Other Sites For Finding Work
While most freelancers get the vast majority of work by setting up accounts on the major dedicated freelancing sites, at least one writer I know didn’t start using the major freelancing sites until he was making a steady income from other sources—and there are plenty of other sources on the Web. Forums, classifieds and your own website can all be good places to develop relationships with clients and start earning big money.
When using these sites, remember to have a verified PayPal account set up and always request either a deposit or upfront payment. Because you don’t have the benefit of escrow and dispute resolution, you need to protect yourself. Ask for a work-for-hire contract when possible and if you take on a large project, make sure to get at least 50% up front. Most clients will understand your hesitation to work on good faith. But if they don’t, let them go. It may hurt to lose a job, but not as much as losing money for all of your hard work.
Forums – Many freelancers offer a “free trial” when first starting out. Check out sites like WarriorForum and DigitalPoint. Once you’ve established some posts on those sites, you can place classified listings on their “for hire” forums. Keep track of what it’s costing you because WarriorForum charges you for each “bump” of your post. But, by offering a free article or small graphic to start, you’ll get people to know you and your work, and you’ll be surprised how many of them will come back for more – and be happy to pay you.
Craigslist – Work you find here will be less structured than what’s on the major freelancing sites, but sometimes you can find long-term, larger-scale projects here if you’re so inclined. To avoid being scammed (and there are many scams on Craigslist), avoid any job that wants samples or pays by results.
Freelance Writing Job Listings – For daily listings of freelance opportunities on sites like Craigslist, check out Freelance Writing.
Your Own Websites –To get more job opportunities, there’s nothing better than creating your own website built using a free WordPress theme that you can install on your own Web host, which will cost you a few dollars per month for hosting. Although you can buy some great looking WordPress themes, there are many free ones available on the Web but here are some of the best paid and free WordPress themes I’ve ever used.
In addition to your own site, you should take advantage of the many free sites on the Web including Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, Reddit, Blogger, WordPress.com (paid and free versions of WordPress with hosting), etc. And these are only just the beginning. The more Websites you appear on, the more potential clients may see your work and want to hire you. So Google “free websites” and setup up as many as you can to promote yourself. There’s no such thing as having too many!
Always Focus on Future Growth
To have a successful, sustainable, growing business requires you to set goals with the expansion of your business in mind. Don’t fall into the trap, which many freelancers do, where they spend all their time looking for more work but no time improving themselves, learning new skills, and expanding into areas like creating your own products and services, etc.
It OK to start by taking no- and low-pay projects in the beginning but after you get somewhat of a reputation, you should focus only on projects that make you the most profit and you should always spend some time learning new skills and gaining further expertise in your field.