New Freelancer? Avoid These 7 Common Mistakes

For some people, working alone is a viable career path. Maybe the freedom of “working for yourself” appeals to you, or the prospect of a new challenge does. Some people are freelancing because they were given the option to, while others would rather not.

Regardless of your motivations, freelancing is hard. It’s also possible for several mistakes to be made.

Here are some of the worst things you can do as a freelancer.

1. Don’t Start Without a Plan:

The freelancing sector is thriving. At the end of 2018, more than 56 million Americans were engaged in some form of freelancing. Before diving headfirst into the freelance economy, however, you should study the industry and formulate an official business strategy.

You should know:

  • What it is you’re trying to market.
  • How much you should charge for your service or item.
  • Weaknesses in both your company and the competition.
  • The resources and abilities you possess.
  • How much money should you put into advertising, and what tasks should you assign to others in the beginning?

Is there a surplus of supply but a lack of demand in your industry? Is there a low labor supply but high demand for the product in question?

You’ll be in a bind if you don’t do the groundwork beforehand. Even worse, you may end up with a negative financial balance after investing unnecessary time and money in the outset. Approach your field with reason and caution.

2. Focus on Your Client:

 Clients matter to freelancers. Satisfied customers outperform financial success. Customers will be loyal and appreciative if you put them first. They’re not infallible. Your first try may become viral. Not all freelancers want to work. Working harder at freelancing will pay off.

3. Don’t Promote a Website with Poor Design:

Avoid unattractive websites. Good resumes aren’t essential. A basic profile, feedback form, and appreciation may encourage someone. If your website is poorly built, clients may not be able to reach you. It might hurt your career. You won’t become a digital services expert with a 1990s-looking website. Sending your portfolio to copy editing jobs won’t work.

It’s impossible. That internet hub must be updated. If you follow a few simple rules, you can make a great website. After building your site, get feedback before launching it.

4. Don’t Be Hard to Contact:  

As a free agent, you need to consider how people will employ you. Think about how they’ll talk to you. Those in the freelancing sector in the “olden” 1990s (we know, we’re old) had a few more options for getting their name out there. These snippets of information often included their name, location, and phone number so that potential customers could make direct enquiries before physically visiting.

Even though many independent jobs are now completed online, many of these standards continue to apply. Keep your contact information front and center when freelancing. Ideally, they would incorporate:

  • What is your name?
  • A contact electronic mail.
  • I need your phone number (if relevant).
  • A social media alias, where prospective clients may see examples of your work.

The problem with freelancing on the internet is that there’s greater competition. You’ve taken your war on the global stage rather than fighting over specific territories.

If you make it difficult for people to donate to you, they will quickly find someone else who is easier on the eyes and the wallet. People from everywhere are looking for a place to stay.  

5. Make good use of the time you have:

There may have been a turning point in your decision to become a freelancer where you realized, “I can work for myself.” “Since I work from home, I don’t have to worry about getting up early or sticking to a certain schedule.

Oh, how terribly wrong you are!

Just because you’re working from home doesn’t mean you can treat your “work place” like your bedroom. Although there may be more distractions when working from home, you are free to start your day whenever you choose and save gas by not having to get up as early.

Distractions like housework, TV, phones, and errands will all make it difficult to focus on the task at hand. It won’t be long before you no longer bother to maintain a tidy workplace.

While you’re not really at work, your brain will make the distinction between your “office” and your “home.” As a result, it’s likely that your output won’t suffer.

You have more flexibility with your time management as a freelancer. You may use the Pomodoro technique to gain a head start. By breaking up large projects into manageable chunks of 25 minutes each, you can get more done in less time with the Pomodoro approach.

You might use these daily agenda apps to help you stay focused and get more done in the time you’ve allotted for your tasks.

6. Either your charges are too high or too low.

You’re either charging too much or not charging enough. When first starting out, it might be challenging to determine fair prices. Should you boost rates to make ends meet in the absence of numerous customers? Should you keep your prices the same or lower them to meet demand?

There are several guidelines to follow when determining your independent rates; nonetheless, there are many factors to consider, such as your level of expertise, the value you provide, and the seriousness with which you approach your area of expertise. To get started, check out what other freelancers in your area are charging for equivalent work, and go from there. Even if your specific situation is different, at least you’ll have a ballpark figure to work with.

7. Remember Your Taxes:

Last but not least, failing to settle your taxes is the biggest error you can do as an independent contractor. Get your taxes done already. The importance of this cannot be overstated.

Tax time is a hassle for everyone, but if you have difficulties filing your returns, it may be time to employ an accountant. You should choose a local tax filing provider and familiarize yourself with the local financial requirements.

Self-employment still counts as “work” for tax purposes, even if you’re the boss. If you fail to keep adequate records of your financial dealings and are later proven to have concealed funds, you may face severe penalties.

Having one’s heart guarded is preferable to the alternative.

Freelancers, Study Your Mistakes and Improve

Here are some hazards and ways to prevent them. Disregarding my advice might jeopardize your job. Daily practice is the greatest method to learn.

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