Many benefits come with freelancing. However, it’s not always a smooth and positive career path. Whether you are new to freelancing or an experienced freelancer, freelancers face many common problems throughout their careers. Below are five issues typically faced by freelancers and how they can be easily solved:
Having clients will be the foundation of your success as a freelancer. However, one of the biggest challenges will be finding clients in the first place. Finding clients is an ongoing problem many freelancers face throughout their careers. Luckily there are solutions to make this process easier. Freelancers can attract clients with a few different methods:
- Establish your online presence by creating a website and social media accounts to showcase your best work and market yourself.
- Build your network and request referrals from colleagues and clients you’ve worked with.
- Join freelance marketplaces like RadialHub to expose yourself to a community of clients and freelancers
These methods can effectively solve the problem of finding clients as freelancers.
Slow work weeks
It may take some time to build up a consistent workflow and schedule; even then, it will not always last. Some weeks you may be very busy, while others will be slower. Even the best freelancers have periods of no work, so it’s essential to be prepared when these problems arise. While inconsistent schedules are the nature of freelance work, there are ways to prepare for when you have slow weeks:
- Consider conducting outreach to prospects and building your sales pipeline to ensure you have work in the future.
- Follow up with old clients to check if they need your services.
- Save up during your busy work weeks to ensure you can make it through your slow work weeks.
Even the best freelancers have periods of no work, so it’s wise to prepare when these problems arise.
When you are a freelancer, you set your deadlines and schedules. A problem many freelancers face is managing time effectively. Mastering time management is essential to ensure you are dedicating your time to the most critical tasks and projects. Consider a few strategies to ensure you are managing your time well as a freelancer:
- Organize and maintain an accurate list of all your projects and tasks. Some freelance marketplaces organize tasks for you, but if you’re freelancing, consider project management software.
- Consider using a time-tracking tool to measure how long specific projects take and consider that time when creating future schedules.
- Avoid taking on too much work. Overloading your schedule can be counterproductive if you don’t have the time to complete all the tasks.
Effective time management is essential to becoming a successful freelancer.
Being your boss
While one of the benefits of being a freelancer is that you are your boss, a problem many freelancers face is holding themselves accountable since you don’t have anyone telling you what to do and when it’s essential to make sure you are disciplined and on top of your work. To be effective when managing yourself consider the following:
- Creating realistic work schedules of when you’ll start, stop, and take breaks that can easily be followed.
- Eliminate all distractions. Consider turning off your phone or setting it on “Do Not Disturb” when working. Have a dedicated workspace free from distractions. If you live with others, communicate your work schedule and ask that they not bother you during those times.
- Reward yourself when you’ve completed specific tasks or projects.
Being your boss can be beneficial if you learn to hold yourself accountable.
Getting paid is crucial for a successful freelance career. However, a problem many freelancers face is ensuring they get paid on time. To make sure you get paid as a freelancer, consider the following:
- Accept multiple forms of payments, such as payment apps, bank transfers, and cash or checks.
- Send invoices and follow up to hold your clients accountable.
- Consider upfront payments or a deposit so you get paid before you complete the project.
To learn more about how you can get paid as a freelancer, read our blog, which provides more details on this topic.
Freelancing can be a rewarding career; however, it comes with its problems. To solve the above common problems effectively, it’s important to keep those strategies and methods in mind if you encounter any issues while freelancing.