Let’s be truthful about the cash-flow of your freelancing business. It could be better. You probably hear all the time that cash flow is king – and it is. After all, without it, you basically have a passion rather than a profession. Or maybe the cash is flowing in big but is leaving even faster through expenses which are larger than your revenue. If cash-flow sits on the throne, why we aren’t prepared for the times when it isn’t?
Account for everything
Most of the time, the beginning of more consistent cash flow is to try to find out what kind of cash flow you actually possess. A basic cash flow spreadsheet is a must here. The easiest way to calculate your cash flow is to use columns for months and clients, with a running total at the bottom. This will show you what kind of income you can hope for in each month. Combining this with a spreadsheet of your expenses – also monthly – will give you a better understanding of how much cash you’ll require, and when. Once you understand what kind of cash flow you’re dealing with, you will be able to develop a more financially stable plan. It should include a salary that completely covers your personal expenses and bills, and a comfy cushion for any unexpected expense.
And still, have a plan B
Sometimes even the most solid plans fail and you suddenly find yourself short of cash. And unexpected bills pop up. Not having any money while you are waiting for your payment is more common than you think. This is particularly true for freelancers who experience feast and famine cycles regularly. Online payday loans may be able to help you in such situation as you can receive up to a $1000 directly into your bank account. Even if you have the poor credit score you still may be able to get them as they have a high approval rate. Repaying them is as simple as getting them. Since a payday loan is a short-term debt that has a lower amount when compared with other debts, you will often repay it over a shorter time period. Most clients are able to repay their debt over a month or two.
Raise your rates… in the right way
You have a client. They’re comfortable to work with and have been around for a long time. However, your rates have jumped and you just won’t work for any less. You will now have to call your client and basically ask them to pay you more. For a freelancer, this can end in ruins if there is no plan. You know you’re more valuable, but does the client know? From their perspective, it looks like you want more money for the same service. The solution is to concentrate on how to present your offer. You have to be indispensable before anything else. If you aren’t carrying your weight and more, you don’t stand any chance with negotiating a larger sum. Don’t talk about how you’re still the cheapest option for them. First, you shouldn’t be, and second, you’re increasing your rates, not fighting a bidding war.
Managing your retainers
Retainer clients have awesome benefits: They give you steady cash flow while you won’t need to spend as much time in the networking-prospecting-qualifying-selling process. Although it is easy to get “stuck” with them – they paid for your time and now you have to do whatever they want. Protecting your time, income, and energy with retainer customers is simple. You can structure your relationship in the form of “Reserved Time” where you get paid a particular amount for a specified number of hours that you reserve for that client. To make this more appealing, offer your hours at a saving. Or you can try your luck with an “Ongoing Project” form, in which you provide a set amount of project material every month. Writers can send a predefined number of posts and emails, while designers can concentrate on handling particular ongoing design requirements – website design or social media graphics.
Variable income is an integral part of any freelancer’s life. It doesn’t have to apply to you also. You will just need to have a persevering attitude, act to the best of your abilities, and never stop reaching new clients. In time, financial stability and clients will come your way.