freelance strategies

Freelancing has become a popular profession for those who want to be their own boss and choose where they want to work. Unfortunately, not all freelancer jobs pay enough to live comfortably. On the flipside, there are also plenty of freelance jobs that actually pay a good wage, like the following 101 professions.

1. 3D Rendering

First, it’s no secret that freelance designers are in-demand. However, those working with 3D printing technology are fairing particularly well. In fact, this industry is expected to reach $12.8 billion in revenue by 2018. Depending on your specific niche, 3D artists can make over $20/hour.

2. Accounting (CPA)

While there’s no shortage of DIY accounting software available, there’s still a need for accountants to assist their follow freelancers and entrepreneurs in understanding tax codes and deductions. The average salary for an accountant is $52,419 per year in the United States.

3. Amazon Marketplace Web Services (MWS)

This is a web service API that helps Amazon sellers exchange data on listings, orders, payments, and reports. As you know, there’s no signs of slowing for Amazon. So if you have python skills, you’re set financially as a freelancer. Keep in mind that the amount freelancers charge will vary depending on the scope of the project.

4. AngularJS Development

Now, freelancers possessing this skill will build either mobile or desktop web applications. Since this is the framework for dynamic web apps, demand for this job should continue to increase. The average national salary is around $102,000. If you’re interested in pursuing this career, then check out our handy programmer guide.

5. Animation

Being talented enough to create cartoons and similar media could result in a healthy $86,000 annual average salary.

6. Architecture Services

Next, this job focuses on areas like the design and even the development of residential and commercial structures. Freelancers can make between $20 to $130 per hour.

7. Audit Management

Audit managers conduct financial and operational audits for their clients. They can rope-in six-figures annually.

8. Bartending

As explained in Entrepreneur, a freelance bartender would market their services “to catering companies, event and wedding planners, banquet halls, hotels, and pubs for relief duties.” Freelance bartenders can earn up to $300 per day when wages and tips are tallied.

9. Blockchain Developer

Thanks to hype surrounding the value Bitcoin, blockchain development has become one of the hottest freelance skill. In fact, it was the second fastest-growing freelance skills in Q3 2017.

Blockchain developers must have a background in computer science or engineering. They should also have experience in creating and running distributed ledger systems in production. If so, they could make up to $150/hour.

10. Bluetooth Specialist

Ever since Apple eliminated the headphone jack when the iPhone 7 was released, this is a growing field. Bluetooth specialists average salary is $65,810.

11. Bookkeeping

As opposed to paying a CPA, those on a tighter budget outsource their bookkeeping needs to freelancers. Considering this can be an entry-level gig, earning between $35,976-$45,981 isn’t too shabby.

12. Brand Strategy

Then, if you have experience in developing position recommendations, guide market research analysis, and define brand elements and tone then you can earn anywhere from $39,251 – $101,069.

13. Broadcast and Sound Engineering Technician

This involves working at radio/TV stations to setting up sound systems at concerts or events. Since these freelancers know how to operate complicated equipment, they can easily request $20/hour.

14. Business Consultant

As a business consultant you work with clients on strategy, planning and problem solving, creating business skills and knowledge. On average, a business consultant earns around $70,000 annually.

15. Busking

Street performers can actually make over $20 an hour. Of course, this depends on how many hours you put-in and your location.

If busking doesn’t workout, put your freelance musician skills to work by teaching lessons or playing with cover bands.

16. Carpentry

According to Investopedia, “freelance carpenters make a median salary of $42,090, with a projected 10-year job growth rate of 6 percent.”

17. Catering

When there’s an event like a wedding or office party, clients will hire a caterer to feed their guests. You can start out as a caterer making $20 per hour.

18. City-Guide Writing

If you enjoy writing about travel or real estate in specific areas, then you could net between $15-$25/hour.

19. Cloud Engineering

With more and more clients moving to the cloud, clients are looking for freelance cloud engineers. Responsibilities include the implementation, maintenance, and troubleshooting of of cloud-based solutions. Expect to make around $127,000 annually.

20. Content Writing

As a way to establish an online presence, organizations of all-sizes are hiring freelance content writers to compose quality articles and blog posts. Freelance writers can make anywhere between $10 to $100 hourly.

