Recent research has shown that 1 in 3 individuals are freelancing. The main question is how to freelance with success? Having a successful freelance career requires dedication and focus, and now-a-days there are more opportunities than ever. Whether you are just starting out or an experienced veteran, you need to always be on the lookout for ideas and strategies that can help your freelance business grow. Below are 5 tips on How to Freelance successfully that can improve the efficiency of your freelance business and help you acquire and retain more high quality clients.
Tip #1 – Plan your days ahead of time
Proper time management is essential for freelancers because you don’t have someone telling you what to do and planning your days out for you. You need to figure out how many projects that you can complete in a day and come up with a to-do list for every work day to properly manage your time. Be realistic and don’t overload your days with too many tasks. Try to estimate the number of hours each task will take and schedule your week out accordingly. There are many tools out there to help organize all the tasks you need to take care of such as invoicing, writing proposals, creating contracts and tracking expenses. One such tool is AndCo. Read on here for a no nonsense review of this free business management software.
Tip #2 – Don’t over-commit
A common mistake for freelancers is to take on too much work at once and end up overloading their schedule. You need to be realistic about your time commitments and be honest with your clients. It’s always a bad thing to over-commit and end up falling behind on your project deliveries. Always check your schedule before promising to complete a project by a particular deadline, and if you can’t do it then let your clients know upfront rather than trying to get as much work as possible and disappointing them.
Tip #3 – Deliver your work ahead of time
Nothing makes your clients happier than delivering high quality work ahead of schedule. At the very least you need to deliver your work on time, but if you can plan your days accordingly and get your work out ahead of schedule it will make a major difference. Your clients are much more likely to send you more work when they know that you are reliable and get your work done on time. One approach is to give your clients a reasonable turnaround time that you know you can safely commit to, and get your work done as soon as it comes in.
Tip #4 – Reward loyal clients
Your most loyal clients are your bread and butter, and because of this you need to reward them in any way that you can. One great way is if you can offer discounts for bulk work definitely do it, but at the very least you should be sure to get their work done on time. Throwing in as many bonuses as you can will translate into more income for you, and it’s possible that they may even give you a raise. Be generous with your effort and time and your best clients will stay with you in the long term and spend a lot of money on you.
Tip #5 – Make some time for yourself
Your freelance business is your main work commitment but you need to remember to make time for yourself and to take care of your health. Set strict work hours and try to avoid overloading your schedule. Setting the proper work/life balance will keep your stress levels low and help you avoid burnout. Take care of yourself, get up and exercise and get out of the house at least a few times per day and it will pay off and help you be more focused and efficient when you are working.
So here are 5 simple tips to answer the question on how to freelance successfully. Once you try this new life style, you can’t go back.