Tag Archives: freelance

Where can I find a gig?

Where can I find a gig?

These are some of the best places to find freelance work.  (Courtesy of Entrepreneur.com)

Consider this: Freelancers are expected to become the U.S. workforce majority in the near future. That means we can expect to see more and more freelancing job boards appear. That's not to say we need them. Take a look at the Google search results for “freelance jobs.” You’ll find hundreds of websites that can connect you with prospective clients.

The problem, however, is that not all job boards are created equal. Some are a bit suspicious, causing both freelancers and businesses to question their legitimacy. Others are meant only for seasoned veterans. There are also boards capable of finding work quickly for freelancers, but they won’t get paid very much. Consider it the "price of entry" to the freelance realm.

These obstacles make finding freelance work more complicated than it has to be. That’s why I’ve put together a list of 18 freelance sites to help entrepreneurs find their next gig. Each of these sites is reputable and can be used by freelancers of all experience levels, empowering people to make the most of their skills in a shaky economy.

Related: Become Your Own Boss and Start a Freelance Career in 2020

1. Toptal

If you’re a freelancer designer, developer, financial expert, product manager or project manager, you can find hourly, part-time or full-time work at Toptal. The catch is that Toptal has a rigorous screening process, meaning typically only the top 3 percent of freelance talent that applies is accepted.

This is better suited for talented freelancers who have some previous experience under their belt. However, if you're accepted, you can be certain that you’ll receive competitive compensation.

2. Fiverr

There are a couple of things that make Fiverr stand out from other leading freelance marketplaces. Users get to list the specific jobs where they excel. When I started podcasting, I hired someone on Fiverr to design my cover and another person to create the intro. When I had trouble getting the podcast listed on iTunes, I enlisted another expert to help solve the mystery.

Secondly, because most gigs start at $5, this is a great place to launch your freelancing career. After you land some clients and build up your portfolio, you can start charging more for your services.

3. PeoplePerHour

For more than a decade, PeoplePerHour has been helping freelancers land web-based projects. This site has areas like marketing, SEO and software engineering. What makes it so appealing is that it streamlines the process of signing up. Client communication, project management and payments are all handled in one dashboard.

You can send 15 proposals to clients before having to sign up for the paid plan. However, you can still browse listings and get notified of new openings, even if you don’t sign up for the paid plan.

4. Upwork

Upwork has been around in some form for years. Elance and oDesk were formed in 1999 and 2003, respectively, and merged to found Upwork. Today, Upwork is one of the largest freelance marketplaces in the world, hosting millions of freelancers in industries like design, development, accounting, marketing, writing and customer service.

Like Toptal, freelancers can find short-term tasks, recurring projects and even full-time contract work. Upwork is good for both entry-level and experienced freelancers because of the variety of work listed.

5. Freelancer

Freelancer states that it’s the “the world’s largest outsourcing marketplace,” connecting more than 30 million employees and freelancers across 247 countries. With Freelancer, you can a find a couple of different ways to work. The first way is by creating a profile that highlights your freelancing skills. When a client needs your specific skills, he can chat with you in real time.

The other way is by browsing for work and placing bids on projects that match your talents and interests. When your work is complete, you’ll receive a secure payment via the site’s Milestone Payment System.

6. SimplyHired

SimplyHired is a job search engine that helps people find remote or local work in 12 different countries. SimplyHired contains more than 100 job boards, meaning you'll have access to millions of job openings ranging from marketing to customer service. You can even find nursing and warehouse work.

You can also search for both part-time and full-time work, making SimplyHired a great platform to quickly land a job. It produces a blog that contains helpful advice on how to make yourself more attractive to recruiters.

7. 99designs

99designs should be your go-to marketplace if you’re designer. Anyone truly skilled in creating logos and web and app design can find a home here. Creative freelancers can search for jobs where clients need someone to create marketing materials, packaging or merchandise like T-shirts.

The site also provides numerous resources to assist designers in enhancing their skills. These resources include how-to tips, tutorials, tool kits, e-books and even interviews with seasoned designers.

