At the start of the pandemic, a good number of companies asked their employees to work from home to keep them safe from the virus. Their work-from-home arrangements meant they had more time on their hands since they did not need to travel from home to work and vice versa. Due to this, some people started using their newly-found free time to accept freelance jobs to add to their income.
While freelancing is a lucrative career for many people, some make mistakes along the way that made them decide that freelancing was not for them. If you’re planning to join the world of freelancing, here are some mistakes you should avoid to succeed in the industry.
Not Managing Your Time Well
With no one telling you to do, you may end up not doing anything until the deadline is near. You need to manage your time well for you to be productive. Freelancing requires a lot of discipline on the part of the freelancer. Unlike in a regular corporate job, no one tells a freelancer what to do and when they should do it.
With this in mind, you should organize your day and follow a set schedule. While managing your time is challenging, you should strive to do it since it plays a major role in your success as a freelancer. You can create a schedule that allows you to be productive and accomplish whatever tasks you need to accomplish.
If you feel you are productive in the evening, you can schedule most of your work in the evening. Your schedule should also include regular breaks so you will not burn out. These breaks also keep you productive and motivated throughout the day.
When you set your rates, you should avoid undervaluing yourself. When deciding your rate, you should also make sure the rate is not too high since you might end up not having any clients. If it’s too low, you will not be able to pay your bills. You can negotiate with your client, but you should set a minimum rate for the services you provide.
You should also be consistent when you give the rates to your clients and avoid underpricing your services since it will set the stage for future clients to pay below your preferred rates. In these situations, you may find yourself in a bind since it will be difficult for you to increase your rates.
Underpricing yourself can also cause you to lose potential income. This is particularly true if you are working on a personal project that allows you to enhance the services you provide to your clients. For instance, you may be building your own PC that’s better than what you are currently using. If you underprice yourself, you might end up not completing your personal project or at least take more time to finish it.
Working with No Contracts
When you work through an online job platform, you normally have a contract before you start working. But if you work directly with a client, you must make sure to make a contract that binds both you and your client. Aside from protecting you and the client, the contract can serve as your guide on the work you should provide the client.
Giving too much trust can cause the freelancer to lose money since there may be instances when a client does not pay after the freelancer completes the work. If you have no idea how to make a contract, several resources allow you to create a valid contract. You can even sign the contract electronically. And these are binding if they have the consent if they meet the requirements, such as the consent of the signers and the signers have copies of the contract.
Making the Payment Method Challenging
Since freelancers normally work online, the payment is typically made through online payment platforms. As a freelancer, you should make sure the payment method is accessible for both you and your client. If you select a payment method that is inaccessible to the client, the client will look for someone else to perform the task.
There are several online payment platforms available for you to use. These platforms include PayPal and Stripe. You can also opt for direct deposit payments, but the transaction fees may be too high. Similar, bank transfer fees can be quite prohibitive that these payment methods may not be cost-efficient for you and your client. You should look for a payment method that works for both you and your client.
Becoming a freelancer can be a good career choice for people who prefer working from home. If you decide to perform freelance work, you should avoid the common mistakes that many freelancers make.