Since the advent of the technological revolution amidst a rising unemployment rate, the United States has seen an unprecedented number of freelance business operations opening up. It seems everybody knows somebody who owns a mobile office.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that freelancers comprise as much as 3.8 percent of the workforce, which amounts to approximately 15 million Americans. It also accounts for approximately one in every 10 workers and freelance business operations worldwide contribute trillions to the global economy.
But suddenly becoming your own boss with a skillset that is largely based on your marketable skills and talents and not on your business acumen does not come without challenges. It can be all too easy to put a deadline off for some time on the couch, lunch with friends, or a Netflix session if you don't have the right tools.
You don't mind it much at the time until the clock reminds you it's deadline time. But that doesn't have to be you.
Discover these 7 freelance business tools that you can start using today, and streamline your work and improve your bottom line when you do.
Freelance Business Tools
In today's day and age, there are as many freelance business tools as there are freelance jobs it seems. And if you are wondering what tools to add to your business, use the ones that solve your problems, it's that simple.
Make a list of the things that you want to do with your work, and decide where the gaps are in your business model. Is it better time management? Project management? Keys to staying on task even when the new Survivor premiere is on?
There are freelance business tools for that, for all of that. Here are the most common freelance business tools helping millions of business owners.
Time Management Help
There are many freelance business operators today that run steady and smoothly through any given day, and then there are some that get distracted on their video games too long. Or maybe you are texting with your friends because you can get away with it with no employer to speak to, or you take longer lunches than usual.
By the time you get back to your work, you are frustrated with yourself for time wasted.
Time management tools can help you with this.
Google Tasks is one that helps you transform your emails into automatic assignments. Instead of working from email to calendars, entering things into your phone and then setting something up on your desktop, just use Google Tasks.
Another great management tool is called Freedom. This is what you may need if you are constantly sidetracked by video games, texting, Instagram, or….that dress or suit you've been eyeing online right before Black Friday.
Use Freedom to keep you on task, and set timers and limits to online access when you should be working. Reward yourself with that shopping trip when Freedom signs you out for the day.
When you are running your own business, you need to keep good accounting. Small businesses usually have a part-time bookkeeper to do this work for them, but that may be too much for your needs.
There are apps for that.
This is a tool that helps you to keep all our money matters in one place. Do your invoices and your online banking all at the same time, pay bills or send them.
Freshbooks for Writers
Writers that are running a freelance business won't always have a set time period when they get paid. Freshbooks is an ideal tool for freelance writers as it saves you a lot of time in the invoicing process.
Paypal does as well, but Freshbooks gives you a more comprehensive picture, allowing you to input receipts and the like for expenses and bills. It is the only freelance business tool that offers the option of taking a photograph of your receipts so that you don't have to manually enter them yourself.
Speaking of writers, have you considered whether your writing is up to snuff with today's SEO landscape?
Freelance business types range from writing to graphics design and just about anything in between. Even bookkeepers are freelancing it today because finding employment is easier and you are more in control of your career options.
But you need tools that will keep it all organized so you don't lose critical projects or work product.
Trello is a system that allows you to put it all in one place, your projects, contacts, lists, and boards. It's all there.
This is useful if you have a lot of people working the same gigs, or are managing a group of freelancers of your own in your freelance business.
If you like systems like Trello, but you still don't like the added step of leaving one website to check emails or write emails, then you will like Proof Hub. Here you can put all of your work in one place, and contact your clients as well.
Keep track of everything and you will never forget a deadline again.
When in doubt, back it up. When in doubt, put it on the cloud.
Most freelance businesses that are operating today are using tools like Trello, Slack, Basecamp, or Proof Hub to store all project management needs in one place. But many older business owners are not as comfortable as millennials in storing data and financial information in a cloud.
It seems weird. But it's essentially just a storage solution that is as secure as you want it to be.
Keep your project management going in Proof Hub or Trello, but back it all up to the cloud. Then you will know you have everything well backed up.
If a server goes down at Trello for example, you still have your work on the Cloud.
Most software providers offer one, but you can start with iCloud or Google Drive if you want to test drive this tool.
Take Charge of Your Business
The freelance business market is one that is exploding all over the world, with approximately $1 trillion dollars pouring into the economy as a result. Freelance work is more profitable today even than the transportation and construction industries.
On average, freelancers can earn an estimated $28 hourly, which works out to more money hourly than 70 percent of American workers. It's clearly a system that works for many.
But running a freelance business can be difficult if you aren't motivated or driven to produce high-quality work like you would in an office situation. So you need tools for that.
And it seems that more and more are being developed every day. For every freelance problem, there is an app or a tool for that.
Find the one that works for you, or begin marketing your freelance business smarter. Start taking charge of your business and join SEO Clerk today to begin making more money with more productivity tomorrow.