Strategy for getting your first $100 through freelancing (without using a freelance site!)

15 replies
The first time I made $100 bucks online is through freelance WordPress Design. It took me roughly 6 days. I knew how to do it because I had setup personal websites in the past. Honestly though, my skills weren't really that impressive... but I found out that they didn't need to be. Read up on my personal story:

My Strategy:

I found local websites in my area by searching Google. I targeted websites that were poorly done and mismanaged.

Next, I would use the email address on the page and send a FREE, detailed report about how the business owner could improve their website. I didn't make any offer... I simply provided value for the owner immediately. My suggestions were specific and quick; just a few rapid fire ways of making the site better (Layout, colour scheme, copy, etc.)

Finally, after just 4 emails, a small owner contacted me with a request to do business (that is a ridiculously high 25% response rate ). I was shocked... not only did he take my suggestions seriously, he also wanted ME to be in charge of making the improvements! He asked a price, and I said $100. I thought that I was way overshooting it... but later I found out that he was saving up for another designer that charged $1500+! Boy... did I kick myself after finding that out.

So, my suggestion for people out there is to leverage a skill that you already possess... and do exactly what I did. First, provide value with no strings attached. After awhile, people might come to appreciate the work you did for them and offer an opportunity. Leave room to be surprised... and don't necessarily chase the money. Instead, chase helping others and the money will come. I'm sure you've heard that saying before!

Remember: I was NOT amazing when it came to WordPress design. I was just more skilled at it than my client... and that's usually all that matters when you are starting out.

The next step for me is to switch over from freelancing to a more marketing-oriented income source. But freelancing is a great first step.
#$100 #freelance #freelancing #site #strategy
  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    I honestly thought it was going to be more of a traffic solution rather than sheer marketing (like you did - good job!). When i launched my ebook consulting services, when i started promoting it all over my site and emails.... i got alot more inquiries than i ever did before the marketing promotion. But great story, and congrats on your first $100 through freelancing.
    Signature
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10409889].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author SantamNaha
      Hi coolCrawler,

      Thanks for sharing your experience. It's really great to read your story. And much to learn from it.

      Thanks
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10409982].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author activeinternet
    Thanks! This is a useful tip!
    Logical and simple
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10410104].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author David Beroff
    Originally Posted by coolCrawler View Post

    He asked a price, and I said $100. I thought that I was way overshooting it... but later I found out that he was saving up for another designer that charged $1500+! Boy... did I kick myself after finding that out.
    Actually, you did the right thing, and obviously were rewarded for doing so. If you feel that $100 is a fair price, where you earn a fair and reasonable profit for your work, then you can charge that all day long and keep a clear conscience. I might hazard a guess that you'll actually make more money than someone who's charging 15 times more for the same work; note that your client was going to have to take more time before (possibly) going that route.
    Signature
    Put MY voice on YOUR video: AwesomeAmericanAudio.com
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10410299].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author coolCrawler
      Actually, you did the right thing, and obviously were rewarded for doing so. If you feel that $100 is a fair price, where you earn a fair and reasonable profit for your work, then you can charge that all day long and keep a clear conscience.
      The only problem is that I vastly underestimated the time it would take me to do a good job... I put in around 20 hours or so which amounted to much less than a minimum wage job... but I learned far more by doing this and I might not have received the opportunity without lowering the price.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10413881].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Raydal
    Great model and one that many SEO companies follow all the time. There is
    always an email in my inbox from a SEO company who checked out my
    site and wants to make my #1 for my main keyword on Google. But your
    method was a lot more personal.

    -Ray Edwards
    Signature
    The most powerful and concentrated copywriting training online today bar none! Autoresponder Writing Email SECRETS
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10410316].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author malikshahid3232
    Great story! Many and many thanks to share with us.
    This story help me for find out some correct way to proceed to work with all my future clients.

    Best regards,
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10410434].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author jogunn
    Thanks for sharing your story. Getting started as a freelancer can be tough for some. Consider using social media as a developing portfolio of your work and help you stay connected with both current and previous clients. Allowing prospective clients to gain insight on your experience and work ethic can certainly be a positive push to help them decide to contract your services.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10411534].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author irawr
    Banned
    Originally Posted by coolCrawler View Post

    The first time I made $100 bucks online is through freelance WordPress Design. It took me roughly 6 days. I knew how to do it because I had setup personal websites in the past. Honestly though, my skills weren't really that impressive... but I found out that they didn't need to be. Read up on my personal story:
    Cool strategy, but seriously, I have a personally customized genesis child theme, I'm paying 100$ to designers to just modify it and make it look better.

    I need this done about 25 more times.

    I'm looking for people on upwork and freelancer, have a portfolio that has genesis child themes or I don't respond.

    What's likely going to happen here: 2-3 guys will do all of them. I realize a lot of freelancers have trouble finding work, as a person who spends a lot on outsourcing, I have trouble finding people who have skills and produce quality. Also to be clear to any designer who may be reading this, I seriously don't care if it takes you and hour and it looks amazing. I only care about the fact that it looks amazing.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10411547].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author ivanadee
    Cool. Providing value and get money
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10412057].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author MissWrite
    LOL yeah, when I first started reading I was thinking to myself you really under-valued your work.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10414136].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Nexstair
    The Key here is only offer what you can do at your best.your clients would keep you busy as it is not easy to find Good people.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10414372].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author umohlee
    Great story to read, $100 just like that while I'm working my ass to earn $50 a week from freelance site.
    Thanks for the tips
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10414551].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author coolCrawler
      Originally Posted by umohlee View Post

      Great story to read, $100 just like that while I'm working my ass to earn $50 a week from freelance site.
      Thanks for the tips
      I struggled with that same thing for a long time. The problem with freelancing sites is that they are usually a race to the bottom.

      You might be able to make a quick buck (but usually not)... but I would say that it isn't worth it in the long term. I would suggest that the energy you pour into scanning through the all of the garbage of a freelance directory would be better spent into developing a better strategy.

      With a freelance site, people are usually posting jobs with the intent get the cheapest, fastest job. Quality comes second with 95% of the job postings.

      On the other hand, with doing something like I did, you can start to name your own price. You can start to deal with people that care about building a strong reputation. It is no longer a race to the bottom... it becomes an actual professional service that you are getting fairly compensated for.

      Don't lose hope... I use to do the freelancing site thing and I HATED it. But it seems to be the starting point for most people.

      Good luck breaking away from that $50/week!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[10415541].message }}

Trending Topics