Freelancing is in vogue. Well established companies remain slow-moving to employ full-time staffers, choosing rather to deal with short-lived or agreement workers they don’t need to lure with advantages – and with whom it’s simpler to cut ties when tasks are finished. As a result, a swiftly growing cohort of startups is leveraging on-demand freelance labor like never ever before. A whole cottage market has arised to supply support for these employees in the U.S. and abroad.

In 2013, a much-touted Intuit research discovered that at least 25 % of U.S. workers currently freelance or work as temps or independent professionals. The research also forecasted that by decade’s end, that number would be 40 %. For workers who can encourage themselves to abide by a routine schedule without supervision, freelancing offers plenty of benefits. Veterans point out benefits such as the capability to make their own hours, having even more time for child-rearing and family activities, and the chance to pursue creative or tough jobs that couldn’t be offered in a more regimented environment.

Where Can Freelancers Find Work?

To fend off financial pressures that could leave them hoping for cubicle life, freelancers have to constantly watch for brand-new tasks and chances. These resources assist thousands of freelancers discover work online and in their cities, keeping their abilities sharp – and their bank accounts full.

1. Elance

Boasting complete member revenues of about $1.1 billion since mid-2014, Elance brokers freelancer-client relationships in numerous broad categories: shows, mobile app development, design, writing, and marketing. The platform, whose customers consist of significant companies such as Mozilla, CareerBuilder, and Disney, sees more than 100,000 job posts per month. Anybody can enroll in an account and search easily for postings.

However, having an Elance account doesn’t assure work. Task posts that require less specialized skills, such as website material and marketing copy generation, have the tendency to have more candidates. More complex tasks, particularly OS-specific development work, might be less competitive. Positive client feedback and greater lifetime earnings are exactly what can set your proposals apart from those of less seasoned workers.

When you come across an attractive task, you must assemble a proposition that includes your certifications, your approximated conclusion time (consisting of a detailed timeline for each deliverable), and your needed payment – either a per hour rate or a flat cost, relying on the client’s specs. Customers normally select propositions that provide the optimum combination of experience, abilities, and sensible compensation demands.

Depending on its size and intricacy, each proposal costs one or more ‘Connects’ – Elance’s virtual currency. Individuals receive 40 Connects per month as part of a free subscription strategy, with paid plans offering greater month-to-month Connect quotas and other perks.

There are three paid plans:

  1. Individual Membership: For $10 per month, you get 20 extra regular monthly Connects and up to 15 profile keywords that can enhance your visibility to customers.
  2. Small Company Membership: For $20 per month, you get 40 additional monthly Connects and 20 profile keywords. If you are handling a group, you can also amount to 5 specific profiles on your account.
  3. Large Company Membership: For $60 per month, you get 60 additional regular monthly Connects, 25 profile keywords, and a limitless number of employee profiles.

Additional Connects are readily available to all subscription kinds at $1 per unit. Elance deducts 8.75 % from your total revenues for each task.

2. oDesk

oDesk provides chances for developers, designers, systems and information analysts, authors, translators, online marketers, and company and management experts. Like Elance, it proclaims some notable clients, such as OpenTable, NBC, and Panasonic, and showcases more than 100,000 monthly postings.

After signing up for an account, you are asked to flesh out a profile that highlights your capability and experience. Next, you can search for task postings. When you discover an attractive job, submit a solid cover letter that describes your certifications and links to your profile. Using this information, the customer picks a pool of candidates to interview via email, phone, or Skype. If worked with, you are required to supply routine status updates to the customer and send along deliverables as they are completed.

Unlike Elance, oDesk customers – not freelancers – set per hour rates or flat fees per project. Nevertheless, you can work out those rates throughout the interview procedure. Subscription is free and lacks Elance’s multi-tiered structure. The platform subtracts a 10 % charge from the client’s payment. Post-project customer ratings and total revenues signify experience and proficiency on the site, increasing the likelihood of selection for future projects.

3. Textbroker

Textbroker caters specifically to freelance writers. Like Elance and oDesk, it brokers relationships in between clients and authors, managing payment and disagreement resolution on their behalf. It’s complimentary to register, but you’ve to take a writing test and receive manual approval to begin accepting work.

You are designated a score at the beginning – ranging from two to 5 stars – which identifies your earning power for openly posted tasks. Two-star authors make less than one cent per word after Textbroker’s 35 % cut of customer payments. Five-star authors earn five cents per word after the cut. You are examined a number of times per year, with the chance to move up or down in the ranks – greater ranks normally have more available work.

