A Practical Guide on How to Become a Freelancer in India

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On a weekend when I was surfing the internet and searching for some work from home jobs, I found a very common question on almost every site “How to become a freelancer in India?”

This question makes me think about today’s topic. After researching the internet I found very few relative results for this question. And most of the guides out there on how to start as a freelancer in India gives extremely shallow advice.

To know how to work as a freelancer in India, first, you have to understand what is freelancing and freelancer.

Let’s start from the beginning!

What are freelancers?

Freelancers are the self-employed persons who works on different jobs for different client at the same time.

what is freelancing
What is Freelancing

They are not a direct employee or not being hired by them. They work contractually.

Generally, Freelancer earns money on the pay-per-jobs basis. Some of the freelancers charge on an hourly basis.

Should you start as a Freelancer?

Should you start as a Freelancer
You should start as a Freelancer

Freelancing is a good choice for may of the people, who wants to leave boring 9-6 jobs and those who want to work from home. Though there are plenty of liberties in freelancing jobs it does not suites to everyone.

 Being self-employed and starting your own business is not easy. To be successful in freelancing you should have the following qualities and tendencies:

  • Ready to work alone
  • Ability to organize your time.
  • Be multitasking.
  • Ability to work on any surroundings.
  • Always be self-motivated.
  • Ability to cope up with risk & Uncertainty.
  • Make your self-confidence on top-notch.
  • Brush up your communication skills.
  • Ready to work on flexible timings.
  • Make your skill unbeatable.

Once you figure it out successfully you get a lot of opportunities, not just in India but all over the world.

According to Fiverr, a leading freelancing platform, freelancing revenue in 2019 was $107 million and active buyers 31st December 2019 grew to 2.4 million.

From the above statistics, we can say we are going towards a world where freelancing is becoming more demanding because clients and businesses find it more effective than full-time workers.

The trend is increasing because of the cost cut down of many companies. Now their tendency is to just hire a freelancer for a specific job and pay per-task.

Thanks to the freelancing service provider to make an opportunity for a lot of people wanting to be a freelancer.

So, I think I highlighted some points about why you should start your carrier as a freelancer.

Read more: Work From Home:10 Ways to Make Money Online

How to Become a Freelancer in India

How to Become a Freelancer in India
How to Become a Freelancer in India

Step:1 Choose your niche

freelancing topics
Choose a niche for Freelancing

Choosing your niche is the most important and crucial part to start as a freelancer.

There are a lot of niches that give you the opportunity to work on it. First, make a list of those skills that you have and then choose one or two that you are master off.

As an example, I have the skills in graphic design, logo design, content writing. But after that, I realized that I am an expert in content writing. So, my niche should be content writing.

Be specific and honest while choosing a niche. Because all your work will be on this niche and if you are not good in your niche it is very difficult to serve your client the best. Because your service is your reputation in the freelancing market.

Step:2 Create a Portfolio

Create a Portfolio
Create a Portfolio

You may state that you’re an SEO expert. But unless you upload a testimonial your client is unlikely to believe. So, when you’re creating your profile make sure to add some proof that validates your skills and experience that you have illustrated in your profile.

If you are a beginner it is hard to get testimonials or some proof of your work. So, it’s my suggestion to create a portfolio with some sample work and try to accept jobs at a discounted price.

Step3: Build a social audience

Build social audience
Build social audience

Most freelancers use social platforms to showcase their work and from there they get leads to different freelancing jobs.

We all are social beings. Let’s understand why you should showcase your skills and experience with this simple example: When we go to Flipkart or amazon to buy some product, we first check their ratings and user experience. This is how the client do when they search for a freelancer.

Social media like Linkedin is a good source of gigs. The platform is popular because of its service to effortlessly find a freelancer for their work.

If you are in the content writing field the Another best platform is Quora. It not only makes your content writing skills best but also helps you a lot to showcase your skills and generate leads.

