How to Make Extra Money with Freelancing

How to Make Extra Money with Freelancing: Freelancing is increasingly becoming an appealing option to supplement or fully replace traditional employment. By marketing your services independently and working with clients virtually, freelancing lets you earn income on your schedule.

How to Make Extra Money with Freelancing

The rise of the gig economy and the desire for work flexibility have led more skilled professionals to explore freelancing. With industries continually adopting remote and on-demand work models in the digital age, high-quality freelance opportunities are abundant across many career fields today.

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So if you’re looking to profit from your expertise or make money through freelancing, now is the time. This comprehensive guide covers everything from selecting your niche to expanding into a sustainable freelance business.

Key Takeaways

Find the freelance niche that best matches your skillsBuild up expertise through courses and certificationsCraft an appealing online profile to attract clientsDeliver excellent work and expand services over time

Determine Your Freelancing Niche

When getting started with freelancing, first decide on your niche by assessing:

  • Your professional background – Industries like writing, programming, design, consulting or prior work experience
  • Personal interests and skills – What you enjoy doing and are naturally good at
  • Market demand – Well-paying or growing freelance niches like:
    • Writing – copywriting, content marketing, ghostwriting
    • Development – web design, app coding
    • Creative – graphic design, video editing, photography
    • Business – consulting, accounting, human resources

Select an area that intersects your abilities with freelance career opportunities. While narrow specialization limits your clientele initially, it enables commanding higher rates from those seeking focused expertise.

Here are the most in-demand and well-paying freelance skills as of 2023:

Freelance SkillAverage Hourly Rate
Mobile App Development$45-$150 per hour
Web Development$30-$100 per hour
Graphic Design$15-$60 per hour
Copywriting$20-$100 per hour
Video Editing$25-$100 per hour

When choosing your initial niche, pick an established field like programming or writing instead of an obscure service to ensure sufficient client demand.

Build Up Your Skills

Once a lucrative freelance niche matching your strengths is selected, the next imperative step is expanding your competency through:

  • Specialized courses – Online classes, certification programs, workshops, etc. to bolster niche abilities. Udemy and Skillshare offer thousands of niche freelance courses.
  • Software proficiency – Mastering tools and programs used by professionals in your field. Examples:
    • Writers – Microsoft Word, Google Docs
    • Designers – Adobe Creative Suite
    • Developers – GitHub, Android Studio
  • Portfolio development – Create 3-5 examples highlighting excellent work to showcase abilities.

Building up your skillset and qualifications legitimizes your freelance pursuit and allows delivering better client outcomes.

Invest time upfront into sharpening your freelancing acumen through guided lessons, software skill-building, and portfolio samples showcasing abilities. This will equip securing early positive reviews fueling long-term success.

Create Your Freelance Profile

Now ready to secure client work, and optimize online freelancing profiles that attract people seeking your area of expertise. Essential elements for each profile:

Headline & Description

  • Listed freelance niche/service offered
  • Specific expertise within that niche
  • The professional yet approachable tone
  • Why clients should work with you over competitors

Portfolio Samples

  • 3-5 high-quality examples representing capabilities
  • Brief context explaining each work sample
  • Varied pieces showcasing breadth of abilities

Client Testimonials

  • Reviews from past satisfied clients on delivered services
  • Verify execution skills and working style
  • Build trustworthiness through social proof

Well-crafted profiles convey talent and professionalism to potential new clients evaluating your services against other provider options.

Freelancing platforms to create an appealing personal profile:

Bid on Freelance Job Listings

Popular platforms listing available freelance opportunities include:

Follow these best practices when evaluating and applying for listings:

Carefully Review Project Details

  • Scope of work required
  • Client budget or offered rate
  • Expectations on deliverables

Submit Customized Proposal

  • Match personal skills to requested tasks
  • Explain the approach for fixing their needs
  • Provide estimated timeline and pricing

Set Notify Reminders

  • Follow up 4-7 days later if there is no notification
  • Don’t let promising opportunities slip

Submit targeted, personable bids for the most appealing opportunities fit for your expertise. Avoid mass-submitting generic proposals.

Landing Early Freelance Clients

Discount RatesOffer 10-20% off the typical rate to land first clients and reviews
Bid RapidlyRespond quickly to promising new listings within the first hour
Follow UpIf no response in 5 days, send a short follow-up message

Implement these methods for converting initial bids into secured work to jumpstart your freelance profile with key verified reviews.

