These are the MUST do things that you have to do if you are working as a freelancer,

1 Tell your client what you can and what you cannot

Sometime you get interviewed for a project and the client has a few different recommendation, some you can do and some tasks that you cannot. Such as you can design a logo, but unable to add it on the website. So it’s always better to discuss it with your client. In most cases your client will be okay with that and hire another provider to do that particular thing.

2 Respond as fast as you can

I lost a couple of potential clients for the lack of a response. I had emails asking for a project quote and I took nearly a week to email them; ahh I lost so many clients. As soon as you receive their mail, respond to them; or at least send them a mail saying, you got his message and will contact him soon.

3 Tell them you can’t take the task when you have too many projects

Most cases, you don’t to lose the client, you take the project no matter how busy you are. This doesn’t helps, because you lack the quality and build mental stress. I have so many clients that I have said “Sorry, I’m busy now” and they have waited for a week or even a month; because they have felt that I’m someone who is capable and dependable and won’t take another project when he is doing mine.

4 Don’t share to a client how much you have charged for a project

You can give them an idea, how much it can cost, but please don’t tell client “B” how much you got paid from client “A” because when you will finish a project of client “B”, they will say I have paid you more, but you haven’t gave me this feature from client “A”s site? -it happens!

5 Don’t be a big mouth on social media

It’s better to keep the details including your clients strategy, project type, branding and budget inside your mind. Your clients trust you, so please don’t brag about these things in social media. You are being followed by your clients and future clients and if you spoil it, you will lose your business. Even if you had a bad feeling with a client, please don’t comment about them publicly.

In another case, where you are the client, when you have hired someone and have found some lacks in them, please don’t discuss it publically. Instead, email them regarding this matter and ask them to improve. One of my client (and now my business mentor) have taught me so many things to improve my service and the things which are my minus points. But if he would write this on facebook, then I’d be shattered!

6 Your social profile matters!

Facebook, twitter, flickr is no more personal. Your facebook profile shows what kind of person you are and your are being watched by others. Your future client must be watching your steps for a long time until they will contact you for their project. Take a look at this particular facebook feed,

If he were a provider, then 90% of potential “new media” clients won’t like to hire him. The fact is, joyful, happy and enthusiastic people are more likely to be hired. I kept this on mind and don’t like to share very personal updates; instead I share day to day fun things -which shows how much active I am.

7 Send them project updates

When you have taken a project, send them regular updates on what things are going on in the work. What I do is to write them a progress report every 2 or 3 days where I tell them what I have done so far.

8 Be confident while pricing your self

I had this issue before where I felt lack of confidence when setting an hourly price or sending a quote. Be sure what you can do for them and charge a competitive price. Don’t hesitate asking for an upfront payment. Be sure that you don’t under-price or overprice your services.

9 Apologize if you have done a mistake

If you have done a mistake and your client is asking for a reason, then feel free to apologize -this is the best way to get away with this. Come up with a solution on how you can help solving this problem.

10 Don’t tell, “it’s no possible”

You are a web designer and have been asked to add this feature and then you found you are unable to do this, no please don’t tell your client “It’s not possible with this platform” -the chances are, your client is far more expert than you and only testing your skills with a dummy project. So the best way to deal this is to say that you are unable to make this happen.

11 (Bonus!) Be honest with your client

In most cases you think your client is a noob and don’t know much. When you are dealing with their personal details, passwords and financial info, please don’t try to misuse it. One of my client has sued a provider for this. He turned out a former US special agent and have used his sources to punish that person. The best way to go is to being honest.

12 (Bonus!) Don’t eat every dollar and try to see the BIG PICTURE!

When working as a freelancer, don’t try to take one more dollar; in most cases I have provided the last minute services + the after project tweaks for free of charge. This helps you build a better business. Your clients will hire you for more projects and tell their friends too.

Have your say!

  • Do you work as a freelancer?
  • How long you have been working?
  • How do you deal with your clients?