Going freelance is a quick and affordable way to start making money from the comfort of your own home. You can start offering your services today if you have special skills and knowledge. However, freelancing confuses people who have never worked remotely. They are wondering how to start working on the Internet without experience. So, this article helps to make your way to dream easier and more pleasant.
Who is a freelancer?
A freelancer is a person who offers his/her services for a specific fee and usually does not expect to have a regular clientele. However, the employment relationship with these clients may continue into the future. Freelancing is a form of self-employment similar to running a business at home and working remotely. But consider that freelancers can work as contractors, distinguishing them from people engaged in their home businesses.
It is true that the terms “freelancer” and “remote worker” are often used as synonyms, although it is not strictly true. Unlike a freelancer, a remote worker is officially employed by one company and works according to a nine-to-five schedule. Freelancers, on the other hand, work with different clients and set their plans.
And this applies not only to creative professions. So, for example, you can act as a freelance insurance agent offering people to buy travel insurance online and visit website to find out the cost of travel insurance services. And you can do that any time you want.
Pros and cons of freelancing
For some people, freelancing is just a fairy tale: no early rise at 7 am to get to the office in time for the start of the day; no annoying bosses constantly watching the progress of your work; no need to ride the subway during rush hour or stand in traffic for hours — because you are working from home. But is it all so rosy in reality? Now you can look at all pros and cons of freelancing.
|✔️ Work from anywhere in the world. You only need a computer and an Internet connection to work — no need to wait for vacation to travel. You are free to move around the world without being tied to a specific city.||✔️ High competition among freelancers. Without a good portfolio, it is not easy to get orders. So, it is necessary to constantly develop, take courses, add to the portfolio to compete in the market.|
|✔️ Set your work schedule. If you are an owl and like to start work in the afternoon, freelancing makes it possible. You can make your plan. The main thing is to meet the deadlines set by a client.||✔️ Earnings directly depend on the ability to work. You cannot sit for hours, like on a regular job, and then get paid. Freelancers have to work more and harder than you would work for hire.|
|✔️ Work with clients from all over the world. You are not limited to the geography of your employer in freelancing. Just work with clients from other cities and countries.||✔️ No paid vacation or sick leave. Many freelancers start chasing projects and are afraid to go on vacation because they immediately lose their earnings. For this case, they have to plan a separate budget and learn to negotiate with clients.|
|✔️ Many exciting projects. For those who hate routine, the variety of projects and tasks allows being constantly in dynamics.||✔️ No guarantees. You may deal with a dishonest customer. In freelancing, no one guarantees that you will get money for your work.|
|✔️ Networking. In freelancing, you need to communicate with new people on different projects constantly. As a result, you are getting a large circle of valuable acquaintances.||✔️ High self-organization. Working with several clients and on many projects requires excellent self-organization.|
Where to start?
Many people forget about the pitfalls of freelancing. However, it is essential to consider them so as not to be disappointed and not to give up at the first time of work. So, where do you start?
Create a financial cushion
You will have to spend the first few months creating a portfolio, finding customers, and building skills. So you will not start earning immediately. In addition, do not exclude the widespread risks in freelancing: lack of orders, customer dissatisfaction with your work and refunds, periods of illness, and others. That is why you need a financial cushion to live on something during this time.
It is better to save money for the next 3-4 months. Below is an example of a table by which you can calculate how much money you will need to live comfortably for a month.
|Budget category||Expenses per month|
Add 20-30% for unforeseen expenses to the amount you get and see the amount you should save for the month.
Make a daily schedule
When nobody controls you, it is straightforward to start putting off tasks for the evening, tomorrow, or the next day. Thus, you run the risk of disrupting deadlines and doing your work poorly. You may not get paid for work or ruin your reputation. Here you have to pull yourself together and get busy organizing yourself.
Assess the cost of your work
The most challenging part about freelancing is setting fair prices for your work. So what should you rely on when creating a price list? First, be guided by the market. And second, look at what price other freelancers in your niche are setting. Finally, study the rates on the exchanges, which you can find below.
📝Calculate the cost of your hour.
📝Determine your desired income per month (real, based on your skills).
📝Divide by the number of working hours.
For example, you are a beginner and yet expect to earn $ 300 a month. You have five free hours a day for freelancing. Calculate 300 ÷ (5 hours x 20 working days per month) = $ 3 may cost an hour of your work. Not much, but it is an excellent point to start.
Learn to communicate with clients
Learn how to negotiate and sell your services to work comfortably in freelancing. Some of your customers may try to put you down on price and offer unfavorable working conditions if you can not convey the value of what you do. And this is where the brief you have written comes in handy, which will help reduce disagreements about the work done between you and the client. That is why it is worth studying in advance what it is and how to make it.
Promote your services
The best way to promote your services is to do quality work. Then you will have “word of mouth” and a stream of loyal customers. But to create such a flow, you need time and customers. So start a blog on social networks, talk about your work, and share cases and testimonials to attract customers. Use multiple links — a mini version of a landing page with a description of your services, links to social networks, customer reviews, or a price list.
You already know how to become an exceptionally good freelancer, having passed all the previous points. However, it is worth remembering that the way to great earnings lies in professionalism and experience, which are long and difficult to earn on your own. Therefore, to succeed, you have to choose the most exciting direction, study it, look at the jobs on exchanges in this area and go ahead!