There are plenty of benefits to being a freelancer as opposed to a salaried employee. Often, going freelance means getting to set your own hours, and you can sometimes earn a higher wage as a freelancer since you’re not getting workplace benefits like health insurance. That may be a mixed bag if you need those benefits, but if you don’t, you can come out financially by freelancing.
The only tricky thing about freelancing is that it can lead to a variable income. And that can make your expenses tricky to manage. Plus, freelance opportunities can ebb and flow, which is why it’s a good idea to have a healthy savings account balance to dip into during those slower periods.
If you’re a freelancer looking to add to your workload, you should know certain industries are quite eager to find workers right now. According to the freelance site Upwork, here are a few specific jobs and skills that are in high demand right now.
1. Data analysis
Many companies rely on data to inform decisions and turn profits. And if you’re good at crunching numbers and analyzing data, you could set yourself up with a nice paycheck. Upwork reports the average hourly rate for data analysts is $40 to $100.
2. Video production
These days, companies are reaching consumers via social media, and that often means advertising with video. It’s not surprising that video production skills are in high demand, and if you take a job in this field, you might command an average hourly rate of $40 to $85.
3. Search engine optimization
Online advertising has, for many companies, largely replaced print advertising. A good way for companies to generate more organic traffic to their sites is via search engine optimization, or SEO. If you have the right skills or are willing to learn them, you could set yourself up to earn an average of $25 to $75 an hour.
4. Machine learning
Machine learning engineers build programs that are able to learn from data. The result? Better automation and efficiency. To work in this field, you’ll generally need a strong background in data science, and you may need to be familiar with specific programming languages. But if your skill set fits the bill, you could end up earning an average hourly wage of $80 to $125.
5. Mobile app development
As a society, we tend to be attached to our phones at all times. And so many companies are willing to sink money into developing apps for smartphones, as well as tablets and other devices. To freelance in this field, you’ll need a strong computer science and programming background. You may be rewarded generously via an average rate of $40 to $100 per hour.
What’s the right freelance gig for you?
Many of the above freelance roles require specific skills. But if you don’t have them, worry not. These are just a few examples of the roles that are high in demand right now, and the reality is many companies are grappling with labor shortages and may be looking to add freelance employees to their rosters.
If you’re looking to take on more work or boost your income, network extensively and keep pursuing different opportunities. You never know when one connection or gig might open the door to many more.
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