21. Copy Editing

Do you possess superior editing, proofreading, and communication skills? If so, you can become a copy editor and earn up to $80,000 annually.

22. Copywriting

If you’re a talented writer, and also have some solid marketing skills, then you could be hired to write promotional materials. Copywriters can make anywhere from $18 to $60 per hour.

23. Corporate English Training

Native English speakers are frequently sought after by non-English speaking clients. This is typically for clients in countries such as Japan and Korea. This gig can pay you at least $25/hour.

24. Creative Director

As a creative designer, it’s your duty to create a cohesive look and feel of a project. As such, you’ll work with artists, designers, copywriters, marketers, and sales team. Creative directors can make close to $90,000/year.

25. Curriculum Writing

This gig is ideal for educators and administrators who develop and implement new techniques to improve education. At ZipRecruiter, curriculum writers can make between $41,000 to $79,000 a year.

26. Customer Service Rep

Online stores, large companies, and other organizations hire plenty of freelancer customer service reps to answer product inquiries or resolve conflicts. Hourly rates average around $13/hour.

27. Data Entry

Not the most interesting job. But it’s a entry-level position that averages over $12/hour.

28. Delivery Truck Driving

With a site like GoShare you can earn up to $61.92 per hour by helping people move, haul, deliver, or tow items.

29. Document Review Specialist

As described by The Balance, “Document reviewers (also known as document review specialists) are trained legal professionals who examine documents relevant to pending litigation and regulatory investigations. Document reviewers are most often attorneys, paralegals or litigation support personnel.”

It’s a tedious job, but the job outlook is good and you can make $10 to $50 per hour.

30. Dog Walking

Even though you can find a dog walking side gig on sites like Rover, a freelance dog walker can set out on their own and fetch around $25 per hour.

31. Ecommerce Specialist

For those wanting to boost their sales and profits for their eCommerce stores, they’ll turn to an eCommerce specialist. It helps if you’re familiar with leading platforms like Shopify, Magento, and WooCommerce in order to make on average $45,000/year.

32. Econometrics

The application of statistical methods to economic data is within the top three fastest growing freelance skills in Q2 2017 according to Upwork. As a result, I’ve seen econometrics specialists making up to $125/hour on Upwork.

33. Education Research Specialist

This job supports educators in designing coursework. These specialists are compensated around $70,000/year.

34. Electrical Engineering

As noted in Business News Daily, “With the internet-of-things market heating up, companies and entrepreneurs need electrical engineers to help build connected devices.” As such, you can expect to earn anywhere from $20 to $200 per hour.

35. Email Marketing Specialist

Despite what you may have heard, email marketing is alive and well. In fact, it remains the most effective way to communicate with a target audience. With that in mind, individuals, companies, and nonprofits need email marketers to create and manage their email campaigns.

Freelancers in this field can make between $20 to $150 per hour.

36. Etsy Marketing

For creative and crafty individuals, Etsy has become a great way to make money on the side. Even better, some people have made this a full-time gig. As such, those new to Etsy could use someone to assist them with their marketing needs. You can make up to $30/hour.

37. Event Coordination

Whether if it’s planning a birthday, wedding, anniversary, conference, or charity event, freelance event coordinates are able to bring-in a salary that’s around $50,000.

38. Fashion Consultant

Do you have an eye for fashion or know the latest trends? This gig pays $50 to $500 per hour according to one industry blog.

39. Financial Analyst

Are you a numbers person? If so, consider becoming a financial analyst where you track stocks, bonds, equities, and other financial instruments. After going through this data you make recommendations to your clients.

Entry level financial analysts start at $60,000, but you can eventually make over a hundred grand.

40. Financial Planning

As explained in the NY Daily News, “Financial planning is the process of quantifying a client’s current financial position and then mapping out a game plan to help that client meet his or her various goals.”

Financial planners can make well-over $80,000 annually.

41. Money Management

Also from the NY Daily News, “Money management is the process of building and repositioning client portfolios to be sure they are in line with the investment parameters stated in their financial plan.”

