Over the past one decade time, internet has given birth to new ways of making money. Just a few years before the .com boom, these new ways of making money might not have been in the imaginations of even tech-savvy people. Either you launch a startup that could turn into a billion dollar business or you just signup on a website to do a small gig, you are in a way associating yourself with an ocean of endless opportunities.
A few years back I started a series of articles about “Top 10 ways to Earn Money Online“. The series was intended to cover some of the most common ways, in fact ten of those, that can lead you to some wealth while sitting in front of a screen and doing some work of course.
This is the 3rd part of the series with quiet some break since the previous installment. I’ve been busy.
Let’s get back to the topic. Please note that this piece is for absolute beginners and those struggling with kick-starting their freelancing career.
Steps to Make Money Freelancing Online
I think the whole freelancing process comprises of 3 closely related sub-processes.
Step 1: Get what it takes
The most important part of starting a freelancing career is to find a skill that you think you posses; something that you would love to do for the rest of your freelancing career. Freelancing might get boring at a certain point and you have to make sure that you are picking the right area. Make a list, search top freelancing portals and see if people are actually offering opportunities in those areas. If you think you are falling short of the proper skill, give it some time to learn and polish those skills before jumping in. It is always better to start late with a polished skill than to start early with no or little skill because the later will always lead to failure and thinking of yourself as something lesser.
Step 2: Search and settle
Once you have found your skill set, you need to search for a platform that will be the bridge between you and your to-be future clients. To make money freelancing online with some kind of guarantee of the future aspects, you will have to find a platform that is going to stay in the long run. Here are a few things to keep in mind while searching for a freelancing platform:
- Make sure that the platform is reliable enough. Don’t go for early age startups, they experiment a lot and you will lose your pace within the changes being made faster than you could comprehend.
- Pick a platform that specializes in offering work related to your skill set.
- Money matters. Pick a platform that offers easy money transfer to your bank account. Some countries like Pakistan are not so Paypal friendly which is a big con working online from such regions. See if you can work around things without getting your profile at risk.
Once you have made your selection after carefully looking into your needs and the platform’s requirements, settle! Don’t go changing platforms just because you do not get enough positive responses. Take your time, try to further polish your skills, add a little portfolio and give some tests. Eventually, you will find yourself comfortable around the platform and your work counter will start ticking.
Step 3: Eat. Sleep. Freelance. Repeat
If you have come this far without any intention to get rich overnight or follow some magic shortcut to become a millionaire, you are already on the right track. Make yourself a schedule. Try to shift your working hours to match those of your target market. Although freelancing gives absolute freedom when it comes to working hours but you you should always make a schedule that doesn’t affect your personal life. For example, if you are working from Pakistan and working with a US based client, you will have to probably shift your working hours. This will give you edge over many others and minimize the communication gap that you might face due to timezone difference.
Once you start delivering work, ask for honest feedback. The feedback should give you an insight into you how you are doing with your profile. Take some time to reflect on things that are giving you negative reviews. There is always room for improvement.
You can also improvise by looking into profiles of top freelancers in your specific area of work and following their best practices. All you need is to get an inspiration once in a while to align yourself in the right direction.
Best of luck!