Last updated on March 12th, 2022 at 05:32 am
Freelancing is a popular career choice for many people. It allows you to work at a flexible time and place. Freelancers are usually self-employed, meaning they don’t have an employer.
They might also be employees of a company but not full-time. Freelancers typically work on their own terms, without the typical constraints of an office job or 9-to-5 schedule.
The most common type of freelancer is the independent contractor who works for multiple clients or companies on different projects over time.
Freelancing can also be done as part of a group project with other freelancers, such as in the case of creative collaborations or co-working spaces like WeWork and CoSchedule’s Coworker Collective.
Those who work from home are typically self-employed or freelancers.
How To Start Freelancing as a Beginner
Freelancing as a beginner can be difficult, but it is definitely worth the effort. You will be able to gain experience and showcase your skills without the pressures of a full-time job.
The first thing you need to do before starting freelancing is deciding what type of freelancer you want to become.
Do you want to focus on writing or design?
Are you interested in working remotely or locally?
Once you have decided on what type of freelancer you want to become, then it’s time for step two: finding clients and projects that suit that specific niche.
Step 1: Get The Right Equipment
Straight up: The quick answer is that there are no good tasks that you can complete with just a smartphone. At least not ones that would be worth your time to complete.
If you are going to start freelancing, it’s important that you have the right equipment. You need to have a laptop, a smartphone, and an internet connection.
The most important thing is the laptop. You need one that is powerful enough for graphic design, web design, and development work. But also one that has enough battery life so you can work on it outside of your home office.
If you are going to be doing photography or video editing, you need a camera too. And if you don’t already have one, make sure to get a tripod to keep your shots steady when you’re filming or shooting pictures.
While freelancing may not be a get-rich-quick scheme and does not promise to make you rich, it can be effective for certain individuals who have the perseverance and determination to succeed in the field.
Step 2: Find A Marketable Skill
The next, and the most important step to start freelancing is to find a skill you can offer as a service. You need to find something that people are willing to pay for.
One of the most important skills you can offer as a service is copywriting. It’s not just about writing articles or blog posts; it’s about writing content that will help your audience connect with your brand and grow. your business.
Here are a few other skills you can offer as a freelance copywriter:
- SEO copywriting
- Social media management
- Web design and development services
- Even video production for your YouTube channel!
Most In-Demand Freelance Skills
Step 3: Define your target clients
Once you’ve identified your skills and what will be most profitable and enjoyable, it’s time to think about who will pay you for these skills.
In order to make sure that you are targeting the right people, it’s important to identify your target client. It can be a specific audience, industry, or company.
It is important to know who your target clients are in order to develop a strategy that will resonate with them and get them interested in what you have to offer.
A target client is an ideal customer or user of a product. It is the person you want to attract and convert into a customer. Target clients are usually in the market for a specific product or service, so it is important to know who they are and what they need.
The key to defining your target client is understanding their needs, motivations, and problems. You can do this by talking with them directly or by conducting market research.
This will help you write proposals that are more relevant and appealing to your target clients as well as improve response rates.
Step 4: Build Your Reputation
Having the right skills and being able to prove that you can accomplish your work will determine whether or not you’re a successful freelancer.
Employers are always looking for individuals who have a lot of experience, especially when it comes to writing skills. If you’re not able to prove that you’re skilled at what you do through your portfolio, or by validating your skills on a job posting, then you may never find work.
How do you build a reputation as a freelancer?
Get your work out there.
If you are a writer, you should consider getting your articles published on popular blogs. If you are a graphic designer, you should be able to point to a brand that can attest to your skills.
The same applies to a web designer, send a link to a website you’ve designed.
The primary objective is to eventually build enough of a reputation in the industry that you are able to get paid writing opportunities.
There are a few different ways you can go about this, but it starts with getting your work out there. Even consider doing some free work at first, reach out to blogs that accept guest posts, and do some concept design work.
Step 5: Create A Portfolio
When you are trying to establish yourself as a credible individual, it is important to have all your published work and live projects located in one place. This should include both works that have been published and work that you have completed for various companies.
A freelance portfolio is a collection of the work that an individual has done over the course of their career. It is typically used to show potential employers that you are qualified to be hired for a certain position.
Freelance portfolios can be created in different ways, but it’s important to have one in order to land your dream job. Whether you’re looking for a writing job or a design job, having a portfolio will help you stand out from the competition.
For example, if you are a graphic designer, you would create a portfolio page on the website called Behance. This would allow you to show off your designs in an elegant and highly-curated way that is easily accessible to potential clients.
Step 6: Find The Right Freelance Platform
This step on how to start freelancing is crucial for how easily you’ll land jobs, and the quality of the clients you’ll be able to work with.
The mistake that most beginning freelancers make is looking for popular freelance marketplaces and joining to get started. Like UpWork, or Freelancer.com.
For your information, these marketplaces are already awash with millions of freelancers looking for work online. And due to stiff competition, you will end up engaging in bidding wars to win gigs.
