Make Money Online By Freelancing: The Beginner’s Guide
So you want to make money online by freelancing?
People will tell you it’s easy to start freelancing online.
But if you want to really make money then you need to do an effective job of:
- defining your value
- branding yourself as an expert within your chosen field
- getting your name in front of new clients whenever you can
Make that happen and you can have a 3–6 month waiting list for new freelance clients – and really start to make a full time income from your freelance work.
This won’t happen overnight.
Success in the world of freelancing and making a decent income online is the result of hard work, strategic planning, good timing – and a bit of luck!
If you’re ready to get serious about freelancing and multiplying how much you make in online income, here are my top top tips for making money online by freelancing.
- 1 Why Freelancing Is The Best Opportunity There Is To Make Money Online
- 2 How To Stand Out In A Crowded Field Of Freelancers
- 3 Freelancing Opportunities
- 4 Freelance Writing
- 5 Making Your Own Money Making Opportunities Online
- 6 Graphic Design
- 7 Virtual Assistant Opportunities
- 8 Create Your Own Category
- 9 Ready to get inspired?
- 10 Set Up Your Freelance Business
- 11 Learn The Freelance Ropes
- 12 Setting Goals
- 13 Set Your Working Hours
- 14 Set Your Income
- 15 Getting Freelance Clients
- 16 Earning Money Online Has Never Been Easier!
Why Freelancing Is The Best Opportunity There Is To Make Money Online
We live in a time where we have more opportunities to make money online than ever before.
- are a newly graduated college or university student and would like to take the entrepreneurial route to start your own business
- were recently laid off from a corporate job and would like to monetize your skills
- are currently working part-time or full-time and looking to make money on the side doing something you’re passionate about
Everyone has a unique talent or skill that can be monetized through freelancing.
Freelancing allows you to take on client projects that you get to choose, at times most convenient to you, in order to make money for a one-time project or sometimes on an ongoing contract basis.
But as a freelancer, you can work with multiple clients at once, on multiple projects at once, you aren’t tied to a single company.
No matter who you are or what your experience has been, you can freelance. Because of the many advances for freelancers on the Internet, online-based ‘digital freelancing’ also means that you location does not even matter!
You can take on client projects worldwide as long as you have an internet connection and a means of communicating.
You get to set your own hours, choose the tasks you take on, work from home, set your own income, and choose your clients.
You can freelance in your spare time, which is what really makes it fantastic.
Let’s say you have a day job but need to get some extra money coming in.
You can freelance for a couple of hours in the evening, no sweat.
Or, maybe you’re looking to make a full time income.
That’s absolutely possible as a freelancer…
In fact, you can quickly replace the income you’re making now, if you play your cards right.
It used to be that people would have to hire someone in-house if they wanted certain jobs done.
These days, those jobs are going to freelancers.
There are an incredible number of companies, both big and small, who are looking for someone just like you to hire on a per-project basis.
The opportunities are only becoming more numerous with time
Freelancing Is Very High In Demand
As a freelancer you can choose whether to work with local offline clients (small businesses near where you live, where you can meet them in person) or you can go completely digital/online and work with clients from anywhere in the world over the internet.
Both offline businesses and online businesses need content.
Offline businesses need graphics, online businesses need graphics.
Offline businesses need assistants, online businesses need assistants.
Both online and offline businesses need freelancers, like you, to fill certain roles for them.
They are willing to pay you handsomely and you get the freedom that comes along with freelancing.
It seems that no one wants to hire full time employees for certain tasks – there’s no need to.
They would rather hire someone by the job.
They want to hire people who will do a good job but who they won’t have to put on a typical payroll.
More and more, both online businesses and offline businesses are realizing that they’re nothing without their online content and graphics.
Businesses that need to cut back on their full-time employees tend to turn to contract workers to minimize costs.
Freelancers see this is an opportunity, a chance to work on projects for large companies, without being tied to them as a full-time worker.
You enjoy more control not only over your hours, but your work as well.
More Online Money Making Opportunities
Opportunities will only get better in the future.
We’re really at the cusp of what it means to be an online freelancer.
It’s a great idea to get started today so you’re in prime position to profit now and well into the future.
Far too many people wait to get started.
What’s really holding you back from becoming a highly in demand freelancer right now?
The truth is that there’s nothing holding you back but the fear of the unknown.
That’s where support networks, freelance communities, and meetup networking groups come in.
Join a local meetup group, and take the opportunity to chat with those who are currently freelancing today.
