If you’re a graphic designer looking for a place where the sunshine is endless, the air is clean, and the outdoor scenery is breathtaking, New Mexico is the place to be. The Land of Enchantment makes an excellent place for graphic designers because of its thriving arts scene and low cost of living. You may be considering making a living here as a graphic designer. Yet, before you relocate, you may want to know about a graphic designer’s salary in New Mexico and whether it’s worth living there.
What Is the Market Like for Graphic Designers in New Mexico?
One of the things you want to consider when building your career in a place you desire is the market. Is New Mexico truly a good place for graphic designers to live?
This information is essential to know because you may love your state, but it can be challenging to find a job if the opportunities are limited. A factor like this makes it difficult to live comfortably. Then, you may find yourself in a sticky situation.
When looking for graphic design jobs in New Mexico, the opportunities are currently quite limited. Consider job boards like Indeed and Glassdoor. If you look for graphic design jobs on Indeed, you’ll find there are only 30 listings available. The positions listed on Glassdoor are far fewer — approximately 15 job listings are available.
Although the job advertisements are on the lower side, other opportunities are available outside these job boards. With that in mind, looking at what employers currently pay graphic designers in New Mexico is crucial. That way, you can get an idea of what you’re supposed to be making. If you continue looking at the jobs listed on platforms like Indeed or ZipRecruiter, 17% offer approximately $17.93 or higher.
High-Paying Industries for Graphic Designers in New Mexico
Keep in mind these are starting wages for entry-level positions. If this pay range is one you desire starting out, you can also earn more by working in a certain industry. Some industries pay more than others, so consider which of them will let you make the most:
- Technology: $59,067
- Manufacturing: $54,488
- Finance: $54,139
- Media: $52,206
- Education: $51,763
- Retail: $50,927
Technology is one of the top sectors to work in as a graphic designer, which makes sense. New Mexico has become a central hub for some of the most well-known tech companies. This includes companies like Facebook, Intel and Amazon.
What Is the Graphic Designer Salary in New Mexico?
As a graphic designer in New Mexico, you know many of the jobs posted are listed at an entry-level wage. However, it’s also helpful to understand what most graphic designers are making in this part of the U.S. While many of the jobs listed start at around $17 per hour, knowing the average salary could help you earn more.
In New Mexico, the average salary for graphic designers is $49,100, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This number is slightly lower than the national average. Graphic designers in the U.S. generally make $50,710 each year.
While the average salary for graphic designers in New Mexico is under the national average, consider other factors that may offset the lower earnings. For instance, the cost of living is a major factor in how comfortable and manageable your finances become.
According to MERIC (Missouri Economic Research and Information Center), New Mexico’s cost of living index is 94.1, which ranks 20 out of the 50 states. In other words, New Mexico’s cost of living falls on the lower end of the spectrum. To give you an idea of what that looks like financially, the cost of living totals $40,028 per person.
Other factors that affect your salary include the city where your work is located. Most employers will consider the economic state of a city and factor it into your paycheck. Here are some of the cities you can expect to make the most in New Mexico:
- Clovis, NM: $55,589
- Roswell, NM: $54,398
- Farmington, NM: $53,388
- Las Cruces, NM: $51,411
- Hobbs, NM: $51,411
- Rio Rancho, NM: $49, 609
- Albuquerque, NM: $48,882
- South Valley, NM: $48,284
- Los Lunas, NM: $44,901
Clovis is the place where graphic designers can make the most. However, it’s important to be mindful of the costs of living in each city to help you make your decisions.
The Career Outlook for Graphic Designers in New Mexico?
Another important factor that graphic designers must consider is whether they’ll be in high demand. This is crucial to think about because the demand for graphic designers plays into how many opportunities there are when you start a job search. Therefore, if you’re considering living in New Mexico or already are, know whether there will be a demand for graphic designers.
In New Mexico, there were 880 total employees working as graphic designers in 2020. The projected employment in this field will grow to 970 graphic designers by 2030. Considering these numbers, you can expect a 10% growth increase, which is much higher than the national average.
Overall, it’s predicted that the U.S. will only have a 3% growth between 2021 and 2031. With New Mexico projected to have a 10% increase in graphic designers, this is good news. Graphic designers will have many opportunities to get their foot in the door with their dream company.
However, there are other ways that help you achieve your career goals faster. One of those methods includes joining an organization that supports creatives like you. In New Mexico, you can find professional associations like AIGA.
Graphic designers who join AIGA’s chapter in New Mexico will meet with other designers and can collaborate on projects. The organization is also set up to provide workshops and support designers in their career endeavors.
Tips for Earning a Better Salary as a Graphic Designer in New Mexico
1. Practice Building Your Skills
Expert graphic designers know that the key to earning a higher salary is constantly sharpening their skills. Graphic designers must always learn about the latest within their industry because something new is always occurring.
For instance, it could be Adobe adding new software to their mix. Or it could be a new trend taking over in the graphic design world. Keeping up with building new skills keeps you on your toes and makes you even more valuable to potential employers.
2. Work With a Mentor
If you can find a mentor, you’ll be better off in the long run. Mentors are people in the same field as you but with much more experience. Having a mentor by your side is crucial because they can guide you toward achieving your career goals. They’re someone you can always count on for advice and help you understand what it takes to move up in your career.
3. Establish an Online Portfolio
If you’re ready to attract potential employers or higher-paying clients, you must show your work off to them. The best way to make this happen is by creating an online portfolio. Build your online portfolio using Wix or WordPress. Ensure you publish your best work and send it to employers when ready to apply for a new job.
Should You Earn a Salary as a Graphic Designer in New Mexico?
If you’re wondering whether you should earn a salary as a graphic designer in New Mexico, ask yourself if the average number is worth it. While New Mexico’s average wage is slightly lower than the national average, the lower cost of living can offset that. Additionally, there are plenty of ways to earn a higher salary if you put forth effort and creativity. Consider what matters most to you and whether New Mexico is the place to help all your dreams come true.