The global pandemic put millions of people out of work.
If you’re going through rough times right now, it’s important to start earning as soon as possible.
Even if you’re not, it may be a good time to start a side hustle and supplement your current income.
If you have the right skills, the gig economy presents a useful strategy for finding work offering fast payment.
Provided you do a good job, you’ll find yourself with a whole new world of opportunity.
To give you a head start with your efforts, we curated this list of five platforms to find freelance work online.
Each of them has a unique offering, focusing on skills that transfer to the online world.
If you’re a designer or a writer, there’s plenty of work on all these sites.
UpWork is one of the largest and most respected online marketplaces for human capital.
There are hundreds of thousands of freelancers searching for work in a variety of categories.
Signing up with UpWork is easy, but you’ll need to take a verification interview after completing your basic profile.a
If approved, you can start looking for work. The platforms model runs on a job-board style system.
Employers post jobs, outlining the conditions in a brief.
Freelancers bid on the job, offering competitive rates with each other to win the client’s business.
Unfortunately, this often results in a race to the bottom in a price war between users.
You can expect some jobs to have hundreds of bidders, and it’s an overwhelming feeling to attempt to bid against that much competition.
To make matters worse, if you keep bidding and nobody takes your offer, the UpWork admin team determines you’re not a viable contributor, booting you off the platform.
It’s a frustrating platform to deal with, and if you don’t have a reputation, it’s challenging to get someone to take a chance on you.
That said, you can get a lucky break sometimes, and someone might take you up on a bid.
Make sure you deliver top-quality work, and you can begin to build your portfolio.
Many people make a living off of UpWork, and there’s no reason you can’t either.
Fiverr is sort of the reverse model of UpWork.
On this board, the freelancers post profiles and a short description of their services.
The site offers a diverse range of categories for design and content creation.
You get categories for everything, from editing videos to designing logos or writing articles.
Choose the category and build your profile. There’s a certain standard you’ll need to adhere to with your listing.
For instance, if you don’t have a profile picture, the right caption for your services, and an introduction video on your services page, clients won’t bother looking at you.
If you’re thinking about joining Fiverr, spend some time researching what it takes to create an effective listing.
One issue with the platform is that you’ll have no experience and no referrals.
Starting as a new freelancer on Fiverr is challenging, and you’ll need to build your reputation fast to a 5-star level.
Once you’re on your feet and you have a decent reputation, it’s relatively easy to find work, provided you have skills.
Freelancer is another option that is similar to UpWork and Fiverr, offering you a job board to find clients.
They have various tiers to give new users premium access to the site.
It’s not a bad strategy to pay upfront to cut out the noise of thousands of other freelancers trying to compete for the work.
Freelancer is a good alternative to UpWork and Fiverr, but you’ll need to build your reputation to get more contracts.
Overall, it’s a top-quality freelancing platform, but very competitive, just like the other two.
Are you a designer?
Do you feel you’re a step ahead of others in your industry?
If you have design talent, sign up as a creator on 99Designs.com.
This platform specializes in hosting design competitions for clients.
If you qualify as a candidate for the platform, you can start entering contests to win business.
The upside is that if a client chooses your design – you get paid, the downside is that if they don’t – you don’t get paid.
Therefore, it’s a bit riskier.
However, most of the design jobs are basic and don’t take long.
For instance, people might post competitions for brand logo designs.
You complete your design and send it in.
While it might seem risky, if you submit a certain number of projects each day, and you have design talent, it’s just a numbers game.
You can earn income working from home, designing basic projects that yield you extra money.
5. Constant Content
If you’re a writer, Constant Content could offer you a lot of opportunities.
One of the best features of this site is its business model.
Instead of you looking for job listings, you get to submit articles and build a catalog.
Therefore, if you have specialist knowledge in, say, Bitcoin, you could write a series of 10 articles and post them in your catalog on the platform.
Your work goes through an editing team to ensure it’s original, and you meet grammar requirements.
When posting your content in the catalog, you attach tags to the post, “Bitcoin,” “Cryptocurrency,” finance,” in our example.
You’ll also add a price to your work. Constant content takes 33% of the article’s total listed sales price as a commission for hosting your content.
While that might sound expensive, here’s the kicker, you can sell your articles for up to 10X to 20X the sales price you would get submitting articles to a content mill or a client on UpWork, Fiverr, or Freelancer.
In our example, you could sell a 900-word Bitcoin article with relevant content for $97, giving Constant content $33 while you bag the balance of $64.
Compare that to $9 for the same length article at Fiverr.