable, digestible structures for clarity over length.

    What is a design brief give an example?

    Here is a design brief excerpt summarizing a website redesign: “Extern Theatre Co seeks website refresh with edgier, contemporary vibes aligned to recent rebranding. Target under 35 performing arts patrons. Display fall event lineup prominently. Optimize for mobile. Maintain e-commerce functionality for show ticketing. Complete by August 30 on $1500 budget.”

    What are the 7 parts of a design brief?

    The 7 key sections of a design brief typically cover:

    1. Client Summary
    2. Project Goals
    3. Target Audience
    4. Schedule/Budget
    5. Technical Considerations
    6. Visual Preferences
    7. Content Requirements
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    Betina Jessen

    Betina Jessen

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