If you want the freedom to work in the comfort of your own home, then freelancing could be for you.
Many companies today want global expansion. Progressive technology and worldwide audience have opened channels for freelancers and clients alike. The internet has exploded with opportunities to work from home – you can focus on the type of work you enjoy!
If you prefer the stability of a permanent job, you don’t have to leave it. Many of these online jobs can be done on the side, choosing projects to suit your schedule. As your confidence grows and clientele expands, you may choose to pursue it on a full-time basis. The beauty is, it’s solely up to you.
Below are 20 legitimate ways to work from home.
Note: all these jobs require a computer, internet access, and the ability to work alone and meet deadlines. To find out more about job platforms, check out Top 10 Sites For Freelancer Jobs
1. Freelance Writing
The range of writing methods is huge. People can work from home writing articles, promotional material, research papers, press releases and so much more. You can find almost anything to suit your skills, from content writing, ghostwriting, creative writing, copywriting, technical writing to blogging. Many clients pay by the word or project, rather than by the hour.
Requirements: Good writing and editing skills, ability to meet short deadlines.
2. Virtual Assistant
You can provide administrative support to businesses from home, using email, phone, or other client systems. Tasks usually include data entry, processing payments, answering emails, taking calls, creating business plans and managing calendar meetings.
Requirements: Solid computer skills and previous administration experience.
If you have good writing and editing skills, then you can offer your services to polish other people’s work. Many businesses, authors and entrepreneurs seek help in editing or proofreading their marketing material, books, blogs, emails, even social media.
Requirements: A solid understanding of English spelling and grammar, knowledge of proofing marks etc.
4. Graphic Design
There is a constant call for designers. Small businesses often seek logos and other designs on a contract basis. You can use your artistic skills to create graphics for both electronic and print media. Many self-published authors also hire graphic designers for their book covers.
Requirements: Previous experience and qualifications.
5. Data Entry
This covers a range of tasks, mainly inputting data to a spreadsheet or database. Other duties can include form filling, tracking inventory, measuring performance, surveying customers, copying and pasting information from one format/program to another.
Requirements: Good computer skills, administration experience, decent typing speed.
This is more advanced than data entry. You need to enter data into ledgers, keep track of cash flow for small businesses and do their invoicing. This is a service you can do from home on a part-time or full-time basis.
Requirements: Accounting and administration experience.
7. Web Development/Programming
You can design and code websites or write computer software for clients. Many small businesses don’t have websites or the time to create them, so they outsource. If you have the experience, this work is highly sought after and likely to increase.
Requirements: Need to know coding and all the relevant software.
Earn money for your passion. As websites keep popping up, so does the need for images. More and more people are looking for creative and unique photos for their marketing material. There are many platforms where you can sell your photos. Check out Make Money with Stock Photos – 8 Best Websites to Sell Photography
Requirements: A high-quality digital camera, good software and a creative eye.
9. Customer Service/Call Centre
Use your people skills to provide customer service for businesses, via email and phone. You can assist customers, make sales, process orders and liaise with other businesses. Listening clearly and having a good phone voice is important.
Requirements: Customer service experience, administration skills, access to email and word processing software, any other equipment specific to the company.
If you’re a fast typist with editing skills, then this is a good pick. Transcribing involves typing/editing from audio scripts, in accordance with a style guide. You can offer your services to individual clients using job platforms. Or there are sites like rev and gotranscript that provide projects where you can pick and choose.
Requirements: If freelancing alone, you need good quality headphones, word processing/transcription software and possibly a foot pedal. If you’re joining a transcription company, you ’re usually given access to inhouse software.
If you have expertise in a certain field, you can offer tutoring services to help others. There is a big call for online tutoring. You can apply as a tutor for online course sites like Udemy or TutorMe, or you can offer your services to individual clients through job platforms or the community.
Requirements: Industry knowledge, teaching and customer service skills, formal qualifications for some sites.
If you can speak another language other than English, then you can work as a translator. Many businesses want to reach a global audience and seek these services. You can translate for all sorts of mediums, from audio, transcribing to articles and essays. Or take your skills further and become an interpreter for real-time translation.
Requirements: Fluent written and verbal skills in English and a second language.
13. Social Media Marketing/Coordinator
You can offer your services as a social media communications manager. Many businesses and entrepreneurs have little time to engage in social media. You can boost their online presence by managing their social media accounts, communicating with customers, sharing articles and growing their audience.
Requirements: Knowledge of various social media platforms, marketing and SEO.
14. Music Creation
Businesses often need freelance musicians to create unique songs and jingles. This avoids breaking any copyright laws. And you can create music for YouTubers. Some musicians also make royalty-free music, allowing people to use it in their videos for free. This increases exposure and can lead to other commission-based work. Then there are sites like Shutterstock where you can sell stock music, images and photos.