“In other words, financial planning addresses the big picture, while money management does the day-to-day buying and selling of investments to make sure the financial plan stays on cours.”

Money managers can charge around $30/hour.

42. Grant Writing

Grant writers typically work with educational institutions, hospitals, and non-profit organizations in identifying, developing, and writing grant proposals. The median salary for grant writers is around $67,000.

43. Graphic Design

If you’re able to create commercial or promotional needs, including packaging, displays, or logos, you can earn $25 per hour on average.

44. Immigration Law

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) anticipates a 6 percent job growth for all lawyers between 2014 and 2024. However, considering the possible immigration reforms under the Trump administration, immigration law is a niche on the rise. The median annual salary for lawyers as $115,820.

45. Infographic Design

Infographic designers take data and transform it into an engaging visual. A talented and experienced infographic designers should have no problem charging at least $50/hour.

46. Information Security

With the constant threat of cyber-attacks, there’s a serious demand for individuals to plan and carry-out the security of a client’s computer networks and systems. Information security analysts can charge over $44 per hour.

47.Instagram Marketing

The Gram has become one of the most popular social media channels with close to 77 million users in the U.S. alone. As such, there’s a growing need for marketers who are experienced with Instagram.

While professional “Instagrammers” can make over six figures, the average Instagram marketer should expect around $15 per hour.

48. Interpreter

Are you bilingual? If so, you can put that skill as an on-call translator for legal and medical services. As an interpreter, you can make around $25/hour.

49. Landscaping

Don’t mind getting your hands dirty? Then it’s possible to make over $20/hour as a freelance landscaper. If you own the right machinery there’s room to make even more.

50. Lead-Generation Specialist

Lead-generation specialists are responsible for prospecting, qualifying, and generating new sales leads via email and social media. The average pay is $20 per hour, but highly motivated individuals could make more.

51. Learning Management Specialist

This job is all about promoting and supporting instructional technology. It’s becoming a popular freelance skill can can make you at least $60/hour.

52. Legal Consultant

It’s not uncommon for lawyers to share their legal advice on a contractual basis. For those just starting they can charge around $70/hour. However, experienced legal consultants can definitely clear six-figures a year.

53. Machine Learning

According to Upwork, “data science is the fastest-growing category on its site for the second quarter in a row. Machine learning moved from Upwork’s spot in Q3 to number 12 in Q4 “but continues to see rapid growth.”

On average, the salary for machine learning engineers is $128,549.

54. Major Gifts Officer

What does a Major Gifts Officer do? Well, their the individuals who ask for large-sum donations for nonprofits. The salary for this unique job ranges between $53,459-$73,336.

55. Makeup Artist

Whether if it’s working with a bride or local celeb, makeup artists can make up to $48 per hour.

56. Management Analyst

A management analysts advises clients on how they can create an efficient and cost-effective process. Median salary is $81,320, with a projected growth rate of 14 percent.

57. Marketing Specialist

Tasks for this job include creating and supporting communications and marketing plans, and creating marketing materials and outreach programs. If that’s in your wheelhouse, you can bank $26/hour.

58. Massage Therapist

As long as you have a Certified Massage Therapist license you can request anywhere between $11.84 – $56.05.

59. Medical Claims Processor

Hospitals, healthcare facilities, and other healthcare-related organizations hire “coders” to handle the paperwork involved with medical insurance. This gigs pays around $16/hour.

60. Medical Transcriptionist

This gig involves you transcribing codes from doctor’s notes into a document or a database. Those familiar with medical language and jargon can earn between $11 to $24 per hour.

61. Merchandise Coordinator

A merchandise coordinator is simply in charge of the supply and promotion of items in retail stores. If you have some basic merchandising experience, you could earn up to $21/hour.

62. MySQL Programming

Are you knowledgeable in web-scripting languages like PHP? Then you can fetch between $41,560 – $102,158.

63. Natural Language Processing/Twilio API Development

Thanks to the popularity of of voice-activated assistants like Amazon Echo and Google Home, natural language processing has become one of the hottest freelancing skills around. If you have this a background in computer science, artificial intelligence, and linguistics, you can command anywhere from $45 to $100/hour.

