The world is currently shifting to depend more on the work-from-home model and freelance opportunities, especially after the need to maintain a social distance as a result of the current challenging situation that the world is experiencing. With this new model of work, “freelancer” is a term whose concepts have begun to expand to all kinds of industries and fields. According to “Hsoub“, the Gulf countries are at the head of the Arab countries that provide better environments for freelancers by encouraging self-employment and enacting laws to support them and improve their conditions. Despite the support currently available and the obvious benefits of self-employment, freelancers are still facing many difficulties and challenges. So, what are these freelance challenges? How can they overcome it? This article will explain that.
What are the freelance challenges?
Managing finances is one of the most prominent freelance challenges.
Freelancers usually do not know how to determine the cost of their services, which is the most important element to attract their customers. Some of the solutions that can help determine a fee for your services are:
1- Get the first 3 paying customers: If you don’t have real paying customers, you don’t have a job. So first get the first 3 real paying customers and ask them for any amount, no matter how small it is. Then you can ask them to rate you on freelance sites and recommend you. This will strengthen your profile and you will look like a professional. This will probably increase your chance of getting more jobs and then you’ll be able to ask for better fees.
2- Determine an hourly rate: As you know, there are many ways to determine your fees. Customers can pay you per hour, project, or month. To start, set your hourly rate, it makes things clearer and easier for customers and takes them out of the business details circle. You can initially set your price according to the rule of “Drop-3-Zeros” which depends on knowing the average annual wage of a person specializing in the same field of work and then removing three zeros from the number. So, for example, if the average annual wage for a person working as a digital marketing specialist is $64,000, to determine the hourly price, remove three zeros, then your hourly rate will be $64. Check this guide to know more about the 3 proven systems to find (and raise) freelance hourly rates.
Another freelance challenge is receiving money and issuing bills. Business owners find a real problem in finding a cheap and fast way to send money to freelancers. They often use transfer methods such as PayPal, Payoneer, Western Union, or bank transfer.
Time and task management
Working from home is what most freelancers do. This may be a good thing, but at the same time, freelancers run the risk of not completing tasks on time or being unable to manage their time and tasks. Therefore, it is better to allocate a special room or office. You need to keep yourself away from distraction or interruption during your work. Check these 5 tips for creating a perfect home office to work effectively.
You can also use different tools to help you manage your time and tasks effectively. Such as Slack, Trello, or Asana. These tools can help you create projects, add, distribute, and follow tasks with deadlines.
Finding new opportunities and high competition
Payoneer says that 73 percent of freelancers find their customers online, while 33 percent find new work opportunities through personal and social relationships.
Related articles: Career networking tips: Lay the foundation for your career
Despite the vast space and diversity of opportunities available, finding a good job opportunity is mainly related to your skills and building a personal brand for yourself. In addition to that, you need to be able to deal with market trends through research and study.
Always remind yourself that once you find a new opportunity, deal with it passionately and this challenge will become a lucrative pleasure.
Personal branding is one of the 8 things you need to start working on as a freelancer. To do so you need to build a strong online profile. It can be an account on one of the most promising freelance platforms in the Middle East, which you can check here, or a personal website that you can build easily without any tech knowledge required using GoDaddy’s Websites + Marketing tool.
Having a website that acts as a portfolio allows you to highlight your previous work and skills. It shows how professional you are and that you are ready to invest time and effort to excel in your business. You can also consider it as an archive of your work, achievements, and customer testimonials.
Related articles: 5 steps to build a personal brand with a personal website
You can overcome these freelance challenges
We know that freelancing can be challenging and difficult, and we hope that we’ve covered the most pressing challenges that you face as a freelancer and provided you with the help and tools that you need to overcome them.