How to Start Freelancing for Beginners In 7 Simple steps (Complete Beginners Guide To Freelancing)

Before you start freelancing there are certain things you ought to know. Freelancing has proven to be the future of work, especially after the worldwide lockdown during the pandemic. So many people see freelancing as a means to survive, especially as no one knows if the world will experience another deadly outbreak. But is freelancing as easy as people think it is? 

Freelancing as a beginner will not be a bed of roses as many people make it seem. You may even feel like quitting somewhere along the way. When I started as a freelancer, I almost gave up because of the challenges I encountered, which is why I have put up this post I tagged “freelancing 101” after extensively researching about how to start freelancing and having succeeded at it. 

Let’s dive into how to set you up as a freelancer and keep you standing; read on, brave entrepreneurs! 

#1 Set Goals and Objectives for Your Freelance Business

First of all, let me warn you that freelancing is not a get-rich-quick scheme. You have to work out your success; to do that; you must set a realistic goal for yourself. I know how determined you are to succeed, but you have to accept that not every big freelancer started big; some of them were once like you. 

While there is a lot of money to be made from the freelance market, don’t go after all the money at first. You can prepare to get your first client within the first week, and get your first pay, even if it’s not much. Celebrate your success every step along your journey into being that big and popular freelancer you have dreamt of becoming; this will keep you from getting frustrated. 

#2 Choose Which Skill You Will Need to Start Freelancing 

There are several freelancing skills out there, you should go for high-paying in-demand skills. You can read about high-earning freelancing skills for beginners here. Remember, one of the keys to succeeding as a freelancer is consistency.

You have to be consistent in producing or rendering your chosen service. This is why I always advise beginners to go for a skill that they can deliver at all times to keep their clients. Likewise, ensure that there is a market for your chosen skill. A marketable skill will always send customers your way. 

#3 Define Your Niche 

At first, I wanted to go for any freelance skill that could fetch me some dollars. The more the price tag on the skill, the more desperately I wanted it. However, being a jack of all trades always makes you a master of none (Ps: the full quote is ““a jack of all trades is a master of none, but oftentimes better than a master of one.”). That was the situation I found myself in earlier as a freelancer until I decided to narrow down my niche and target a particular audience.

First, what is your passion? What is that skill that you are always ready to deliver even if you are not paid for it? Find that thing you love doing because it will keep you from getting tired of trying so hard to deliver. It is hard to keep doing what you have no interest in.

Ask yourself what type of problem your freelancing skills can solve because people will always pay you if you solve a problem in their lives or careers. This will help you to know your audience and also help you to get clients fast. For example, if you are into health, you can narrow it down to nutritional health, child health, or even fitness. 

Find out if there is a good market for your niche. You can do this by finding out how populated your new niche is. The populated niches will present lots of competition for you as there will be lots of freelancers that have made names for themselves that you might compete with. So, you might want to go for the niche with a good market but less population to enable you to find a good space for yourself in the market.

Check out your competitors. Checking your competitors might make you feel intimidated but don’t let them make you feel small. If there is competition, then there is a market there. On the other hand, no competition might mean that your chosen niche has no good market, which is why people are not interested.


Defining your niche will make your purpose as a freelancer clear for you. You can choose a niche that you can always deliver and one with less population.

#4 Create a Portfolio to Showcase Your Skills. 

Many freelancing platforms like  Behance allow you to create a portfolio and showcase your works to attract clients. When you create a portfolio, ensure that you add the best of your work. See your portfolio as your selling point. When you are done creating this, start sending out links to your portfolio on freelance platforms and social media, you can get lots of gigs through this.

#5 Figure Out Your Pricing

When I started, a friend advised me to reduce my price to the lowest because it would attract lots of clients, and you might have received such advice too. But one thing is for sure; you do not want to appear too cheap because it may scare some good clients away. If your price is too low, you may appear incompetent or even too desperate to get clients. 

On the other hand, no one wants to spend too much on a service, so be careful on how high you price your skill. Remember that you have competitors willing to reduce their prices, so try to find an average price that will not make you too cheap or unaffordable. 

#6 Develop a Strategy for Finding Clients

After all is said and done, how do you get clients as freelancers? When it comes to getting clients, you have advertise your skill. Here are a few tested and trusted ways of getting clients as a freelancer; 

  • Join Freelance Platforms 

Many freelance platforms enable freelancers to get hired, like Upwork, Fiverr, and many more. I always advise beginners to go after the freelance platforms that are less popular and new because those popular ones will present lots of competition for them as they are crowded with lots of freelancers with track records of delivering good works.

  • Leverage Freelance Job Boards 

Never underestimate freelance job boards, as they have helped lots of freelancers get hired. As a beginner, you can make use of the opportunity provided by these freelance job boards and save yourself some of the stress of always searching for clients. 

  • Utilize Social Media to Get Freelance clients

Social media remains among the best places to get clients as a freelancer. You can do this by advertising your skills for everyone to see; luckily for you, so many clients are on social media like Facebook. LinkedIn is also one of the best platforms to get clients, so optimize your profile by updating it and making your skills visible. To start popping up whenever a client searches for a certain skill.

  •  Get Freelance Clients Through Networking 

As good as other methods of getting clients sound, nothing beats personal testimonies and referrals. You can get your friends to recommend you to their companies or people in their circle. You also need to start attending gatherings and functions that can help your career, like conferences, meetups, and events, and give out as many of your business cards as possible.

  • Use Email Marketing to Get Clients

Email marketing is great way to get freelance clients. You can target a particular client and decide to send them emails, telling them of your service and making them an offer if possible. 

  • Get Listed and Encourage Reviews

Positive reviews are those things that make expert freelancers stand out; the reviews are the testimonies. So always encourage clients to drop reviews for you as it will help you grow. You can even make them an offer in exchange for a review, but you have to be careful, so you won’t appear as if you are bribing them. 

#7 Start Producing Amazing Works

WOW your clients by delivering the best quality works. Retain these clients by delivering extra value than what they paid for. Also ensure that you meet up the deadline you were given without compromising quality. No client wants to stick to a freelancer that cannot deliver on time, no matter how good they are. Especially if you are subcontracting, your agency needs someone to help them keep their clients by delivering early.

Final Thought

Congratulations on having the patience to go through this post; you have proven to have one of the key attributes of successful freelancers: patience and consistency. While these steps are tested and trusted to get you to the top, remember that consistency will keep you there. You might also encounter some challenges but never give up brave entrepreneurs. See you at the top.

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