8. Aquent

Are you a creative professional or a digital marketing expert? If so, you can land your next gig through Aquent. The site gives freelancers the chance to find remote or on-site work in the U.S. You can also find work in Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Netherlands, Australia or Japan.

What’s most appealing about Aquent is that its Gymnasium offers free online courses that can help you strengthen your existing talent.

9. The Creative Group

The Creative Group is part of the large Robert Half staffing agency. The site is meant for individuals in creative fields like art, copywriting, photography, graphic design and marketing. You can find temporary, project-based or full-time work.

Simply upload your resume to the site or share your LinkedIn profile. Robert Half's specialists find the right job for your specific expertise and preferences from there.

10. Envato Studio

Envato Studio was established by designers, developers and creatives. This studio can help you land short-term or long-term projects. When a client needs your unique skill set, he browses the site to compare portfolios and pricing. You'll receive recommendations from the Envato Studio community.

Once you're hired, Envato Studio holds the payment until the job is completed and the client is satisfied with the work. Throughout the course of the project, the platform gives you a chance to receive real-time feedback from the client. You can be certain you’re on the right track with this direct communication.

11. Remote.co

Founded by Sara Sutton, who previously founded FlexJobs, this site has been a leading virtual team site for more than a decade. Remote.co is a great platform for anyone who wants to work remotely.

Whether you’re a designer, developer, customer service rep, writer, recruiter or sales professional, Remote.co can help anyone who’s ever dreamed of becoming a digital nomad. If you’re new to remote work, there’s also a handy blog that can help you get started on the right foot.

12. DesignCrowd

DesignCrowd has dubbed itself the No. 1 custom design marketplace in the world. Similar to 99designs, this site lets designers find work. You can design logos, website, business cards, T-shirts and even tattoos.

Clients can select short deadline submissions, such as three to five days. Project turnover is incredibly quick. If you need some extra cash, you can also enter design contests through the site.

13. FlexJobs

This site has more than 50 different career categories for freelancers, virtual workers and full-time employees. FlexJobs is a popular platform for anyone searching for remote or flexible work. All open positions are screened in advance, so you can rest assured that the jobs that have been posted are legitimate.

You have to pay to join, with plans starting at $14.95 per month. You can also participate in skill tests, attend webinars and read up on tips to help your job search. Best of all, you have access to exclusive discounts through partnering websites.

14. Krop

Krop is a job board solely for creatives, like copywriters, photographers and designers. On top of creating a profile to showcase your experience, you can use Krop to build and host your portfolio.

Another perk of using Krop it that it's a site that promotes freelancers to clients searching for new team members.

15. Authentic Jobs

Since 2005, Authentic Jobs has been connecting creative and web professionals to find freelancers. You can contract or moonlight on the job with companies like Apple, Facebook, ESPN or The Motley Fool for free. If you're a freelancer interested in working with these companies, start browsing listings for everything from content strategists to back-end developers to project managers.

Because compensation can range anywhere from under $29,000 to more than $100,000 annually, it’s a nice platform for freelancers of all experience levels.

Related: How to Build Your Own Career as a Freelancer

16. LocalSolo

Recently acquired by Communo, LocalSolo is unlike other freelance marketplaces. It's a localized freelance job board where you can find gigs in your neck of the woods.

It’s free to use, and it doesn’t charge commission fees; it also lets you customize your profile. When you and a client connect, you communicate directly. This way, you can discuss the scope of the project, rates and contracts. As a member of LocalSolo, you also receive discounts from partners like Shopify, FreshBooks, Adobe and DreamHost.

17. Working Nomads

Working Nomads sends you a curated list of remote jobs in areas like development, management, marketing, design, sales and education.

You have the option to receive these notices daily or weekly. You also have the option to find temporary projects or regular employment. Just keep in mind that not every gig is 100 percent remote; some jobs may require you to train on-site or work part-time from home.

18. LinkedIn ProFinder

Chances are high that you already have a LinkedIn profile. Why not get the most out of it? LinkedIn is used by more than 420 million members in some 200 countries, making LinkedIn one of the best resources for connecting professionals.

