Freelancing is a great way to start off your journey to a lifestyle of freedom, independence and doing work you love.
In the beginning, you get some of the benefits right away and you love your life more because of this. You can work from the comfort of your home, choose only clients you like and which seem like the right fit for you, start new projects whenever you feel like, set your own working hours, travel and still make money, take a day off whenever you feel like and then hustle harder for the next few to bring more money in, and so on.
These are the joys of being your own boss, working online, managing your time the way you want to, caring about what you do, being strategic and productive but not having to answer to anyone else.
At some point, though, you’ll notice some disadvantages. The main one being that you make money only when you’re at the computer. The more hours you invest it, the more you’ll make, sure. But too many freelancers fall into the trap of working too much, not taking breaks, not doing other things they enjoy, etc.
This leads to feeling like you’re at your regular job. You might start hating what you do because of that. And the magic of being self-employed is lost.
That’s not how a business owner spends his time. Administrative and repetitive tasks aren’t something you have to deal with for the rest of your life, you shouldn’t dedicate all your time to work, and you also need to grow the business.
What you need to aim at in this case is earning passive income. That’s how you take freelancing to the next level, how you get back your time but keep making money even when you’re away from your laptop, and how you take the leap from a freelancer to an online entrepreneur.
It’s not easy, of course, and you’ll need to try out a few things to see which one works best for you.
In case you’re wondering how a freelancer can make passive income, here’s what you should consider:
1. Create a product
If you don’t try something you haven’t tried before, freelancing will turn into a comfort zone. And comfort is the enemy of progress. Too many people working for themselves are scared of even thinking about creating a product. However, it’s much easier and cheaper than you think. We’re not talking about hiring a developer and paying thousands of dollars to create an app that might not even get any attention by users. Let’s start with something simpler and for which there’s already a market. You have knowledge on a subject, the point is to share it with people and get paid for it. Once you have a product, it will be a source of income for a lifetime.
Self-publishing an eBook is something you can do. You don’t need to be an expert or hire professional editors and marketers. You just need to gather your experience and knowledge on a certain topic, know more than beginners, organize the information in an understandable way (preferably create a step-by-step guide), do the work in the beginning when writing, editing and proofreading. Get help for the formatting and design if you want to or even create it in Canva or Powerpoint, and start selling it on Amazon or even your site. That’s it.
Then, you can turn this into an audiobook. In the future, you might add video and create a whole course, these are pretty profitable now. Sharing it on Udemy will get it directly in front of the people interested in courses and who want to learn more about this particular subject.
Once that’s done, the only process you’ll keep working on related to the product is promotion, as it never ends.
2. Grow a site and monetize it
As a freelancer, you should have a site and a blog where you write and share opinion on important topics connected to your field.
Put more work and effort into this to get traffic. It will take time, but it will be worth it.
Produce fresh content consistently, provide a great user experience and make the site look professional with a premium theme.
Not only will you become an expert in the field by publishing practical content so often, but your site will grow and you’ll then be able to monetize that traffic.
The easiest way is to publish ads – available in, but not limited to standard and popular sizes – 728 x 90 leadersboards and 300 x 250 rectangles. Advertisers can pay you a flat rate for a specific duration or pay you based on impresssions or clicks.
Another option is affiliate marketing. You’ll link to other people’s products from within your articles, or emails to subscribers, or will even write whole reviews to products your visitors will find useful. Your goal is to encourage them to make a purchase. When that happens, you can easily get 50-70% commission. If you’re in a niche where you can promote software services, or big networking events, or else, each sale might mean a few hundred dollars for you.
The good news, and what makes this passive, is that when you write such articles (preferably super practical and long so that Google can be happy and rank them higher), they will be found by new people all the time and you’ll keep earning commission from something you wrote a long time ago.
These are the easier ways you can start earning passive income. Choose one today, brainstorm some ideas and start turning them into reality.
Soon, you won’t need to freelance all day, every day, and will begin to earn income without being at the computer.