How to Take Your Freelancing to the Next Level

04/12/2016 05:21 pm ET Updated Apr 12, 2017

First off, congratulations on freelancing! If you're wondering about leveling up, you've obviously done pretty well. You've moved up in the world and it's just a matter of doing even better. That's awesome.

What this post will do is give you ideas on how to take your freelancing business to the next level. The tips offered will be about how to bring in more income. Because web design, attending conferences, using the proper project management systems, etc. is all rubbish unless it actually produces more dollars. After all, this is a business. Let's get going.

Freelancing Means Negotiating


If you find this topic intimidating, it shouldn't be. You may just be operating out of fear of the unknown.

Do you have any contracts that have remained the same for a year or more? It may be time to renegotiate. After all, if you were working a salaried position, you would likely get at least a cost of living increase each year.

Renegotiating doesn't have to be difficult. What helps when renegotiating is to be in a position to walk away.

To renegotiate, simply inform your client that your rate has gone up. Tell the client that they are great. It's just that your skills have become more valuable and it's been some time since you've talked money. Tell the client you would love to stay on board but understand if your new price is out of their budget. Read more about negotiating before beginning as this post isn't in-depth on this specific topic.

Find Bigger Clients


You can be doing the same work for a small company or a big one. But the big company can afford to pay a lot more. What you want are the clients who say,
"What's your rate?"
These are the ones who pay the best. Big companies tend to say this.

Work More Hours


Before you skip this suggestion, stop. How do your hours really look? Are you really fulfilling your potential? See what a difference just a few extra hours per week would make. Are you willing to put in those hours?

Hire Help


There are only so many hours in the week. Once you've exhausted the free labor (you), you may want to think about hiring at least one person. Run the numbers. See how much more you can make after paying them. If all goes well, you may want to consider
.

Work More Efficiently


At times, we all catch ourselves doing low priority tasks. How can you weed these out? One way is to create a daily plan and stick to it. You may also want to delete any distractions you may have around you. Perhaps only check email a few times per day. Or keep personal and business time completely separate.

Maybe hardware or software is an issue. What improvements could you make in order to really bring in more bacon? A new laptop? Faster internet? A new piece of software? Whatever it is - you should probably get it. In order to take your business to the next level, you need the right tools. Have you ever tried preparing a nice dinner using disposable utensils? I have. And it's difficult. I know spending is hard at times, but it's also necessary at times. If you want to make money, you must know when to spend it.

Take Action


All of this advice is worthless to you if you don't take action. Do something today. Do something NOW. You're in a really good position. You're doing well. You just want to do better. By working to level up, you don't have to take much risk. Often it's just a matter of doing what you're currently doing only better. Which one of these steps will you implement?