Ask them all of the questions that worry you and are holding you back, and you will quickly see that it isn’t as daunting as you may think.
Becoming a freelancer is not difficult, and we’ll go through how to start freelancing and making money as you read through this guide.
Make Your Own Schedule
We only get one life to live.
So, why spend it locked into a 9-5 job?
You have a choice and the freedom to decide what you do with your time.
As a freelancer you get to decide if you’d like to work part time or full time
You get to decide who you work for, and when.
You can work a little in the morning or a little at night or whatever you want in between.
Freelancing from home is perfect for stay at home moms and dads.
It’s great for college students, struggling single parents, those who’ve lost their jobs, or simply those who are ready for a chance.
Choose Your Own Ways To Make Money Online
You get to choose your own income as a freelancer, which is something very extraordinary.
Your income will depend on the service you provide, of course, but there are several factors that come into play when you’re talking about income.
For example, when you first starting out you might charge a lower price until you build a reputation.
But then, you can specialize in offering premium services and charge a premium based on your name, reputation, and the service you provide.
Do you need a little bit of money every month?
Freelancing is for you.
Do you need to (very quickly) replace your current income… or very quickly make a full time income?
Freelancing can be the answer.
The beauty of the Internet is that you can reach potential clients right away.
You can make a name for yourself very quickly.
You just need to dedicate yourself to your new business and make an effort to stand out from the pack.
If you do that, and deliver consistently and quickly, you can quite easily start building up your own clients.
How To Stand Out In A Crowded Field Of Freelancers
It has to be said that there’s a lot of competition these days.
More and more, people (like you) are discovering that this is even a possibility.
That means there’s a lot of competition.
Some people new to freelancing give up far too soon – they see how many people are competing and give up.
Or, they offer the same thing everyone else is offering and don’t realize that with a little shift in how they present their offer, or a shift in the offer itself, they can make more money.
The great news is that if you take the right steps to brand yourself, you can set yourself apart.
You just have to decide what you do better than everyone else.
What if you’re new and you don’t feel like you do anything better than anyone else?
What are businesses spending money on?
What can help them make the most money?
If you can position your service as something providing a clear return on investment to a client, it will be much easier to sell your services.
For example, what if you know that businesses want to publish on Kindle but don’t know how to get started
They know that, by publishing on Kindle, they can market themselves, position themselves, and get more customers.
Well you, as a freelancer, could offer to write their book, edit their book, create their cover, write their copy, or whatever they need to become profitable on Kindle.
If you help them make money, you’ll make money.
Figure out what they need and how to present it to them.
Is their online campaign struggling?
Figure out ways to help them get more people on their email list or to write effective emails that sell like crazy to their list members
Remember – help them make money, set yourself apart, and you’ll be asked back time and again to help that client again because they trust you.
You’ll also get more referrals from that client, giving you praise to other business owners that they know.
Hopefully, you’re now convinced that freelancing is the right choice for you.
You’ve weighed the pros and cons and are really enticed by the idea that you get to set your own rules and choose your own income.
Now it’s time to examine all the opportunities there are.
Remember, you don’t have to jump into the deep end right away, quit your current job, and start freelancing full-time.
Take each step slowly, specialize in something to be really good at it and command higher paying rates, and then expand your services you offer.
You can work on small projects in evenings you are free, or on weekends just to have a small income coming in on the side, and then gradually build it up to a sustainable and profitable business.
Freelancing requires very little to start, the upfront costs for getting a domain name, hosting, and setting up a website are well under $100.
And you can make back that money on projects you take on very quickly.
To start, let’s go through some of the freelancing opportunities you can pursue
Decide which you’re most drawn to.
Then, set goals for yourself and make plans to put it into action.
You can get started with your freelancing business immediately – there’s nothing to stand in your way.
You can start earning money right away and work your way up to a full time income by investing the time and effort required.
I’ll start with writing, because this is where there are the most opportunities for freelancers.
You don’t have to be an award-winning writer to build up a successful business as a writer online.
I’m not saying your writing should be poor– what I am saying is that easy, casual writing is ideal for the Internet and that style of writing is easy to produce.
If you can write informative and persuasive articles, you can easily become a web freelance writer.
You also have to consider that there isn’t just one choice when it comes to your writing business.
You can write articles, ebooks, blog posts, sales letters, emails, and so much more.
You’re sure to find a specialty that suits you.
Ghostwriting is a time-honored profession.
A great many books and articles are ghostwritten.
