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How to Become A Successful Freelancer: 8 Lessons You Need To Learn

June 21, 2020 | by Admin

How to Become A Successful Freelancer: 8 Lessons You Need To Learn
How to Become A Successful Freelancer

As a first-time freelancer, it can be confusing and frustrating
navigating the process alone, which is why the past ten years have been full of
important lessons. Learn from my experiences to become a more effective and
lucrative freelancer.

1. Increase your prices every year

Every year you gain experience, which makes your work more
valuable. As such, every year you should increase your rates to ensure they’re
aligned with your experience and the value you provide to the client. It can be
hard to set prices, especially if it’s your first time doing so.
While there are many theories on how to price your services,
I’ve found the best method for me is to combine both time and value-based
When pricing a client, I consider the time it will take to
complete the work itself and then add a buffer to account for the extra time
that I’ll spend outside the scope of the project. For example, this might
include time spent communication (email or phone), on extra research needed, or
edits and updates based on client feedback.
Finally, I consider the overall value this project will
provide to the client and what I provide as a contractor or freelancer. For
example, creating SEO-optimizing content, if done correctly, will provide value
to the client long after I’m gone. While this isn’t a concrete pricing process,
I want to give you an idea of how you can play with pricing to represent both
immediate works done and the overall value of what you offer. Check out reports
like this one from Clockify to get a sense of what hourly rates are typical in
your industry as a baseline.


2. Stay firm to your rates

Once you have your pricing set, stay firm to your rates.
This is hard to do because you never
want to turn away work. However, when you take on projects that fall below your
rates, you run the risk of:
Having no time for a project that you actually like and that
pays the correct rates. Resenting the client and the work because you’re not
getting paid what you should.
Setting a precedent with potential on-going
clients that you’re willing to work for lower rates. I’ve found that when I
turn down projects that aren’t worth my time, another one comes through that is
worth my time. Say no and trust that by doing so, you’re making room for
something better. I love this article from Fast Company about when you should
say “no” to a client.

3. Look for ways to save

are so many ways to save money as a freelancer. This is important to consider
because, by working for yourself, you take on the burden of extra business
expenses, like software purchases, equipment.

4. Bring on financial experts

One of the best lessons you can learn as an entrepreneur is
that some things you can figure out yourself; how to design a blog post or set
up your Instagram account, but other things you should rely on the expertise of
When it comes to finances, the latter is the case.

5. Diversify your client load

Until about six months ago, one client made up almost a
third of my monthly revenue — when they left, I lost a lot of recurring monthly
It can be nice to have clients like this, but what happens
when those clients decide to shift their marketing spend, cut back on freelance
support, or take your projects in an entirely different direction? You end up
with a gaping hole in your revenue stream that you have to scramble to fill.
Relying on one client, or even one type of client is
inherently dangerous. Instead, diversify, by taking on clients big and small so
you can ensure consistent revenue each month.

6. Get face to face

Networking can be scary and time-consuming. However, as a
freelancer, it’s critical to your sanity and can be invaluable over the
long-term. Networking provides you with a chance to learn from people, drive
referrals, and connect with potential clients. Instead of avoiding networking
altogether, use these tips to make the most of it:
Identify 1 to 2 events each month that get you in front of
your target audience or in a room with others who do the same work as you.
Find recurring monthly or quarterly events that you love,
allowing you to build a community that you can rely on as your freelance
business grows.
Don’t forget to network online with Facebook and LinkedIn Communities. You can also build a community and drive clients with Twitter
chats. Check out these Twitter Chats to give it a try.


7. Make communication a priority

Communicate with your clients above all else. I have a
24-hour response policy with my clients. If they email me, I will get back in
touch with them within 24 hours of receiving the email, if not sooner. This is
all about building trust and showing that you prioritize clients’ needs —
within reason.
With that being said, it’s important to set boundaries. I
don’t respond to emails on the weekends 
or late into the evening, unless it’s necessary or there is an
emergency. This helps you avoid burnout, which ultimately allows you to do
better work for the client.

 8. Focus on your website

It’s easy to get caught up in social media and forget about
your website. But what happens if there are a crash and social media is your only
source of leads? All of a sudden you’re scrambling to bring in work.
Don’t let this happen and instead prioritize maintaining
your website and most importantly, creating and optimizing content for SEO. 
example, consistently publishing blog posts that are SEO-optimized allows you
to target multiple keyword – potential client search queries — so you can
consistently drive traffic and leads.



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