Freelancing-for-Beginners

Freelancing Graphic Designing and More

Looking for freelance jobs to work from home? Well, you’ve come to the right place! Maybe you’ve been wanting to make a career change to a more creative career or you just need a side hustle to make extra money online – regardless of the reason, the importance is to take the first step. 

What Does a Freelance Do?

A freelancer is an artist, graphic designer or creator, who works for many clients on their own terms. It can happen online or offline, but for this article, I am only referring to Freelancing online, so you have the luxury to work in any location which gives you more time to focus on your work. 

As stated earlier, part of the beauty of this type of self-employment is being able to work for more than one client. Any experienced freelancer will tell you that having multiple clients makes it easier to stagger work and keep the dollars coming in through multiple income streams.

Can You Make a Living off Freelancing?

Payoneer’s research revealed that the average freelancer worked 36 hours a week at a rate of $21 per hour, for an annual pretax salary of more than $39,000. So yes, it is possible to make a living out of Freelancing. 

The Advantages of Freelancing

When you become your own boss you are much less likely to need time off. You have the power to decide for yourself what projects are worth your time and choose those that look interesting to you. 

The Disadvantages of Freelancing

One of the drawbacks to working as a freelancer is the lack of benefits you would otherwise receive in other online Creative businesses such as blogging, vlogging, Kindle publishing, and podcasting like getting paid when you go on holiday or when you’re sick. Don’t get me wrong though, you can still travel anywhere you want in the world while putting your skills to use and of course, get paid.

How Can a Beginner Start Freelancing?

The best way to kick off your freelancing career is to start it as a side hustle. This is especially necessary if you have financial responsibilities. Keep your current job until you have built credibility and have paid off debts. That said, here are the steps you need to follow:

Step 1: Define Your Goals

Your freelance business will DIE without solid goals. You need to set realistic and achievable goals. You must be clear on the type and number of gigs you will take in a certain period of time e.g annually. Successful freelancers don’t agree with every job. Take something you love doing and make sure it’s worth your time.

Step 2: Choose a Profitable Niche

The next step after setting goals is to figure out your niche. Considering that you want to make a living out of freelancing, it is very important to choose a profitable niche. Finding your niche will make it easier for you to produce content and offer services. It will also help you define what your ideal client looks like.

Below are major and profitable niche markets for freelancers:

Writing & Editing

With more businesses realizing the importance of having an online presence, there is a massive world of commercial writing that includes everything from web content to technical manuals to journalism, grant writing, and advertising copywriting. And all of this has to be arranged and corrected by editors.

Graphic Design

As a freelance visual or graphic designer, you would work with your clients to assemble images, graphics, and typography creatively, for them, using technology, tools, and computer software. Most experienced freelance graphic designers charge between $65 and $150 per hour, while beginners charge between $25 and  $40 per hour. 

Step 3: Get Clear on Your Service Offerings

It might be confusing to decide on how much to charge as a freelancer. Below are tips to help you Set Freelance Rates:

The first common rule of thumb for setting freelance rates is that the hourly fee for consultants and freelancers should be between 2 and 2.5 times the hourly equivalent of that work in a salaried role. The result of this formula is slightly more than two times the hourly equivalent.

However, as a beginner, you may try these freelance hourly rates: 

Writing and editing: $30 / hour. 

Graphic design: $40 / hour. 

Step 4: Choose a Platform

Want to know which website is best for freelancing? I would recommend that you choose between two platforms, Upwork or Fiverr

Upwork Freelancer

Upwork, formerly oDesk is the best freelance job site for beginners. There are over  1.5 million clients in the platform who offer a range of jobs from hourly to fixed projects, short-long term projects, and even entry-level to expert-level tasks.

Most of the work is 100% legit, although you still need to be mindful before accepting any gig.

Fiverr Freelancer

Fiverr, just like Upwork has been in the game for a while. There are so many clients whose gigs are ready to grab every day, so your earning potential is endless. Despite what you think, you can earn way more than five dollars a job with Fiverr, although I advise that you start low as a beginner. One challenge that you may face when you are raising prices is the fact that the site is full of new workers who are willing to take work for a lower rate, which can impact your earning potential. But overall, Fiverr makes it easier to find jobs and make more money, as a Freelancer. 

If you are to choose between the two platforms, just take into consideration that Upwork is better for finding high-paying, long-term clients, while Fiverr is better for offering multiple high-volume, narrow and repeatable services.

Step 5: Create a High-Quality Portfolio site

As a freelancer, your portfolio is the “best self” you present to the world. It’s very important to write a killer copy for your portfolio. When you create a well-thought portfolio, you get the opportunity to demonstrate to potential clients what kind of work you can do, and your portfolio itself is a project you can use to showcase your skills.

Step 6: Create Samples

Seeing is believing. If you create examples of what you can deliver, you are likely to get more gigs. Put the samples on your portfolio site. Try to drive traffic to those samples to ensure that it is seen by as many potential customers as possible. 

Educate Prospects with Valuable Content

There are many ways to educate your potential clients. Below are a few ways to choose from:

Demos

PDF reports

Videos

Email courses

Podcast

Social media

Webinars

Blog

Provide Proof and Testimonials

Testimonials are blurbs of praise that your clients send, expressing their honest opinions about the work you provide for them.

They’re like a product review, except the “product” is you or your services, and not an actual product. What a testimonial offers that your own copy can’t is a little thing called ‘social proof.’ This will help you to earn trust and credibility, and contribute to the success of your business. 

Get Certified

As a Freelance Writer, you can boost credibility by earning the “Content Marketing” and “Inbound Marketing” Certificates. Graphic designers, on the other hand, can for instance boost their credibility with a design qualification. 

Deliver high-quality projects on-time

As a freelancer and online entrepreneur, your reputation is everything. If you become known as someone who can’t meet deadlines or deliver poor quality work, your entire business could be on the line. It is therefore important to ensure that you remain organized and deliver high-quality projects on time. 

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