If you’re more familiar with building SMS, voice and messaging applications on an API — specifically, Twilio’s cloud-based communication platform — then you can make more than $35/hour

64. Node.js Development

A Node.js developer writes the server-side web application logic in JavaScript, as well as variants including CoffeeScript or IcedCoffeeScript. You can definitely fetch over six-figures as this type of freelancer.

65. Occupational Therapist

This rewarding job assists patients recover from illness, injury or chronic condition. The average median salary is $80,150. And, with a 27 percent growth rate, there’s plenty of opportunities for freelance work here.

66. Online Communications Associate

More suited for part-time work, this gig focuses on tasks like updating and writing content, managing social media, providing system administration, and creating reports. You can bring-in $25/hour.

67. Penetration Testing

In simplest terms, this is job where you get paid to hack web-based applications, networks, and systems. The reason? To determine if there are any security vulnerabilities. This is a blazing hit gig right now where you can easily make over $100/hour.

68. Personal Assistant

If you don’t mind running errands, then you can earn around $25/hour as a personal assistant.

69. Personal Chef

If you’ve got a knack for cooking, then use that skill as a personal chef. Whether if it’s making frozen meals for a client or catering an event, you can make over $20/hour.

70. Personal Shopper

There are plenty of busy people who could use someone to do their shopping for them — namely personal stylists. As a personal shopper, you can could make up to $25/hour.

71. Personal Trainer

As one of the fastest growing careers in the country, personal trainers earn on average $50,000 annually. However, some hustlers can make over six-figures.

72. Photography

Freelancers.com reports that jobs for photographers has increased by around 22 percent. This is due to the fact that employers are “finally understanding the importance of high-quality pictures on their landing pages.”

73. Project Archivist

This is more of a part-time gig where you work with museums and curatorial departments in backlogging archival materials. The pay is $26/hour, but having a master’s degree in records and archives management or experience is a must.

74. Project Manager

Overseeing the entire journey of a project — from idea creation to implementation — project managers can request up to $43/hour.

75. Property Manager

Property managers do everything from marketing rentals, collecting rent, handling maintenance and repair issues, responding to complaints, and even pursuing evictions for real estate owners. The average freelance property manager salary is $46,000.

76. Public Relations Specialist

PR specialists handle the promotion and awareness of their client’s brand. They also put-out PR disasters. For their trouble, they earn approximately $60,000 annually.

77. R Development

This is the programming language used to create graphics like polls and surveys. An R programmer can earn more than $77,oo0 per year.

78. Recruiting

Instead of having an in-house human resource department, more and more businesses are outsourcing this task to freelancers. Recruiters are often paid a percentage of the salary of the placed applicant. For example, if an applicant is hired and makes $70,000/year, and your paid 20 percent of that, you just banked $14,000.

79. Search Engine Optimization

SEO specialists are hired by client’s to increase organic growth, conduct keyword research, and run a backlinks analysis. On the higher-end, SEO specialists can rake-in $60,000 annually. However, the rock stars of SEO can make serious money a year — I’m talking in the millions.

80. Senior Medical Writer

Healthcare organizations hire freelance medical writers to review medical information, as well as write and edit medical-related documents. Being familiar with the medical field is a perk. This is another job where you can make over six-figures.

81. Senior Technical Writer

Technical writers are hired to compose high-quality documents like manuals, developer guides, and online help. As such, they can earn over $100,000 annually.

82. Sign Language Interpreter

Classrooms, courtrooms, and events like meetings or concerts can use a sign language interpreter. As a result, you can rake in roughly $25.41 per hour.

83. Social Media Management

With businesses of all-sizes needing someone to create and manage their social media campaigns, this is another good paying, in-demand freelance job. The midpoint starting salary for social media managers is $59,000, but you can make a lot depending on your experience and location.

84. Software and App Developers/Programmers

Some coders are content to make $50 per hour, but experienced programmers can command as much as a whooping $1,000 per hour!

85. Stripe Specialist

Also, businesses are searching for affordable and flexible ways to accept payments. As such, they’re looking for freelancers to construct payment platforms using APIs from payment infrastructures like Stripe. These specialists can charge up to $95 an hour on freelancer jobs sites like Upwork.

