There are so many videos on YouTube about Freelancing on Fiverr and how to Create Gigs on the many other Freelance sites, some are valid and some totally wrong, painting an altogether too rosy picture of your prospects. In the initial stages, when you are establishing your profile, you will have to work very hard, doing your best work, for very low payment. When you become established this can change radically.
Below I paint a picture of the Gig-World. Fiverr, Freelancer, Upwork, People Per Hour, and all the Freelancing sites with an endless demand for skilled workers and how to make your own offers.
Using Freelancing Sites
Longstory short, becoming a freelancer takes WORK and you probably will not make any return for perhaps many weeks. I have outlined below the way that works the quickest, to get you going with gigs and earning cash. Nonetheless, Fiverr et al is actually a legitimate way to go to raise capital for your new business venture.
Not only will Fiverr et al, provide ready cash for your site, for advertising, and other expenses, but it also can even out the rocky income you will no doubt experience when your site starts earning from affiliate sales and ad placements like AdSense or Ezoic.
Remember your blog is going to be the source of your income for years to come. It will take at least a year to build it to the point where it is earning enough to be your only income. Gigs on Fiverr can boost the effort toward that goal by earning some money which you can use advertising or outsourcing some of the repetitive work. Initially, your new blog will have little or no visitors so using these gig-type jobs to earn, while the blog grows is a great way to go.
Exchanging your Time for Money
I am an advocate of making multiple income streams from hands-off sites you build, that run themselves. This is a passive income, which is not determined by the TIME that you put into it. Exchanging Time for Money is not a good model, yet most of the world does it when they get a JOB. I did not realize this until I had worked in a job for half of my working life! Nonetheless, I do like Fiverr and the services it has for all blog builders.
If you make a success of gig selling, you can always continue the work, long after your needs are met with your blog. The arbitrage model is used by many ‘traders’ in gig services. They will buy services that are priced low on one platform ( typically Fiver ) and sell them to buyers on another platform ( typically People Per Hour ) which has higher prices, pocketing the difference.
What Services Can You Sell?
Many years ago, I put together an Amazon review Affiliate site promoting Cooking gadgets, in my spare time. Within a month I was making commissions, within 3 months it was paying my mortgage payments! But the best part was, it did this with no extra work from me, once built, the site was autonomous, making money month after month.
But in the beginning, if you have no capital to help start your new business, what can you do?
Providing an Online In-Demand Service.
Note I said Online. Don’t go for physical products! It may be tempting, but you will have to deal with distribution, returns, postage, packing materials, invoicing, everything a business has to do, which will suck up all your available time believe me.
There are now millions of bloggers, YouTubers, Influencers, TikTokrs, Instagrammers, Pinners, and other social media creators out there on the internet. They all want help! The list is endless
Image and Video Work
- You can create intro videos for YouTubers
- Remove marks from Images
- Picture editing, remove spots and wrinkles
- Remove background (mainly for online shops)
- Voice over to customers video if you have a distinctive voice or accent
- Offer a complete Social Media management service eg Pinterest: Creating, Pinning, Scheduling, and Following
Another much-in-demand Service is Copywriting, you can with the right skill level charge 50cent to a Dollar a word, for composing sales pages and email follow-up letters.
Managing a platform such as Pinterest, for a business, is another highly prized skill set, you can boost your client’s online presence making huge returns, for which you can demand good rewards.
this is needed by every website, just to get the most from their own site. Few new website owners know how to do this and there are tools you can use to assess the SEO state of any site. I wrote some details of the main points within SEO here. SEO improvements will ( eventually) make big steps towards higher visitor numbers and a higher bottom line for these businesses. It IS more difficult to get new clients, as there are many scammers out there hammering the email inboxes of every business under the sun, so it is perhaps more difficult to get started.
The great thing about providing services like the ones above is they are the very skills you will need to use on your own blog, so learning the basics and more advanced techniques of photo editing and site promotion are skills that will serve you well and that you should be doing anyway.
The websites to join, to get this work are:
- People per hour
- Simply Hired
- 99 Designs
When you join and first log in, it may look like you are up against massive competition, I searched the following terms and listed the number of gigs under each one:
- Image Editing 7200
- Picture Editing 2700
- Video Editing 29000
- YouTube Intro/Outro video 10200
- Logo Animation 4800
- Voice Over 770
- Character Animation 304
- Explainer Video Animations 300
So be aware that it will take a while to become established, the competition in some categories is high. Most people hiring on these platforms choose intermediate-level gigs, not beginners with no track record, so be prepared to hustle for a while to get some work on the platform, once you have 10 or so gigs behind you, you will find more inquiries coming through.
