There is a lot of competition out there for web developers looking to make their mark and achieve success. Whatever your goals, starting a career as a freelance web developer requires you to pay attention to industry trends and continuously update your skill set. Take a look at these 7 things you should do before starting your career as a freelancer:
1. Develop Reasonable Expectations
Many web developers have full-time income as self-employed in this industry, but median and average salaries vary significantly from country to country. Reasonable salary expectations help design a career plan that does not lead to disappointment. Focus on expanding your skills and increasing your customer base in an organic way. Set your rates based on your experience level, and then set them up as you create a reputation as a developer. Here is an article published on entrepreneur.com to help you setting up your wages.
2. Create your Portfolio (and Update)
While a resume or CV can help potential clients understand your education and experience, what employers really want is to see your work. Create a portfolio online on your own website or through a market such as Upwork. Show only a few examples of your best work.
If you do not have a wallet, create one. “Hire” yourself to design a website, mobile application, desktop application or piece of software. Show your skills, so customers know what to expect from your deliveries.
3. Requires a Contract
Never do a job for a client before formalizing your agreement in writing. Each standalone deal must include these 8 important points, from your rates to your policy regarding reviews.
- Payment Rate,
- Payment Method,
- Late Payments and Deliverables,
- Point of Contact,
Invite your customers to read the contract and get in touch with you about anything they do not understand.
4. Take Advantage of Your Strengths
Are you an expert in Drupal or WordPress? Do you know Ruby on Rails better than anyone else? When you advertise your services as a freelance web developer, put first that which is best given to you. You can offer additional services now or in the future, but when it comes to marketing yourself and finding new customers, focus your efforts on building a career based on your strengths or stronger market niches.
5. Invest in Premium Tools
Open source software offers multiple free alternatives to payment development tools, but premium software programs and other resources often become profitable in the long run. For example, if you focus on the initial design, buy a Photoshop license instead of relying on free alternatives like The Gimp.
6. Register in Markets
Self-employed markets allow clients and professionals to meet each other in a convenient location. These markets not only offer a comfortable place to request payment to customers but also enable you to accept international payments easily. Already working in the markets?
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7. Establish Networks with Other Professionals
As a freelance professional, you may sometimes feel like an island separated from all others by the endless miles of ocean. In fact, however, millions of people work as freelancers from their homes, so take the time you need to meet them. Networking not only helps establish a supportive community, but it also opens opportunities to generate income. For example, if you know a great freelance writer, you can recommend customers to each other, and you will both be benefited.
When you start your career as a freelance web developer, focus on the tips above to create a solid foundation and succeed in the future. The more experience you accumulate, the more attractive you will be to potential customers.