11 Best Freelancing Tips for Beginners in 2024

If you’re starting out with freelancing in 2024, you’re not alone. Nor are you late. The world has adapted to the remote culture, and more companies are opening up to moonlighting employees. Before I lend my helping hand and give you my best freelancing tips, here are some statistics:

In 2023, the number of worldwide freelancers was 1.57 billion (46.4% of the global workforce), contributing more than $3 billion only from freelancing sites. That’s huge!

But there’s another side to the coin. Around 90% of freelancers quit only after a few months of starting out. Why? Because they don’t get in without knowing how this industry works.

I’ve been freelancing for the past 3 years, and I know a lot about it. Hence, in this article, I’m writing down my best 11 freelancing tips for you. Here goes:

My 11 Best Freelancing Tips

1. Define Your Expertise and Offerings:

Before you get too excited and start reaching out to prospects, define what you want to sell and how. When I started out, I was applying to any and every gig out there. The only thing in my mind was to get work and earn money. I was stupid, you’re not.

Before selling anything to anyone, you need to know what you’re offering. This, in my opinion, is the most important freelancing tip I can give you.

Begin by conducting a thorough self-assessment to identify your skills, strengths, and areas of expertise. Consider your professional background, education, training, and any specialized knowledge you possess.

Narrow down your focus to a specific niche or industry where you can offer the most value. Define the services you’ll offer, such as graphic design, content writing, web development, consulting, etc. Be specific about the types of projects you excel at and the problems you can solve for your clients.

Pro Tip: Pick either from your professional background or your hobby. My professional background is tech, and my hobby is writing. I picked writing.

2. Perfect Your Skill Set:

Continuous learning and skill development are essential for freelancers to stay competitive in their field. You can’t just be another generic writer offering 5 blogs or a designer offering 20 designs a month.

Identify the key skills required for your chosen niche and invest time in mastering them. The competition is high, and you need to stand out. That is if you don’t want to compete with others on price. That’s miserable.

Take advantage of your knowledge and uniqueness. For example –

If I offered my clients 5 technical articles a month, I’d be outdone by any other writer.

But instead, I offer my clients 5 technical articles on Salesforce. I’m a 2x certified Salesforce developer with 1.5 years of experience. Who’s going to compete with me now? A few!

Similarly, find your unique aspect, blend it with your offering, and constantly upskill.

3. Stay Ahead with Regular Skill Updates:

It’s not just your skill set that you need to update. The freelance industry is constantly evolving, with new trends, technologies, and best practices emerging regularly. To stay in the game, you need to modify your offering too.

Always follow relevant blogs, newsletters, podcasts, and other freelancers in your niche to stay updated with the industry. Participate in webinars, conferences, and networking events to connect with industry experts and fellow freelancers.

If you’re a writer, mix your offer with SEO. If you’re a designer, mix it with design template creation and strategy. Learn, evolve, and upsell.

4. Build a Strong Portfolio to Showcase Your Best Work:

Portfolio is the most important thing that decides the trajectory of your freelancing career. If you’re a beginner, learn to build a strong portfolio. If you’re a veteran freelancer, constantly update your portfolio.

Your portfolio is your most powerful marketing tool as a freelancer, showcasing your skills, expertise, and experience to potential clients. Create a visually appealing and user-friendly portfolio website or profile that highlights your best work. It could be your LinkedIn profile, a one-page Carrd website, or a multiple-page custom site.

No matter what platform you choose, include a variety of projects that demonstrate your range and capabilities, such as case studies, client testimonials, and before-and-after examples.

Organize your portfolio logically, with clear descriptions and explanations of each project’s objectives, challenges, and outcomes. Want to have a look at my writing portfolio? Check out my

5. Utilize Online Platforms to Find Clients:

Online freelancing platforms like Upwork and Fiverr offer a convenient and accessible way for freelancers to connect with clients and find work opportunities. But that was years ago. The competition is fierce, and such sites are full of established freelancers. Newbies have almost no chance there.

Instead, create a solid profile on social networking platforms like LinkedIn, X, and Instagram. Most of the freelancers hunt clients through social networking sites.

Build your social profiles, highlighting your skills, experience, and achievements. Customize your profile to appeal to your target clients with a professional photo, engaging bio, and relevant samples of your work.

Proactively search for projects that align with your expertise and interests and submit tailored proposals via cold DMs or emails.

“But Sushrut, isn’t it hard? Social networking sites have competition, too.” Of course! Read the next freelancing tip.

6. Develop Your Digital Presence:

As I said, social networking platforms have fierce competition, too. Hence, to outwork your competition, start building a personal brand. Use these social media platforms to engage with your audience, share updates about your work, and network with other freelancers and industry professionals.

If you’re a writer, ghostwriter, social media manager, branding expert, or else, build your presence on LinkedIn and X. If you work in the video industry, target YouTube or Instagram.

For example – I’m a writer and branding strategist. I position myself as one on LinkedIn and X. Ever thought of people getting inbound clients? That’s what a good social presence can get you.

Consistently create and share valuable content, such as blog posts, articles, videos, or podcasts, to position yourself as an authority in your niche and attract potential clients.

Want to learn the art of personal branding? I’ve created a free eBook. Get it here.

7. Invest in the Right Tools for Improved Work Quality:

The first six freelancing tips are all about starting out and getting your first few clients. Now, I’ll give you tips on how to serve better and retain clients. Start off by providing quality work.

Quality work requires the right tools and resources to get the job done effectively and efficiently. Evaluate your workflow and identify any tools or software that can streamline your processes, improve productivity, and enhance the quality of your work.

Invest in professional-grade tools and equipment that are essential for your freelancing business, such as design software, project management tools, communication platforms, and hardware upgrades.