86. Supervisory Attorney

If you’re a seasoned attorney, you can share your legal knowledge or prepare depositions for clients while pulling in around $150,000 annually.

87. Swift Development

Considering that the Apple Watch broke records in the 2016 holiday season, having the ability to code this iOS programming language could lead to a cushy paycheck. The average salary is over $94,000!

88. Tax Professional

While completing and preparing taxes for clients is primarily a seasonal gig, it’s also one of many freelancer jobs you can expand into year-long work. However, if you provide audit assistance you can have work throughout the year. The top ten percent of tax preparers earned $38.58 per hour, $80,250 annually.

89. Teaching and Tutoring

If you’re a wiz in subjects like math, science, or English, then you can earn a decent living in freelance jobs like a freelance teacher or tutor. Finding tutoring is probably a lot easier, but thanks to platforms like Skype you can teach from wherever you like. Depending on your expertise and subject matter, it’s possible to make around $40/hour.

90. Tech Support Provider

As long as you have a telephone, internet connection, and strong communication skills, you can resolve the technical issues that customers may have with a product or service. This gig pays around $13.50/hour. But, there is potential to make more depending on your expertise.

91. Telephone Nurse

Are you a registered nurse? There are freelancer jobs where you can handle case management, treatment authorization, and patient education with client over the phone. Pay is in the $50,000 annual salary ballpark.

92. Travel Agent

Even though there’s a surplus of travel sites like Expedia, people still want someone to find them the best travel deals. They also want someone to make all of their travel transportation and accommodations for them. Independent travel contractors average a little more than $30,000/year, but some experienced travel agents have made $80,000.

93. Underwriter

As an underwriter, it’s your job to accept, suspend, or decline an application for loans like mortgages. In the past, underwriters were employed by banks. But, it’s become an option for freelancers too. The average salary for underwriters is over $60,000.

94. User Experience Design

Also, it’s up to UX designers to improve the experience of website and app users by improving the usability, accessibility, and pleasure when interacting with a product. The average base pay for UX designers is $86,071/yr. You can find a decent freelance UX designer gig on a site like 99Designs.

95. Video Editing

Thanks to the popularity of YouTube, Instagram Videos, and Facebook Videos, there’s a growing demand for video editors. As an editor you check for errors, insert audio or graphics, and make sure that the story flows. If so, you request around $70,000/year.

96. Video Reviewer

Here’s another way that educators can cash-in on their skills; observe and assess the instruction of teachers in the classroom. For this input, you can make up to $25/hour.

97. Virtual Assistant

As more and more businesses are looking to save money, they’re relying on freelancers like virtual assistants. VA’s are responsible for managing administrative tasks, like responding to emails and planning business trips. The average salary is $15.57 per hour depending on tenure and location.

98. Virtual Reality

Next, virtual reality has skyrocketed to UpWork’s faster-growing freelance skills in Q2 2017. As such, if you’re able design and develop multimedia using 3D modeling, you can charge around $75/hour.

99. Voiceover Artist

“While voiceover work has been around for decades, the move to digital is enabling talent to record from virtually anywhere,” CNBC has noted. “Telephony, audiobook readers, dubbing work, e-learning instruction, animation dialogue and video game voices are just some of the jobs calling for voice actors.”

According to Voices.com, “Voice actors get paid on a per project or per job basis. Your earnings as a voice actor range from $100 for a 15 second recording, $250 for a 30 or 60 second commercial to about $3000 per audiobook.”

100. Web Design

With pretty much everyone needing a website, the ability to produce and maintain a website is going to be a much needed skill going forward. On average, web designers can make $32/hour. However, depending on their skill level, they can definitely charge a lot more than that.

101. Zendesk

Finally, “Zendesk is a growing customer service software company where you can customize the experience for your teams and customers by placing products into existing APIs, Apps and mobile SDKs,” writes Due co-founder Chalmers Brown. Software Engineer salaries at Zendesk can range from $76,969-$134,061.

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Renzo Costarella is an entrepreneur, avid learner, and startup enthusiast currently living in Silicon Valley. He consults for several startups in the Bay Area and is pursuing a few ideas of his own.

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