Requirements: Music ability, audio recording software and a creative mind.
15. Video Creation/Editing
The popularity of video content is rising. Since people absorb information in different ways, it’s usually recommended to use text and video on websites. If you have skills in videography, you can create video packages to sell to clients or on online platforms. Or sell your services to edit clients’ existing footage.
Requirements: Previous experience, video editing software and marketing skills.
16. Voice Acting
Used for commercials, radio, television, movies, games, audiobooks, even YouTube. The self-publishing industry has boomed, and there’s a growing demand for audiobooks. Many authors now hire people to narrate their stories.
Requirements: A home studio, soundproofed with a good mic and recording equipment. Many professionals recommend using a voiceover coach.
17. SEO Services (Search Engine Optimization)
Become a master of SEO and offer your services for a fee. You can do webmaster keyword research and help people rank pages in Google. Analyse their websites and give technical support to improve their analytics.
Requirements: Good knowledge of SEO, access to keyword research tools.
18. Sales and Marketing
If you’re experienced in marketing, then you can sell your services as a consultant. There are many businesses, even entrepreneurs, that are happy to outsource. You can analyse their marketing methods, create a plan and implement improvements. You can even combine this with social media management. Also, target authors to help promote their books.
Requirements: Previous marketing experience, SEO and customer service skills.
19. Legal Services
If you have any experience in the legal industry you can offer your skills as a freelancer. Services can include legal advice, legal secretary, legal interpreter, transcripts, even assistance in writing privacy policies for websites.
Requirements: Legal qualifications and experience.
20. Technical Support
If you have experience in information technology, you can offer IT Support services on a freelance basis. Help clients with technical processes and troubleshooting. You can even help bloggers set up and customise WordPress websites. There are job platforms like Upwork that list tech support freelance work.
Requirements: IT qualifications and experience.
Be Wary of Scams
The internet is full of scams as well as legitimate opportunities. You need to stay vigilant of any offers that mightn’t sound right. Here are some tips to look out for:
- Don’t take on anything that requires you to pay for anything.
- Don’t get involved in anything requesting personal information, like your ID.
- Use legitimate online platforms – refer to Top 10 Sites for Freelancer Jobs.
- Avoid ‘Get Rich Quick’ schemes, such as pyramid selling.
- Only accept work from clients with good ratings and verified history, check their reviews.
- Avoid clients offering unusual payment methods (such as gift cards, products etc.)
- Avoid requests to share accounts, where you give the client access to your freelance account (platforms like Upwork won’t allow this).
Pros of Freelancing
Work your own hours – you can work around your other commitments to suit you. This is ideal for parents or people with other jobs. You can choose to work in the evenings and have the mornings off!
Choose your own projects and clients – using job platforms, you can choose which jobs you’d like to apply for. You can also check out the client’s status and reviews to see if you’d like to work with them. And there are businesses (like transcriptions sites) where you pick your tasks from a list.
Work from anywhere – no more commuting! You’ll save time and money working from home. If it’s a beautiful day out, you can sit outdoors or at a cafe. All you need is a laptop and internet connection. Having the freedom to change your work environment can reduce stress.
Less office politics – you won’t get caught up with common workplace issues; micro-management, issues with colleagues, long stuffy meetings etc.
Good for your confidence – being independent and having to learn for yourself boosts your confidence. You’re enhancing your knowledge and problem-solving skills and earning money without relying on anyone else. You get the sole merit for your hard work.
Better work/life balance – when you’re in control, you can adjust work around your lifestyle. You may have a lot of work on, but they’ll be the hours and environment of your choosing. If your family works shift work, you’ll have more opportunities to see them. Freelancing offers a lot of flexibility.
Work to live, don’t live to work.
Cons of Freelancing
No guaranteed stability – unless you land a regular client/gig, it’s hard to predict how much you’ll earn on a weekly basis. You will need to be able to save for quiet periods.
Lack of benefits – unlike a full-time job, you won’t have an employer paying Superannuation or any other benefits. You will need to make appropriate deductions from your earnings to cover this.
Isolation – you need to be comfortable working alone as freelancing and entrepreneurial work can be isolating. You won’t have a colleague to ask questions, so you need to conduct your own research.
More responsibility – if you face any issues, you need to figure it out for yourself. You’re also responsible for invoicing, payments, tax deductions and answering to clients.
Potential scams – as mentioned above, you may come across scams on the internet. Always research the company before making a commitment.
Looking for Something Simpler?
If you just want a little pocket money, you can do this by completing online surveys or conducting website tests. Keep an eye out for my upcoming article on user-testing.
Try it for Yourself
Freelancing is a great way to work from home. The pros often far outweigh the cons. If you’re looking to earn extra money or take your life in a new direction, then freelance work is worth considering. It can offer your freedom, confidence and the chance to do what you love for a living.
Have you tried freelancing before? Share your experiences below!