Graphic Designer Salary in Illinois

Posted on April 5, 2023 | Updated on October 27, 2023

Graphic design is a creative field. People have many opportunities to create impressive visuals and messages with their art. It can be an inspiring and passionate industry. However, salary also plays a role in any career. Professionals should know how much is fair compensation.

It’s especially important to know this information in artistic fields. Many designers, artists and other creatives are underpaid. Designers may not recognize how valuable they are. They might think it’s only fair to start earning a higher salary after working more or longer.

However, workers deserve to earn fair wages from the start. Once designers realize what others might earn in their area, they can demand equivalent pay. Negotiating higher salaries is often possible. Learn more about the average graphic designer’s salary in Illinois and how you can maximize your earning potential.

Average Graphic Designer Salary in Illinois

According to recent data, the average graphic designer’s salary in Illinois is $57,550. This salary is much higher than the national average of $50,710 a year. However, salaries can vary depending on certain factors. Common influences include location, industry and experience level.

Wages vary based on the type of graphic design you do. In Illinois, graphic designers in the technology industry might earn $59,067 annually. On the other hand, people working in the retail sector have the lowest average salary of $50,927.

Experience can have a big impact on salary. Entry-level graphic designers in Illinois may earn less than the statewide average. People with more experience and skills will earn more. Type of employment is a consideration, too. Freelance or self-employed graphic designers might earn less than people in traditional office settings.

Overall, the average graphic designer’s salary in Illinois is competitive. That’s especially true when you compare it to other states. However, there is room for advancement in the industry.

Cost of Living in Illinois

The cost of living is another important consideration for graphic designers in Illinois. If you’re moving to the state, you should learn about average costs and expenses.

In Illinois, living costs are generally lower than in many other states. It depends on where you live in the Midwest. Certain areas like Chicago can have higher living costs compared to other parts of the state.

Housing costs in Illinois are lower than the national average. The median home prices are $228,698 in this state. Keep in mind that housing prices can vary greatly depending on the location within the state. Other expenses in Illinois, like utilities, transportation and groceries, align with national averages.

One difference to remember is that taxes in Illinois can be higher than in other states. Property taxes in particular are often higher here than elsewhere in the Midwest.

Overall, the cost of living in Illinois is reasonable for graphic designers. Costs are lower outside of major cities. Living in a larger metropolitan area will cost more on average.

Top-Paying Cities for Graphic Designers in Illinois

Location plays a significant role in graphic designers’ salaries. Certain cities within Illinois offer higher wages compared to others. Here are the top-paying cities for graphic designers in Illinois:

  • Chicago: The largest city in the state, Chicago offers the highest salaries for designers. The average salary for graphic designers in Chicago is $60,988. That’s slightly higher than the statewide average.
  • Springfield: The capital city of Illinois offers an average salary of $54,709 per year. The cost of living in Springfield is also relatively low compared to other major cities in the state.
  • Champaign: Located in central Illinois, Champaign offers an average salary of $54,831. Champaign is a college town. It’s also home to several technology companies, which means higher wages in the area.
  • Bloomington: Another central city in Illinois, the average salary for graphic designers is $55,230. Bloomington hosts several large businesses, including State Farm Insurance and Country Financial. Being near these corporations can lead to higher earnings.
  • Peoria: Near the heart of Illinois is Peoria, where graphic designers can expect to earn around $55,843. Peoria is a hub for several large employers, including Caterpillar Inc. Bustling businesses can give designers a good place to make more money.
  • Decatur: Decatur is another top-paying city. Graphic designers may have the opportunity to earn around $54,415. It’s a manufacturing hub, which is a great place for graphic designers to achieve higher salaries.

These cities offer competitive salaries for graphic designers. They’re great options for those looking to work in Illinois.

Job Outlook for Graphic Designers in Illinois

The job outlook for graphic designers in Illinois is expected to increase by 3.1% over the next decade. The data also shows there are 12,050 graphic designers employed in Illinois.

Digital media is in high demand in Illinois. Many employers are looking for graphic designers with diverse skills. For example, the ability to create digital designs, animations and website layouts. There are things job seekers can do to make themselves more appealing to companies. Being proficient in design software and having varied experience improves your prospects.

The digital world is more important than ever. Businesses will continue expanding their online presence. That means graphic designers will be in high demand. Companies need all kinds of content, from social media graphics to mobile app designs.

Plus, the rise of e-commerce creates new demand for product designs and packaging. Businesses need designers who can make their goods and services more appealing. Graphic design leaves the first and most important impression on customers. Visually-enticing packaging is a must-have

While the job market is tight, Illinois has promise for graphic designers. People with strong technical skills and diverse portfolios will be the best candidates.

Benefits and Perks Offered to Graphic Designers in Illinois

Illinois is one of the most populous states in the country. The diverse economy helps graphic designers find many opportunities. There are design jobs in agriculture, manufacturing, retail and more. The state is also a leading producer of corn and soybeans. It’s home to many Fortune 500 companies in health care, finance and transportation.

Illinois has a rich history and culture. Chicago is a major center for business, finance, technology and transportation. It is home to many world-renowned institutions, such as the Art Institute of Chicago and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

Graphic designers can expect to work for top employers like ActiveCampaign, Grubhub and Sprout Social. These big companies offer several benefits. Workers enjoy favorable working arrangements, such as remote work options and flexible hours.

These companies offer other unique benefits for employees. Office events and outings, professional development and extended paid leave are a few advantages. Many companies also offer great perks, like fitness centers, pet-friendly offices and paid commutes.

With benefits and perks like these, graphic designers can expect to work in a positive environment. Companies that foster a strong sense of community are common in Illinois.

Tips for Maximizing Graphic Designer Salary in Illinois

Graphic designers can earn a decent salary when living in Illinois. However, there’s always room for growth and the potential to make more. Consider these top tips below for salary maximization:

  • Continue learning: Keep a watchful eye on changing design trends and principles to give employers and clients what they want. Graphic designers should be aware of the latest techniques. Taking online courses, attending workshops and reading design blogs can help you stay relevant.
  • Build a strong portfolio: A strong, diverse portfolio should also be on hand. In the interview stage, a portfolio is what sets candidates apart. The key is to hone in on a defined style with personal interest.
  • Get Certified: Certifications can impact a graphic designer’s salary in Illinois. Everyone knows the job market is competitive. It’s essential for graphic designers to earn certificates that show off their various skills. Even just a few more qualifications can set you apart from other prospects.
  • Negotiate your rates: Be bold and negotiate your rates with clients and employers. Research industry standards for your experience level and use the information to attain a fair rate.

Follow these tips to boost your prospects. Graphic designers have the power to increase their value and earn a higher salary.

Earn the Best Graphic Designer Salary in Illinois

A graphic designer’s salary in Illinois varies on experience, skills, education and location. While the average pay may be lower than in some other states, several growth opportunities remain. Industries are booming, with plenty of ways for designers to get ahead. Improving skills and staying up-to-date with trends is a necessity. Graphic designers can position themselves for higher salaries and greater success.

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