Step:4 Build authority blog

create a blog
Create a blog to build auhority

The more authority you build the more you get

Try to build authority. Authority means how much expertise you are in your niche. That not only helps you to bring more clients but also helps you get a higher price of your service.

For that set up a Blog and showcase your work, skills, and experience into the blog. This will also help you to build your portfolio.

Step:5 Choose freelancing platforms

best freelancing websites
Best Freelancing websites

There are a couple of good freelancing platforms. If you are a beginner I suggest working on Fiverr & Upwork or else you can go for any other platforms.

There are a lot of opportunities in the Fiverr and Upwork. You may be from any industry, but there are jobs for you.  

  • List of best freelancer sites:
    • Fiverr
    • Upwork
    • Freelancer
    • Guru
    • Simplyhired
    • Peopleperhour
    • 99designs
    • Flexjobs
    • Hireable
    • Taskrabbit
    • Skyword
    • Designhill
    • Nexxt

They are the leading freelancing platform. There is more than that.

Step:6 Build your profile on these platforms

Build your profile
Build your profile

Most of the freelancing platform has its pre-designed template. Just you have to fill this out with your information.

Fill this out with proper details because this profile tells your potential clients about you and your service, skills, and experience. So take time and make your profile unbeatable and make the client understand why you are the best for this job.

Here is something that you have to fill when you will go to register on Fiverr.

  1. Name
  2. Email Id
  3. Phone no
  4. Country
  5. A short description of yourself
  6. Language known
  7. Skills
  8. Education
  9. Certification (If any)

In most of the freelancing website, you will find these basic columns.

Step:7 Find work

Find jobs on freelancing sites
Find jobs on freelancing sites

If you are looking for jobs and clients, here are some tips that you will keep in mind.

  1. Apply for the jobs, that you are confident you can do.
  2. Do not apply those jobs that you can’t complete within time.
  3. Select those jobs that you can deliver with satisfactory results.
  4. Craft a relevant cover letter that shows why you are the best for this job.
  5. Be always online.

You are building your reputation from scratch thus you have to acquire positive feedback from the client end.

Types of Freelancing jobs in India 

There are a lot of freelancing jobs in India. You can choose from them. Some of the categories are

  • Graphics & Design
  • Digital Marketing
  • Writing & Translation
  • Video & Animation
  • Music & Audio
  • Programming & tech
  • Business
  • Lifestyle
  • Finance
  • Legal
  • Admin support
  • Customer service

Read more: Start A Business with No Money 2020

Qualifications to Become a Freelancer in India

Qualifications to Become a Freelancer in India
Qualifications needed to Become a Freelancer in India

Qualification, not a barrier to becoming a freelancer. You can be a freelancer if you have only limited qualifications. Here the main thing is that you have to skilled enough in your niche.

But in some cases, some of the freelancing jobs require a level of qualification. But most of the jobs do not require any qualifications.

For example, if you are good enough in SEO or in Digital marketing, that does not mean whether you are qualified enough or not. You know the skill of how to do SEO or digital marketing. That’s all!

So, readers if you are thinking you are not qualified enough, thus you can’t be a freelancer, it is totally wrong. Try to make yourself a skillful & experienced professional.

How to Qualify for a Freelancer?

Here are the 4 tips that may help you to qualify for freelancing jobs.

  1. Try to enrich your web presence
  2. Try to collect testimonials from the client you have already worked for.
  3. Always showcase your work samples and case studies.
  4. Enrich your communication skills and the approach towards clients.

4 tips to be a better Freelancer

4 tips to be a better Freelancer
Tips to be a Better Freelancer

Whether you are a programmer, photographer, SEO expert and web developer these tips will help you a lot to become a better freelancer.

1. Go for quality, not for quantity:

If you are new in freelancing you might go for bid on different projects at the same time. But keep in mind the quality of projects is more important than quantity.

Try yo figure out about the client’s business as much as possible. Once you study in-depth make a document where you can put this comprehensive study.

