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Freelance Opportunities: It Is Not Only about Writing

Updated on February 21, 2012

Why I decided to write this hub

I see most of the hubs here are about freelance writing jobs while there are enormous opportunities for all independent contractors with any other specialty. So I’ve decided to show case some of those success stories so that you are not misled – it is NOT only about freelance writing :)

My personal experience is with oDesk – one of the several well-established platforms for freelance projects; so all of the contractors’ profiles will be taken from there. I would like to point out that none of these contractors have asked me to show case their work, neither they know I am using their profiles to prove a point. Since their profiles are publicly accessible for everyone, I feel it is more of free advertising for them though :)

Look at the categories of freelance projects available

Anyways, as you will see for yourself (if you browse oDesk), there are plenty of job postings in various fields – of course, writing and translation, but also:

- Software Development – with subcategories for desktop applications, games development, social plugins, and more

- Networking & Information Systems – with subcategories for Server Administration, CRM implementation, etc.

- Administrative Support – with subcategories for data entry, personal assistants, web research, email responses, etc.

- Design & Multimedia – including Graphic Design, Logo Design, Illustration, print design, 3D and CAD, and many more

- Customer Service – including phone support, technical support, order processing, etc.

- Sales & Marketing – including Advertising, Email Marketing, SEO, SEM, SMM, PR, and many more (this is my niche and I can promise you there is huge demand!)

- Business Services – including accounting, bookkeeping, HR, financial planning, and more.

Browse the categories you are interested in to see some details about the job postings available. I will not lie to you – the competition is huge, especially in some of the niches. You will see many contractors from the Philippines, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and other countries in the region who are willing to work for little money and thus – dump your prices and make it more difficult for you to win a project. However, there are plenty of buyers who are not after hiring the cheapest labor ever – they do want quality and are ready to pay big bucks for it! Positioning is everything – make yourself visible to the right clients, and you will never have to worry about the cheap prices of so called “competition” fromAsia.

Maxim S - Web Development

Web developer, located in Russia, with over 11K hours worked in oDesk, registered since 2006, hourly rate on his profile is $33.33 and has excellent feedback. There are less paid contractors but there are more expensive contractors, too. It’s all about skills, being professional and positioning yourself before the right clients.

Yuriy K. – Software Development

Adobe Flex & Air Developer, top notch contractor in the Software Development category; located in Ukraine, he has worked almost 6K hours on oDesk so far, with excellent feedback and profile rate fixed at $30.00 – if you go through his work history though, you will see he has been hired at a higher rate, too - $40 per hour is the rate of his most recent contracts.

Vadim Sudenko – Networking & Information Systems

IT engineer, located in Check Republic, you will find him among the top contractors in the Networking & Information Systems category with more than 1000 hours worked on oDesk (actually, his hours are even more than 3000!). With profile rate of $40.00 per hour and only 14 contracts under his belt, he has obviously positioned very well on the website and has found the right clients because he does have continuous work sine 2009 until today.

Eliza Enriquez – Administrative Support

Average paid contractor in the administrative support category. Native speakers (in the US) are twice or more paid, however – contractors from the Philippines, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh (I mentioned this kind of competition earlier in the hub), are mostly in this category – and their rates vary from 4 to 7 dollars per hour. Bottom line, this contractor, not being native, has positioned herself very well with hourly rate of $11.11 and excellent feedback of 4.99 out of 5, with 1200 hours worked and many fixed price jobs completed (145 contracts in total for almost 3 years time). Look at her tests results – she is a smart one, and professional, too. Finding a quality and quick editor and transcriber is hard these days ;)

Iuliana Urechi – Design & Multimedia

Graphic Designer, top contractor in the category for Design and Multimedia. Now, here are plenty of different subcategories in which the payment varies simply because of the difference in skills required and demand for such skills. E.g. for video production, there are only about 150 contractors who have the skills needed – and thus, the payment will be higher. While for Graphic design there is the largest number of freelancers who have the skills to do the job and thus – the payment will be smaller. Anyhow, the featured contractor is a graphic designer and despite the competition in her niche, she has managed to set a rate of $30 per hour. With over 1600 hours worked and 90 contracts (both hourly and fixed price jobs) she appears to be one of the top contractors in her niche, making a decent living by freelancing her designer’s skills. It can be you – she is fromMoldova, not a native English speaker.

Alejandro B. – Customer Service

A successful contractor in the customer service niche – just like in the administrative support category, here are many US based contractors who earn twice and more as much as Alejandro does; but also there’s great deal of competition and price dumping by contractors from the Philippines, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and others. This category is one of the hardest to position yourself with quality at a higher price – and Alejandro has done it. $11.11 per hour profile rate and over 5000 hours worked on oDesk make him a good example of a contractor in the niche. Have a look and see how he did it.

Diana M. – Sales & Marketing

This is my profile; there are plenty of other successful contractors in the Sales & Marketing category – more or less paid; however with the $27.78 hourly rate on my profile, over 20 contracts and more than 3000 hours work through oDesk, I do believe I have positioned myself well on the marketplace of the site and do not really compete against the contractors who are willing to build links for $5 per hour or even worse - $5 for batch of 100 links.

And hey, these are just random contractors I found on oDesk as a result of 2 minutes search in each category. There are hundreds of contractors out there who make a decent living by freelancing their skills – and this is ONLY through oDesk. There are tens of quality websites which offer freelance projects.

If you are inspired from this list of successful quality contractors, let me know and will write some how-to hubs – how to complete our profiles in the freelance sites, how to write a winning cover letter, how to communicate with our clients for a successful cooperation, and more.

I do have a lot of tips to share about freelance and marketing…

Just tell me in the comments how you like this hub and what you want me to write about ;)


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    • Brilqntin profile image

      Diana 5 years ago

      thanks for your comment and feedback, Aiden! is there any specific topic or question about freelance you are interested in? :)

    • aidenmoor profile image

      aidenmoor 5 years ago

      It would always be great if you can offer some of your valuable tips.Great work!