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If you’re reading this, you’re probably thinking of starting your own freelance business. We understand why this is tempting, as Fast Company reports that 35% of the American workforce is now freelancing.
This number equates to about 10 million more freelancers than just five years ago. Indeed, more and more people are making the switch, but you must keep in mind that the transition isn’t easy.
There are things that could derail you and set you back significantly if you don’t know how to handle them. Luckily, we’re here to give you a heads up on what you need to know before starting your own freelance business.
Money makes the world go round, and it goes without saying that this fact remains true in the world of freelancing. The only difference is that since you’re your own boss, you will be handling all your finances.
This will mostly have to do with managing your expenses and income, as well as making sure that you don’t break the bank on your journey to financial success and independence.
We’ve previously discussed this topic in our article Financial Planning for Freelancers: Manage Your Money Like a Pro, where we have tips for getting your finances in order as a freelancer.
One valuable tip would be to separate your personal and business bank accounts. This way, you’ll be able to track your business expenses more accurately, allowing you to make adjustments to your business expenditures if necessary.
2. Online marketing
Visibility will be the key to your success. While it used to cost a lot to do this in the earlier years of the internet, that simply isn’t the case anymore. All you need nowadays is a website and a means to get people to your website.
While the first part of that equation is easy, the second part could prove to be a little more challenging. Digital marketing agency Ayima points out how it can be difficult to establish your site on Google since its algorithm favors larger brands that already have a ton of high-quality content.
Thankfully, there are ways to boost your Google rankings to make your site more visible. One way to do this would be to create a blog with the right keywords that are aligned to your specific industry.
It’s also important to craft unique blog content that will allow your potential customers to find your site easily. As an added bonus, this helps set you up as a credible voice in your industry, helping you land more clients down the road.
Jumping off from making yourself more visible, networking will also play a pivotal role in your new career as a freelancer. While putting your business out there on the internet will surely help, you’ll find that you can also obtain a steady stream of customers through networking.
But since you’ll mostly be working from an area of your choosing, how then will you approach networking? Fortunately, there are so many different ways you can network as a freelancer.
One way is by keeping an eye out for networking events on websites such as Eventbrite, as these are usually good opportunities to meet like-minded individuals. So how do you build a solid network?
While there is no catch-all answer to this question, one good way to approach network building is by being a curious and active listener. This way, you’ll be able to build organic connections that are more likely to result in a mutually beneficial working relationship.
4. Team communication
Lastly, let’s address the issue of team communication when your business starts to pick up. Even if you’re a digital nomad working from different locations around the world, you might need to communicate with clients in different time zones or any employees you hire to help with your business.
One way to manage the challenges of communication is to use applications conducive for remote working. One such app that helps with this is Microsoft Teams. Microsoft Teams allows you to communicate with your team through organized chats and video calls no matter where they are in the world.
And if you decide you need a physical office space to meet people in person, you could consider becoming a member of a coworking space. Coworking spaces rent out desks and private offices to remote freelancers and businesses owners and offer varying rates depending on your needs and the size of your team.