If you're a freelancer, you'll know that while this month you're working late nights, next month you might have quite a little free time on your hands. Although I haven't seen any free time for the last six months, I did earlier ~ before my 'freelancing' became a full-fledged business.
So what do you do when you don't have too many projects to focus all your creative energy on? You put it to good use. Here's how I did it.
1. Update Your Website
Look through all the pages of your website from a new visitor's point of view. If your website was designed a while ago, it would be a really good idea to invest some time in making sure it looks the best it can. Also look up your competitors' websites and see what they are doing. Consider investing in a good web designer
to restyle your online presence.
Ask yourself these questions:
Is your website easy to navigate?
How does your website stand out against your competition?
Is it providing the visitor easily with all the information you want him/her to see?
Is it easy for the visitor to contact you?
If you have a blog, you also want to go through old posts to see whether or not they make sense now. Some of the stuff you posted back then might be irrelevant now and so will require updating. Same goes for your blog images and most importantly - your portfolio.
Additionally, if you're like me, you probably to like to try new things on your website. E.g. sometimes I add a sharing plugin because I think it will help. Sometimes I think I should have more product categories in my shop, other times I don't. So when you're free, it's time to analyze what features on your site have actually helped you over the past few months and which have not. It's time to get rid of the ones that have not.
One more thing. Many times we add new images on the website and forget to delete the ones that we are no longer using. Use this time to sit down and go through your website hosting directories to delete any files that are just sitting there unnecessarily slowing your website down. Alternarively, you can hire web support
to take care of this for you.
2. Streamline Processes
Until two years ago, I was using Microsoft outlook with a hosting plan for my business emails. After some research I realized NOTHING handles business email better than Google Business Mail
so I switched to it and set it up for myself and my employees. For me, streamlining also included designing standard templates for my proposals, invoices, receipt, blog posts, portfolio projects, PayPal documents, Enquiry email replies etc.
Free time is great for marketing your services. Start working with an SEO expert
to help your website get a better ranking on search engines. This will in turn give you more exposure and leads.
4. Portfolio Profiles
If you're in a creative business, this is a great time to sign up and create your portfolios on popular sites like Dribbble
. These have a very good reach when it comes to getting your work noticed by potential clients looking for the creative services you offer.
5. Social Media Profiles
Take a look at all your social network profiles/pages one-by-one. Update your cover photos/profile pictures so that they are consistent with your web identity.
Do research on what kind of a social media marketing automation plan will work for you. This will help you save a lot of time when you are busy later and have no time for marketing. I recently wrote an article on 5 Steps To Automating Your Social Media & Email Marketing (For Less)
. Check it out.
7. Collect Inspiration
Use the Pocket app
to create folders/boards and organize stuff that inspires you. This will come in handy when you're busy working with project deadlines later.
Did you get an inquiry last month for a service that's like an extension of the services you offer but you had to refuse because you don't know much about it? Or may be you do know about it but your skills require some brushing up? Well, this is your time.
Over to you
Tell me, do you get time between projects?
How do you use that time to help your business succeed?