6 Marketplaces To Sell Your Freelance Services Online
Many people actually have some skills that can allow them to make a full time living online over the internet. And they have no clue that they are not very far away from actually making it a reality.
Some of the common skills to generate a sustainable online income include:
- Graphic design
- Basic coding
- Website design
- Expertise on specific software
- Search engine optimization
And usually when you politely ask someone who any of these skills why they haven’t tried to make it out on their own by starting a business or freelancing, the usual reason, or excuse, they give is that there is too much competition and that they have no idea how to find customers over the internet.
Well here’s some good news for you.
An online market is basically a global market. This means that the pie is so HUGE that every service provider will be able to grab a piece and live off it. So even though there will be a lot of competition, the market is big enough to accommodate everybody.
I believe that most people will agree with global market potential. The real challenge that people ponder over is how to finds clients to sell to.
And if you really think that you face a huge challenge in finding customers online, you are thinking too much. Because there are many places online that are bursting with buyer traffic. Many of these marketplaces either let you list your services for free or charge a small fee.
You don’t need to be an internet marketing guru to get your products and services in front of the eyes of prospects.
And here are some of the busiest marketplaces that will help you make a full time living online. I’ve left out classifieds-type websites like Craigslist and directories like Yelp as they are not really marketplaces.
1) UpWork.com – previously known as oDesk
This is the website made famous by being repeated mentioned in the best selling book “4 Hour Work Week” by Tim Ferriss.
When I first learned about oDesk, I thought that it was just a business providing virtual assistants that work remotely. And that I would keep it in mind should I need to hire a staff like that.
Boy was I wrong. It is a big marketplace portal.
Because I didn’t think from the angle of a service provider, the opportunity alluded me for quite a few years.
Elance was also an established website in the same mould as oDesk. They merged and became UpWork.
This is the perfect name for a freelancing marketplace.
Buyers will be looking for freelancers to do odd, contract, or one-off jobs that can be delivered online. And freelancers want to put their names out there as someone who… freelances.
The domain name “freelancer.com” would probably be worth a few million dollars.
Another big marketplace that spends a hefty budget on online advertising.
You will find everyone offering every thinkable services here like:
- Admin support
- Legal services
- Multimedia design
- Engineering expertise
- Translation and transcription
Still think you won’t be able to find customer for your skillset? Carve out a niche if you have to.
I don’t know how to explain it. But I view Fiverr as the most marketplacy of all the freelancing websites mentioned.
I think one of the reasons is how Fiverr brands itself. And also how it is operated.
Unlike other freelancing sites where buyers and service providers negotiate for prices and custom jobs, Fiverr is filled with sellers that state exactly what they will do for a given price.
This makes it easier for buyers to determine whether a “gig” is clearly what they require. It also helps sellers avoid nasty buyers who insist on extra work outside of what was agreed.
You can find almost every type of service being offered as Fiverr gigs on the portal.
Even though the services provided by the Fiverr community can be customized, the systematic process of how transactions take place makes it more of a marketplace than the rest.
This is a forum for anyone either trying to make, or already making, a good income online.
It’s one of, if not the most, well-known forum for such individuals.
And it has a marketplace that is absolutely buzzing with activity.
You will have absolutely no problem finding clients here as long as you provide a legitimate service.
But be mindful that because it does not have a proper rating system, it is relatively easy for service providers to underdeliver or don’t deliver at all with little to no consequences. This have led the community to be more careful when purchasing products and services on the marketplace.
I know because I’ve had first hand experience buying a $500 service on the marketplace. The seller did not deliver and refused to provide a refund. I had to get my money back via a credit card chargeback.
So don’t be surprised to find prospects asking you a lot of questions before purchase just to make themselves more comfortable doing business with you.
The best services to offer here are those that are related to online marketing. This means things like article writing, SEO services, banner designing, website coding, copywriting, etc.
This is another make money online community that is buzzing with activity.
And what do you know… they have a marketplace as well.
Don’t let the name fool you. Black hat has nothing to do with hacking or phishing. This is a great forum where members have more freedom to express themselves. So don’t be surprised to find members who speak without being politically correct.
The best way to describe the conversations on this site is that you will find material information that “people know but don’t talk about”. Participants truly share a lot of in-depth information that can help you.
Even newbies are seldom talked down to like a discipline master to a student. And if you do encounter bullies on the forum who troll you unnecessarily, usually others will jump in and help you out.
No more worries about finding customers
I know it can be tough to convince you that these online marketplaces will provide more than enough customers for you to make a living. Especially if this is new information to you.
I suggest that you keep your day job, but jump in and give it a try online. I’m sure that you will find the results pleasantly surprising.
Just remember to offer an honest service that does not leave people feeling short-changed. Repeat customers are what will make a big difference in your income.
When you start, you might have to offer cheap prices to get the ball rolling. Even so, keep quality as a top priority. Buyers value quality over quantity. And when you prove yourself as a quality provider, people will be willing to pay premium prices for quality.
Finally, don’t forget that your ratings matter a lot. Buyers on online marketplaces depend on ratings to judge whether a seller is credible and trustworthy. People look at feedback before they hire a virtual worker. In order to consistently obtain good ratings, treat your clients with respect and always over-deliver.