15 Great Job Websites for Freelancers
With 53 million freelancers in the United States (that’s one third of the workforce!), it’s safe to say that self-employment is not just a passing fad due to a recession or something that a few anti-corporate hipsters prefer. With so many people working for themselves, naturally the number of websites dedicated to these kinds of gigs has risen. The difficulty can be knowing where to find these jobs, but if you know which websites to check, hundreds of lucrative opportunities are just a click away.
Here are 15 great job websites for freelancers in every industry:
No matter what freelance work you’re looking for, Upwork probably has it: they boast over 4 million clients. This platform lists everything from coding and website development to writing and design work to IT and admin support jobs. You’ll find it easy to search for short- or long-term jobs, but you may run into some competition when it comes to landing some of the better ones, at least until you build up a portfolio and some happy client reviews. Upwork is free to join, but they take a 10% commission from each payment you receive.
Freelance engineers and software designers that work for Toptal rave about it. This company is easy to work with and most freelancers report higher-than-average pay for software development and web design. The catch is that Toptal is difficult to get into—the company only hires the top 3% of all applicants. But if you do work with Toptal, you’ll be included in a network of the best software engineers and designers, get to work with great companies, and have available to you plenty of resources that you can use for years.
99designs is the go-to place for graphic designers and illustrators. As they say: “We handle the logistics so you can focus on what you do best—design.” It’s completely free to join and there are always a variety of jobs available. Just be aware that you’ll need to complete work on spec as all work is completed and submitted to “contests.” The contest requester chooses a winning design and that designer gets paid.
On GetACoder, you’ll find much more than coding gigs. This website also has listings for web developers, project managers, and even writers. It’s free to join and incredibly easy to sort through listings. As a bidding website, you’ll need to bid against other freelancers to win jobs. However, GetACoder lets you see not only how many others have bid on a job, but also how much they’ve bid.
No matter what your freelance enterprise is—graphic design, marketing, writing, video production, music, programming—you should definitely check out Fiverr. This website works differently from almost any other platform: instead of job requesters posting gigs, it’s up to you to post your services. People who need freelancers browse the skills that you’re offering and pick the ones that they need. There’s also no fee negotiation because you fix your price at certain levels when you list your services. It won’t cost you anything to set yourself up on Fiverr, but the website will take a 20% commission from the payments you receive.
Guru offers a mix of jobs, from writing and design to engineering and IT. There are a couple of ways to find jobs on the platform: browse their listings, build an amazing portfolio and let the clients come to you, get matched jobs emailed to you daily. You can sign up for free, but you’ll need to pay a transaction fee on each job (4.95% to 8.95% of the job’s price). You can also pay to upgrade your membership so that you have access to elite jobs.
PeoplePerHour lets you bid on jobs across a variety of industries, including legal, accounting, writing, and programming. Job requesters can also search freelancer profiles and reach out to those they like best. There are no membership fees at PeoplePerHour, but you will need to pay a commission and transaction fees when you request a payout. The commission structure is more complex than most other freelance platforms: 15% on the first $280 from a buyer each month, and then 3.5% on all payments after that. There are also paid proposal credits (you only get to bid on 15 jobs per month for free), and you can pay to promote your portfolio and your proposals.
Freelancer is another website that caters to independent workers across all industries—including aeronautics (NASA used Freelancer when they needed to train their Robonaut!). Employers can post jobs or browse freelancers, and freelancers can submit bids to the jobs that interest them. You can pay to promote your bids and you’ll also need to pay project fees on work completed. Click here for an in-depth overview of Freelancer’s fee structure.
Flexjobs works like a recruiting agency for flexible jobs, like telecommuting, part time, and freelance, across more than 50 industries. You can use the service to search for jobs in your industry or in your area, and the website offers things like skills testing and a library of information about telecommuting and finding flexible jobs. This isn’t a free site—you’ll need to pay a monthly membership fee, which starts at $14.95 per month.
10. Simply Hired
This website is a free job listing service where you can find all kinds of projects, from full-time work to freelance gigs, from twenty-four countries, and in twelve languages. While Simply Hired doesn’t cater exclusively to freelancers, you can use their search tools to find anything from small gigs to full-time telecommuting jobs.
If you’re a freelance writer or blogger, then Problogger is worth a look. The “Jobs” section of the website is set up like classifieds, but the listings are devoted solely to writing gigs. It is free for writers to use (no login required), but people who post jobs need to pay a listing fee for each ad, which means you’re more likely to find quality leads.
12. Constant Content
Constant Content is a good resource for budding writers. Once you’ve signed up, you can make money in two different ways: by writing articles and posting them to the website’s catalogue where buyers can browse and make purchases, or by applying to teams and receiving assignments. In order to gain access to the team assignments, you’ll need to post a few articles to the catalogue first. As you’re pricing your work, keep in mind that Constant Content takes a 35% commission on all articles (both catalogue and team assignments).
As the name suggests, Mediabistro is geared mostly towards media—writers of all kinds, marketers, and more—and you can find work in industries like IT or design, too. The website is free to use (you don’t even need to log in to search for jobs) and both the free and paid memberships (which starts at $55 per year) come with extra perks like event invitations and discounts on courses.
14. Smashing Jobs
Smashing Jobs (by Smashing Magazine) focuses mostly on full-time and freelance work for programmers and designers. However, jobs in other categories do occasionally pop up. Posters pay to post their jobs, which means you’ll find a nice selection of quality leads for free.
Craigslist might just be the granddaddy of all job search websites, but it’s also the most difficult website to use. You’ll find jobs of every shape and size—and you’ll also find some scams. The biggest challenge, aside from spotting scams, is searching for jobs with Craigslist’s clunky regional interface. To browse Craigslist effectively, you’ll need to be on the lookout for cities in which your particular industry happens to be booming.
When it comes to websites that will help you find work, this list only scratches the surface. The Internet is a big place and it’s absolutely packed with opportunities for the freelancers willing to find them. If you’ve created a professional profile that showcases your skills with a well-rounded portfolio and a great blurb about yourself, then these freelance websites can be your oyster!