How to Become a Freelancer: A Step-by-Step Guide

Thinking of starting a freelance career? Here are 5 easy steps to becoming a highly paid freelancer.

5 min read


By Catherine

In the last few years, freelancing has become a popular career choice for people across the world. Not only is it convenient since it does not require going to the office, and you get to be your own boss, but it's also a great way to earn some extra money and create a steady side income for yourself. 

Today you can do freelancing in any field. From make-up artistry, content writing, typing, and transcribing to web and software development, teaching, and accounting. And the best part of being a freelancer is that, unlike conventional careers and jobs, it does not necessarily require a specific degree or experience. If you have a talent for something and know how to allure clients with your work, you are sure to land great business and well-paying projects within a few months of your freelancing journey. 


That said, becoming a successful freelancer requires you to know a few tricks of the trade, that can save you from the initial confusion, and know where to start. 

If you are an aspiring freelancer, this guide is for you. Read this step-by-step guide to becoming a freelancer, to learn more about the journey you are about to embark upon. 

Pick a Lane

This may be the toughest thing you have to do to become a freelancer. Picking a lane is simply choosing the kind of niche you want to pursue, and what kind of freelancer you would like to become. 

In the initial stages of becoming a freelancer, it is important to ask yourself and ponder upon questions like what would you enjoy more: Full-time freelancing or engaging in part-time freelance projects, and what niche would you like to pursue within a specific field. 

For instance, if you want to be a freelance content writer, then what kind of niche would you prefer to write about? Like all other fields, content development is full of exciting, well-paying niches for you to choose from. Finance, Software Development and Technology, General Blogs, and SEO content, are some of the many examples of niches. 

Choose a Marketable Niche

Picking a niche is also a part of answering another daunting question; what do you have to offer to your clients? You can answer this question for yourself by thinking about your daily life, what you enjoy doing the most, and the hobbies or talents that you excel at. 

The beauty of freelancing is that you can offer any service to your clients, without worrying about having a formal education in the field. If you enjoy doing make-up or making videos, you can apply for freelance makeup projects or shoot vlogs for companies. 

Just remember that having a marketable skill helps in scoring clients faster and more efficiently. 

Agreed, choosing a niche and deciding on a freelance path may be overwhelming at the beginning for you. Visualizing your life as a freelancer, researching in-depth about the pros and cons of choosing this profession, and mentally living the ups and downs will definitely help you make well-thought-out decisions regarding this profession. 

Invest in the Right Equipment

Investing in quality equipment that is necessary to support your freelancing journey is important to start working on projects. 

Imagine having a client with a requirement of 5 articles, and not having a computer that is equipped with writing software and related plug-ins to provide quality content. 

However, don’t take this to mean that you have to invest in the most costly equipment at the very beginning of your career as a freelancer. You can purchase basic necessities that fulfill all the requirements and equip you for all the services you offer to your clients at first, and keep upgrading as you gain experience and confidence in the field. 

Create a Portfolio

A portfolio is a collection of all the work that you have done in the past, to showcase your skills, and caliber to your prospective clients. For beginners, a portfolio can be filled with sample work that you have done in your free time. Consider creating a website, a social media page, or a youtube channel as a part of your portfolio. This not only helps in creating a media presence but also gains customers’ trust in your work. 

It is essential to work on creating a diverse and creative portfolio since this is what finally attracts clients to your expertise, and helps you negotiate your price with them. 

Build a reputation

How will your prospective clients know that you are ready for business? How will you connect with new customers to inform them about your services and expertise?

A major part of being a freelancer is to engage in personal branding, which is nothing but creating an online presence of your business and reaching out to people who might be interested in hiring you. 

LinkedIn, Instagram, Medium, and WordPress are the most commonly chosen platforms by businesses to advertise their services to global clients. You can also explore various freelance websites such as UpWork,, and Fiverr to upload your portfolio and get clients. 

Additionally, talking about your niche on social media shows off your expertise, and proves your skills, and deep knowledge of your subject, to viewers who steadily become your followers, once you manage to engage them with your online content.

Another way to build your reputation is of course to deliver quality work, maintain customer relationships, and target customer satisfaction. Doing some free work at the initial stages of your freelance career is not a bad idea. 

These are some ways you can market yourself, and build a reputation for your freelance business to score more clients at a global level.


While there are so many more steps to becoming a successful freelancer, these are the 5 most important ones to start your journey.