In this day and age, there are many advantages to taking on gig work. For starters, you get to be your own boss. You can choose the type of work you accept, the people you work with and for, as well as the times and places you prefer to be ‘in the office’. It’s that level of freedom that draws so many people into this style of work.
Gig work has grown in popularity in recent years. Our research suggests the gig economy accounts for 18% of all work done today. Other studies suggest that gig economy transactions will continue growing by 17% each year. The main reason for this is due to the rise of digitization, and workers can work from anywhere. An employer will be able to select from a variety of talented workers the most qualified one for his work. But first, what is this gig work you speak of?
What is gig work?
Gig work describes the kinds of jobs where workers complete small tasks for pay. Instead of a regular salary, workers get paid for the "gigs" they do, such as cleaning a house or walking somebody’s dog. Having a job for life is no longer the regular way to have a career, and as job security continues to decline, people are looking for new ways to secure their future while enjoying their work.
Flexibility is one of the biggest reasons people are drawn to the gig economy. You get have complete control over their work schedule and can schedule shifts or gigs around the other commitments in your life. Once a task or shift is completed, you’re free to moves on to the next opportunity. That could be another task with the same company, or something quite different with another company.
How to get more gig work
The gig economy is great, but it can sometimes be challenging to get a steady flow of work. Ideally, you want a good choice of jobs so you can choose the most interesting and profitable gigs and avoid tricky clients or employers. Sadly, when you go through a dry period, it can be hard to know what to do next. In this section, we cover some of the best tips for how you can find more gig work.
Get out there
Don’t sit back and relax while employers look through your profile, you’ll get more work if you proactively seek it. Approach people you’d like to work for whenever you spot an opportunity for you to help them. Research the markets you’re in as well as the ones you want to be in, identify your ideal client, and find a way to speak with them.
Also, take a look back at your work history and reach out to any clients you never got but build a good relationship with. Be aggressively proactive and leave no avenue unexplored. Spend time every day researching clients and employers you want to work for. Introduce yourself to them. Even if they don't hire you, they now know your name.
Show off your work
We’re sure your phone is full of pictures of times you did great work. Get in the habit of using your past work to promote yourself for future work. Turn those pictures into an impressive portfolio and share it with people and in places where your services are in demand. This will help you build a name for yourself and reputation for producing quality work.
As you promote yourself on social networks, be strategic with your promotion. Instead of blasting everyone with the same ‘check me out’ script, try to form organic online relationships with potential clients and employers and join in the online discussion to show your expertise.
Use multiple apps
One challenge with gig platforms is that you compete against many other people. Since you’re in control of the jobs you accept or reject, you can access more jobs by using several different apps all at the same time.
Think of these apps are your clients, and always aim to have multiple clients. Your obligations as a gig worker are on a job-by-job basis. Once you’ve completed the gig, you are a free agent once again.
Having an abundance of options is a great way to for you find and focus on the right jobs. It can be helpful to run multiple apps when business is slow or when it’s difficult to compete. Be aware of the risks and don’t let it interfere with your commitment to provide excellent service.
Use friends and family
There’s no shame in starting out by doing work for a family member. Let your friends and family know that you’re open for business and looking for work. Money is money and experience is experience - you need both.
You’ll be surprised how many times a friend-of-a-friend needs help with what you offer. So, don’t be shy about putting yourself out there. Your friends and family will be great allies in helping you get the word out.
Actively use your social networks
Make it clear to potential employers on your social media channels that you’re currently for hire. Put it in your profiles and bios. A good presence on social networks can help you get more gig opportunities. You can use social media to search for jobs too and use hashtags to find relevant job listings.
There are even Facebook groups devoted to sharing knowledge and opportunities around the job you do. You can use these groups to collect ideas and new techniques, post questions, and find out about new jobs and opportunities.
Build up your reputation
Feedback and reviews are critical to building a positive reputation online. There’s nothing better than a glowing recommendation from someone who worked with you to help build your professional brand.
Once you’ve finished a job, don’t be shy about asking your co-workers and employers to give you a great review and to help share your good work with the industry. Keep in mind, the more people who support your work, the more interest you can create about you and your job.
Get more word of mouth
This is probably the best way to get have new work come to you. If you do a good job and delight one client, don’t be shy to ask them if they can refer to someone else. Satisfied clients will be happy to recommend you if they were happy with your work, but they may not do it until you prompt them. If you don't tell them you’re looking for more work, they might assume that you are too busy.
People trust personal recommendations more than any CV, LinkedIn profile, or five-star review. A potential new client/employer will be more open to you if they know you have been referred by someone they already know and trust.
