Keeping your products and services at the forefront of your customer’s mind is key to building strong, lasting relationships. But who has the time and resources to hire new team members every time you need your website tweaked or a new ad copy written?
Fortunately, online outsourcing has made it easier than ever to expand your team without bringing a full-time employee onto your payroll.
Whether you’re a small business owner or a solopreneur, outsourcing will help you:
- Save time by hiring a freelance expert (instead of tackling those web design changes yourself!)
- Save money by only paying for the services you absolutely need right now
- Get immediate results instead of waiting for an in-house or local contractor to finish your project
What kind of outsourcing services are available online?
You can outsource just about anything and everything your company may need. Popular outsourcing services available through websites like Upwork.com include:
- Graphic design
- Web design/development
- Voice over artists
As new business needs arise, you’ll be able to select appropriate freelancers based on your price range and desired delivery date. Small projects can be turned around in a just a few days, and many larger projects can be completed in as little as one week.
How to get started outsourcing services
- Decide on the tasks you need to be completed. For example, do you need a video to be edited, an update to your WordPress site, or posts written for your blog?
- Write a short summary of the outcome(s) you’d like to achieve. Don’t be afraid to get super-specific about your expectations, timeline, and budget. The more specific you are the easier it will be to find the right freelancer to help address your needs.
- Go to upwork.com and sign up for a free account.
- Create a job posting using the summary you created in Step #2 above.
- Invite qualified freelancers to apply to your job via the “invite” feature within the Elance application.
- Select the freelancer that is most qualified for the job.
- Delegate what you need done and get back to focusing on your core competencies!
Pitfalls to avoid when outsourcing services to freelancers
Be sure to watch out for…
- Inexperienced freelancers without a strong Upwork profile and portfolio
- Freelancers who have difficulty communicating in English
- People who obviously haven’t read your job posting in detail, or use a “copy and paste” response in their submission.
You can avoid dealing with unqualified freelancers by reading the feedback and comments that have been left by past clients on their Upwork profile.
It’s a good idea to ask for samples of past work as well, and you may want to hire several freelancers to do a ‘test’ job and see whose work you like best.
For example, if you’re looking for a web designer, you might choose your top three freelancers and hire all of them to do a one-page mockup design. Whoever creates the design you like best gets the big job.
Upwork.com is a fantastic choice for outsourcing services because it protects you and the freelancer should the job not be completed to your liking. Your money is put into an escrow account but is only released once you are 100% satisfied with the work.
Outsourcing various marketing tasks is the best way to save time, energy and resources, and lets you get back to doing what you do best – running your business.