The gig economy has grown a lot in the last few years, and this could expand even more after the Covid-19 pandemic. Already, companies that offer delivery services and management tools for remote teams have seen significant growth. This will increase freelance coding jobs at a fast pace.
On top of that, being a freelancer now is a lot easier than 10 years ago; there are many available tools to manage your career.
If you are a freelancer or just starting in the software development world, this is the perfect time to further your career. This article will give you a list of the best sites to look for freelance coding jobs, alongside tips to land the job of your dream and strategies to find success as a freelancer.
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Top 11 Sites for Freelance Coding Jobs
Upwork is one of the biggest freelance platforms in the industry. First, you’d need to create an account and submit your profile for approval. Upwork will give the green light depending on your existing skill set and the skill sets that are largely in demand. Once approved, you can start sending proposals to find long- or short-term coding jobs.
Upwork is a huge platform with over 12 million registered freelancers and five million registered clients, offering approximately three million jobs annually.
It offers many perks such as a wide range of opportunities, a long list of job openings, and multiple payment options. Upwork also offers payment protection which allows clients and freelancers to collaborate on projects with peace of mind.
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On the downside, Upwork charges a 20% fee for its services and the rate only goes down to 10% after you billed $500 with the same client. Also, to submit a proposal, you must have points called “connects” in your account, which you have to purchase first.
As a layer of security, Upwork requests all work communication to be done on its platform. You just have to evaluate if the benefits outweigh the drawbacks.
FlexJobs is a platform to search for flexible positions like remote work, freelance, part- or full-time, and more. FlexJobs conducts thorough research to find authentic job openings covering over 50 careers and provides its users with a direct link to apply.
It also offers more than 150 expert skill tests to complement your profile, on top of additional resources, tips on how to land jobs, and an ad-free list of job positions.
A downside is that you have to pay a monthly membership of $14.95 to access the full database of job postings. However, it does have a satisfaction guaranteed policy that states if the client is not pleased with the service within 30 days of creating the account, they are entitled to a full refund.
Overall, FlexJobs is a great platform to find freelancing opportunities, if you are prepared to pay the subscription fee. At the moment, it has over 1,000 freelance programming job positions.
Coding Ninjas was created in 2015 and it matches developers to projects. For freelancers, you have to create an account before applying. After that, Coding Ninjas will conduct an interview to evaluate your coding skills and English proficiency.
If you pass all the tests, you can be a Coding Ninja developer. The platform then matches each project with a developer that it thinks is the best fit.
Some benefits of working with Coding Ninjas include not having to submit proposals to compete with other freelancers and not having to pay any fees or commissions. On the other hand, the downsides are that you can only receive payments through Payoneer and that you don’t have any control over what projects you are matched with.
Regardless, completing the application process on Coding Ninjas will just open another door toward the freelance coding job that you want.
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Freelancer is a platform to find all kinds of freelancing opportunities. The first step is to create a profile with relevant details such as your experience and skill set.
Then, look for job postings that meet your requirements—in terms of duration, length, and price—and make a bid on it. The client will then select a freelancer that best fits their needs out of all the bids made.
Freelancer offers a complete across-device platform where you can manage all your work relationships. One of the major perks of using this platform is that it has more than 43 million users, which means it’s a big community with a lot of opportunities.
However, this also means more competition. Freelancer charges a fee between 10% to 20%, depending on the type of assignments. The basic membership is free until you find your first project.
Gun.io is a platform for elite freelance developers. It has a thorough vetting procedure for its clients to ensure only top tech leaders are listed on its website. The platform doesn’t accept clients that fail to accept the US market rates for starters.
It looks for clients that offer interesting development challenges, that want to build lasting relationships, and that can pay top prices for top professionals. If you are an industry expert and are looking for freelance coding jobs, Gun.io may be a great option.
Gun.io doesn’t charge a direct fee but it adds a certain amount on top of the rate you set for work. The platform helps market your profile by highlighting skills and relevant experience.
You can also submit a video of yourself to better promote your service. The site, however, requires you to commit at least 20 hours per week to be eligible. Depending on how you look at the situation, that can actually be a good thing.
Fiverr is a marketplace for freelancers to “sell” their services and skills. The main difference with other platforms is that freelancers get to post their own gigs—what they can do, for a certain amount—and get contacted by those interested in their services.
This way, you get to set your own rates and plan your own gigs. It should be noted that in order to post a gig, you are required to set up three different plans with varying prices and scopes each.
Fiverr is a huge and competitive community so you have to be an excellent seller to make some money. The company charges a 20% fee for all orders. One of the downsides is that it can be challenging to gain visibility among sponsored and seasoned sellers.
8. MeFi Jobs
MeFi Jobs is a subsite of the Meta Filter website that was created in 1999. To create a profile, you just have to pay a one-time life fee of $5 and that’s it. With MeFi Jobs, you can list down your expertise and set your availability, so employers know if you are looking for a job.
You can find full-time, part-time, internship, freelance, volunteer, and contract positions near you by saving your location in your profile.
One of the pros of MeFi Jobs is that you only have to pay once and there is no additional fee if you find a job there. Also, MeFi doesn’t supervise or participate in the working relationship after a job opening is posted.
All it does is help make the first contact between employer and freelancer. While MeFi is a good choice to find freelance coding jobs, the site’s UI could be a little more user-friendly.
