Week 8: Now We’re Cooking

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Week 8 Gig Status Overview

This week has been great. I don’t know any other way to put it. I feel like things are finally coming together. I’m feeling confident about the quality of the work I’m doing and that I now know how to operate each of the platforms that I’m working with. The biggest news of the week?

THIS MILLENNIAL IS FINALLY PROFITABLE!

I’m so proud to report that I’ve accomplished my May goal with time to spare. Thanks to three clients and hours of hard work, I also reached a new milestone with earnings surpassing $200 for the week. If you thought I was excited about $100, this has been twice as rewarding!

Upwork

I had another great week with Upwork. There are so many jobs on Upwork with more added every minute. Many of the opportunities are exciting and have the chance to turn into long-term work. It’s been a fun adventure to read through the postings in search of opportunities to branch out and expand my skillset.

This week I submitted a proposal to perform a job as a beta reader for a fantasy novel. I didn’t get the job but found it fun to try to use my existing skill set to break into something new. From here on out, I’ve committed to submitting one proposal a week for a job that’s tangential to my current skill set but not exactly within my wheelhouse. I’m excited to see what types of jobs I may end up doing as a result.

I had several older proposals close out this week due to inactivity after 30 days. I have now gone 9 for 31 overall with proposals, which brings me to a 29% success rate. Of the submissions in the past week, I went 1 for 3 at a 33% success rate. Now that so many proposals have closed, I plan to apply to more this week to bring my total active back up to around 15.

Time invested this week: 20 hours (performing client work, reviewing job postings, submitting quality proposals, conversing with potential clients)

Fiverr*

I BOOKED MY FIRST GIG Y’ALL!!!!!

Having people come to you for established gigs that you put out there in your area of expertise is the absolute best. I am now willing to invest more time in creating a presence on this site.

My first job came from someone looking for proofreading and corrections for a technical paper. After a bit of messaging and negotiation, we agreed on the price. Admittedly, it’s a bit lower than I wanted, but it’s for a student, and it’s also my first gig on this site, so I bent. Doing quality work and receiving my first review seemed a fair trade-off.

In other news, I was talking to a client from Upwork on Saturday, and he asked if I had seen his post on Fiverr. After getting a bit more detail, I uncovered a section of the site called “Buyer Requests.” I had no clue it existed, but I’m so grateful I know about it now! This section of the site allows freelancers to place offers for a specific buyer request, similar to Upwork.

It’s interesting to find that each of these sites, Fiverr and Upwork, is essentially offering the same kinds of services in unique ways. Upwork, while primarily a website where freelancers bid on jobs, also allows buyers to invite freelancers. Fiverr, while mainly a site where buyers contact freelancers, also has a section where freelancers can bid on requests. It’s apparent to me that any freelancer starting should be on both of these sites. While there may be some overlap with clients posting on both sites, it also allows more opportunity to find the right gigs.

Analytics is still broken so I have no idea how my gigs are tracking, but since one client found me I’m keeping the faith.

Time invested this week: 3.5 hours (proofreading job and client communication)

onlinebookclub.org

One of the things I uncovered about Online Book Club is that you become eligible for higher-paying reviews if you’re also able to leave reviews on Amazon. Since I had been using my husband’s account (don’t tell on me), I had to make a purchase over $50 on my account before I was able to leave reviews. The purchase took a bit longer to ship than expected due to pandemic-related delays. As such, I was finally able to post the requested reviews on Amazon last Tuesday night.

Due to this, I held off on selecting my next book to get a higher-paying ($10 option) vs. the others available ($5 or less). I haven’t yet completed the book I’m reading, so I don’t have any earnings from this gig in week 8. I’m hopeful I can do double reviews this week instead. Even still, the publishing of two more reviews and posting on forums increased my reviewer score a bit and put me ever closer to level two (45 points).

Current reviewer score: 36 (up six points from last week), still level one

New reviews posted in the past week: We Don’t Just Eat Lettuce! (87% – one minor grammatical error) and The Date Farm (97% – need to better organize the flow of ideas)

Time invested this week: 4 hours (reading book 8, making posts in the forum to increase reviewer score)

Rover

Everyone is still at home and nobody wants me to hang with their pups. Perhaps people will start to look again in the coming weeks as restrictions lift in the area? Only time will tell.

Time invested this week: none

Survey Junkie*

Survey Junkie is offering a 500 point ($5 reward) for completing three surveys per day through the end of May. I’m already doing them, so I think that’s a cool incentive to encourage participation. In case you missed it, check out my full review of Survey Junkie for a more in-depth look at this program.

Time invested this week: 2 hours

The plan for week 9

  • Add videos to Fiverr gigs (I meant to do this last week but an acne flare-up made me want to wait for clearer skin before I hit record)
  • Continue to submit directed, quality proposals on Upwork
  • Continue to monitor metrics for Fiverr (views/clicks) and Upwork (jobs won/jobs bid)
  • Spend 20 minutes a day doing surveys for easy, quick money
  • Finish book 8 for onlinebookclub and write review, start book 9

The Financial Picture – May 18, 2020

Hot diggity dog, we’re in the black! I am SO pleased to consider this adventure into freelancing profitable. The recurring jobs and my ability to be flexible and do quick work proved valuable as I reached my first (of many) $200+ weeks.

Current week income: $288.25 (first Fiverr gig for proofreading, Upwork administrative assistant work, Upwork QA job, surveys)

Current week expenses: $14.99 (Monthly Upwork subscription fee)

Net Operating Costs: $156.91

Things I learned this week:

Bid on jobs on weekends when possible: This past weekend, I was working a bit on Saturday afternoon and saw a Quality Assurance job pop up on Upwork. I applied and, within minutes, was working on the job. The client was in a hurry and wanted to get started right away, which worked well for both of us. Weekend and evening hours are a great time to capitalize on work that clients deem too pressing to wait.

Toggl is an excellent tool for time tracking: Now that I have regular clients to invoice, it’s essential to be able to track my time down to the minute. Toggl allows me to do that by giving me the option to automatically or manually track based on the project. I would highly recommend this free tool to anyone who is looking to get more granular with regards to monitoring time per project.

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