Are you ready to make your living as a freelancer?
You have the skills and the passion – now you just need clients so you can make money!
There’s no one way to find clients online that works for every freelancer.
There’s no one way to find clients online that works for every freelancer.
Nor is there a magical formula that will guarantee that clients will come knocking down your door.
The key is to explore a variety of ways to find potential clients online and see which ones work for you.
As a beginner, finding clients online can be a daunting task. Here, I’ve listed nine ways you can seek clients and gain work as a freelancer!
Ready to get started?
One of the most obvious ways of finding clients online is to check out job sites.
There are hundreds of job sites out there for freelancers where you can apply for positions posted by clients.
However, the competition on job sites is huge, especially when it comes to content writing. And with so many people applying for the same jobs, you’ll find that many freelancers will low-ball their rates just to get work – and may not get paid.
Don’t let that discourage you, though!
There is definitely a potential to find clients online through job boards – just take some time to refine your pitching process and check job sites frequently.
Here are a few you should check out to get you started:
Freelance Gig Economy
The gig economy refers to platforms that connect freelancers with clients for temporary work opportunities.
Uber and Airbnb are examples of popular gig economies.
Gig economies allow you to choose your job, or “gig,” connect with clients, and gain freelance work.
Unlike job sites, gig economies focus on connecting clients with freelancers on a job-by-job basis.
Whereas job sites allow companies and businesses to fill consistent positions with specific types of skills, gig economies expose you to a wider variety of work.
Plus, sometimes a simple gig can turn into a full-time opportunity with a client!
Here are some gig economy apps you should check out:
- Hubstaff Talent
You can also use social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, and Quora to find clients online.
On Twitter, follow freelance job boards and freelance-related hashtags to keep an eye on job leads.
You can also post tweets about services or build connections with potential clients by liking and sharing their content.
When it comes to Facebook groups, join groups related to the freelance services you offer.
For example, you can join a group for freelance writers or one for freelance graphic designers.
Post questions, answer questions and build a rapport with other members. If the group rules allow, you can post your services and what you have to offer.
Less popular social media platforms can be useful as well when it comes to finding potential clients online.
Quora and Reddit, for example, are great platforms for asking and answering questions.
The more you answer questions, the more you are valuable to other users.
You can optimize your profiles on these platforms to include your freelance services, upping your chances of landing a client!
Build Business Connections
Another solid platform you can use to find clients online is LinkedIn.
LinkedIn was created for businesses and employees to connect.
Use your profile to showcase your freelance portfolio and connect with others in the industry. You may just have potential clients checking out your profile!
You can engage with their content to get noticed such as commenting on their posts or requesting to become part of their network.
Use LinkedIn to connect with businesses, brands, and individuals you would like to work for.
Start a Blog
There’s no better way to showcase your skills and talents than by having a blog!
Not only can you show off your freelancing skills but you can give potential clients some insight into who you are as an individual.
Plus, with the right setup and SEO-optimized content, your blog will start attracting clients to you.
Whether you are repositioning a current blog to showcase your freelance services or starting from scratch, don’t forget these important elements:
- Hire Me Page
- Portfolio Page
- About Me Page
- Contact Page
Make sure each page has a call-to-action that asks the client to do something such as getting in touch with you to ask questions, learning more about your services, and contacting you to work together.
While you’re creating the content for your blog, it’s also important to visualize who your ideal client is.
This way, you can speak directly to them on your blog!
Start by figuring out both your niche (the area of content you specialize in) as well as the type of content you want to write (blog posts, magazine articles, landing pages, etc.).
When it comes to how to find potential clients online, starting a blog is an easy and passive way to have them come to you!
Write Guest Posts
A huge part of knowing how to find clients online is getting your services in front of as many people as possible. You can do this by writing and publishing guest posts on popular websites and blogs.
Think about your niche and what you are an expert in.
Write an in-depth article and pitch it to a site that accepts guest posts.
Many sites will let you include an author byline where you can mention your freelancing services or you can casually drop your services in the content by connecting the point of the article with what you do.
This method of finding potential clients online isn’t just limited to freelance writers!
For example, if you’re a freelance graphic designer, you can put together an article about a certain aspect of your niche (i.e., “Why Logo Design is Crucial To Your Brand’s Image”).
Network With Other Freelancers
Despite the world of freelancing being notoriously competitive, there’s a fantastic sense of community among all kinds of freelancers.
Networking and connecting with other freelancers provides you with the opportunity to learn the tricks of the trade such as how to find potential clients online.
It also helps when you need support or encouragement.
However, freelancers sometimes end up with too much work and are willing to pass on some jobs to other freelancers.
Building a rapport with other freelancers could mean picking up some paid work – which could lead to building relationships with potential clients.
Knowing how to find clients online isn’t all about finding new clients.
It may be worth going back and touching base with previous clients that provided you with short-term work.
There are many reasons why a relationship with a client might not extend past one project: there wasn’t enough money in the budget to pay you, the scope was beyond what you could handle at the time, the timing wasn’t right, etc.
Now is the time to follow up with these people and see if they are interested in collaborating again!
Whatever the reason was for not continuing the first time around may be nonexistent so maybe now is the right time to work together.
Online Forums and Community Groups
For freelancers looking to expand their client base, online forums and community groups, such as Reddit and Quora, present a gold mine for gigs.
Instead of direct promotions, the key is to join and participate in relevant communities and consistently offer insightful answers or solutions.
A graphic designer, for instance, can engage in design-related forums, while writers can dive into blogger or content marketer communities.
Make your focus on contributing genuine value, so you look like the expert but also organically pique the interest of potential clients.
It’s crucial to have a well-optimized profile that highlights your services, so those impressed by your insights know what you offer. Always remember to respect each community’s guidelines to maintain a positive reputation.
If all else fails, you can always send out some cold pitches!
Trust me, they are not as scary as they sound. The worst a potential client can do is say “no” or ignore your email – you have nothing to lose!
And everything to gain if you find clients online this way.
Here are some tips for sending out an amazing cold pitch:
- Look for potential clients– Research blogs and websites in your niche, paying attention to the ones that can use some improvement.
- Read about their business– You want to tailor your pitch to each client you email so make sure you understand what they do and why they do it.
- Don’t use cut-and-paste templates– Make sure you write a unique pitch for each potential client you contact.
- Offer some trial work– You can never know what kind of budget business owners have, so you can get your foot in the door by offering a “trial.” This will give potential clients an opportunity to see the value of your work before committing financially.
- Link to your portfolio– This will showcase your skills and experience. Bonus if you have testimonials as well!
Again, you may hear crickets after you send a cold pitch or you may open the door to an amazing opportunity!
When it comes to how to find clients online, cold pitching is definitely worth a shot.
How to Find Potential Clients Online
Every long-lasting relationship with a client starts with getting your name out there and reaching out for those paying freelance jobs!
You never know which one-shot jobs are going to turn into full-time work.
By trying any of these methods, you’re sure to get some paid work, gain experience, and build up an amazing clientele.
Now I want to know: How do you find clients online? Share your tips in the comments and check out the rest of the blog for some invaluable freelancing tips!