With the rate of self-employment rapidly growing over the past decade, freelancing platforms are an ideal way to find remote work on cutting-edge projects. But getting the most from freelancing platforms requires insider knowledge. Whether you are looking to transition to the freelance market, or you are already an established freelancer, we are here to explain 4 key actions that will help you attract quality work on a freelancing platform.
1. Choose the right platform.
Where you start matters. There are many freelancing platforms out there to choose from, and it is vital you select a reputable site that suits you needs. Assess whether you are looking to work on cheaper short-term projects, or want to build longer-term high value client relationships.
We recommend you choose a marketplace that screens projects and verifies users. This will minimise the risk of you being exposed to fake hirers posting projects that do not exist. It will also help to ensure you are not subject to exploitative working environments.
That brings us onto service fees and hidden charges – each marketplace will charge freelancers a different amount for projects commissioned via their site. Most platforms charge between 20% to 30% of your income plus other hidden fees and subscription costs; these charges can turn what seems like a brilliant deal quickly into a nightmare. At Prolancer we have an ethical ‘fair fee for fair work’ policy and our service fee charges are less than 10% for freelancers (9.9% for the first £600 and 6.0% for anything above that). As a platform we ensure that every project on our site meets living wage criteria.
Whichever platform you choose, make sure you read and understand the Ts&Cs and identify any ‘hidden’ costs.
2. Create a laser-precise profile.
Once you have selected the right platform, optimise your profile and portfolio to showcase the best examples of your work. For each example you include, provide a clear description so potential customers can understand the role you had. Be sure to highlight measurable results to demonstrate how your involvement yielded positive outcomes for the project. Include links, images, and PDFs where possible.
We also recommend ensuring that you select a professional profile picture that will build trust with clients. People like to know who they are going to work with, so use a quality photo rather than an avatar, logo, or cartoon.
If you need more guidance, assess the profiles of successful competitors on the platform. Establish what these freelance experts do well to sell themselves, and note down profile areas they need to improve. Take this research and tailor it to your own portfolio and individual expertise.
3. Promote yourself and showcase your skills.
In addition to creating a laser-precise profile, capitalise on other opportunities to promote yourself on freelancing platforms. Does your platform of choice have an opportunity for you to contribute to a blog, for example?
At Prolancer, verified freelancers can use our Community Hub to showcase their expertise through articles, tutorials, and portfolio posts. This area of the site offers prolancers the chance to share and learn new skills, as well as giving hirers the opportunity to source talent and discover new services. Spotlighted posts are also shared on our socials, further exposing prolancers to potential clients.
Think beyond your profile and use the full scope of freelancing platforms to promote your expert knowledge.
4. Write compelling proposals.
Writing proposals that are engaging and specific to the needs of the hirer is key to getting the most from freelancing platforms. We recommend you tailor each proposal to the client’s requirements, and clearly demonstrate you understand the parameters of the project. It is more worthwhile to send a lower volume of proposals executed to a higher standard, as you will then be able to communicate the quality and expertise of your services.
Each proposal has the potential to create a long-term relationship, and recognising this fact will help steer the writing process. Make sure you include your profile and portfolio within your proposal, too, and you will be sure to impress hirers.
Freelancing platforms should be used as a tool to discover cutting-edge professional opportunities. Finding the right platform, creating an optimised profile, and capitalising on exposure are key to success. These actions will place you in a strong position to attract hirers and send competitive proposals of your own. Prolancer connects real people with real opportunities. Join today.