Essentially, a ghostwriter is paid to write something and stay out of the spotlight, allowing the client to put his or her name on the work.
You can ghostwrite articles, ebooks, print books – almost anything you can think of.
This is great for the writer who wants to take on premium clients and earn a great income without needing to be in the spotlight.
Writing sales letters is a great opportunity for freelancers because it’s considered to be a specialized skill.
There are many very successful business people out there who don’t know the first thing about writing a sales letter.
If you can learn the craft and art of writing copy, you can very easily earn a full time income as a freelance writer.
Stock up on copywriting books from Amazon and dive right in. If you produce results for your clients, word of mouth will spread like crazy and your business will really take off.
This is one specialty you really can’t go wrong with.
Writing Online Articles
When you’re first starting out as a web writer, you may want to stick to writing articles.
It’s a nice way to get your feet wet.
Web articles are typically ~500 words and are written to inform or persuade people.
There are many freelancers offering article writing as a service so you will face more competition since it’s not a differentiated skill.
At the same time, there’s plenty of work out there for article writers.
Specialty Writing (Like Kindle)
If you really want to make great money, then you need to specialize.
You have to investigate and dig and figure out what businesses and people need that isn’t readily available.
For instance, you can become the writer who’s known to deliver awesome, ready-to-publish books and packages for Kindle marketers.
You can put awesome ready-to-go info products together, complete with sales copy and everything else people need to get started selling their own product.
Become known for something as a writer, and produce something that’s high in demand, and you’ll do just fine as a freelance writer on the web.
You can specialize as a blogger-for-hire.
Many people are too busy to run their own blogs, yet they know they that every online and offline business should have a blog presence.
That’s why there are a ton of people ready to hire you to take over their blog.
Blogging can be a lot of fun, and it’s just one more specialty you can offer to clients.
Making Your Own Money Making Opportunities Online
I want to say again that there are always ways to create your own opportunities as a writer.
Content is what makes the web spin.
There will always be a need for great content providers.
Set yourself apart from the competition and find an in-demand service you can specialize in.
What are other freelancers offering right now?
What can you do differently or better?
Do some brainstorming and try different things out.
You’ll find exactly what will work for you if you stick with it and set your sights on success.
What if you’re not a writer?
Don’t despair- there are so many other services you can offer as a freelancer.
One of the most needed services is graphics work.
If you’re handy with PhotoShop or Gimp and have an eye for design, this might be the path for you.
Again, figure out what businesses need and are willing to pay you to take off their hands.
Go where the money is – figure out what’s “hot.”
Become good and it and become known for it.
Start small and build your reputation to work your way up.
Below, I’ve given you some examples of in-demand services you can offer.
Ecovers are great because so many marketers and authors need them right now.
Many people are publishing their own e-books or are publishing on platforms like Kindle.
They are willing to pay good money for a professional looking cover.
Mini-sites, Headers, and More
Many businesses, bloggers, and website owners need great graphics for their websites and blogs.
They are willing to pay to have headers, logos, and minisite graphics created for them.
You can specialize in a certain style of website graphic to set yourself apart.
Doing It All
Set yourself up as a web graphics artist that does it all.
The great thing about graphics is that it’s a skill not everyone has or takes time to learn.
Yet, it’s a skill that’s very much needed.
You can collect clients like crazy if you’re about to do all of their graphics for them.
Clients become loyal to graphic artists because you create a “look” for their work that they become attached to.
Virtual Assistant Opportunities
What if neither graphics nor writing suits you?
Not to worry– there are plenty of other opportunities out there.
You can become a virtual assistant, helping businesses with a variety of tasks.
This can be a lot of fun because you get to do something new every day.
Some days, you might be managing customer emails.
Other days, you might be managing the blog, managing social media accounts, or writing articles.
Basically, you’ll do whatever your client assigns you.
It’s the equivalent of working in an office and having tasks to do here, except you get to do it all from the comforts of home, on your own schedule.
Virtual assistants typically charge by the hour.
Create Your Own Category
This is by no means an exhaustive list of all the ways to make money online by freelancing.
- video production
- business consulting
- social media marketing
- game design
- app development
- life coaching
- health coaching
- and many more other skill niche’s you can specialize in to make money online.
Ready to get inspired?
“Spy” on what other freelancers are offering.
What kinds of services are people looking to hire out?
What kinds of services are people offering?
Use what you find as fodder for coming up with your own ideas to try.
People are going to hire you because you’re going to help them make more money than they are paying you.
