10 FAQs for Freelancers
Answering your most frequently freelancing asked questions
Quick question for you
There’s a lot to learn when becoming a freelancer. Sometimes Google is your best friend and business partner when you need to know your ‘hows’, ‘whats’, ‘whens’, and ‘whys’ – but it’s always good to hear from the experts. Here are our answers to your most frequently asked questions, to make sure you’re totally ready to start freelancing.
1. What does freelance mean?
Freelancing is working on a self-employed basis as an individual, selling your services to a host of clients.
As a freelancer, you can be part of a number of different sectors depending on your speciality. Freelancing specialities can include tech, marketing, virtual assistance, writing, and design, amongst many others.
2. Why is freelancing better than a normal job?
In comparison to a 9-5, freelancers have highly flexible working hours. Freelancing means you become your own boss, enabling you to work from home and schedule around your personal life.
Not working a desk job means you can freelance from wherever you like, with freedom to travel and work on the go. Controlling your own workload becomes far easier than in regular employment, as you can accept or reject additional clients/projects as you please.
3. Which freelancing jobs are best for beginners?
Graphic design and copywriting are the most in demand freelance skills, but also have large volumes of freelancers in the sectors.
Content writing is great for beginners. It is widely available so it is easy to hone your skill and get jobs on various online platforms. Virtual assistance includes easy yet time consuming tasks, so is perfect for beginners. Social media is expanding, providing opportunities to be payed by staying attentive to trends and developing your online marketing skills.
4. How do freelance websites work?
Most freelancing websites work by freelancers posting their services for clients to purchase, and clients posting projects for freelancers to bid on. This can either be a fixed rate or an hourly rate. Freelance websites typically take 20% of freelancers’ earnings.
Revolancer takes 0% of freelancers’ earnings. We believe freelancers should keep the money they’ve worked for – simple!
5. How do freelancers get paid?
Freelancers and clients set up an agreement on pricing before the project. This can include a deposit, an hourly rate, or a fixed rate. Freelancers should then invoice their clients to receive their payment once the project is completed in the agreed timeline.
If, for some reason, your client is late with your payment, it’s a normal practice to apply a late payment fee. Ensure that this is laid out in your agreement before you begin working. To help prevent this, using sites like Revolancer helps to protect your payment by requiring the full fee be paid up front. We’ll then keep hold of this payment until the project is successfully delivered, before then releasing 100% of the funds to you.
6. Is freelancing a good way for students to earn money?
Extra money is always useful, particularly when you’re a student. Freelancing is the ideal way to make extra money working flexibly around your work and studies.
Not only does it provide money, it is the best way a student can get experience. You can build up a portfolio and valuable skills to help your CV stand out after graduation.
7. When do you pay tax as a freelancer?
This will depend on which country you’re based, but let’s focus on the UK for now. Freelancers will need to submit their self-assessment form, minus business deductibles, by October of the following tax year.
HMRC will then send you a bill for any taxes that you owe during this period. You have from when you receive your bill in October until 31st January to pay any outstanding tax on your self-employed income.
8. How do I keep track of my finances as a freelancer?
It’s important to keep your income and expenses logged so that you can refer back when tax season comes around. Ideally, you’ll either keep your own accounts by using a spreadsheet, or pay for an accountant. This will depend on the size of your sole trading business.
There are plenty of apps that help you keep track too. QuickBooks is one of the most popular options with freelancers.
9. How do I put myself out there as a freelancer?
Marketing your sole trading freelance business is a challenge, but it’s a vital part of building your profile. In order to gain clients, it makes sense to create and maintain social media accounts promoting your work. Additionally, ensure that you’re making use of word of mouth marketing by asking for testimonials and encouraging clients to spread the word.
If you’re starting completely from scratch, a great way to build a portfolio is by approaching people and businesses that you’re already familiar with and offering them some work. Even if you don’t charge a market rate to your friends and family initially, it helps to build a backlog of work to show prospective new clients. Having a robust and trustworthy portfolio, including testimonials, is the key to landing new work.
10. How do I ask for a higher rate freelancing?
In the midst of a cost of living crises where we’re all impacted by inflation, prices are rising. There’s no problem is raising your prices in line with inflation to ensure your profits remain materially the same over time. If you don’t do this, your ‘real’ earnings will fall.
Equally, increasing your prices due to a boost in demand, improvement to your skills, or shift in the market is totally fine. Just make sure that you lay out the reasons for your price increases openly and fairly. Some clients may resist this, but so long as your new pricing is sound and reasonable, it’s important to trust your instinct.
We’ve got the answers
We hope you found these FAQ answers useful in your ambition to learn more about the world of freelancing. Should you have any other questions, feel free to get in touch to submit them – we’ll be more than happy to cover your chosen topics in the next edition!
Before you go
Freelance marketplace: Revolancer