A freelancer is a self-employed worker who is not contracted to long-term employment plans. They work within a particular specialism, such as Graphic Design, Web Development, or Copywriting.
Unlike full-time work, freelancers have no set salary or fees. Pay completely depends on the freelancer’s rate card – something they set themselves – and any negotiations or contracts they may have with the businesses they work for.
Sometimes, little pay is offered compared to the amount of work done. Constant work is never guaranteed but the chance of controlling your own workload, time, and pay is what makes freelancing appealing to many.
The most common type of freelancing is computer-related work, including:
These roles can be within a workplace, or at home, also known as working remotely.
There are endless options when it comes to freelancing, but you would have to search what fields have the most opportunities when it comes to flexible work. To see what type of work is currently available, check out our freelance job listings.
There is no limit to how much you can earn as a freelancer, but your pay may be inconsistent. As a journalist, media companies will have set prices for each piece written. For example, some companies will pay per day whilst others will pay depending on how many words written, or per article.
When it comes to other forms of freelancing, figuring out your set prices is important. Do some basic research to get a sense of what your line of business should be charging, dependent on skillset and services. You must take into account that fees will depend on your level of experience. Building up a good reputation with fairly-priced work gives you the upper hand and will expand your freelance opportunities.
Getting new clients is almost impossible without good examples of your work. Online presence is a must in this day and age, so having a freelance portfolio website is best for showing your clients your capabilities.
Your portfolio website should make a good first impression, as it’s the first thing many potential clients will see when they are looking for freelancers to work for them. It gives them an idea of your style, work, and relevant skills. This way, you can show what types of services you offer, how much you charge, and how to contact you. Imagine it as a more interactive CV, so be sure to highlight your accomplishments and experiences in order to polish your personal brand.
Freelancing has its ups and downs, so having a full-time or part-time job alongside freelance gigs is useful. As a freelancer, you may not earn big money immediately, as you have to build up a reputation before clients are willing to spend big money. Also, having a full-time/part-time job is important as your sole source of income until your freelancing business gains traction.
If you already work full-time/part-time, you may want to check what you should know before starting a side business.
Being a freelancer means working for yourself, and that comes with a lot of responsibilities. Before doing anything, be sure to register yourself with HMRC and make sure to declare your self-employed income each year. Decide whether you would be classified as a sole trader, limited company, or something else.
Another top tip is to keep a new business checklist. This way you can get the legal aspects out the way, such as setting up a public liability insurance or making sure any other licences and permits are complete. This will keep you on top of things before you even get started in addition to saving you from any trouble in the future.