You’ve probably noticed that the world of work is changing. These days, you don’t necessarily need to work a nine-to-five job to get a good income. Sometimes, you work according to your own schedule, and still, make enough money to pay all your bills.
Thanks to the internet, the gig economy and freelancing have become more popular than ever. As long as you have a stable internet connection and a talent that you can sell online, you can become either a full-time or part-time freelancer. Of course, just as with any career, it pays to have a strategy for success. If you’re thinking about joining the freelancer community in 2019, here are some tips to get you started.
1. Start Before You Give Up Your Day Job
While the idea of working two jobs might seem exhausting at first, it’s often a good idea to work on your freelancing opportunities before you give up your day job. By working as a freelancer part-time, you’ll be able to see if you really have what it takes to thrive in this environment. Freelancing is nothing like working in a regular job, and you’ll need a lot of commitment to make it work.
Additionally, if you freelance and work a traditional job at the same time, you can make sure that you have some income available when you’re in the process of gathering clients and customers. It can take time to find a regular roster of paying clients, so make sure that you’re not going to struggle with finances during that initial period.
2. Have a Plan
To be a successful freelancer, you need to have a skill that other people want to use. Some people freelance as virtual assistants, answering emails and scheduling appointments for business leaders. Other people decide to put their skills in graphic design and blogging to the test. Find out what you’re good at, and start building your talents.
There are plenty of online courses that you can take in your spare time to find out more about the profession that you’re going to be getting into. For instance, consider taking a writing course if you want to be a copywriter, and learn as much as you can about things like SEO and search engine algorithms.
3. Know How Much You Need to Spend
Unfortunately, preparing for a life as a freelancer isn’t just about predicting how much money you’re going to make offering your services. Though it’s important to know what kind of price you’re going to charge for your services, you also need to know how much you’re going to spend. Typically, the very least that you need to work as a freelancer is a good internet connection and a great computer.
If you need to buy any equipment, like a desk, a PC, a chair, printer and anything else you might need to serve your clients, it might be worth checking out your options for third party finance. You can get business loans that are tailored to freelancers, or you can look into personal loan options. Remember to compare your options to ensure you’re getting the lowest interest rate.
4. Build a Buffer
If you’re truly committed to making it as a freelancer, then you’re going to need to start planning long before you start putting your career into motion. Even if you continue to work at your job for a while when you’re freelancing, it pays to have a buffer in place in case things go wrong. The more you can save up before you’re relying exclusively on your freelance gigs for money, the better off you’ll be.
Remember, when you’re working as a freelancer, you’ll also need to save a portion of your income aside for the rainy days when you lose clients, or you’re struggling to find enough work to thrive. Freelancing does have its ups and downs.
5. Have a Plan B
Finally, it’s important to be positive when you start freelancing and remind yourself that everyone has their rough patches. However, if you lose work that you can’t win back, or you end up struggling to pay your bills for months at a time, then you might need to consider moving to plan B. For instance, is it possible to request your old job back if your freelancing strategy doesn’t work out? This would mean that you have to avoid burning any bridges when you leave your old career.
Additionally, think carefully in advance about when you should start applying for new jobs if your freelance strategy isn’t working. Don’t wait until you’re already struggling to get by.