Referrals aren’t just for clients and employers; you can also create your own network of workers with complementary skills. Think about how many times has a client has asked you to recommend someone who does good work like you? Builders recommend gardeners; hairstylists recommend makeup artists; and travel guides recommend taxi drivers.
Referrals between workers are very powerful too and pairing up with other independents - especially those that offer complementary services to yours - can be a great way to widen your exposure. Look for people in a related field with skills that complement your own and see if you can work together on some projects. If you connect with good people and recommend them, they are likely to do the same for you.
Do a good job
Make sure you do a high-quality job so your clients want to work with you again. Remember that each gig can affect your ability to gain future work. Nowadays, your online reputation is the new employee-of-the-month badge. With online marketplaces, you’re working for a community based almost solely on customer reviews and ratings.
Although many websites offer a five-star rating system, having less than the full five can make it difficult to compete. A successful gig worker needs to be completely customer-focused and skilled at making employers feel like they are in good hands with you.
Now that you’re armed with all the best advice, which platforms and apps should you use to find work?
Platforms for gig work
These days there is a platform for every niche and skill level you can think of. There are on-demand platforms, local community forums, newspaper ads and online markets all tailored to your particular skill set. You’ll quickly realise that there are many ways you can sell yourself on these platforms, and setting your own schedule and pricing means you have flexibility when it comes to how much you earn.
Still, it can be confusing to figure out which ones are best for you and your interested. So, to save you the research time, we have summarised the key points of the better-known options you might consider.
If you are a designer, developer, content, or academic writer, product manager, you can get part-time work paid hourly at Toptal. You can even work full time here. It is because Toptal has an extensive screening process; that is, only 3 percent of freelance talent which applies is accepted.
It is, however, best for the freelancers that have had earlier experience. You are assured of getting competitive compensation if you are selected.
Fiverr is one of the best freelancing sites in the world. You will look for the job in areas you are proficient in. you can choose to start a podcast, be a writer, edit videos, do voice-overs, and plenty more skills. However, you need to ensure that your gig description is excellent.
The smallest amount you will charge is $5 hence the best place to start your freelancing career. As you grow by finishing plenty of tasks and attracting more buyers, you can increase your price. Fiverr has tons of users globally and over 100 services offered on the platform.
Fiverr charges only 20% of what a seller has earned and puts the money on a 14-day hold such that when a dissatisfied customer needs a refund. After the 14 periods of waiting time, the seller can easily withdraw the money to their PayPal account, bank account, or Fiverr Revenue Card.
Upwork is arguably the best freelancing site in the world. It is one of the largest freelancing platforms that I rusted by huge businesses such as Microsoft, Airbnb, and Automattic. It can serve both experienced and entry-level freelancers. A freelancer can get a one-off gig or a very long-term contract with many companies in fields such as accounting, writing, marketing, customer service, and many more. A freelancer starts by posting a resume, build a portfolio, reference the case studies, post videos, and many ways of proving that you are a professional in a particular field.
Upwork is powered by AI that filters through millions of available opportunities to match freelancers with potential job opportunities. Clients are given ratings that a freelancer can review together with the history and project before submitting a bid. Both the sellers and buyers can negotiate the rates and any other information via Upwork.
All the contracts are managed via Upwork's website. A freelancer will choose how they need to get paid, i.e., direct deposits and PayPal to wire transfer or any other payment mode. Creating your profile on Upwork is absolutely free, but the company has a percentage deducted depending on how much you have earned.
Freelancer is another place where you will get gig jobs if you are looking for one. It is among the largest marketplace and crowdsourcing globally. It, however, has buyers that tend to underpay the projects compared to Upwork. The projects are organized by categories such as websites, IT and software, design, media and architecture, and many more than specific industries.
Users can even browse local jobs such as teaching, drafting, lecturing, and many more. This platform is straightforward to join as it is free. All you need to do is create a profile that will show your skills and the experience, and you will set their fees. Once up, freelancers can look for jobs using various filters that are customized and check the history and ratings of buyers and place bids on them.
The platform offers easy communication between the buyers and freelancers and will track time, send invoices, and the freelancer is paid via a milestone. You do not need to get approved like on Upwork in order to start working on freelancer. As a result, a freelancer is great for those starting up and inexperienced ones looking for simple and low-paying jobs that will help them build a portfolio.
Freelancer, however, deducts funds based on the amount of money earned.
For the experienced gig workers, Guru is the best place for them. For those proficient in marketing, IT, business consulting. It has over 800,000 buyers worldwide and a 99% customer satisfaction rate. It is not like a freelancer as it targets more experienced freelancers.
It provides a paid membership that enables the freelancers to rank significantly higher in the site's search.
It provides eight different categories that it places the professional freelancers. They include writing and translation, administration, design and art, sales and marketing, business and finance, engineering and architecture, and legal.