LinkedIn has more recently decided to get into the freelance game with ProFinder. This gives small business owners and other professionals a chance to hire freelance accountants, bookkeepers, designers, marketers and copywriters. ProFinder also offers career coaches. Your personal coach will review your resume and prepare you for interviews to help advance your freelance career.

Now or at any other time, it's easy to feel overwhelmed and unable to move forward with your entrepreneurial goals. But these sites can empower you to find opportunities that will maximize your skills and allow you to grow your side work into something bigger.

 

8 Ways To Diversify Your Freelance Income

Want more stability in your financial life? Here's how freelancers can create a more reliable income through diversification.

growing an income

Perhaps whoever coined the phrase "don't put all your eggs in one basket" was a freelancer, because, well, that's one of the biggest financial mistakes freelancers make. If you make all your freelance income from one client, what's going to happen when that client loses their funding? Certainly nothing good. But, if you make your freelance income from ten clients, when one client loses funding, you'll only be out looking to replace ten percent of your income.

There's more than one way to put your income into separate "baskets"–here are eight ways that freelancers can diversify their income for a more reliable paycheck.

Work with multiple clients. If you happen to land a client large enough to pay your entire salary, it may not be the best idea to work only with that client. Keep a few other clients on the side so that if something does happen, you're not wondering how to pay for groceries. The more clients you have, the more reliable your income will be—just make sure you can manage them all. Along the same lines, freelancers should continually be marketing their services so there's a potential client to contact when a current one falls through.

Write a blog. Whatever it is that you do, you can earn a little extra side money by sharing your first-hand knowledge. One way to do that is through blogging. While creating a successful blog takes time and effort, it's a good way to add an extra income source. And if worse comes to worse and you don't make any money from your blog, you at least have a great website to show potential clients that you know your stuff.

Write an eBook. Many bloggers expand their income through eBooks. While a blog earns money through advertising, eBooks are ad-free and earn income through the sale of the book itself. Many readers prefer getting their information through eBooks because the form is much easier to use and typically offers more information than a typical blog.

Teach a class. Another way to earn extra income by sharing the knowledge you have of your field is through teaching a class. While you can go the old fashioned way and actually teach a local class, you could also teach online for an even farther reach. Using a platform like Udemy or Open Learning, creating an online class is easier than you may think. There is a big time investment involved—though if you already have material like a blog or eBook on the same topic to work with, it's much easier to get set up with an online class.

Sell a digital product. There are many more possibilities of diversifying your income without selling an eBook. If your expertise lies in graphic design, for example, you could create and sell graphics such as clipart or templates for businesses to use for marketing materials. There are a lot of possibilities here, including stock photos and templates for different software programs.

Sell physical goods. While it takes a bit more of a financial risk, you could also sell physical products, ideally related to your area of expertise. Graphic designers and photographers, for example, could sell their designs on t-shirts and other items through a company such as Cafepress. If you created an eBook, you could could sell a physical copy too.

Use affiliate links. Many online stores pay for the links that send them traffic, it's called affiliate linking. If you have a blog or social media network with a large following, you could earn a little extra by using affiliate links. Popular sites with affiliate links are Rakuten Affiliate (formerly LinkShare) and Amazon Associates, though there are many more.

Expand your services. Having a niche area is a great way to show that you are an expert, instead of the jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none kind of freelancer. But there is such a thing as being too narrow. One way to diversify your income is to start offering more than one service, ideally, something that's similar to your primary focus. For example, if you are a copywriter specializing in blog posts, it's an easy step to also start offering landing page content or e-mail marketing. The best way to expand is to offer another service that caters to the same business as the first. If your target audience for your first service is businesses, but for the second is families, it will be tough to market properly. Instead, try adding a service that your current and past clients might consider adding.

Freelancing, and the unpredictable income that comes with it, can be pretty scary. A great way to lessen the fear and create more stability is by adding other revenue sources. The first and biggest way is to work with a wider number of clients. But, by offering things like a blog, an ebook, online courses, digital or physical products, affiliate links or additional services, you can create a more reliable income that comes from a variety of sources.

What do you think? Have you ever worked for free? How did it turn out?

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Stephen Hodgkiss
Chief Engineer at MarketHive
markethive.com


Alan Zibluk Market Hive Founding Member