Beginning a freelance business can be extremely rewarding. You are your boss and work whenever and wherever you want. Since the 2020 pandemic, the number of freelancers has grown, with many of them disillusioned with the 9-to-5 grind. But going it alone isn’t as simple as it appears.
New freelancers must work hard to build a client base and earn a good living. As a result, it could take weeks or months to build a sizable clientele. As a result, we’ll give you nine freelancing tips for beginners to get you started. These freelancer tips can help you build a successful freelance career.
1. Recognize Your Niche
This freelancing tip may appear obvious, but it isn’t. Before moving forward, new freelancers must first understand the market they are about to enter. As a result, they must conduct extensive research to understand their niche and how they fit into it.
Some freelancers may know about previous full-time jobs, but that isn’t enough when you’re doing everything yourself. Because you’re going it alone, you’ll need to delve deep into your niche. As a result of your research, you should be able to determine:
- Prospective customers
- Topics for trending or evergreen content
- Your freelance objectives
Workflows used by top creators in your field
For example, if you want to be a freelance copywriter, you can conduct research by reading freelancer tips and guides written by experts to learn how they succeeded in copywriting. You are not required to complete all of the steps, but they should give you an idea of what a career in your industry entails.
Extensive Google searches related to the role you want to fill should be part of your research. Examine any major platforms relevant to your industry to see how they operate and what you need to succeed on them.
2. Train to be a Generalist or a Specialist
You can be a generalist in your industry as a freelancer, or you can specialize in specific topics and services.
A freelance writer, for example, can choose to write for any niche in which they find clients, or they can establish authority in a specific niche, such as health and wellness.
Generalists qualify for more jobs. This increases their chances of being hired, but competition is increasing.
3. Create a Website
All freelancers must have a website to display their work. Nothing beats an online portfolio for helping new clients understand your capabilities.
“If you are building a website yourself and can not afford to hire a web designer, consider looking into different website templates so that you are still putting something out there that’s beautifully done,” suggests Rowan Made founder Breanna Rose.
Here are some essential sections we recommend including in our freelancer tips:
- Homepage – A brief introduction to your Contact or Services page with a call to action (CTA). Include links to your LinkedIn profile and other social media accounts at the bottom.
- My background – Brief career history, including notable accomplishments
- Services – Clearly list all of the services that you offer. Consider listing your rates for each service as well.
- Portfolio – Possibly the most important aspect of your website. Highlight your previous work and demonstrate your worth. Nobody will look at the other sections if your work isn’t good.
4. Design a Procedure
No matter how useful a freelancer tip is, there is one thing you must develop on your own: discipline. As a freelancer, you should have a well-defined work process that governs not only your craft but also your back-end operations.
Determine a procedure for the following:
- Prospective client pitching.
- Contract creation and execution.
- Items of work.
- Payments and invoicing.
If you’re a designer, you should have a defined design process that guides you through each project. The same is true for freelance writers and other content creators.
Most clients will request a brief explanation of how you work to get a sense of how it will be to work with you.
5. Select Tools That Are Within Your Budget
Freelancers rely heavily on software to complete tasks, especially as remote work becomes more common. According to Upwork, by 2025, 22 percent of the American workforce will be working remotely.
As a freelancer, you must pay for all of your tools. That means you’ll have to handpick your tools to stay within your budget. If you’re just starting and can’t afford to buy the best software, you must make the most of what you have.
WordPress, for example, is a great low-cost web host. You can use it for up to a year before comet’s important to remember that there’s plenty of free, open-source software available that can do the same thing as a paid app. So, rather than paying for a full platform, it may be better to start with a few free tools.
Unless otherwise specified, your clients will not care whether you use free or paid tools to complete the task. They simply want high-quality work completed by the deadline. missioning a custom website based on your freelance career.
6. Set Your Rate
This freelancer tip is critical for you and your career in the long run. Your rate is determined by your niche, but you can generally charge by the hour or by the project. You can also divide payments according to project milestones or deliverables.
For example, a freelance writer can do all of the above but also charge by the word. There are numerous methods for determining how much to charge clients. Here’s a detailed guide that might be useful.
In general, a flat rate is preferable to an hourly rate. This is because hourly rates allow clients to dispute the hours listed or question the amount of work required. Another major concern for hourly payments is micromanagement.
PRO FREELANCE TIP: When using a flat rate, always request a deposit upfront. You have the option of determining how the client will make payments. For example, you could request half of your fee before the project begins and the rest after you’ve completed the assignment. Make it unique for each project. Clients will most likely offer lower rates to newcomers. The key is to quickly expand your client base so that you have proven work experience and testimonials to negotiate for higher prices. Once you’ve paid your bills, you can switch clients to explore new topics or branch out into other types of freelancing.
8. Locate the Best Job Boards
If there is one freelancing tip that can help you get started, it is to branch out and look beyond generic platforms.
When they first start out, most freelancers flock to Upwork or LinkedIn. These are excellent platforms, but you must also identify and apply to job boards where good clients in your industry post jobs.
This is especially true if you want long-term freelance work rather than one-time projects. You could waste months reading freelancer tips and applying on generic job sites rather than niche job sites.
PRO FREELANCE TIP: When applying for a freelance gig or pitching to potential clients, consider their point of view. Don’t just list your qualifications. Instead, consider what the client desires and tailor your proposal accordingly.
Written By: HAMMAD KHAN