Once you’ve actually developed relationships with customers, you can set your own price for work and receive it straight from them. Additionally, customers could create groups of hand-selected authors at dealt with per-word rates. Textbroker likewise handles content-generation accounts for bigger customers, many which pay considerably more than the luxury rate. Clients – or Textbroker itself – can ask for modifications to sent orders as many times as needed, with payment coming just when the order receives last approval. Profits for client-approved orders are deposited in writer-specific escrow accounts, which pay weekly.

4. Accountemps

Run by Robert Half Business, a major staffing company, Accountemps is a freelancing and short-lived work platform for bookkeeping and administrative experts. It contracts with mid- and large-size companies for special accounting or information entry jobs, basic back office support, loan origination, auditing work, tax-related tasks, and collections. Accountemps earns a cut of each staff member’s total compensation, negotiable on a specific basis with its clients (and typically not divulged).

For work prospects, the sign-up process looks like employing for a conventional position: Submit your resume or LinkedIn profile online or at one of the company’s workplace areas (there are about 350). If authorized for an interview, you see in-person or confer with a personnels staff member via Skype. Interviewees test for proficiency in Excel, QuickBooks, information entry, and general bookkeeping principles.

Accountemps authorizes employees on the basis of experience, qualifications, and test efficiency, so entry-level workers mightn’t be authorized. If designated to a project, you instantly make access to a charitable advantages package that consists of a 401k, health care strategy, online training courses, and tuition repayments. If you work a specific number of hours, you could get performance bonus offers and trip time too.

Accountemps-brokered relationships are typically project-based, but they’ve the tendency to be more steady than those reached through Elance or oDesk. Task lengths range from a few weeks to a year or even more, and strong work could be rewarded with a full-time job offer.

5. Guru

Guru connects specific customers and business to designers, developers, accounting professionals, management professionals, writers, translators, marketers, and legal experts. Unlike Elance and oDesk, where customers must post specific tasks and accept applications from freelancers, Guru’s freelancers actively promote themselves to clients. Those clients can select workers prior to communicating the details of their projects.

Clients can also upload tasks, for which freelancers might browse and use. Projects are paid on a per hour or flat-fee basis, without any bidding required. Total earnings and positive assessments from customers enhance freelancers’ possibility of being picked for competitive projects.

When you enroll in Expert, you create a profile that highlights your skills, experience, and minimum payment requirements. When a client hires you, Master holds funds in escrow until all of the project’s deliverables are approved. The platform takes 4.5 % of the complete payment on every task.

6. 99designs

The 99designs platform caters to freelance designers, who send drafts in feedback to client-generated briefs. Uploaded work includes everything from corporate logo designs and book covers, to digital marketing materials and screen prints. Each task is structured as a contest, with a limitless number of designers sending mockups over a seven-day period. After that duration, customers pick their preferred design and compensate the freelancer. It’s free to sign up with and maintain a subscription.

Clients can pick from four subscription levels, ranging from a bronze bundle that costs $299 to upload a contest, to a platinum package that costs $1,199 to publish. The dollar amount represents the winning designer’s prize. 99designs usually takes a 40 % commission before passing reward cash to each winner, although this cut is lower for bulk projects (designers can request payment after winning just a single contest). Contests bring in anywhere from 30 to 120 entries, so competitors can be high.

7. PeoplePerHour

PeoplePerHour matches clients with a wide range of specialized freelancers. Upon opening a complimentary account, you create a profile highlighting your experience, proficiencies, and minimum payment demands. Then, you can discover work in 3 means:

  1. Post “Hourlies. These are publicly visible offers to finish brief jobs, such as writing a single post or developing a mobile app. You set the specifications of the job, including your hourly rate, shipping schedule, and what the end product includes. Any PeoplePerHour customer can employ you to complete this service, and satisfying performance may lead to even more work from that client.
  2. Individual Job Proposals. You can send approximately 15 proposals per month for client-posted jobs that are openly readily available to all PeoplePerHour freelancers.
  3. Client Solicitations. You can receive an endless variety of solicitations from customers who view your profile and send you work straight.

In all cases, you define your preferred compensation. Nevertheless, it’s necessary to keep in mind that you are contending on price with other freelancers when you send out a proposition for client-posted jobs. Overall earnings, recommendations from previous clients, and the variety of effectively completed jobs all enhance your beauty to prospective clients.

PeoplePerHour is a U.K.-chartered company, but you can receive payment in U.S. dollars if you want. Projects are compensated on a per-hour or flat-fee basis – when you successfully finish a job and send out an invoice to your client, your payment is transferred in an escrow account. PeoplePerHour deducts a 15 % commission on the first 175 pounds that you earn in an offered month, plus 3.5 % on any additional earnings. It also costs one pound to send an invoice.