Note that for many services carried out with tools, for example, photo-editing; there are FREE tools, available for most purposes, rather than pay out top dollar for Photoshop, use GIMP (download) or PhotoPea(online). Similarly, with Sound Editing there is Audacity. For video Editing, there are VSDC, HitFilmExpress, Openshot(opensource V easy). Shotcut 4k, intuitive interface, and DaVinci Resolve (an incredible number of features) which is probably the best.
Adding Tiers to your Gig
Fiverr gigs are no longer Five Dollars, most are way more!
On Fiverr ( and most similar sites ) you can have 3 levels of Gig, which may be Basic, Middle, and Super. Each with a higher price and more facilities included eg. For images:
the basic might be $5( for a newbie) and just provide the end product.
The Middle option might be $10 and include all the files used, (so the hirer can produce work using them ) and
the Top Option might be $20 and have 10 images with files.
Dont forget you can add options: If your normal gig turnaround time is 2 days, you could offer a Rush 24-hour time for $10 extra.
This is the most important structure to gather more work. Offer something different to your competition. Offer 10 free revisions, different resolution images, Style variations…. again the list of options is endless.
Don’t expect to earn overnight, Fiverr takes a while to get going, to accumulate those positive feedback stats, but can be a great regular income once established, that doesn’t take up too much of your time.
What Services Can You Offer on Fiverr
This may be stating the obvious, but make sure you are confident that you can actually DO the gig you’re offering. If in any doubt, there are many good tutorials on YT and courses on Udemy and Coursera. And…. practice practice practice
Virtually all businesses need a logo. Logos need to be original, simple memorable. Offline businesses use a logo on their delivery van, their business cards, and stationery. Online businesses like to use logos on their sites, for webpages, ebooks, popups, and favicons. The market does seem to be saturated in Logo design, but will always be in demand and good sellers are hard to find. Ideas can be generated by various online tools.
YouTube Thumbnail design: the UT platform is ever more popular and videomakers need to have matching and relevant thumbnails for each of their playlists.
My main and KEY point with Fiverr is this – when you start no one knows you. You have no reputation. No 5-star rating. Nothing. Who wants to hire someone with no track record?
The Tools to Complete the Work
This is where you need to know what programs are available. For those just starting out, you may have gained some experience in a previous work environment. But if you don’t own a copy of the program, it’s going to be difficult or expensive to start. So I wanted a cheap route to start off designing my work.
For me, long hours building WordPress websites, with graphics, text articles, videos, and images, dictated my route with Fiverr. I was skilled in:
- Making infographics with Paintshop Pro
- Editing photos and images with Photoshop
- Researching & Writing text articles of 2000+ words
- Creating a video with Camtasia
I have a copy of Paintshop Pro and Camtasia, but I didn’t want to buy or rent Photoshop software when jobs were not guaranteed to come in fast enough to break even. A little digging on Google found GIMP, the latest version of which is a good and FREE substitute for Photoshop. In fact, 99.9% of work you might use PS for, can be achieved just as easily using GIMP.
Lastly, (5) I feel that business LOGOs may be an area I can add value. It is similar enough to image editing, I thought, to be able to make some progress by offering a design service for businesses.
After some research, I found Inkscape is the ideal tool to make logos, which must be able to produce Vector Graphics for highly scalable work, rather than Raster-Graphics like Gimp and Photoshop. Let’s say a Burger company wanted a logo for their business cards (small), their vans (medium size), and their headquarters (very large). It would be no use producing jpeg images in Gimp or Photoshop, as they would become hopelessly pixelated at the edges when blown up to full size.
So that is how I came to offer the maximum number of services (seven) on Fiverr, which gives the beginner the best chance of success. I would use my existing software Paintshop Pro and Camtasia, combined with Free software Gimp and Inkscape.
After a few weeks with Gimp and Inkscape, studying the many excellent YouTube tutorials by Iron Echo and Logos by Nick, on Inkscape, plus the thorough step-by-step GIMP videos by Parker Photographic and Davies Media Design, I was able to make very competitive designs in a reasonable amount of time.
The example is from my own experience, and expertise, I have compiled a useful list of other software which may also be of help to you here.
