Escaping a regular work schedule and voyaging into an unknown path of freelancing is a bit menacing. You keep thinking about the ups and downs and all the negative things you’ve heard about the freelancing industry.
But the truth is, freelancing is an opportunity that changes your life. From declaring your work hours to doing what you want to do, you really can’t lose! Still, learning to freelance can be a pretty long-term process, especially if you don’t know where to begin. Becoming a freelancer can be an exciting move for a person fond of working free hours and choosing their own jobs.
With this blog we will help you embark on a new turn of your life, where you will be your boss, where can can make your own decisions on what tasks do you want to work on? what time suits you to best to work? which corner of your house fascinates you the most to work? and so on. So if you want to start working as a freelancer, this article has a complete guide for you to get started.
1. What do you need to do so you’re ready to freelance?
Do you know many people dream of the freedom they get by being a freelancer? However, this could be a tiring and challenging journey. Before you start it off, you should know if you are ready for it or not.
Here, we’ll discuss the basics of what you need to do to know if you are ready to freelance.
If you’re ready to jump in, start reading!
Clients expect freelancers to be able to hit the goal! You need to know your job well enough to start working independently. This means you need to build up experience in the positions you choose to freelance.
Suppose you’ve already worked in the field before, great! If not, you might want to do some beginner-level jobs and low pay gigs to build up a reputation.
Clients expect you to have proof of how capable you are. A portfolio would portray your skills right and wow prospective clients with your skillsets.
It would be best to have an excellent time and project management skills to be a good freelancer. As it does not promise a typical job structure, you might need to manage various tasks with multiple deadlines.
As a freelancer, you should know how to:
- Market your skills.
- Solve disagreements.
- Handle all the communications, especially the ones with the clients yourself.
Before you start working, you should know:
- How to make money?
- Decide if you will use a freelance marketplace, a referral, cold calls, or emails to get clients?
Learn more about how to get freelance clients here.
Dealing with ups and downs:
Freelancing is a fantastic experience, but it can also be stressful. There will be bad days and good days, and you should know how to cope with all of them.
Whether it is in the form of dropped income or in the form of saturation of work, you should learn how to deal with it.
One thing that you should know is that freelancing is all about skills. And skills can be learned and practiced.
So make sure you are ready to freelance before you decide to jump into the freelancing pool!
2. How to manage time & projects as a freelancer?
Did you know deadlines are essential for freelance projects? There are two types of deadlines that you should know how to meet.
One is the deadline that the client provides you. These are fine! You tend to meet them since they’re the ones who set them for you and your payday depends on them.
The other deadline is what you give to yourself. It is the deadline that is difficult and harder to keep. You commit to meeting those deadlines, but if you fail to do so, your quality of work can drop.
Being a freelancer can be challenging; you might have at least 5 to 6 clients at a time. Now you can imagine how difficult it could be to manage time according to your projects.
Thanks to technology, now you can use time managing tools that help you manage your time. These tools, including clockify, click up, and google calendars, are user-friendly and make freelancing a more effortless experience for you.
Moreover, a few tips and tricks that will make your time management skills better and help you manage multiple projects at a time are:
- Keep track of your time.
- Take small breaks to boost your mindset with new prospects.
- Set working hours for yourself.
- Prioritize your tasks.
- Get rid of distractions.
- Try scheduling your day before starting it.
- Analyze your productive working hours and work the most in them.
- Don’t overbook yourself.
- And take an off day for yourself if you feel exhausted.
- Change your working place, and you might find it surprising, but sometimes it proves to bring out more productivity from you.
3. How to charge your freelance clients correctly for your services?
You have the right to set your pay rates. Although you know your potential and valuable skills, you may still be unsure of the appropriate pay rate for their service.
Are you confused about how to decide your pay rate? There is nothing to be worried about, and it is a widespread concern among freelancers. And honestly, the perfect formula for this is straightforward: Time = money.
The very next question that might come to your mind can be: What is the worth of your time? And this is not a wrong question either! Questions like: How can your experience or your efforts in a task decide the amount you should charge?
The thing is, there is no infallible formula for charging your skills and abilities, but experienced freelancers have managed to get around that problem. The most common methods of assessing your pay rate are:
- Hourly pricing
- Project-based pricing.
Hourly pricing is much more popular, as it is the simplest one. You decide the per hour rate of your service and then multiply it with the hours you have worked.
Still, project-based pricing is also pretty standard with freelancing platforms like Upwork and Fiverr.
All in all, you can choose depending on what field you’re working on and which pricing best suits your needs.
Learn more about how to charge your freelance clients here.
4. How to handle freelance finances correctly?
It would be best if you stayed on top of your business finances. Handling your business finances rightly is about maintaining positive cash flow and financial stability.
You may feel a little behind your game when it comes to proper accounting and keeping a record of how to maintain resources. Hence, for running your business smoothly while planning for your future, it is vital for you to:
- Prioritize financial planning.
