Time Management Tips That Will Help Grow Your Freelance Business
Learn more about this topic in the FREE Six Figure Freelancer audio course, where Alex Fasulo covers all of this and more.
As unglamorous or unsurprising as it sounds, effective time management is essential if you want to grow your freelance business. As a freelancer, you’re selling your services, which means you’re selling your time.
The more you can take control of how you spend your days, the more work you can take on, and the more time you have to focus on growing your business sustainably.
But time management as a freelancer can be overwhelming as it changes on a daily basis. From customer service support to revisions to pitching projects, how exactly you’ll balance all of it in a given day is unpredictable.
Ready to take your freelancing career to the next level and start earning income that is reflective of your hard work and dedication? All that stands in your way is an effective time structure.
If you’re able to coordinate your own time system that incorporates all the biggest elements of freelance income, it’s possible to stay at home in your pyjamas, and earn an income that is comparable to business owners, managers, and executives within big companies.
So, what are the secret tricks for making it happen?
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1. Know when to say no
As freelancer, we all know the hustle that goes into hunting down new projects. It’s part of the rush and the unpredictability we all love and cherish. However, that’s why it can be so hard to identify when it’s time to say no to a project.
Reasons we should consider saying no from time to time include having too much in our queue already, identifying that the buyer might be a complicated and difficult person to work with, or understanding that it might be out of our area of expertise. Agreeing to projects that we really can’t take on will deter buyers from using us again. They can tell if we weren’t able to put in the work it required, or if we simply did not come with the knowledge that was required to do an excellent job.
More: Why Using a Time Tracker is a Game Changer for Freelancers
2. Research the competition frequently
I earned $150,000 in 6-months this past year as a freelance writer, and I attribute my edge to my obsession with researching the competition. The world of freelancing is ever-changing and fiercely competitive, so you can’t get complacent. That’s why I study gig titles, descriptions, and so forth of the other people selling exactly what I’m selling.
From my observations, I use a little bit of inspiration from each and every seller, as well as an average of their pricing, to arrive at a formula that places me competitively in the center of every service I offer.
3. The psychology of pricing
Pricing can be an incredibly confusing, awkward, and unnatural element of the freelancing process. Many freelancers question their set pricing, asking themselves if they should charge less or more. How can you know where that sweet spot exists?
The psychology of pricing places emphasis on charging more for your services. Why? It communicates to buyers that you are of high quality and worth a higher rate than the competitors. Now, I’m not saying you should charge a rate that is incomparably higher than the rest of the entire industry. You have to be somewhat reasonable. But, setting “cheap” rates will immediately tell buyers that your product is a cheaper product.
Not to mention, take some to sit down and analyze how much time goes into each order. Remember: each freelancing project is more than just the project itself. How much time did you spend answering questions, pitching clients, and engaging in customer service? How about revisions once the order was completed? Consider this aggregate value when identifying where you want to set your pricing.
Read more: How to Use a Time Tracker to Manage Your Time and Productivity
4. Organize your time blocks
Lastly, although this point doesn’t sound as fun or exciting, you really need to sit down and analyze your time blocks.
How much time is allocated to answering messages, talking to clients, actually completing the projects, and revising the projects each day? My day generally includes one to two hours of customer service support, five to six hours of actual project completion, and 30-minutes to one hour of revisions. This breakdown is what has provided me with the right formula to draw buyers in, while also guaranteeing top quality commitment to each project I complete and edit on a daily basis.
Now, one size fits all time blocks won’t work for every freelancer. Each industry is different. But, if in doubt, it’s safe to assume this generic time block structure is one that will position you for success moving forward.
Easy Fiverr time management tips
I’d be remiss if I didn’t include additional common sense tips that I’ve discovered through my work on Fiverr:
- Avoid procrastination at all costs: with the instant book feature on Fiverr, six new projects could appear while you are sleeping
- Never sell yourself short: you can do more than you think you can do
- Start small: if you feel overwhelmed by the day ahead of you, start small and work through each task piece by piece
- Get enough sleep: our focus and energy is directly related to the health and restfulness of our bodies
- Step away from the social media: power down the distractions while you are in the zone
- Buyer requests: if you feel like the orders aren’t flowing, there is a feature within the Fiverr platform that lets you apply for jobs directly
- Marketing: you can also take your Fiverr gigs to the web and let other people know about the services you are now offering
Related: 5 Ways Time Tracking Can Make You a More Productive Freelancer
It’s an incredibly exciting time to be a freelancer. A recent study in Forbes confirmed that more than half of the U.S. population will engage in freelancing by 2027. Find your mojo and approach every day with an energy and motivation that carries you through each and every task.
Six figures can be yours as a freelancer. All that stands between you and that paycheck is some time.
To learn more about managing your time for six figures, check out this episode of the Six Figure Freelancer audio course, where Alex shares more of her tips for earning six figures through Fiverr.