Freelancing can become your dream job and it can give you the freedom you wanted when you started on this journey. Many people have joined the ranks of freelancers because of coronavirus, but only a few have found real success and financial freedom from it. Employing the following key principles can help you turn your freelance business into a more profitable enterprise.
1. Determine What Success Means to You
Success means different things to different people. Decide what your ultimate goal will be so you will know when you have reached it. Do you want to build a big bank account? Buy a house or boat? Take vacations? Ultimately build a large business, then sell it and retire? Choose a clear target and work toward it every day.
2. Increase Your Self-discipline
It is easy to get distracted from your primary tasks if you work from home. This generally involves better time management. Break your time into various segments and then devote those segments to tasks necessary to sustain and grow your business. Choose the most important tasks first.
3. Increase Your Billable Hours
Every business owner can fall into the trap of working on their business versus working to grow the business. There is a large difference. Give time every day to building your business. If possible, give other tasks to someone else if need be, but the only way to increase your income is to focus on increasing your daily billable hours.
Remember that you need to make enough money to pay your bills and self-employment taxes, which is Social Security and Medicare. You also need to get a health care plan for yourself and your family members. This requires that you charge a reasonable rate so that you can live comfortably. Before taking a new task with a client, get some money upfront to ensure that you will not be scammed.
4. Aim for Better Clients
While freelancers always need to be sure to have some clients that will give them work, seek to avoid the small and low-paying jobs where possible. Aim for clients and tasks that will pay more and possibly create ongoing work. These may take some time to find, but they are out there and will be well worth your time and effort. Evaluate potential clients based on the size of the company before determining a price and charge accordingly – large companies can and will gladly pay more.
5. Know Where to Find Work
Finding work as a freelancer can be tricky. There are many places from which you can get some clients. Job boards are available that specialize in listing available freelance jobs. Use them often. Depending on the type of freelance work you provide, you can also make contacts through places such as LinkedIn. Many of the better-paying jobs are available through you contacting businesses directly.
6. Enhance Your Portfolio
What your portfolio says about you and how it is worded will speak volumes about your services, expertise, and accomplishments. You want to keep it updated and well-refined. Your website can bring clients to you if you say what clients want to hear – but be sure to tell the truth and not exaggerate or make false claims. It should contain samples, photos (if applicable), and testimonials. Your contact information should be highly visible.
7. Carefully Watch Your Cash Flow
You can keep more of your profit if you control your cash flow. Avoid buying frivolous things and stay away from buying things on credit. The interest will only eat away at your profit. Buy when the item is on sale.