This post is for you if you've decided to start working as a freelancer for any reason at all. However, this isn't your typical article offering advice to new freelancers. Since 2015, we have assisted people in quitting their employment and starting their freelancing careers. Therefore, we are more aware than most that freelancing is more difficult than industry leaders would have you believe. When it comes to freelance work for beginners, we're here to discuss the good, the bad, and the awkward. However, we're also going to provide you with our top advice for being a successful freelancer, direct from other successful freelancers who have been in your position before. Here is some advice for freelancers.
Refrain from quitting your work (yet)Don't quit your day job (yet)
You’ll still want to keep your day job in the beginning, as you don’t know how much income you’ll earn as a freelancer. Plus, you don’t want to miss out on benefits like healthcare and paid leave, which you may not get as a freelancer.
Start with side gigs
Start working as a freelancer on the side, in addition to your full-time job, so you can get your feet wet and make sure freelancing is for you.
Start with smaller projects and build up to larger ones as you get more comfortable with the process and build up your portfolio.
Create a portfolio
Make sure to create an online portfolio of your work, whether that’s your own website, a social media account, or another platform.
Find a mentor
Find someone who is already freelancing and can help you learn the ropes and answer your questions.
Be prepared to hustle
Be prepared to hustle and hustle some more to make your freelance business a success. You’ll need to work hard to find clients, build up your portfolio, and be flexible to work around your customers' schedules.
Don’t give up if you don’t get any bites right away. It can take some time to land your first few clients, so be patient and keep at it.
Make sure you act as a professional from the get-go, from the way you communicate with clients to the way you present your work.
Be proactive in your search for work, and don’t wait for clients to come to you.
Be prepared to be flexible in your work hours and the type of work you do to make freelancing work for you.
Set your rates
Don’t be afraid to set your rates and be firm about what you’re worth. Remember, you’re running a business, and you need to get paid for your work.
Get organized from the start by setting up a system for tracking your work, invoicing clients, and managing your finances.
Invest in yourself
Make sure to invest in yourself and your business by taking courses and attending networking events to help you grow your freelance business.
Be prepared for the ups and downs
Be prepared for the ups and downs that come with freelancing, as it’s not always a steady income. You may have a few months where you’re busier than others, so make sure you have a plan for the leaner months.
Take care of yourself
Make sure to take care of yourself both mentally and physically when you're freelancing, as it can be a lot of work and can be stressful at times.
Enlist help when you need it, whether that's hiring a virtual assistant or accountant to help with the business side of things or hiring a babysitter to watch your children.
Create a support network
Create a support network of other freelancers or business owners who can relate to what you’re going through and can offer advice and support.
Start freelancing work with an open mind
I'm a full-time freelancer, and I've been freelancing for over five years now. At first, I had no idea what I was doing. I just knew that I wanted to work from home, and I was willing to try anything.
I started by doing some online research, and I quickly realized that there were a ton of different ways to make money freelancing. I started by offering my services on sites like Fiverr and Upwork, and I quickly realized that there was a lot of demand for my skills.
I've since expanded my business to include other platforms like Freelancer and People Per Hour, and I've also started offering my services to local businesses.
It's important to try new things when you're just starting out. Experiment and fail without fear. You can only find out what works for you by trying different things.
Starting out can be discouraging. It is likely that you won't get a lot of work or make a lot of money right away.
The truth is that it takes time to build up a client base, and it takes time to build up a reputation. Don't expect to be an overnight success. Be patient, and persistent.
If you keep at it, eventually you'll start to see your business take off.
When you're freelancing, you're your own boss. That means that you need to be professional and organized.
You need to treat your business like a business, and you need to be sure that you're always putting your best foot forward.
Communicate clearly with your clients and be responsive to their needs. deliver quality work on time. Success is yours if you do all of those things.
Don't be afraid to ask for help
When you're first starting out, you might not know where to turn for help. That's okay.
There are a lot of resources out there, and there are a lot of people who are willing to help.
If you need help figuring out where to start, try searching for freelancing forums or online communities. There are a ton of them out there, and you're sure to find someone who's willing to help.
Don't be afraid to invest in yourself
One of the best things you can do for your freelancing business is to invest in yourself.
