In the world of technology we are being part of now, and with the health procedures that have been taken since last year to prevent the outbreak of COVID-19, there would be nothing as good as being your own boss, doing your own thing, at the comfort of your home or working space. If you have been thinking about coding and programming and trying to take the right steps into the freelancing world then you should keep reading this article since we will share some of the most important tips to consider in order to become a successful freelance programmer in 2021.
First of all, it is important to ask yourself a question: are you more of a 9 to 5 working person, or you are someone who loves to work on his own timings? Answering this question will make it clear from the beginning about whether you are going to succeed as a freelancer or else not.
In the world of freelancing – be it a programmer or any other job – you will get the chance to choose your own working slots throughout the day and you could even sometimes be the one putting the deadline for getting the task done, which will be also based on your skills and the time you always take to finish a specific task.
Being a freelancer is also way more interesting than the regular employee because you will most probably receive different projects to work on, related to different entrepreneurs or companies rather than just being stuck in the same field all the time. This will actually give you the chance to open your mind to different people and different points of view regarding several fields, and thus gain more and more experience.
Here are some of the tips which you could follow if you have made up your mind and you think that the freelance world is waiting for a programmer like you!
Specialize In A Programming Niche
When it comes to programming, it is always better to specialize in one thing rather than offer everything all at once, even if you have the skills to do so. One of the top rated in-demand technologies in 2021, and have been for a couple of years already, is machine learning and artificial intelligence, in which you could learn different things like Python, R, SQL, and more, and that’s exactly what getting specialized in a niche means.
Build Your Online Portfolio
Being a freelancer is different from being a regular employee when it comes to the resume or the online portfolio as well, so you have to spend some time working on your online portfolio before you actually start your freelancing career. The online portfolio is very important to the freelance programmer since it actually works as a place where they showcase their previous projects and sometimes even the client gets to see the testimonials shared from previous clients as well before choosing you for their project. Also, the online portfolio should direct the client to some of the profiles you have on the world of social networking, so they get to know more about you and even try to interact if they want to.
Learn How to Market Yourself Online
Since you will be the one attracting the clients to you and your skills, you should then learn how to market yourself online. To market yourself online, you should learn content marketing and this usually includes a website, a blog, profile on LinkedIn, maybe a profile on Upwork, etc. This is very important because that’s where you provide information about yourself, your skills, your experience, and what you can offer, and this is also where clients will be looking for a programmer like you to help them with a project, so always work hard on marketing yourself online.
Set Some Basic Working Rules for Yourself
Don’t just start then go with the flow, but make sure you set some working rules for yourself before you start which should be applied to all the clients you are going to work with. Working rules for a successful programmer include a fixed schedule, fixed basic pay rate for the clients, as well as the schedules which you are supposed to set beforehand including the meetings, deadlines, updates, and any other thing that you might need to share with the client before you start working on the project.
Understand Your Clients
When you first read this tip, you would probably say to yourself that you don’t need this written because you surely know that getting to work with a new client will happen after you understand them and their needs. You are right, but understanding your client in this case is very important, you need to go behind the client and learn more about the nature of the business as well as the goals that the client wants to achieve for this business, and this might not only happen through talking with them, but also through browsing through their website and their social networking profiles to learn more about their services, their products, their history, and even the language they use to deal with their customers.
Work on Your Communication Skills
Knowing how to deal with other people is important especially if you will be meeting new people all the time to make deals about new projects with them. Communication skills are generally known to be important for programmers because they usually work among a team to solve problems, even if what we know is that programmers or coders spend most of their time working alone, which is not true, and that’s why having the right communication skills to deal with people and handle conflicts to reach a final solution is beneficial.
As a programmer, you should know the questions you want to ask your client to get directly to the point, and not just that, but you should also explain things simply because not everyone around you will understand technical stuff. At the end, you should make sure that both you and the client are on the same page, you both can negotiate the deal, and you both can communicate through online as well as offline meetings.
To become a freelancer is not much of a hard thing especially that the world is moving in this direction, giving people the chance to work from wherever they want and whenever they please, but to become a successful programmer or coder who knows how to market himself/herself online and make clients choose him/her over somebody else is what we are talking about.
You could join RoboGarden’s bootcamps to learn more about full stack or machine learning and get some inspiration along the way on how to enter the freelance world and succeed in it. Learn more here!
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