8. iFreelance

iFreelance links third-party customers to freelance designers, photographers, multimedia producers, authors, specialists, management specialists, IT employees, architects, engineers, and accounting professionals. There are 2 methods to discover work on iFreelance: You can search and bid for task listings published by clients, or you can produce your own posts for basic services such as blog writing, logo design, and website constructs. In either case, you’ve to flesh out a profile that highlights your abilities, experience, and minimum compensation requirements.

Anyone can join iFreelance, but unlike Elance, oDesk, and PeoplePerHour, the platform has an upfront expense. Fundamental memberships cost $6.25 per month, silver subscriptions cost $9, and gold memberships cost $12. Discount rates are readily available for prepaid 6-, 12-, and 24-month packages.

Project bids are focused on according to membership level, with gold members getting leading placement. Gold members can also upload their services in an unlimited variety of subcategories, such as translation and mobile app development, whereas standard members are restricted to simply 3.

While iFreelance does not deduct commissions from customer payments – a huge perk for freelancers, who get to keep all their revenues after paying monthly subscription charges – it likewise doesn’t hold funds in escrow while a job is in development. As a member, you are liable for collecting payment from your customers.


With more than 11 million users and 6 million jobs published, expenses itself as ‘the world’s largest freelancing, contracting out, and crowdsourcing marketplace by variety of users and jobs.’ It deals with freelance software application and mobile designers, authors, designers, accounting professionals, marketers, data entry specialists, as well as attorneys and virtual personal assistants.

There are three ways to discover work on

  • Bid on a Posted Project. As on oDesk and Elance, clients can publish projects and obtain quotes from freelancers. Free accounts get eight proposals per month. To bid for a project, define the deliverables that you’ll offer, your needed payment, and the project’s timetable. If the customer accepts your bid, you’ll begin deal with the job and could begin interacting with the client straight. When the customer accepts your finished work, you’ll be paid either through’s escrow transfer service, or via an outdoors payment technique. For security, it’s best to choose the previous route.
  • Enter a Contest. You can also go into a contest in any of’s work classifications, although they are more common for innovative specialties such as advertising and design. Just choose a contest that attract your capability and submit your initial entry. If your entry is picked, you’ll be paid the listed contest reward, less’s cut, through the platform’s escrow system.
  • Add a Service. Just like PeoplePerHour’s ‘Hourlies,’ a ‘Service’ is a statement that you are readily available to complete a specific sort of task, such as writing an article or making a logo design. Clients can employ you straight to perform these services.

It’s complimentary to establish a freelancer account and build a profile that includes 20 of your most relevant abilities, but both customers and freelancers pay costs for listing and accepting work. If you’ve a complimentary account, takes 10 % of your earnings for per hour jobs, the greater of 10 % of your earnings or $5 for fixed-price tasks, and 20 % for work finished with Service postings. To withdraw your funds, demand a bank transfer or a prepaid debit card when your account reaches $30.

For freelancers, there are numerous paid membership plans that entitle you to more bids and other perks:

  • Intro: For 99 cents per month, this entitles you to 15 quotes per month and a total amount of 30 abilities in your profile.
  • Basic: For $4.95 per month, you get 50 quotes per month and 50 profile skills.
  • Plus: For $9.95 per month, you get 100 quotes per month and 80 abilities.
  • Standard: For $49.95 per month, you get 300 quotes per month and 100 skills.’s charge likewise drops to 5 % of your total project-based and hourly profits.
  • Premium: For $199.95 per month, you get 1,500 bids, 400 abilities, and’s fee drops to 3 % of your hourly and project-based earnings. This level works for job managers and entrepreneurs who handle groups of freelancers.

10. DesignCrowd

Like 99Designs, DesignCrowd is a crowdsourcing, contest-based platform that connects freelance logo, t-shirt, print, and web designers (along with other graphic artists) with customers. Unlike 99designs, clients can pay whatever they really want for the winning design, as long as it surpasses DesignCrowd’s $30-per-contest minimum. On average, each contest draws in more than 100 entries, so competitors is high. Higher-paying competitors draw even more abundant, better quality entries. There’s no expense to get in a contest.

You can search for pertinent contests by classification, such as WordPress design and T-shirt design. When you discover a contest you like, enter it and submit your work. If clients like your design but are not quite ready to accept it, they can request modifications to it prior to providing last approval. DesignCrowd holds the client’s funds in escrow for the duration of the contest, releasing the money to you as soon as your design is accepted (minus the flat 15 % fee for all contests).

You don’t preserve the copyright to your designs, although you can ask the customer to let you show them in your work profile. As soon as you have won a few contests, clients could start to invite you to their contests, possibly enhancing the chances that your entries are accepted. DesignCrowd moderates conflicts over payment and approval.