This will help you to win in the bid. Remember getting a high priced gig is similar to getting a job.

It is good to get a high priced gig than a number of low-quality gigs.

2. Offer your clients in a clean manner:

Always try to make a clear and transparent strategy for your client. Make them easy to understand what, why and how you will give them the best result that they want.

Try to make yourself trustworthy to your clients.

3. Give some surprise to your clients:

Your client is also a human. And everyone lover surprise. You can deliver over what they want. And also some time you can give them a discount on what they promise to pay.

Sometimes you can provide some additional tasks to them. Make them understand that you want to take ownership of the project.

4. Always try to contribute to improving the product:

There are a ton of little yet successful business enhancements that are disregarded even in the greatest of organizations. Subsequently, your customers will consistently adore a consultant who makes a special effort to propose enhancements and proposals.

Read more: Best Online Business Ideas 2020

Freelancers earning in India

As per ZipRecruiter, the normal yearly pay for independent journalists in the United States was $63,488 in 2019. The normal independent author made $31 60 minutes.

As per an ongoing overview by PayPal, specialists in India, on a normal, acquire about Rs 19 lakh. The overview further separates it:

  • Around 23 percent of consultants win in the scope of Rs 40-45 lakh every year
  • 23 percent gain in the scope of Rs 2.5-5 lakh a year
  • 13 percent gain between Rs 10-15 lakh yearly
  • 11 percent gain Rs 2.5 lakh or less yearly
  • 8 percent gain Rs 7.5-10 lakh yearly

Top freelancer countries

  • United States – 78%
  • United Kingdom – 59%
  • Brazil – 48%
  • Pakistan – 47%
  • Ukraine – 36%
  • Philippines – 35%
  • India – 29%
  • Bangladesh – 27%
  • Russia – 20%
  • Serbia – 19%

Freelancer tax in India

Freelancer tax in India
Freelancer tax in India

Specialists chip away at explicit assignments and get compensation or expense for the work. They are not utilized by anybody. Assessments for such livelihoods and for such callings can most likely be a befuddling viewpoint.

A similar tax assessment sections apply to the outsourcing people also. Salaries up to Rs 2.5 lakhs are not saddled upon, salary between the qualities 2.5 lakhs to 5 lakhs are exhausted @ 10%, 5 to 10 lakhs @ 20%, or more 10 lakhs @30%.

A consultant likewise should know about TDS. Elements you go into an agreement with or work for may deduct charge at a level rate on the entirety of your income/expense according to the law. In any case, you can recover a portion of this cash from the administration by asserting an expense discount.

Is freelancing legal in India?

In the event that you are in India – no, there is no lawful necessity for you to enlist yourself as a specialist. Notwithstanding, on the off chance that you are straightforwardly associated with Govt. contracting then you should hold a legitimate Govt. given permit.

While it can’t require you to be enrolled as a Freelancer in India, it may not be an impractical notion for you to be related to an increasingly bigger expert gathering of consultants.

Full-time jobs vs Freelancing

Full-time jobs vs Freelancing
Full-time jobs vs Freelancing
Full-time jobs

Pros

  1. Consistent income
  2. Job security
  3. Some benefits from the company
  4. Fixed timing of work

Cons

  1. Not flexible timing
  2. Don’t work remotely
  3. Don’t have time to get involved with your passion
  4. At least 30hrs. Of work per week.
Freelancing

Pros

  1. You decide if you take a job or not
  2. Can live the freelancer lifestyle
  3. Can set your own schedule of work
  4. Can work from anywhere

Cons

  1. Inconsistent income
  2. You have to be multi-skilled
  3. There are no sick days in freelancing
  4. There is no one to help you with your work.

Conclusion

If you are bored with 9-6 jobs and want to start freelancing, this is the right time you should take off.

In the article, I have covered almost every point that might help you to become a successful freelancer.

Let me know about your journey of becoming a successful freelancer in the comment section below.

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