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How to start freelancing

Thread title: How to start freelancing
     
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07-19-2007, 11:03 PM
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Village Genius is offline Village Genius
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  Old  How to start freelancing

1. Choose a skill
Different people are good at different things, I am an expert programmer but cant design for the life of me. The only way to find what you are good at is to give both an equal chance.

2. Starting:
If you are a programmer, start with learning HTML, HTML is your basics, you wont be able to do anything if you dont know HTML. When you learn HTML you need to start a scripting language, I would recommend PHP since its easy, widely supported and there are tons of resources for it. When you learn one well (and I mean really well), move on to something else. JavaScript/AJAX are valuable skills.

If you are a designer you will have to wait till I get a paragraph from someone who knows design.

3. Choose hosting
No matter what you do, you will have to have hosting. What should you pay? Can you afford the good hosting? Ask yourself this, can you afford to have a problem with you server and spend almost a week trying to find a knowledgeable tech. Can you afford downtime during projects? You get what you pay for, I pay $20 a month for 3 domains, one gig space and 60 transfer. For this seemingly steep price, the techs respond to tickets in 15min (this includes admins) and there is zero downtime, it works right the first time. My last host (does it matter? All budget hosts are the same) took 8 hours per response, the issue could take days. For a full article on this, read my article on how to choose a host.

4. Build a portfolio
People wont go with you at a good price till you get a portfolio and recommendations. Do some smallish open source scripts for your portfolio, this will give clients a good look at how you code. For recommendations, do cheaper work, when you have both you can start working at a full price. And remember,
NEVER WORK FOR FREE!!!

5. Find your price
If you are going to be renting an office or have many costs of business, read Julian's article on pricing. If you are not, find a fee you are happy with and work at that. What do you value your time at? Thats a question only you can answer.

     


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