That’s what businesses want – growth and more money.
How can you help them achieve that while earning a great income yourself?
Figure that out and you’ll do well.
Set Up Your Freelance Business
Now that you’ve chosen what you’re going to do, it’s time to go official.
You’re going to learn the ropes, set goals, start getting your name out there, and get hired!
Learn The Freelance Ropes
Do you already have what it takes to start offering services?
Great– it’s time to get started.
However, in many cases, it can serve you well to study the craft you’ll be offering first.
For instance, maybe you’re a great writer and you’d like to offer Kindle ghostwriting services.
You’ve got the writing part down but you can study how to help a book become successful on Kindle.
Or maybe you’re proficient with PhotoShop but you’ve never created an e-cover.
Teach yourself to do that then start offering your services.
Study your craft and study other service providers.
Put your own spin and your own talent on what’s already working and you’ll do well.
With anything you do in business, it’s important to set goals.
How much do you need or want to make online?
When would you like to be established and accepting clients?
How many clients would you like to connect with or work for this month?
If you set goals for yourself, you’ll be a lot more likely to become successful.
Your path will become clear.
If you’re not clear on what you’re doing and what you want, you’re really going to struggle.
Setting goals motivates you and pushes you toward success – it’s something all successful people do.
Set Your Working Hours
How much time do you have available to work each day?
Figure that out and set work hours.
It can be difficult to freelance because you don’t have a boss breathing down your neck.
You have to stay focused and on top of things yourself.
Get yourself into the mindset that you’re running a REAL business.
Set work hours and you’ll be able to get more done because you’ll be more focused and confident.
Setting work hours also helps you figure out how many clients you need or want to take on so you don’t become overworked or underworked.
It can also help you figure out your earning goals per month.
Set Your Income
One of the greatest perks of freelancing is that you get to set your own income.
Think a job is paying too low?
You don’t have to take it.
Ready to improve how you make money online?
Charge more or specialize in a higher paying skill.
Set goals for your income and create income projections for yourself.
What kinds of jobs will you take on?
What will you charge?
I do have to say that it can take some work to establish yourself so you can charge the higher prices.
Many freelancers start out with “grand opening” prices and then work their way up as they start to gather experience and testimonials.
Use sites like Fiverr.com which are for very small and quick tasks, in order to build up a lot of testimonials for your portfolio and website.
Each Fiverr ‘gig’ (which is essentially a mini project) requires the user that ordered your service to provide you with a testimonial at the end.
Getting Freelance Clients
The great news is that it’s easier than you think.
First, you need to set up a website offering your services.
Really make it clear how people can hire you and what you specialize in.
How are you going to help them grow their business?
What do you do differently and better than everyone else?
These sites allow you to bid on jobs clients post.
It can be discouraging because you have to bid against many other freelancers.
Ideally, you’ll start networking on social media, on forums, and on industry blogs and websites.
Get to know potential clients.
Hang out online where they hang out.
Let it be known that you provide these services – become known as the go-to person providing that service.
Networking with other service providers – specifically those who offer complementary services.
There are so many ways to get started and get your name out there.
Once you do, and you show that your work stands above the rest, word of mouth will spread and you won’t have to market your services much at all.
Up To A Full Time Income With Your Freelance Business
So, how are you going to build up to a full time income?
Once you get started, you’ll be surprised at just how easy it is.
The keys to doing so are:
- Specializing in something that will help your clients make money
- Setting yourself apart from other freelancers
- Networking with potential clients and other service providers online
- Getting your name out there and building a reputation as the go-to person for a certain service
Study successful freelancers and you’ll see that it’s possible for you.
The key to building up a full time income is that you have to stick with it.
Remember: It is very important to build an email list of clients and potential clients.
Put an opt-in form on your website and add clients to this list as you get them.
Create a free ebook or report (similar to this one – but it doesn’t have to be as long) and offer it for free to visitors of your website to learn about the reasons they need your services.
Once they’re on your list you can send out special offers, notify people when there are open spots on your schedule, and so on.
Earning Money Online Has Never Been Easier!
Hopefully this has inspired you to get started right away.
Whether you need to earn money, or you’re looking to quit or replace your job, or you’re simply ready for more freedom, freelancing and working from home can be the answer for you.
You can work anytime, from anywhere.
You can set your own hours and choose your own income.
All you have to do is decide that you’re ready to do it.
You will become successful if you believe you can do it and if you set goals and create a solid plan for getting started.