In the end, you will constantly be lowering your prices to finally land a job. This is not the right way to find work as a freelancer.
The best thing you can do when looking for freelance work is to find a marketplace that is fairly new, has minimal competition, and allows you to build a portfolio quickly.
It will be important to choose a marketplace where freelancers are still learning the ins and outs, so as not to be competing with seasoned professionals.
Step 7: Charge The Right Price
After you have found the platform that suits your needs, it’s time to set your price. The goal is to maximize the amount you make without losing potential jobs.
So, start by looking at competitors in the market. What are they charging for similar freelancing services?
There are four common pricing methods for a freelance business:
- Hourly: A set hourly rate for each hour worked for the client. The freelancer will track their hours and be paid per each completed minute from the client. It is used for both ongoing and short-term projects but requires a more thorough estimation process.
- Retainer: A flat monthly fee. The retainer is typically used for ongoing projects and charged based on an hourly rate and hours predicted to be spent monthly.
- Fixed project fee: A fixed project fee is a type of fee that is automatically charged for any project that ends up taking more than a certain amount of time. Instead of charging hourly rates, fixed project fees are primarily used for short-term projects or projects of high importance.
- Value-based pricing fee: A value-based project fee is a type of commission that is often charged to service providers for a fixed amount of time. Unlike a fixed project fee, this model is based on the value of the work that is completed during the agreed-upon period. It has the highest potential upside, but it’s harder to sell to clients since they may not understand it or feel comfortable with it.
Here are some tips to set the right prices:
Choose a number that:
- Makes you excited to get up and do the work
- Isn’t trying to compete on being the cheapest price
- Is still competitive with market rates
Step 8: Send Your First Proposal
When you find a project that you’re confident that you can provide excellent service for, it’s time to submit a proposal. This is the point where you prepare your proposal which should begin by outlining the details of your expertise.
A freelance proposal is a document that freelancers use to sell their services to potential employers. It usually includes a brief introduction about the freelancer, their qualifications, and any relevant experience they have.
A freelance proposal is the first step in landing a new job or project. Freelance proposals are often sent by email and can be short or long depending on the type of work you’re applying for.
Freelance proposals are different from cover letters because they have more information about your skill set and experience as a freelancer. They also typically include links to any relevant portfolio content that you have created in the past.
To ensure that your first project will be successful, it’s important to match it with your work experience and capabilities. So, make sure that you’re picking a project that is feasible for you as a freelancer.
Step 9: Deliver Beyond Expectations
Once you land a job, the next step is to make sure that you deliver the project within their expectations. In fact, you should overdeliver by going above and beyond the client’s expectations.
In the early days of my freelance career, I would typically get jobs for writing blog articles with a fixed word count like 1000 words. What I did was write the article to be about 1100-1200 and also include a unique header image for the blog post when delivering it. Without charging extra for it.
Clients were often extremely satisfied with my work and gave 5-star ratings to me almost consistently.
How Does Freelancing Affect Your Personal Life?
Freelancers are now able to work on their own terms and have the freedom to choose their own projects. They can work from anywhere, with any type of device and they can be as productive or unproductive as they want.
Freelancing has many benefits, but it also comes with its share of challenges. If you are looking for a job that offers greater flexibility and a better work-life balance, freelancing might be the right choice for you.
What are the Top Features of The Best Freelance Websites That You Should Check Out
Freelance websites are the best place to find a job as a freelancer. There are many different features that these websites have to offer, but here are some of the top features that you should check out:
- Freelance website search: You can use these websites to search for jobs in your desired field and location.
- Job posting system: These websites have their own job posting system where you can post your resume and get hired by companies from around the world.
- Job listing aggregation: These websites aggregate multiple job listings from different platforms into one list so that it is easier for users to find new jobs on freelance sites.
- Social media integration: Some of these sites integrate with social media such as Facebook or LinkedIn so that people can share their experiences with employers or employers can find new candidates.
- Job-matching system: These websites have their own custom job matching system where they match you with the best jobs on their website based on certain criteria that you provide them.
- Job-specific features: Some of these websites have specific features that help make your job search easier like video profiles, interviews, and job fairs. Online job boards can be classified by their number of job postings, the subscription options they offer, and the types of jobs that they list.
- Number of listings: Some online job boards have a high number of listings while others may have only a few hundred or less.
- Payment methods: Some online job boards are free while being paid.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What Are The Pros And Cons Of Freelancing?
Freelancing is not just a job, it’s a lifestyle. It can be a fulfilling and rewarding career to work on your own terms. However, freelance work can also come with its fair share of challenges.
Pros: There are many benefits of freelancing as it gives you the opportunity to choose your own hours, work from anywhere and be your own boss. You also have the freedom to make money on your own terms without having to answer to anyone else.
Cons: Freelancing can also come with its fair share of challenges such as balancing multiple clients, not being able to take time off for personal reasons, and having no job security.