Why Freelancers Fail at The Very Beginning?

If you have landed on this page then I believe that you are either a freelancer or want to make money online. A lot of people are making money via freelancing but do they make as much as they can? Or do they make any money at all? It takes a lot to be a good freelancer and even more to be a successful freelancer. If you are trying hard and have not been successful then it is very likely that you are repeating the same mistakes that I made when I was a beginner.

The trial and error method is deadly in the freelance world and as a beginner; people are very excited about making money and want to grab a job without caring about their skill set. It is a wrong attitude and only dents the confidence of an individual. Here are a few major causes of failure of a freelancer.


Lack of Vision:

You got to know what you want to do and what it takes to be a freelancer. You have to know your strengths and weaknesses before you step into this world. Most of the beginners do not know what they are good at, what their worth is and how much money they want to make. If you are a graphic designer, web developer or a writer then you should know the value of your job and where you want to be in a year or so.

Financial Trouble:

Most of the freelancers start freelancing as a part time job to meet their expenses. They are ready to take what is thrown at them and quote very low on the jobs because they just want to earn something to pay off their college fee or some other expenses. If you quote too low and win a job then you will lack motivation to complete it because the reward will be too low.

Poor Client Management:

When you load yourself too much with the work then quality suffers. Clients want to communicate and want to be updated regularly. If you are hard to reach via phone, do not care to reply to e-mails and cannot finish the projects in time then you are denting your profile. You will get less recommendations and your feedback may suffer horribly.


Experience has no substitute and this is one of the major reasons of failure of freelancers at the very beginning. When you want to offer something to others then you have to have some experience in it. Beginners keep on asking me the same question, “How do we make a portfolio?” You should spend some time on your profile and portfolio and keep it up to date. If you are a graphic designer then create some samples and upload them on sites like flicker.com and if you are a writer then write some articles and post them to free article directories and demonstrate your experience in your job proposals.

I started working on Elance as a beginner and kept on submitting proposals for 3 months but did not succeed in winning a single job. I left using Elance and moved to Freelancer.com, gained some experience and got hold of the things I was poor at and corrected myself where I was wrong. I again joined Elance and I succeeded and have not left it ever since. I always advise the beginners, including the ones who take my freelance course, to go slow and maintain a positive attitude and proceed with professionalism because it is the key to your success.



  1. Another thing that you forgot to mention was a low rating. Many forums and marketplaces allow the buyers to rate sellers. When a new person signs-up, he obviously has a 0 rating. While this is not his fault but a buyer automatically prefers a seller with some ratings, reviews and reputation rather than a new seller with nothing to show in his portfolio. At this point of time, it is always wise to do the work for a cheaper amount and get some ratings. When you have enough you can get back to the good prices.

  2. And if you know you are skilled, do not put your rate too low just to get the job. You're undermining your capabilities.

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