How Do I Become a Freelance Web Developer?

Instead of working traditional positions, new and experienced developers are asking, “How do I become a freelance web developer?” As companies move toward a distributed workforce and small businesses realize the advantages of a strong online presence, the invaluable role of web developer is transforming from standard full-time jobs to exciting contract opportunities. Becoming a freelance web developer requires patience, creativity and a passion for unique challenges.

Set Realistic Goals

Before embarking on the exciting journey of freelance web development, take a moment to understand your financial and career goals, expectations and requirements. Are you interested in supplementing your income with freelance web development gigs or is your desire to replace a full-time job? While you may aspire to striking it rich as a freelance web developer, a successful beginning requires a solid grasp on your needs and future desires.

Strengthen Legacy and Complimentary Skills

The freelance web developer marketplace is filled with competition. While many freelance gig resources are categorized by experience and skill, it’s not uncommon for a web developer to compete against hundreds of their peers for a single job. Competing in this marketplace requires a refined arsenal of legacy and complimentary skill sets. Legacy skills refers to standard abilities for any web developer, such as the mastery of common programming languages, UX design, MySQL database management. Business Insider offers a detailed report outlining 10 programming languages most used in modern web development, which is an essential read for aspiring freelancers.

Complimentary skills may be familiar to experienced web developers, but for the freelancer, these skills often mean the difference between landing the gig or continuing the job hunt. Successful freelance web developers offer skill sets involving frontend design, search engine optimization and database programming. While honing these skills may require a time and financial investment, the competitive edge is worth the effort.

Create a Digital Portfolio

While updating your LinkedIn profile may be satisfactory for a traditional job, freelance web developers must prove their skill set outside of a resume. A digital portfolio showcasing previous work is the top requirement for modern freelancers. As competition increases, digital portfolios demonstrate your talent, skill and personality.

Establishing a Wordpress website is the fastest way to create a digital portfolio. There are thousands of templates available for free or purchase to quickly create a professional online presence. Along with complete control over the appearance and functionality of your portfolio, self-hosted digital portfolios enhance your perceived professionalism, which is a necessity in today’s freelance marketplace.

Join Freelance Marketplaces

A quick search on Google for freelance web developer job boards reveals a treasure trove of opportunities. Each marketplace has unique requirements. Be sure to thoroughly review each job portal to determine if the website attracts your ideal customer base. When applying for gigs, customize your resume and cover letter to highlight any relevant experience. Consistency and persistence is key to become a successful freelance web developer.

Related Resource: Top 15 Affordable Associate’s in Web Development Online

While the journey to successful freelancer is tedious, those who’ve gone before you rarely regret their decision. Remain passionate about the craft of web development, and eventually you’ll enjoy the benefits of being a freelance web developer. Those interested in learning how to become a freelance web developer must be dedicated to honing their craft in both programming and self-marketing.