According to best SEO expert in India Prempal Singh, If you have recently been freelance or just planning to start this path, it is useful to study in detail the scope and experience of other people. Finding articles written by freelancers is not difficult, but how do employers themselves see such cooperation? Anton, the head of the Gray-Fox studio, shared his view on freelancers and gave a couple of useful tips on what you should pay attention to and what chips to use to please the customer.
Today, the concept of “freelance” is familiar to most people. Excellent conditions have been created for making money on this system. Naturally, this is convenient not only for the most remote, so-called “free” specialists (although for many, the concepts of “freedom” and “freelance” are incompatible), but also for companies that seriously save on salaries, office rents, and even a thousand little things.
It turns out quite mutually beneficial interaction that meets modern requirements and capabilities (which, perhaps, is even more important). By the way, despite the whole modernity of this approach, the concept of “freelancer” appeared and was used since the beginning of the XIX century. The work was built on the same principle, but, of course, without the participation of the Internet. The most famous of the earliest mentions of the term is found in the novel Aivengo. This is how a hired warrior is described, or more precisely, a “free spearman” (free lancer, free – “free”, lancer – “spearman”).
Work with freelancers. Why is it for customers?
The most popular reason for choosing freelance is, first of all, the desire for freedom and independence, the so-called “with laptop on the ocean” earnings model.
The next most popular model is the beginning of a career. Many novice specialists develop skills, gain experience and build professionalism just due to tasks performed on freelance. The third role model of joining freelance is a part-time job. Often, strong and experienced specialists find additional earning channels by completing tasks in their free (or even work) time.
The motives of the performers are very understandable, but in order to receive projects, it is important to understand the motives of customers. Most often, customers are divided into 3 types, differing by request and by value for the contractor.
Everything is clear with this category: basically, this includes ordinary people who need to complete a task in which they are incompetent. Basically, this type of customer has the most diffuse TK in the Universe and a small budget. You can work with them, but usually it does not bring pleasure and earnings either in the short-term, or even less in the long-term perspective. In this segment, you can find puzzles that are paid for by positive feedback or by upgrading the rating of the artist’s account.
The second type is companies that, in their core business, have nothing to do with web development or other freelance services. Basically, they hire specialists for personal purposes – site administration, development of layouts for the action, blogging, etc. This option is more attractive for the contractor, as the reward is higher, and there is a great chance to establish constant cooperation.
Development companies (agencies, web studios and so on)
In working with this type the highest chance to regularly receive projects and high rewards. Such customers, in fact, resell the services that they buy from you, and with the proper quality, the chance to enter trust and receive projects on a regular basis is very high.
Since the work you perform is the main activity of the customer or its part, such companies apply to the freelance exchange in three cases:
- The company is at the first stages of development and cannot afford the offline staff of permanent employees. In this situation, the probability of regularly receiving orders is less, since the customer himself may have problems with them at first. In addition, if they cannot afford a full-fledged staff, they may not be able to pay you the desired amount.
- The company currently has a high volume of tasks and cannot cope on its own. In this case, the chance to get a high reward is higher, but there is a danger that the peak of the company’s loading will pass and will not happen again. If the peak repeats, the company goes into the 3rd type of interaction with freelancers.
- The company hires a classic outsourcing employee. In cases where the company has a demand above production capacities, they expand the staff either at the expense of employees in the office, or by hiring outsourcing specialists. This is the most favorable option, which will allow you to receive a stable stream of orders and a decent reward.
If you are aimed at regular cooperation, try to determine the type of customer at the stage of negotiations in order to understand what you can count on and correctly set priorities.
How to interest a customer
After we have decided on the types of customers, their subtypes and reasons to turn to freelance, it is necessary to contribute to their solution in your favor. I will not touch in detail on banal and standard criteria, such as a high level of technical skills in your field, a competent portfolio and reasonable prices. Let’s talk about more secondary things that set you apart from the same professionals with a good portfolio and reasonable prices.
Proof of your professionalism
The most difficult thing is to convince you of the optimality of your candidacy at the initial stage, when there is no way to prove your words by deed. It is necessary not only to attractively present the portfolio, but also to give an opportunity to verify its authenticity. For example, provide contacts of customers who can positively recommend you (do not be afraid of this, you do not need to give a home address and a code from the intercom, just mail, name and company name).
In addition to contacts, you can ask clients for feedback on work and post them either in your portfolio or in a cover letter. Even real reviews often look fake, so don’t try to invent them yourself. If there are no reviews, dial a pool of at least five and only after that publish.
