Freelancing is all about being efficient. Getting clients, rocking your skills, keeping clients happy, handling the business side, continuously learning and improving your craft and, if you’re doing it right, living the dream. But it’s not always easy. I know because I spent several years as a freelance designer before starting this site. And MAMMA MIA! How I wish this 10 insanely awesome and useful freelancing tech tools and resources had been around back then.
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Every freelancer on the planet knows about old tools like Freshbooks and Harvest. So passé. I’ve gone to an enormous amount of work uncovering 10 BRAND NEW resources freelancers should be aware of. And what I’ve done is break the list into two parts. The first part contains business tools while the last 5 items are community and training resources. In any case this entire list is geared toward helping you make more money because that’s the name of the game. Just because you have some skills you won’t necessarily be able to pay the bills… so dig in!
Freelancing is a lot of things but chief among them all, it’s stressful. Cushion aims to make freelancing less stressful (and more productive and lucrative) by combining scheduling, budgeting and client insights into one neat and tidy package. With integrations with Harvest and Freshbooks, why wouldn’t you go ahead and bring some calm to your unsteady income?!
It’s hard as a one-person shop to stay on top of everything you need to or could. That’s why you need powerful tools like Funnel that take some of the burden off your shoulders. Funnel aims to ensure you never miss closing a deal, or following up with a customer again. It does this by letting you create contact forms, track your deals, send proposals and keep track of your customers. In other words, it gives you a sales funnel — without having to hire a sales team.
If you’re a freelancer, you NEED to be using ironclad, professional contracts. I repeat: do not work without a solid contract. Thankfully, you don’t have to create your own contracts because that would be hellish and time-consuming. With Krit Ink you can focus on doing what you do best while still having the benefit of using awesome freelance-ready contracts. Everything from creating and sending contracts to getting them signed all happens in one convenience place with Krit Ink.
How can you get more done and look more awesome as a freelancer? Collaborate! Forming powerful partnerships as a freelancer can pay off big time — but you’ve got to deal with the logistics of such arrangements, and that can be a bit of a drag. Until now. Pendium is a time and finance tracking tool for collaborating freelancers. When a client pays a team invoice, all parties get paid independently.
If you’re looking for a Freshbooks or Harvest alternative, you might want to give Freelancy a look. It’s simple, combines time-tracking with project management, spits out easy reports and handles invoicing as well. With prices ranging from $5 to $51, there’s a plan that’s probably just right for you and where you are in your freelancing business.
The Freelancer (Podcast)
In freelancing, as in life, advice is essential. Somewhere someone has been through situations that you will face and has valuable insights to share. While some people package as a product and attempt to sell it to you (ahem, see below), other’s make it freely available. And when it comes to business, free advice is not to be scoffed at. The Freelancer podcast is a weekly show for designers, writers and developers looking for a leg up when it comes to the business portion of their job.
If you’re looking for a useful, polished, easy-to-use resource for learning how to be a better freelancer then look no further than Freelancelift. It’s a community/service with blog posts, books, courses, videos, guides and interviews that can help to steer your freelancing career in the right direction. What does this mean? At no time should you feel like you are “on your own,” needing to learn the hard way what works and what doesn’t.
If you’re a freelancer you don’t have to be cut off from the world. While you may not work at a traditional office, and therefore may not talk to as many people as you might like to on a daily basis, it’s still important to interact with like minded people. If you want to learn how to become a better freelancer including everything from grabbing more clients, communicating better with clients, earning more money, managing money, overcoming limits and more, Domino is going to be a resource you’ll want to check daily.
If you’re looking for an immediate boost in productivity, knowledge and freelancing skills then you should take a look at Creative Class. Rather than a random grouping of resources or blog posts that are published whenever, Creative Class serves up 7 lessons (via email) that each pack a serious punch. If you’re a brand new beginning freelancer this might be a great way to jumpstart your business.
7 Recurring Revenue Recipes
Like Creative Class above, 7 Recurring Revenue Recipes aims to give you a handful of actionable insights. In this case, this eBook is designed to help you earn more money by realizing different revenue streams that you may not have considered before (or even known about previously). There’s simply no excuse for NOT earning more money as a freelancer; just don’t restrict yourself to the one type of work you thought you’d be doing in the first place.