Freelancing is growing in popularity as many businesses are starting to see how its advantages really supersede its disadvantages.
With freelancing it is very possible to begin and run a huge business without having to rent a space and hire workers you will place on a monthly pay. All you have to do is outsource for freelancers to handle all the tasks that have to be done to make the company hit the ground running.
The flexibility that comes with freelancing is so much so that it avails an individual the opportunity of becoming a professional and getting well-paid jobs in more than one industry so long as he or she is able to deliver every task appropriately and on time.
Another thing I personally like about freelancing is that it will bring you unexpected income at any given point in time.
For instance last month I was in need of money to start a little side hustle and before I knew it one of my freelance clients paid me to build an e-commerce website for her @ jaykaywellness.ng, and the money I received from her was enough to help me start the side hustle.
Freelancing is one of the surest ways to make so much money online in this digital age so long as you have the professionalism and skills that will enable you to position yourself well in the industry.
Thus with more than 4 years in the freelancing sphere, I want to gather my experience and write this article to help you to understand what freelancing really is as well as how to start learning freelancing as a beginner that you are.
So without much ado, let’s get started.
What is freelancing?
Freelancing is simply a process where a professional is contracted or hired by a business to execute a task for a certain amount of money. It is a kind of self-employment that allows for flexibility in getting more than one job depending on your professionalism or expertise.
Freelancing can also be seen as remote work because you can sometimes or many times get jobs from clients without getting to meet them face to face. For example, I have been delivering several services like social media marketing, content marketing, website design, etc for the client I mentioned earlier for 2 years now without meeting her one on one even once.
This goes to say that location is no barrier to freelancing long as you are honest and are able to meet the expectations of your clients.
The only challenge with freelancing is how to get jobs and clients but believe me, even one job you are able to deliver for a client can earn you a recommendation that will bring more jobs in no time.
How to learn freelancing as a beginner.
As a beginner, you can learn freelancing by reading blog posts/articles, watching YouTube tutorials, taking online courses or seminars, joining freelancing forums, and also reaching out to established freelancers who will teach you the basics of freelancing.
Advantages of freelancing.
The advantages of freelancing are:
- Rate setup.
- Profit returns.
Usually, a freelancer is not expected to work under somebody unless you are undergoing some form of training from an experienced freelancer.
And when the training is over you will henceforth enjoy the independence of working from home as a freelancer without having no one to supervise you.
As a freelancer, you will have the flexibility of deciding how, when, where, and whom you are going to work for.
This means that there is no task or project that will be forced on you as is done in the office and when it comes to the expected time of delivery, you will be the one to fix the dateline unless the company needs the job done urgently in which case you will be allowed to raise the fee.
As a freelancer, you will always be having new brands or businesses reaching out to you for a freelance job and this in turn will expose you to so many brands across the globe that you may have not known if you were working as an employee.
Completing one project after another will help you to gather the experiences that will help you to accelerate your efforts and cut down the time you will use to deliver a similar project for another business or brand.
The freedom to choose clients and projects is the sole responsibility of a freelancer. And this goes a long way to help in avoiding jobs that might appear so complicated or have little payment offering.
6. Rates setup.
It is the freelancer that will always decide how much he is going to charge for a project or job.
But before you determine your price for a job, make sure you check to confirm how much other freelancers are charging for the particular job, and don’t raise your fees too high so you won’t lose clients.
7. Profit returns.
All the profits that come from the freelancing job are kept by the freelancer.
Unlike office or employment work where the owner of the company will have to share the profits among all the workers and take the lion’s share at the end of it all.
Disadvantages of freelancing.
The disadvantages of freelancing are:
- Irregularities in payments.
- Shouldering every responsibility.
- Job insecurity.
- Lack of employer-funded benefits.
As a freelancer, you will be working from home most of the time and this means that you are going to be alone all the while.
For this reason, loneliness and boredom might oftentimes choose to be a companion. And to overcome isolation as a freelancer you need to look for the things that are going to motivate you to work from home.
2. Irregularities in payments.
One thing I’ve discovered in my years of freelancing is that clients are very sensitive when it comes to making payments for jobs, most especially if you are freelancing remotely.
Some of them will choose to make a part payment for the job and make the balance available when you deliver the job. And the greatest challenge or issue that often arises afterward is the client expressing dissatisfaction about the completed project.
The majority of them usually use this dissatisfaction excuse to make you cut down the payment to linger for a while until they have the balance ready if it was not yet ready.
I once built a website for a client and the agreement was for him to make payment once I am done with the website design.
But after I was finished with it, he said that he has to start promoting his business to see the outcome before he makes my payment.
Thank God I already had a strategy in place which was not installing an SSL certificate on the site.
So I went ahead to tell him that the site will not be secured for him to start up his business because there was no security on it and that he should give me the balance so I can get one for it.
And that was the only way I was able to receive my balance from the client.
So you should ensure you have an uncompleted but easy task in every project you finish in case the client wants to play smart and you use that to nail him.
3. Shouldering every responsibility.
Staff and employees are usually sent for training by the company that employs them, but as a freelancer, you are going to be the one to shoulder every responsibility of making your freelance career successful.
This means that you will pay for the training, set up a workspace, purchase freelance equipment, etc.
Keep in mind that you are going to shoulder both the administrative and staff responsibility as a freelancer.
4. Job insecurity.
Job insecurity is very rampant in freelancing because a client might choose to move on to another freelancer and abandon you after you have successfully completed their task.
To beat this disadvantage you must always source for new projects, no matter how many are already piled up. If they become much, you can seek the services of a co-freelancer to help out, and for a certain amount that will still have something remaining for you.
5. Lack of employer-funded benefits.
Office staff or workers are often rewarded with promotions, awards, festive gifts, sponsored vacations, etc. But as a freelancer, you will always remain your own boss and as such look up to no one for any reward or benefits.
But considering the fact that a boss in the office usually rewards himself after rewarding others, you can always give yourself some reward when you start to make money as a freelancer.
You can buy yourself a car, build yourself a house, go on a vacation, etc. And in so doing enjoy the benefits of freelancing.
You can read our next article to learn how to start freelancing and make so much money: HOW TO START FREELANCING AND MAKE MONEY ONLINE.