For example – I use Slack to communicate with clients, Notion for content, and GPT-4 for ideas and research. Consider factors like usability, reliability, and compatibility with your existing systems when choosing tools, and stay updated with new releases and updates to maximize their potential.

8. Set and Adjust Prices Accordingly:

Pricing your services appropriately is crucial for freelancers to ensure fair compensation for their time, expertise, and value they provide to clients. Freelancers partially fail because they’re unable to charge well. What’s the point of working for hours when you are getting paid peanuts?

Hence, research market rates and industry standards for your specific niche and skill level, taking into account factors like your experience, qualifications, and the complexity of the project. Determine a pricing structure that reflects the value of your services and aligns with your financial goals and objectives.

Be transparent about your rates with clients and clearly communicate the scope of work, deliverables, and any additional fees or expenses upfront. Regularly review and adjust your prices as needed based on changes in market conditions, your level of experience, and the value you deliver to clients.

There will be times when you’ll have to say no, even to a dream prospect. But don’t worry, there are thousands who’ll pay fair.

9. Negotiate Fair Agreements Effectively:

Beginner freelancers are exploited. It may be in terms of payment, work, or hours put in. One of the most crucial steps of freelancing is to negotiate and sign a contract before starting the work. You also need effective negotiation skills to establish mutually beneficial agreements with clients and ensure a successful working relationship.

Before starting any project, clearly define the scope of work, deliverables, timelines, and payment terms in writing to avoid misunderstandings or disputes later on. Be proactive in discussing potential issues or concerns with the client upfront and propose solutions to address them.

Negotiate a fair and reasonable price that reflects the value of your services and the client’s budget constraints, taking into account factors like project complexity, scope changes, and additional requirements. Maintain open and honest communication throughout the negotiation process, and work only if mutual consent is signed.

10. Manage Expectations with Realistic Deadlines:

Last week, I was on a call with a prospect. They asked me to commit to an unrealistic result within an unrealistic deadline. I immediately said no and dropped off. I lost a potential $2000 client, but I won my mental peace.

Managing client expectations is essential for freelancers to deliver projects on time and maintain positive relationships with clients. Let’s admit it, we do freelancing because we want to work on our own terms. And what’s the point of it when we’re fretting over unrealistic deliverables? You need to set realistic deadlines based on your workload, availability, and the complexity of the project.

Hence, be proactive in addressing any issues or concerns that may impact the project timeline and work collaboratively with the client to find solutions and meet their expectations.

11. Don’t Be Shy in Requesting Referrals and Testimonials:

This is my last freelancing tip for you

Satisfied clients can be one of your most powerful marketing assets as a freelancer. Don’t hesitate to ask clients for referrals or testimonials once you’ve successfully completed a project and delivered exceptional results.

Heck! I ask for testimonials and referrals after two months of good service!

A positive recommendation or testimonial from a satisfied client can help build credibility, trust, and social proof for your freelancing business, making it easier to attract new clients and projects. Reach out to clients politely and professionally, thanking them for their business and expressing your appreciation for the opportunity to work with them.

Politely ask if they would be willing to provide a testimonial or refer you to others who may benefit from your services. Make it easy for clients to provide feedback by providing clear instructions and guidelines for testimonials and offering to assist with any questions or concerns they may have.

Incorporate client testimonials and referrals into your portfolio, website, and marketing materials to showcase your track record of success and reinforce your value proposition to potential clients.

Best Freelancing Tip of all time

I have been in the freelancing space for three years and worked with 15+ clients. The above mentioned 11 freelancing tips have helped me reach where I am today. But let’s be honest, all of this may be a bit overwhelming.

Let me oversimplify it for you with one last freelancing tip: Network with freelancers who are where you want to be. Learning from these people will help you avoid the mistakes they made and replicate the success they have now.

Makes sense? Awesome. If you have questions about freelancing, writing, or personal branding, feel free to reach out on LinkedIn or X.


1. How can I be successful in freelancing?

Success in freelancing requires a combination of defining your expertise, perfecting your skills, staying updated with industry trends, building a strong portfolio, utilizing online platforms effectively, developing your digital presence, investing in the right tools, setting fair prices, negotiating agreements, managing expectations, and seeking referrals and testimonials from satisfied clients. Ah! That’s a lot.

2. How can I get freelance work easily?

Getting freelance work requires proactive efforts such as defining your expertise, perfecting your skills, building a strong portfolio, utilizing online platforms and social networks, developing a digital presence, investing in the right tools, setting fair prices, negotiating agreements, managing expectations, and seeking referrals and testimonials from satisfied clients.

3. Who hires freelancers?

Freelancers are hired by a wide range of clients, including small businesses, startups, entrepreneurs, agencies, corporations, non-profit organizations, and individuals. These clients may require various services such as graphic design, writing, web development, consulting, marketing, virtual assistance, and more.

4. Is freelancing very difficult?

Freelancing can be challenging, especially in the beginning stages as you navigate the learning curve, establish your business, and build a client base. However, with the right skills, strategies, and mindset, freelancing can also be incredibly rewarding and fulfilling. Success in freelancing often requires dedication, perseverance, adaptability, and a willingness to continuously learn and improve.

5. How do I manage client expectations in freelancing?

Managing client expectations is crucial for freelancers to deliver projects on time and maintain positive relationships with clients. It involves setting realistic deadlines, communicating openly and transparently with clients about project scope, deliverables, and timelines, addressing any issues or concerns promptly, and working collaboratively with clients to find solutions that meet their expectations.

Additionally, seeking feedback and providing regular updates throughout the project lifecycle can help ensure client satisfaction and project success.

Sushrut is the key content strategist and writer for FuelEd Community. He is a content writer and content strategist with experience in domains like technology, freelancing, and side hustles.

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