Running a freelance service is a dream for many people, however, it can be a reality. The issue is that for many the process to get started is daunting and worrisome. Using WordPress however can make running and managing a freelance service fairly simple. We hope that this can give you some good starting advice for freelancing, and that you can start your new venture well!
If you have a WordPress site up and running, that is great. However, if you do not, this is a good place to start. Establish a basic website, and set it up to be as simple or as complicated as you would like. Do not allow yourself to become overwhelmed with designing a WordPress. Your WordPress site can set you apart, but it’s also important that your writing, as well as what your business is about, shines clear. You may have a specific field of interest in writing, be it technical, or perhaps topical. Make those interests and specialties clear, and if you haven’t established that sort of presence yet, don’t worry too much about this. As you write and find work, a pattern will begin to emerge, as well as your ability to sculpt your image.
Once you get your website set up, you should consider plugins for your site. Plugins allow your WordPress to perform a wide variety of functions. Installing a plugin generally is not difficult, by design. WordPress has a number of plugins developed by companies to help complete different tasks. Some of the most pressing for you, however, are going to be ways to grow your business. Sprout Invoices may be one of the most helpful for you. Being able to create invoices is the way that you are able to collect payment from your customers. Installing the plugin is simple. If you purchase a pro-plan, you simply download it from the link provided, go to the plugin page on your WordPress dashboard, and click to upload. The free version is done in the same way, but you download it directly from the WordPress search on the plugin page.
Either way, spend a bit of time setting up your invoice. This is helpful to keep track of both your payments, finances, and customers. It is also a good way to make it convenient for your customers to pay. With a paid plan you can get not only customize your invoices, but also have a wider level of tools to work with. You would be able to establish recurring payments, more payment options, and even notifications that you can forward to your customers. These sorts of advantages help set yourself apart from other freelance competitors, as well as provide a method for you to officially secure payments. Without an invoicing program, you will be at the mercy of emailing back and forth, as well as your customer’s memory.
Once you get these steps accomplished, you have to begin the process of finding work. Other plugins can help retain customers, as well as get some important information. We have a list of them here. Either way, finding work for freelancing can be difficult in the beginning. The good news is that there are opportunities in places you may not expect. Consider looking at businesses in your local area, especially ones just getting established. Offer writing services to them to help boost their online presence, and help increase their customers. More established businesses may be more likely to have the money for this sort of project, but may also want to be more selective if you are just starting out.
It is important to establish a proper pay amount. You should establish how much your time, as well as your word count, is worth. In the beginning, you will need to keep a low price, but one that is still worth your time. If you build a strong base of business however, you could increase that price later, as new jobs come in.It is important to establish a proper payment with your customer before you begin the work. Once that is established, you get down to writing, and turn in a first draft! This is also a good time to send an invoice. Keep in mind that some writing opportunities will take more research and background than others. This may be worth adding some to your pricing.
Also, don’t be afraid to reach out to people. If you hear of a new business, or opportunity that may work, be sure to take a swing at it. The worst that happens is a rejection, and you move on. This can be daunting in the beginning, but do not be discouraged at the effort. Building a network of contacts is important for being able to secure business as well as ensure other future possibilities.
Moreover, if you have any social media presence, be on the lookout for different opportunities. Many people are looking for individuals starting out, to contribute to passion projects. While going without pay isn’t the greatest, if it is a project you are passionate about it can provide opportunities closer to your fields of interest, and easily create a wide net of contacts who can help you grow.
All of that being said, Sprout Invoices would love to help you in your freelancing journey. Sprout Invoices is designed for the purpose of helping you as a writer get paid. It’s all well and good to get ‘experience’, and ‘exposure’ but after a certain point you want to get down to the money. That’s completely fair, and completely understandable. Our WordPress plugin is designed to make it easy to not only to get paid, but also to make the process of invoicing easier. Invoicing can take a significant portion of time, but Sprout Invoices can make the job at the more manageable. One last tip, make sure that you actually set aside time to do invoicing. This is a trickier thing than you might think, but it is so vitally important. It is extremely easy to lose track in the midst of the work you want to do to stop and invoice. Make it a habit to ensure that you get paid. It is our hope that you will choose to Sprout Invoices to help you get paid.