In spite of its name, the platform helps you find both per-hour and per-project positions. To be a part of PeoplePerHour, you have to go through an application process to verify your skills and experience.
Once accepted, the platform will show you job postings that suit your credentials. You can make 15 proposals per month for free and additional proposals will cost you credits.
A big difference with PeoplePerHour is that it uses the Euro as the main currency when other platforms commonly use US dollars. PeoplePerHour charges a service fee between 3.5% to 20%, depending on the lifetime billing amount per buyer. The platforms have around 50 job openings for developers at the moment.
Guru is relatively similar to other freelance platforms—you sign in for free and you can start looking for jobs after creating a profile. The platform offers workrooms, a designated space that is specific to each job that was hired on Guru. It allows clients to communicate with the freelancer and it also provides updates on the progress of a project.
To ensure transparency, Guru offers a feature called SafePay, which is a shared account between the employer and the freelancer. The latter will only start working once the former funded the SafePay account. However, the money from there will only be disbursed to the freelancer once the job is completed.
Guru’s free account allows you to make up to 10 quotes per month and it charges a 9% commission for every paid invoice. The platform allows for your account to be scalable—it offers four different plans at different price ranges to make your freelance business bigger if you desire.
11. Stack Overflow
Stack Overflow is the biggest platform for programmers to share knowledge and build their careers. The platform was created in 2008 and it now receives over 50 million visits per month.
Stack Overflow has a subsite called Jobs with more than ten specializations to pick from, such as full stack developers and product managers.
Stack Overflow makes sure every job posting is legitimate. You can search by technology, salary, posting date, location, remote work, or even visa sponsorship opportunities. The platform is not only for freelance coding jobs but for other industry-related professions.
6 Tips to Landing More Freelance Coding Jobs
Here’s some quick tips to help you in your search for jobs:
1. The most important thing when looking for freelance coding jobs is to have an outstanding portfolio. Work for free if you must, but without proof of experience, it will be harder to land a job. When hiring a freelancer, employers pay attention to their portfolios to know if they will be able to meet job expectations. So, get started on a portfolio that will catch the right attention.
2. Recommendations from previous clients are a powerful thing. You can contact former employers or clients and ask for their feedback about your service. Good recommendations can be added to your resume or portfolio.
3. Build a digital presence by writing articles on famous developer’s communities or taking on side gigs that can make yourself more known to your peers in the industry. Not only will you get to demonstrate your skills, but you can also make extra bucks while you’re at it.
4. When looking for freelance coding jobs, marketing is key. Creating a brand around yourself and your abilities will help you in the long run. For example, instead of having your portfolio on any website, create your own personal site that will be a better representation of who you are.
5. Create strategies on how to reach out to clients both online and offline. Sometimes, if the opportunity doesn’t come knocking at your door, you have to go out and find them.
6. Building rapport with your peers and other tech professionals is also crucial to establish yourself in the industry. Attend any tech meetup, conference, or event in your area to further expand your career network.
How to Be a Successful Freelance Programmer
Pick Your Niche
Sometimes, we want to learn all that comes in front of us, but we end up just touching the basics of many subjects. Employers are constantly looking for experts and the only way to become one is to focus on mastering one subject at a time. So, decide on a skill or career path and follow it until you are considered a professional in the field.
However, you can still have interests in other areas. For example, you can start by mastering one object-oriented programming language and gradually work your way through all of them. That way, you will have basic proficiency in several languages but remain an expert in one.
Set Working Rules
One of the most challenging things about being a freelancer is having the right attitude and discipline to set a work schedule. It is important to segregate your tasks and to set time for each of them, while still making room for personal affairs. You should also set some ground rules on dealing with clients and make sure to let them know before you start a project.
Know Your Value
Sometimes, freelancers have to invest a lot of time in sending proposals and making contacts before landing a gig. This means that you can go on for a few weeks without work.
However, try not to give in to desperation by accepting jobs at ridiculous price rates. You have to know the value of your skills. It is advisable to do some research, set a minimum rate, and stick to it. Know that you don’t have to accept anything less than you deserve.
Contribute to Open-Source Software
The software development community has many resources where you can learn and improve your skills. It is highly encouraged to participate in open-source projects as it will allow you to fine-tune your craft, make more connections in the industry, and boost your resume. Github is one of the platforms where you can find awesome open-source projects to work on.
Now go get to work!
There are many websites that offer freelance coding jobs, you just have to find the right one that fits your needs and preferences. If you are willing to invest, you can opt for FlexJobs or MeFi.
However, if you don’t want to spend time doing proposals and competing with thousands of other freelancers, Coding Ninjas or Gun.io may be the sites for you.
Platforms like Freelancer, Upwork, Guru, PeoplePerHour, and Fiverr are for freelancers who are ready to invest time and maybe even money to further their career. Meanwhile, Stack Overflow Jobs is a good platform to look for long-term opportunities with lots of perks.
To succeed as a freelancer you have to have a good portfolio that highlights your expertise, be an expert in your craft, know your value, and continue working on your skills. A good strategy will also come a long way when trying to land freelance coding jobs. Lastly, make sure to build a digital presence by writing articles, guides, and tutorials. Best of luck in your freelance coding journey!
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