11. crowdSPRING

crowdSPRING is a contest platform that deals with graphic designers, imaginative copywriters, internet designers and designers, and packaging designers. Registration and getting in contests are complimentary, with no limitation on the number of entries you can submit, however crowdSPRING takes 40 % of the winning entry’s award. Customers can set their own reward quantities for contests, with a minimum cost to the customer of $299 and target date windows of in between 3 and 10 days.

crowdSPRING likewise instantly cancels contests that don’t receive 100 quotes within the target date window, and canceled contests don’t pay out awards. For the duration of a contest, customer funds are held in escrow, then disbursed to the winner at its close. crowdSPRING either pays by PayPal (free for designers) or via wire transfer ($28 per transfer). If a customer accepts your design, you should surrender the copyright.

12. LivePerson

LivePerson is a online advertising and analytics company that offers a conversion-centric chat platform for website administrators and online marketers. It also maintains the LivePerson Professional network, a collection of about 30,000 experts in 600 classifications, from technical support and computer shows, to financial guidance and charming therapy. It’s free to apply to be an Expert, however you must document your certifications and experience before receiving approval. Once you are authorized, you get your very own listing in the relevant classification and can begin accepting solicitations from the website’s customers.

As a professional, you set your very own rates, normally revealed as a per-minute charge for phone conversations and online chats, and as a per-email cost for e-mail examinations. When you are beginning, you could need to compensate for your lack of onsite experience by publishing a lower rate. In time, your credibility might enhance, more customers could seek you out, and you could find it practical to charge even more. You’re paid either by sent by mail check or PayPal when you have made a minimum of $50 with the platform.

For spiritual and spiritual advisors, LivePerson deducts 55 % from the customer’s cost before passing on your revenues. For all other classifications, its cut is 38 %.

13. Craigslist

Many developed freelancers reject Craigslist, which does have a reputation for accepting dubious listings. While it’s possible to report possibly illegal posts and scams (after the truth), there’s no onsite framework for examining integrity. For freelancers confident enough to wade through some scammy, spammy solicitations, Craigslist is a helpful resource.

Unlike some other platforms, listings are sorted by geographical region, which facilitates in person contact between independent employees and their customers. With low listing expenses, it’s also a preferred fulfillment tool for smaller or one-off employers, such as individuals needing an editor or ghostwriter, or store marketing companies that require a logo design created or white paper looked into.

Clients bear Craigslist’s job-posting costs – which are $75 each in the San Francisco market and $25 each in about 50 other significant U.S. markets (posts are complimentary for customers in smaller markets). It’s entirely free for freelancers to utilize, but they use it at their own danger. Craigslist does not hold funds in escrow or offer disagreement resolution services.

14. MediaBistro

As an aggregator of media-related content and educational resources, MediaBistro offers 2 primary employment platforms for writers, editors, designers, and other specialists in the industry: a conventional job posting board (billed as ‘the number one task uploading board for the media industry’) and a freelance marketplace. The previous includes short-lived, part-time, and full-time tasks. The employer pays $279 per 30-day listing, without any cost for applicants. However, numerous of these conventional tasks are location-specific, with the bulk clustered in media centers such as New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C.

MediaBistro asserts that its database includes about 100,000 editors and working with managers. Its freelance marketplace lets you develop an online profile with a CV, work samples, and an individual statement. It costs $21 per month or $145 per year to publish your profile, with the very first month free. You get a $6-per-month price cut if you join MediaBistro’s AvantGuild, which costs $55 annually and provides discount rates on invoicing software, rental cars, and MediaBistro’s internal courses.

Once you are worked with for a job, MediaBistro doesn’t take a cut of your earnings or assist solve conflicts. All more settlements occur directly between you and the customer. Given that this platform’s pool of freelancers includes numerous skilled media professionals, you might’ve trouble discovering work if you do not have verifiable previous experience.

Final Word

If you have grown disillusioned with your workplace task, freelancing may seem like a fantastic gig. It provides the flexibility to make your very own schedule, take on creative or tough projects, and invest more time in the house. However, it does offer lots of challenges, consisting of the uncertainty of a project-based pay scale and a complete absence of worker advantages.

As a freelancer, you must likewise pay the full amount of your Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) commitments, which fund Medicare and Social Security. These amount to 15.3 % of gross income for freelancers, instead of 7.65 % of gross earnings for conventional workers. And, rather of waiting for a project, you’ve to also seek out new work and create brand-new relationships with clients.

Fortunately, all freelancers – regardless of capability – have a lot of valuable resources at their disposal. It’s just a matter of knowing where to look.

What resources do you utilize to find freelance work and side jobs?