As a freelancer, you likely understand that finding work falls on your shoulders.
Different freelance websites, forums, and portfolios can help you find work and create a name for yourself, but navigating the freelance marketplace takes time and skill.
The gig economy is growing every year, so more and more freelancers are joining the industry and taking their careers into their own hands.
However, in order to get ahead and start making money, you need to learn how best to navigate the marketplace and improve your efforts.
In this article, we’ll help you learn what the freelance marketplace is and give you some marketplace best practices.
We’ll also help you learn how to find clients and get high-paying jobs time and time again.
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What is a Freelance Marketplace?
A freelance marketplace is a term used to describe the way freelancers can tap into the gig economy.
It connects freelancers and other independent contractors and consultants to the companies and businesses that are looking for help.
This marketplace exists online and takes the form of different websites and applications that help both freelancers and businesses list their needs and connect to each other for jobs.
Some marketplaces will facilitate the transfer of funds for finished jobs and give freelancers a place to display their portfolios.
Navigating the freelance marketplace requires skills and tricks learned over time.
What is the Best Marketplace for Freelancers?
There are different marketplaces that offer a venue for freelancers to find jobs and for businesses to list their projects.
With so many options, however, it can be hard to narrow down which ones are best.
Here are just a few of the best marketplaces for freelancers.
WriterAccess is one of the best freelance marketplaces out there today.
With a rapidly growing base of both customers and users, this platform focuses specifically on freelance writers, helping clients find the best copywriters, editors, and translators for their projects.
The application and signup process is user-friendly as well, making it easy to join.
Upwork is one of the most popular freelance marketplaces, with over 12 million registered freelancers.
They have a user-friendly website with a simple application to submit in order to be considered for approval on the platform.
Many large brands are also part of this freelance marketplace, which helps you build connections and find clients that you can work with for a long time.
3. We Work Remotely
We Work Remotely helps connect freelancers to clients with a focus on those who are looking for alternatives to the traditional 9-5 job.
There are many different types of freelancers in this marketplace, including designers, programmers, marketers, sales reps, and writers.
You can sign up for a newsletter and get job opportunities delivered directly to your inbox each morning.
Guru has a straightforward hiring process designed to make it easy for clients to find and hire freelancers.
They also have a large number of postings every day, which helps freelancers find work quickly and continue to make connections.
As a growing platform, Guru is also taking in new businesses every day.
Toptal is a site designed to help businesses connect with top talent and high-quality freelancers. It has a tough application process that ensures that only the best freelancers are approved for the site.
They have a portfolio of writers, designers, developers, project managers, and other experts.
12 Marketplace Best Practices
Learning how to navigate in the gig economy requires a different skill set than traditional job hunting.
Having these marketplace best practices in hand can help you develop your skills and grow your freelance business.
They will also help you increase your connections to find more jobs and get more clients.
1. Choose a Niche
Having a freelance writing niche helps you specialize your area of expertise and connect with clients who are looking for someone with experience in a particular area.
While you might have different skills and knowledge sets, it’s helpful to pick just a few to focus on.
This will allow you to become an expert in your field and get higher-paying jobs with clients who want someone who understands their industry or product.
2. Market Yourself as a Freelancer
A freelancer is different from a 9-5 employee, and you want to make sure that the people you are talking with understand that you are a freelancer, not a full-time employee.
This will help your communication down the line and make it easier for you to find multiple clients and manage their expectations.
It also will help you find the right jobs that you are looking for, not more involved full-time positions that aren’t designed for freelancers.
3. Pay Attention to the Setup Process
When you join a freelance marketplace, most websites will have you fill out a profile or application.
Make sure you give this process the attention it needs and dedicate time to ensuring that your profile is accurate, detailed, and informative to any potential clients who might come across it.
You also want to make sure that you tailor your profile toward your niche and area of expertise.
4. Learn How to Prioritize
When you begin to explore a marketplace and get jobs, it can be hard to organize yourself without any supervision and make sure that tasks and projects are completed on time and in the right order.
Learning how to prioritize your time and organize your days so that you have enough time to dedicate to each of your clients is an important step in becoming a marketplace expert.
5. Look Beyond Local Jobs
When you begin looking for work in a freelance marketplace, you might get caught up in the idea that you need to work locally, just like you would when trying to find a 9-5 job.
However, one of the benefits of working digitally as a freelancer is your ability to take jobs from around the globe that work for your skills and schedule.
Don’t let location stop you from trying to find clients or pick up different assignments.
6. Get Comfortable with Rejection
As a freelancer, not every client connection you make is destined to work out in the long term.
They might not like what you do, or it could just be an imperfect pairing.
Regardless, rejection is something that you will need to get used to experiencing as you navigate through a freelance marketplace.
Don’t let a rejection discourage you, instead take any feedback you might have been given and use it as you move forward.
7. Find a Community
With a growing number of freelancers entering the gig economy every year, there are plenty of people you can meet and create relationships with.
Having a community of fellow freelancers can help you find support on your rough days, learn new tips and tricks, and be able to talk through questions and concerns with other people who are experiencing the same challenges that you are.
8. Network and Build Connections
Networking is one of the most powerful tools that a freelancer can have.
Learning how to network on a freelance marketplace can help you take advantage of your connections and create relationships with clients, references, and other freelancers who can recommend you for jobs and help you find new opportunities within the marketplace.
Learn how to network and build connections on LinkedIn.
9. Update Your Portfolio
Your freelance writing portfolio is one of the first things that clients will look at when they are looking your profile over to see if you are going to be a good fit for their project.
While setting up a profile is a part of the setup process when you join a freelance marketplace, you also want to make sure that you are regularly updating your portfolio.
Your work will improve over time as you continue to develop skills, so you want to highlight any new work you’ve done that is a good representation of what you can offer potential clients.
10. Practice Communication Skills
As a freelancer, communication is one of the best skills you can develop.
As you navigate through the freelance marketplace, you will need to message clients and respond to postings.
Even after you have been hired for a role, you will also need to continue communication-based on the progress of the project and any questions that might come up.
Without the structure of a traditional job, you will need to communicate all on your own, so it’s important to keep those skills updated.
11. Boost Your Social Media Influence
Social media isn’t a traditional freelance marketplace like some of the previously listed websites and applications are, but it still can be a powerful tool for connecting you with clients and customers.
Make sure your social media profiles link to your portfolio or website so people can seek you out and explore your work.
You can also use social media to search out freelance opportunities on platforms like LinkedIn.
12. Ask for Referrals and Reviews
Asking for a referral or review might be uncomfortable for people who are new to freelancing. However, this is an important part of working in a freelance marketplace.
Asking for a review or referral from happy clients helps you strengthen your network and build your client base while respecting the opinions and efforts of your current clients.
Being a freelancer can be an incredibly rewarding career.
When you know how to navigate the marketplace with these marketplace best practices, you can get ahead of others joining the gig economy and find the best jobs and highest-paying clients.
When you follow these tips and have confidence in your skills, you will be able to have a successful career.
If you are interested in joining a growing freelance marketplace that has over 40,000 customers, then sign up to join WriterAccess today.
You’ll be able to explore and post open jobs, find writers or businesses, and establish your profile so that you can become a member of a powerful freelance marketplace.