Kick start your freelancing career with these tips

Kick start your freelancing career with these tips

Sunil Kumar's photo
Sunil Kumar
·Sep 17, 2020·

5 min read

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Freelancing is one of the best ways to earn a little extra money on the side and it can even replace your 9–5 job and give you the freedom you always wanted.

I decided to write this blog since so many people showed interest on this topic on twitter:

This blog is basically a little more elaborate version of the tweet.

Just to give you context, I’am a Computer Science graduate, working as a software developer from past 6 years. Even though I had lot of experience with different programming languages like Python, Golang, Java, HTML / CSS / jQuery, JavaScript etc, I always struggled to get started with freelancing, well until last year. I didn’t know how to convince clients that I can do the job.

I had been applying to jobs on platforms like Freelancer, Upwork etc for years with 0 conversion. I was discouraged and doubted if I can ever make money on the internet by freelancing. The thing is there are too many developers on these platforms and the chances of your application getting lost in the noise is pretty high.

Last year I hit a goldmine when one of my friends introduced me to Codementor. I created a profile on this platform and was able to earn close to 1500$ per month. And I was mostly working in my free time along with a day job, at a startup! Codementor is relatively new and high paying compared to other platforms. You can charge a task 50$ what clients usually pay 10$ for the same task on other platforms.

Follow these tips which have worked great for me. These tips will help you land your first freelancing task:

Profile Picture: Put a good profile picture in which your face is clearly visible. It is very important to have profile picture. Do not leave this blank.

Profile Bio: Your profile bio should mention your top skills. This is what clients see when they search for freelancers for their tasks.

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Expertise Section: In the expertise section, mention all the tools which you can work on. For example: PostgreSQL, Mongo, Git, Redis, Redshift, AWS, Bootstrap etc. Even if you’re not an expert at something, still mention them, you can figure out things later based on what the task needs.

Employment Details: Add your current employment details, projects, technologies used and social media details. This gives more confidence to clients that you’re an experienced developer.

Enable Notifications: When you’re getting started you need to enable email notifications so that you’re notified whenever there’s a new task with your skills. I would even recommend to keep a browser tab open and monitor for new tasks until you complete your first 5–10 tasks. Once you start getting good reviews, clients will come to you with more work. But Initially you need to put that effort to make this happen.

Here’s the secret to land your first task

The trick is to be quick!

Whenever there’s a new task, quickly show your interest (by clicking Interested button) and also drop a message in the chat explaining why the client should hire YOU! Here’s what my message generally looks like:

“Hi X.

I’m Sunil Kumar. I’m currently working as a Senior Software >Developer at a startup. I have been working on Y & Z (HTML/CSS and JavaScript for Eg) from past 10+ years.

I can quickly help you with your task. Let me know if you’re >interested to discuss further”.

I repeat.

The trick is to be quick when you’re getting started. Generally people come on these platforms looking for a quick help after being stuck for a long time. Once the task is done, ask clients to drop a review for you. This will help you land more tasks in the future

Do not stop at this point. Build relationship with your clients. Think long term. Most of the times they come back to you with more work if they loved your work. You can even drop messages once in a while asking how they’re doing and if they’re looking for any help.


  • Everyone can do freelancing. You just need to know where to find clients.
  • Apply for jobs even if you’re not 100% sure. You can learn as you start working on the task. The worst that can happen is, you’ll end up refunding the client.
  • Be transparent with clients. Tell them how many hours of work a particular task can take. Do not undercharge or overcharge. They always consider quality over quantity. They’re always ready to pay more money for better work.
  • Always ask clients to leave you a review and comment. This will help you find more jobs in the future. But do not force them!
  • Build trust with your clients. If clients love your work, they will always come back to you with more work.
  • Once you get the confidence, start taking bigger tasks like building a complete website. It can be intimidating in the beginning, but it very rewarding and you can do freelancing full time and quit your job!

I hope article helps you to land your first task and get started with your freelancing career!

Here is my Codementor profile for your reference.

Connect with me on twitter, where I’m generally more active and share my thoughts on Software Development, Freelancing and Building SaaS products.

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