Aerobatics will be the compilation of cases. In the sale of almost any service on the Internet, one of the key factors is examples of work, cases, portfolio and so on. The task of the cases is not only to prove that successful work really is (which is also important), not only to acquaint a person with how things are being done and projects are being implemented by you, but also to try to get into the client’s need. That is, to display a case that is similar to his situation, and how to say: “I know how to solve your problem, and have already solved it earlier.” To do this, you need to place the most diverse projects on the resume so that as many potential employers as possible can find their problem and an example of its solution in them.
Do not forget about submitting your resume and portfolio. Decorate it, do not be afraid to spend a lot of time on it – it will pay off. Use the services to create a resume, or develop a website dedicated to your professional activities. Learn how large companies that provide similar services serve themselves – you can learn a lot from them and learn a lot.
Register in all possible messengers and social networks so that during communication with the customer he can choose the system that suits him. This will significantly speed up and optimize the communication process and, as a result, will make you a more pleasant contractor. Install all communication applications on your mobile phone and enable notifications. One of the main problems that studios face is the long answers. This is a hallmark of working with freelancers, do not be so.
The same principles work with payment methods. Give the customer the opportunity to pay for services convenient to him.
Be an expert in your field
Follow new trends and stay on the wave. This is credible. Remember that you are primarily an expert in your field, and not just hands that can do what they say.
Under what conditions should a freelancer work?
After going through all the negotiations and approvals on the issues described above, a moment comes, which is often a stumbling block. I will try to describe favorable conditions for both parties. This is how we work with all new contractors. Consider the interaction with technical experts – coders and programmers.
The first issue for discussion is prepayment. The employer, when first contacting a freelancer, is usually afraid to send an advance payment (unfortunately, everyone has a story in which the performer disappears after receiving an advance payment). In this case, there are 2 options – send an advance payment through a “secure transaction” on any freelance platform, or conduct development on a personal server. After the presentation of a part of the project, employers willingly send an advance payment, after which the contractor transfers the data to the customer’s server, or simply provides a backup.
Basically, the work is carried out according to the 50% to 50% scheme. The first 50% is paid to the contractor after the presentation of half of the ordered work, and the second after the full coordination of the work performed. Most importantly, transfer files only after receiving payment. This is a logical requirement, because after completing the work, it makes no sense to you to keep the project files. If such a simple and highly conditional division of the project into 2 parts is not possible, establish the payment procedure based on the work plan. Put the payment after the completion of each stage of development, but do not do more than 5 such stages.
Among other things, during the first projects with a new specialist, daily monitoring by the customer will be quite appropriate. Basically, what is done over the past 1-2 days is checked to exclude that the project will be whipped up on the last night.
TOP freelancer errors
In conclusion, let’s go through the TOP-5 mistakes that freelancers make when working with companies.
If you use freelance exchanges to get customers, do not be lazy to read the terms of reference yourself and write the answer. Template auto-responses scare away potential customers.
Long wait for an answer
The topic that we touched on earlier. This is a real pain when working with freelancers. Be sociable and do not pull with the answer.
Delaying deadlines with an imaginary reason
Often in the work you have to hear the incredible reasons why the project deadlines are broken. It is important to understand that the customer is only interested in the result, and the result is that the project is not ready. Instead of coming up with excuses, it’s better to say when the project is ready, and do everything possible to pass it earlier. If you still have a question about the reason for the delay, just tell the truth. Truth always works best.
The error under the code name “Only WebMoney” is the lack of flexibility of the performers in matters of communication, payment and other aspects. You must not only perform your direct duties well, but also ensure a pleasant interaction. It’s just for you.
Last minute loss
The most burning pain in working with freelancers is the loss of a performer. I think it’s not worth explaining how bad and unpleasant it is. Even if you understand that you cannot implement the project, inform us as soon as possible so that the customer can find a new contractor. Such an outcome completely leaves you a chance to continue cooperation in other projects. The worst thing you can do (and that happens very often) is to ask for a delay on the day the project is completed, then one more, and when the deadline comes, just don’t get in touch. If you do not want to allow such a development of events, do not put off the projects in a long box.
To receive freelance orders, think through and explore every aspect of the interaction. Identify the types of your potential customers. Understand which type of customer is your target audience. Explore their needs and adapt to them. Discover their concerns and develop them. Make a worthy self-presentation. Do not forget about the many little things that tip the scales in one direction or another. There are too many similar offers in a highly competitive market, and the details decide. Make the process of interacting with you comfortable and optimized. And, of course, be a professional, because no tricks will help you get regular customers if the quality of your services is low.