The Answer is Your Portfolio of Work
My approach was to build a portfolio website. Sounds like a lot of work? Not really, you can launch a WordPress site in just 5 minutes, after choosing and purchasing a suitable domain name. Most people, when starting their blogs choose shared hosting, which means you can host as many sites on your own space as you want. If you want to keep costs to a minimum, look out for Domain Name bargains, you can often find some of the secondary TLDs for less than a dollar for the first year. Remember this website will be used primarily within Fiverr, so it doesn’t necessarily need to be a .com TLD.
The sole purpose of this Portfolio site is to make your picture and image work stand out. It doesn’t really matter about the usual Google ranking factors such as page load speed so you can go to town purely on presentation, have as many pop-ups, flashy ads, scroll outs….. etc as you want, it’s all about self-promotion!
However, to maximize your effort:
- For every new technique, you learn
- For every design you make
- For every photo you edit
You MUST :
- Copy or reproduce the technique ( not necessarily the subject ) into your portfolio
- If possible make several digital works with the technique and upload to Etsy /Redbubble /Society6
In this way, each learning episode results in more in your portfolio AND sellable digital goods in your eComm store. I’ll go into more detail with eComm in a later article.
I would suggest either the Digi Theme or the Elementor Theme, either of which has enough bells and whistles to make a super job of creating a splash with web pages. Digi is a paid product whose best value is $249 once only for lifetime access, a full drag-and-drop page builder. Elementor comes in a fantastic free version with almost as many features ( all my own sites are built with Elementor free version ) as Digi, a very good user interface. Digi of course has backup from the authors with any problem, whereas Elementor only has backup for their paid product Elementor Pro. This may be a deal-breaker for beginners who may need help more often. However, I managed to learn the main Elementor features from an early adopter on YouTube and figured the rest out easily. It is a bit of a leap if you’re used to WP only and their Gutenberg editor, but worth every minute of time learning Elementor.
Ensure you have many pages displaying your work, use before and after images, and make certain to use the max resolution possible even at the expense of load time, people looking to have work done, want to see DETAIL.
Delivering Maximum Impact
Although you can upload a video for each type of gig you offer ( and that is a great idea ), your portfolio site will build up over time to show a mass of work, which will be more persuasive than just a video on one sub-niche and get you more work.
Other Important Issues with Fiverr Gigs
- Create a good profile, with a decent head shot photo
- In your profile, fill in the description fully tell people what you do, why they need YOU.
- Create an SEO optimised subject line for your gigs, make it easy for users to find you
- Overdeliver, Give Value! Go the extra mile and you’ll soon get repeat business
- Create sub-niche gigs
- Create 7 ( max allowed ) gigs
- Create an outstanding thumbnail
- respond quickly
- Upload a video for each gig
- start with low prices
- stay online as much as poss.
How to Transition to less of a Time-For-Money Strategy
The problem with Fiverr et al is the timing element. People using Fiverr want their work done within eg 2 days.
That means, your freedom to have a weekend away for a trip, for example, is made very difficult. Be prepared to work like this for at least the first year.
One way you can re-use elements of your work, for long-term advantage, is to create art pieces to sell on POD Print On Demand sites like Etsy, Redbubble, and Society6.
- Apliiq Dropship.
- Lulu Xpress.
I particularly like Etsy, Redbubble, and Society6. These have the best and easiest path to selling products without the hassle of product distribution, stocking products, returns, customer service, or organizing drop-shipping.
On these sites, you can see artists’ work being used for Birthday Cards, POD wearables, and other house-gift-type objects.
Suppose you designed a logo on Fiverr. It might have an element such as a rainbow. These are commonly found on birthday cards and can be in a “hand-drawn” style. You can then easily come up with several card designs and house-art pictures which can be listed on your Etsy or Society6 store.
I would advise building up a portfolio of work on all 3 of these platforms. Over time you could have hundreds, even thousands of individual art pieces on each platform. Have a look at the typical prices for the very simple art pieces, they range from $30 typically to $200. While Society 6 only gives a 10% commission, the work to earn that is already done. Forever after the piece is listed, you will earn over and over.
The same is true on the Print On Demand site Redbubble. Once you list your artwork for a pair of jeans, T-Shirt, or Cup, whenever someone orders it, that is the extent of your work done. You just get paid.
So over a long period of time, this residual and truly passive form of income will grow and reduce your need for Work-On-Demand.
As with any other work in a media space, you can promote your work, to get sales going. Ideal platforms for this would be Pinterest, Instagram, and any other visually-oriented media sites.