Manage Your Freelance Projects

When your bid gets selected, shift focus to delivering stellar services by:

Maintaining Ongoing Communication

  • Ask clarifying questions before starting
  • Provide frequent status updates
  • Seek approvals before final submission

Submitting Quality Deliverables

  • Complete the full project scope outlined
  • Ensure work matches niche standards
  • Welcome feedback for revisions

Avoiding Scope Creep

  • Use an upfront contract detailing expected work
  • Politely decline added services without pay
  • Renegotiate timeline and pricing for any changes

Keep clients continually informed, demonstrate excellence reflecting positively for your brand, and firmly manage requests expanding beyond originally agreed upon terms.

Completing early freelance projects successfully generates 5-star reviews, repeat business, and client referrals that are the lifeblood of a thriving freelance career.

Client Management Tools

TrelloTask tracking and organization
Google DriveFile sharing and cloud storage
SlackMessaging and project communication
HarvestTime tracking, schedules, invoicing
HoneybookClient CRM and financial management

Leverage project collaboration tools tailored for smoothing and systemizing client freelancing work.

Expand Your Freelance Business

For top freelancers, independent contracting shifts from side income to a sustainable full-time business by:

Transitioning Fully to Freelancing

  • Quit position when consistent 3-6 month backlog of contracts
  • Lower early risk through prudent financial planning

Hiring Subcontractors

  • Bring on other freelancers to scale service capacities
  • Manage the administration and client relationships

Specializing Niche Services

  • Double down on particular in-demand expertise
  • Command higher premiums through industry authority

Allow your robust client pipeline, 5-star reputation, and focused niche mastery to facilitate quitting your day job to freelance full-time. Further, leverage your personal brand to build a thriving freelancing firm.


Freelancing leverages your skills to generate income on your schedule through remote work agreements. This guide covered core steps from selecting your profitable niche to running an established freelancing business:

Nail the basics

  • Profile, niche, portfolio

Master client projects

  • Communication, reviews, scope

Growth strategies

  • Specialize and subcontract

With booming demand for services like mobile development, graphic design, marketing, and more, opportunities abound to profit from your talents or side hustles through freelancing across industries.

So whether as supplemental income stream or a new career direction, independent contracting can dynamically grow income over traditional employment. Use these best practices to begin that financially empowering pursuit this year.

Frequently Asked Questions

What equipment or tools do I need to start freelancing?

The required equipment varies by niche, but generally having an up-to-date laptop or computer and reliable internet connection at minimum is essential. Other common items like webcams, headsets, software and programs, writing tools, etc. may also need purchasing upfront as well before taking on freelance work.

How much can I earn as a freelancer?

Freelancer earnings span a wide range but generally increase in proportion to niche skill level, portfolio quality, experience, and reviews. Entry-level freelancers often charge $15-$50 per hour initially, while expert freelancers in high-demand fields can charge over $100-250 per hour after years of refining expertise.

How do I get my first freelance client?

Common approaches to land that critical first client include:

  • Offering discounted rates compared to competitors
  • Checking and responding quickly to new job postings daily
  • Following up with potential clients days after submitting a proposal
  • Asking friends, family, and past colleagues to be the first reference

Securing and excelling on initial projects generates the reviews essential for continued success.

What freelancing platforms are best?

The top global freelancing websites in terms of total users are Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer.com. Each has pros and cons from project variety to payment processing fees. Niche sites like Toptal (tech and design) Guru (software) and Flexjobs (remote jobs) also offer focused freelancing opportunities.

How should I price my freelancing services?

Consider the value delivered to clients and competitive rates of those with similar expertise before setting pricing:

  • Entry-level or untested freelancers generally price lowest until establish a reputation
  • Review sample project pricing in niche across sites to gauge rate standards
  • Increase rates gradually over time as you specialize and gain positive reviews

Don’t undervalue your worth, but remain reasonably aligned as a newcomer without extensive credentials.

Can I do freelancing full-time?

Freelancing replaces full-time employment for millions globally. To transition fully, experts recommend having at least 6 months of living expenses saved up in case of income fluctuations starting out and attempting a gradual transition from your current job by taking on freelance work on the side initially.

What skills are most in demand?

Currently, software engineers, computer programmers, web developers, graphic designers, digital marketers, and consultants across IT, marketing, and business excel on popular freelancing platforms. But niche expertise like photo/video production, data analysis, copywriting, etc. also command robust demand as digital services diversify.

Final Tips

  • Continuously build qualifications and raise rates
  • Scale your brand through client results
  • Specialize to become a niche authority
  • Maintain impeccable 5-star review average
  • Expand capacities by subcontracting
  • Be responsive, professional, and reliable

Master these freelancing best practices for sustainable success!

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