- Manage cash flow
- Optimize your payroll process.
- Improve inventory accuracy
- Mitigate supply chain risks
Through this, you can manage your finances more efficiently, which helps stabilize your company. Plus, it is less likely for your business to fail.
Moreover, it is easier for you to manage your company’s finances by making sure to pay yourself, keep good credit, monitor your books, and plan accordingly.
Learn more about managing your finances as a freelancer here.
5. How to set proper payment terms?
Freelancers across the world work with one goal in mind, “To get paid on time!” It is essential to pick suitable payment options to make it possible successfully.
There are two most common payment options available for freelancers:
Online: Online payment methods include:
- Google pay
- Bank transfer
- Mobile payments
Offline: Offline payment methods include:
You can alternatively use CheckYa to send invoices and receive payments from domestic and international clients in 135+ currencies via CheckYa. What’s even best is CheckYa allows you to split your transaction fee with your clients and you receive the payment directly to your bank account, there is no withdrawal limit. Signup on CheckYa today for free.
Payment terms are the instructions included in the freelance quotes, invoice, contracts, and payment sheet.
As a freelancer, you must maintain an invoice or payment sheet outlining the completed tasks. This sheet records when and how the client would like to pay you.
When you get on board with the clients for your freelancing tasks, you must come to terms on the pay rate beforehand:
- Whether the client should make payments monthly or weekly.
- If the pay rate is based on per word or article.
Learn more about managing taxes as a freelancer here.
6. How to communicate with clients when freelancing?
Do you know, freelancing revolves around forming great relationships with your clients? And freelancing is all about remote working, which means you have to maintain relationships with your clients. As a freelancer, You need to communicate with your clients effectively.
- Don’t assume they know what you do well, always document your work, if something is unclear, ask again, never assume.
- Be timely with communications and calls.
- Be respectful and pay attention to the clients needs.
- Give them insightful findings.
- Keep records of your communications and meetings.
7. How to Set and Achieve your goals as a freelancer?
Do you know, those who set clear goals for themselves tend to enjoy tremendous success more consistently?
You need to set goals. Whether you go and whatever you do in your life, you can’t prosper without clear objectives.
To improve all parts of your life, you should introduce a goal-setting system by setting SMART goals.
- Specific: The goal should be clear and highly specific.
- Measurable: It should have the ability to track your progress.
- Attainable: The plan has to be achievable.
- Relevant: The goal you choose for yourself should be related to your field of interest.
- Time-Bound: Last but not least, selecting a time frame for yourself will help you keep your focus on the goal.
Setting a goal is not enough; achieving your goal is possible by the following tips:
- Break your long-term plans into short-term goals.
- Set daily objectives.
- Keep your goals front and center.
- Expect challenges and never give up!
- Hold yourself accountable.
- Be willing to adjust.
- Put in consistent and high-quality work.
8. How to stay on top of all the things as a freelancer?
You can stay on top of everything only if you are disciplined. And to do that, you must begin planning and scheduling your tasks. And be strict in following them. Avoid any distractions that can lower your productivity.
Four tips help you stay focused as a freelancer including,
- First, start with something you know to avoid getting overwhelmed.
- Stamp out any distraction, as procrastination and a lack of focus might hinder their ability to give in their all.
- Creating an ideal work environment allows you to play your susceptibility to excel in your performance.
- Last but not least, you should ensure that you have optimized your skills and workload to maximize what you can achieve!
9. How to decide which project will have the most significant impact on your business?
Well, the answer to this is straightforward. As a beginner in freelancing, you might not know which tasks should be prioritized! Therefore, you must first learn to separate the urgent from the important.
In this case, you can use Eisenhower Matrix. It helps you in categorizing the tasks into the correct quadrant and help to prioritize the jobs in the best category:
- Urgent and Important
- Important, but not urgent.
- Urgent, but not important.
- Neither urgent nor important.
The most crucial ability is getting the urgent but unimportant tasks off your priority list. It is where the intelligent delegation comes into play.
Although, despite the best efforts, you might end up with a vast list of both urgent and essential tasks, even then, you need to dig deeper to find the true importance.
10. How are sales essential for freelancing?
With increasing costs and consumers rushing to find the lowest prices in today’s world, businesses are reducing the workforce. Hence you need to market your services well that the clients find you among the odd ones out!
To be the best fit for the project you are pitching for, you must figure out the tactics to market your skills and abilities well so that you don’t suffer from a lack of opportunities or clients.
Moreover, the pros of marketing your skills by turning to the life of a freelancer are:
- Unlimited earning potential.
- Choose the clients with whom you want to work.
- The flexibility of hours, schedule, and work location.
In a nutshell, here’s the complete guide to becoming a successful freelancer. If you are tired of your tedious job or you have had enough of your annoying boss’s attitude, then this is high time you go freelancing.
So, what are you waiting for? 2023 is your year! Check out CheckYa to manage and grow your freelance business. Happy Freelancing.