Just like Fiverr and freelancer, users will create a platform for free. After that, users will either browse freelance jobs online or get recommendations based on their skills with the Guru's Top Match and the excellent search features. A freelancer will just place a bid once they find a job, they are interested in.
In Guru, freelancers can interact and collaborate and even add team members to a job. Freelancer on Guru are also privileged to use a time tracker, sharing of files, communicating with their team, you can choose the payment terms, and many more.
Joining this platform is free for all freelancers.
TaskRabbit connects people who need help with the odd jobs and errands with local people who have the time and skills to do them. It is very easy starting to use TaskRabbit. Users are known as "Taskers" and need to create a profile and provide the necessary information, including pay rates and the level of experience of their task categories.
Jobs in this platform can be about anything. It is suitable for a repair person.
It is also among the best custom design marketplaces in the world. This platform enables those proficient in designing to find part-time or full-time employment. You can do any type of design, be it tattoos, printing T-shirts, or any other.
Freelancers can select short time deadline submissions for three to five days, and the project's turnover is relatively very fast. If you need to earn more, there is a design contest that you can enter.
Looking for a gig job is not easy, but on FlexJobs, be assured that you will manage to get plenty of work. It has over 50 different categories for freelancers. It is excellent for those that are looking for remote and flexible work. The open positions are screened in advance so that you can rest assured that the jobs posted are legitimate.
However, you need to pay in order to join with the plans starting from $ 14.95 per month. You will also be able to take part in the skill tests, attend the webinars, and go through the tips that will help your job search.
This is great for creatives. It is solely offering jobs for the creative such as copywriters, photographers, designers, and many more. You will not only show your experience but also host your portfolio. Another advantage of using this platform is that it will promote freelancers to the buyers who are looking for new team members.
This gig platform is excellent for freelancers looking for part-time or full-time employment. It is best for creative professionals or any digital marketing expert. What makes it interesting is that you will get a gymnasium offer free online courses to strengthen the existing talent.
This on-demand staffing platform will help those looking for employments work on their own terms. You will connect with immediate hourly or similar day jobs from the largest and best brands so that you can work anywhere you want.
- Work at times and locations which are convenient for you
- You do not require a tedious resume to get work
- You just need to accept and go to work after finding work
- You will get a rating and paid immediately after the completion of the work
You can download this app from the Google play store and iTunes for free.
This gig platform is excellent for those that have ages starting from 21 years and above to set your own schedule with an assurance of making $18 to $ 25 an hour. When you work here, you will enjoy flexible hours, which will enable you to select opportunities any day of the week to work. It is available for download.
- You can use the Amazon Flex app to track the earnings
- You can schedule it ahead or pick-up blocks of available time
- It will let you know when Amazon wants to make deliveries.
- You need to know the app is available for download.
This platform is great for those over 18 years and is physically able and strong. You can start providing moving services. They are very professional and will provide incredible services while making the moving day significantly less stressful for customers.
The designers' developers launched this platform and creative. You will get either a part-time or full-time job on this platform. A client will browse this site to look for the portfolios and pricing of the freelancers. It has an Envato community that you will get recommendations from. After you are hired, the platform will hold payment until the job is finished, and the clients are satisfied with the work.
This platform will allow you to get feedback from the clients.
It is one of the best freelancing platforms globally. It is the best virtual team site for more than a decade. It is an excellent platform for those that want to work remotely. If you are a writer, recruiter, or designer, then here is the best place. A blog will help you start on the correct path if you are new to this site.
This is a gig economy app that is meant purely for the cleaners and any repair person. A client who will be seeking your services will connect with you using the web or iOS and any android device. You will earn $22 per hour as a cleaner and $45 as a repair person.
- You will decide when to work.
- You will get paid directly when you finish work.
- It is easy to find customers that you are assured they will pay.
This is another gig platform for repair people, and it is based in London. You will get a cleaning, building work, pet services and waste removal. You will get paid $49 per hour to do this manual work.
At the end of the day, getting work as in the gig economy is all about building relationships and proving your value and expertise. Use the tips in this article and more job opportunities will come to you.
How we can help
Finding a job already used to be quite difficult and things have only gotten harder in 2020. But at Umwuga we are doing what we can to help with our worker-first social network! By using Umwuga you can make your job journey easier.
With Umwuga you can display your skills, experience, and reputation to potential employers and really stand out from the crowd. This will make finding your next job an easier, stress-free experience. Builders, cleaners, house cleaners, gardeners, and more will be sure to find Umwuga incredibly useful.
Best of all, there are absolutely no fees or commission charges with Umwuga it’s all about helping you find your next role! Our mission is to help people turn their talents into a new career and now more than ever our services could be a great help to you.