Being a Success using Freelancer websites
Part-time businesses are booming and an increased number of people are now using their spare time to develop a business and earn extra income. Although some entrepreneurs just want to make ends meet, others are choosing something that they are passionate about and have higher ambitions. Could you motivate yourself to work evenings and weekends?
Technology has removed most of the barriers of setting up a business, so people armed with a good broadband connection, laptop and smartphone now have instant opportunities to create a business that can generate income. The use of websites such as http://www.fivesquid.co.uk and www.fiverr.com have allowed users to promote their ‘do once sell many’ services and products to a global audience without the need for extensive marketing strategies. Sites like People per Hour, and Upwork offer larger projects to bid on.
But how do you successfully use these websites to maximise your selling potential?
Don’t undersell yourself – The crucial first step where many freelancers make critical mistakes. Before publishing your services do an honest evaluation of what you bring that makes you different, better, or more capable than others on the market. Once you have done this, look into what others are charging for comparable services. Work out your own costs in delivering the service and set a pricing structure which works for you and takes into account all of your costs of delivery. Do not get carried away in a race to the bottom, no business can sustain that in the mid or long term.
Structure – Setting up any business from home seems like a fun way to make money in the short term. The problems start to occur if you are working on the Internet; you will have to structure your time so you can best meet the demands of your customers. Remember, your audience is no longer local – it’s global. If you are based in the UK and taking on USA clients you need to consider the time differences. It might seem great to just have one client to talk to at midnight, but a lot less attractive when you have 10 all wanting to chat during the night on a Bank Holiday, especially as the USA covers six different time zones (reduced to four if you avoid clients from Anchorage and Honolulu). Structure your work life well and you’ll keep the momentum going.
Manage your time – Many clients will require their task to be your number one priority and hence give you a timescale which may not be manageable. Do not undersell your work and remember that perfection takes time, so make sure you tell a client you need more time to complete a project if their deadline is unreasonable. Most of your clients will want the best work you can do, so honesty is always the best policy! Do not take on clients who want you on speed dial 24/7, the energy they sap from you will affect how you grow your business.
Be clear on your gig – Don’t offer the world if you know you will struggle to supply the goods. Negative feedback and withholding of cash will occur and you will only end up frustrating both yourself and your client. Have a clear understanding on what you will offer and do not look to amend the gig unless it is mutually agreed by both parties. Remember to allow a little breathing room on your deadline to ensure there’s no last minute rush to complete the work – that’s when mistakes creep in.
The key with these sites is to sell yourself – Being a freelancer can be rewarding, but at the same time seriously hard work. Networking is critical to your success on these sites, as are your reviews! Seek out new opportunities and ensure you use social media sites to promote your work. Also, don’t be afraid to upsell further work once a project is complete. The worst they can say is no and most will say yes if your work is good and you are easy to deal with.