Going by the old-school thinking, we – the generation of the 21st century – don’t want to work but want to become a billionaire overnight. The fact is, I chose to become a freelancer due to these reasons; one is free to work according to my timings and needs; the second is obviously the domain in which I prefer to work and excel.
As we see the growing trend, most of freelancers are below 40 in India with experience of less than 5 years. This also reflects the growth potential in the market. Hence, as a recent study shows 63% indian freelancers are optimistic about future.
No journey can be a journey if there are no ups and downs.So is my journey as a freelancer. I started on a very high note, thanks to my contacts in the industry. Like trends suggest that 4 out of 5 gain international clients, I did too.
It was lucky realisation that I am one of those 52% Indian freelancers who enjoy international projects as well as 49% who have domestic projects too. However, as I grew I felt the need to do more quality work. Creative craving touched a new zenith and I started looking for better clients with an international reputation for better quality and better pay.
I couldn’t realize what went wrong initially and why clients deserted me despite offering better work. Neither do I know as to how it course-corrected that I started getting work from international clients. I realised that freelancing is no less than a business run by a one-man-army. And to run any business one has to dedicate his or her whole of time without disappointment, and persistence helps.
So, you can say that now my journey as a freelancer has been stable. In the last one year, I’ve worked with clients from the UK, Singapore, the US, Australia, Dubai and of course Indian clients having an international presence. In about two years I have established myself as a professional rather than a freelancer.
However, working with international clients isn’t easy. There are two major issues of contention- one is setting the working criteria on a particular project within your domain and the other is the payment. A recent study pointed out that 61% freelancers face payment related issues, You are always at the risk of losing your money. No, it’s not because clients run away with your money, but because you do not have the foreign bank account or proper payment gateway to get your money.
Later, a friend of mine introduced me to PayPal. According to him, it was the most trusted way to receive your money from international clients and close to 74% Indian freelancers use paypal. I was reluctant as I had never used it before and had always asked for bank transfers, which used to be the time-consuming process and expensive too.
PayPal made it absolutely easy for me to receive money from my clients. All I need is an authentic email ID to provide to my client to receive the payment. The feature that I like the most about PayPal is invoice creation, which makes it absolutely easy for a freelancer to create customized invoices that look professional and also schedule them as reminders to clients. It helps me keep a record of all transactions and receivables.
The major reason why Indian professionals lose their international clients is the dispute over the payment. Because of PayPal, I have significantly reduced such disputes and have retained most of my old clients. Having PayPal builds trust among international clients and also helps me focus on work rather than worrying about receiving payments on time
PayPal has increased the ease of doing business and helped me reach those clients, who I couldn’t have connected with earlier because of not knowing them personally.
This is where PayPal Seller protection policy comes into playWhat’s more, I am planning a big jump so far as my professional career is concerned. Since I am least worried about my payments, I have decided to invest time in expanding my horizon into another subdomain of my work.
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