Take some time to learn new skills and some time to improve your existing skills. The more valuable you are, the more successful you'll be.
If you're not sure where to start, there are a ton of great resources out there. Check out sites like Skillshare and Udemy and see what they have to offer.
Freelancing is a marathon, not a sprint.
It takes time to build up a successful freelancing business, and it takes a lot of hard work.
You may not see results immediately, but don't get discouraged. Keep at it, and eventually, you'll start to see your business take off.
Utilize sites for freelancers to begin seeking clients.
Freelancing platforms are always promoted as being magical locations where new freelancers may go to learn how to find freelancing work. But we're here to share our frank view with you. Platforms for freelancing can be a terrific place to look for work, especially if you're just starting out. However, platforms for freelancing can also be used by (well, we'll just say it) cheap firms to waste the time and abilities of unskilled freelancers.
However, do not let these warnings discourage you from using freelancer platforms. Just keep in mind to do your research on project scope and pricing to avoid being taken advantage of, to set clear boundaries, and to trust your instincts. Numerous prosperous freelancers Why can't you? A lot of successful freelancers started out on freelance sites.
Try these well-known platforms for independent contractors:
Make a portfolio to inspire trust in potential freelance clients.
Clients will want to see what you bring to the table if you're a new freelancer before they decide to take a chance on you. At this point, many independent contractors have expressed their frustration. They believe that in order to wow potential customers, they must have an award-winning website from the very beginning.
It's not true. Clients need to perform their due research to ensure they are qualified for the job they have been hired for. The folder can initially be a simple Google Drive folder (just make sure it's organized and properly formatted). There will be plenty of time to build that top-notch website on Wix or Wordpress at a later time. You'll be in a position to engage a professional to create a cutting-edge portfolio website for you by this point, thanks to your surplus cash flow.
Make sure you follow the rules.
This is a significant error that new freelancers frequently make. Even though you're just one person, by providing your services in exchange for money, you're still running a business. As you settle into your new position as a freelancer or solopreneur, you'll want to learn more about the legal choices available to you for structuring your company. It's best to speak with a local expert to discover more about your alternatives because each country will have its own unique set of rules, which might result in severe consequences if you don't comply.
A registered corporation serves more purposes than just preventing local tax authorities' fines. If your business is registered, you're frequently subject to numerous laws (lower)
If your tax rate is low enough, you can minimize your tax liability by deducting company expenses (like that expensive new Macbook or that flashy new website we just talked about). If a client decides to take advantage of you, having a registered company can help give your freelancing contracts more legal power (more on that next).
Become organized to set yourself up for success as a new freelancer.
Many people believe that when the cocktail hour comes around, freelancers finish their job for the day after sleeping until noon. Yes, you can absolutely reach that stage as a seasoned independent contractor. However, with this lack of organization, it is impossible to expect to earn enough money to support yourself in the beginning.
Don't take this lack of structure as a justification to start off with negative habits. Treat contract writing like any other job. Establish a daily schedule for when you open and shut your laptop. Set objectives. Plan your course of action. When you spend the entire day browsing the stuff on your LinkedIn feed, it's easy to believe you're being productive. Be truthful about what is genuinely adding value (getting you clients or earning you money) and what you are just putting off. Jorge, as previously stated, is a seasoned freelancer as well as a digital nomad. While working remotely in Asia, he struggled to stay motivated (and we can't really blame him for that). He also produced this essay on productivity hacks and strategies for solopreneurs in addition to this one on how to apply product management best practices to operate your freelance firm like a freelance machine. These articles are essential reading if you find it difficult to stay on task as a new freelancer.
Automate and outsource with the right tools
As a freelancer, you'll quickly discover that there are never enough hours in the day to do everything on your to-do list. Finding out which tasks add the most value to your company and which ones you should outsource is one of the most crucial things you can do as a business owner.
Take billing as an illustration. You'd think that since you're about to get paid, freelancers would enjoy writing invoices. But as it turns out, the vast majority of freelancers struggle with these time-consuming, repetitive chores; therefore, you should automate or outsource them as soon as possible. Remember that there will be freelancers that endorse a certain software or platform in every forum for independent contractors. Choosing the right one is crucial. Each freelancer is unique, so it takes some IRL trial and error to find your tech tool soulmate.