5 Free Resources Every Freelancer Should be Using
One of the many benefits of freelancing is the fact that it doesn’t require a ton of equipment or resources, as most freelancing projects can be completed from any location using only a laptop and an internet connection.
With that said, there are plenty of great resources that freelancers can use to save time, expand their skills, and further their career. Best of all, many of them are completely free of charge. In this article, we’ll take a look at five free resources that every freelancer should be using.
Grammarly is automated proofreading software that helps you spot errors in everything you write. While it offers the most value to freelance copywriters, it can help other freelancers as well by highlighting potentially embarrassing mistakes in the emails and messages they exchange with their clients.
The best part about Grammarly is its browser plug-in that works with Google Chrome, Safari, Microsoft Edge, and other popular web browsers. Once you’ve installed the plugin, Grammarly is able to spell-check and grammar-check everything you type online, whether it’s an email, a Facebook message, or anything between.
In addition to the benefit of working no matter what text box you are typing in, Grammarly users enjoy the fact that Grammarly is able to spot more mistakes and make more accurate recommendations about how to fix them than most any other proofreading software. There is a paid version of Grammarly that is able to highlight more in-depth issues such as passive voice, however, the free service offers more than enough value for most freelancers.
Zipbooks is a free accounting software that is perfect for helping freelancers keep track of their finances. With Zipbooks, you are able to create invoices, organize and categorize your expenses, track the time you spend on a project so you know how much to bill the client, set up recurring auto-billing, send automated late payment reminders, and more.
For a small fee, you can also use Zipbooks to get paid right away when you complete a project instead of having to wait on the client to pay your invoice. Just submit your invoice and Zipbooks will send the money to your bank account in less than 24 hours, allowing up to thirty days for the client to actually pay the invoice.
Managing finances is one of the struggles of working for yourself. With Zipbooks, though, you can eliminate a lot of the time and hassle associated with managing your finances as a freelancer.
Work Hard Anywhere
Working as a traveling freelancer has become incredibly popular in recent years. However, one of the challenges of taking your work with you as you travel is finding a great place to sit down and complete it.
Work Hard Anywhere is an iOS app that lists coworking spaces in cities across the world such as internet cafes, enabling you to always easily find a great place to work wherever you happen to be. The website also lists reviews of the workspaces from people who have worked in them, so you can know ahead of time if the location has fast internet, if it is a quiet environment, if the staff are friendly toward freelancers, and so on.
Even if you don’t do a lot of traveling or don’t take your work with you when you do, Work Hard Anywhere can still be used to help you find a great place to work in your home city should you ever want to mix things up and take your work outside your home.
Bonsai Freelance Rate Explorer
Determining how much you should charge for your work can often be difficult. After all, there are a number of factors at play, such as how much experience you have, the field you are in, where you are located, where the client is located, and more.
Of course, you don’t want to bid too high and risk not being chosen for the project, and at the same time you don’t want to bid too low and end up working for less than the going rate.
With the website Freelance Rate Explorer, you can find the perfect middle-ground by easily seeing how much freelancers with your experience, in your field, and in your area are earning.
Freelance Rate Explorers breaks down the average earnings of freelancers based on a wide range of factors, and their data is top-notch. Even if you end up charging more or less than what Freelance Rater Explorer says is the going rate, it is still really interesting and useful to know how much freelancers similar to you are charging for their services.
Given that freelancers are expected to make up a majority of the workforce in the United States by 2027, they are currently vastly underrepresented when it comes to issues such as political lobbying, healthcare, and more.
Enter Freelancer’s Union, which is attempting to change that by providing advocacy for the millions of Freelancers in the US. In addition to providing advocacy for freelancers, Freelancer’s Union also offers health insurance to freelancers, organizes networking events, provides a vast library of resources that freelancers can make use of, and publishes regular updates about issues that freelancers should be aware of.
While the healthcare purchased through Freelancer’s Union will obviously come at a cost, a membership in the union and access to all of its resources is free of charge. If you are looking for a way to better connect with other freelancers and work together with them on the issues that freelancers face, a membership with Freelancer’s Union is an excellent choice.
As the freelancing economy has rapidly grown, so has the number of useful resources that are available to freelancers. This list covers some of the most popular and useful free resources for freelancers, however, there are certainly plenty of other for you to explore as well. If you are looking for an inexpensive way to boost your freelancing career and make your life easier overall, we encourage you to check out the many resources that are available.