10 Mistakes You Should Never Make As A Budding Freelancer

July 29, 2020

10 Mistakes You Should Never Make As A Budding Freelancer
Becoming a freelancer is a sure way of making money online, and one of my favourite. 
Whether you get your clients on Facebook, Fiverr, Upwork or any other sites, there is a lot of money to make from the career.

However, there are so many serious mistakes every freelancer MUST avoid. We have shared 7 of them on Information Guide Africa.

Before I begin, we will be seeing a brief introduction to freelance writing.

What Is Freelance Writing?

Freelancing simply put is a kind of internet business where you are getting paid to write, take photos, draw, create websites of any other things.

No one guides you through the steps, and you are only required to present finished results in most cases.
The writing career has moved from the hands of professionals to average people like you and I, and is very interesting because no one is asking for your certificate.

Basically, you only need to prove that you can do this and you have the job.
However, getting a freelancing gig is not so easy.

There are a lot of mistakes we make that prevent us from winning the gigs, and I will be treating them in this article.

Some of these mistakes revolve around the way you package yourself, since the clients don't know you personally.

Mistakes To Avoid As A Nigerian Freelance Writer

Most of us make the mistakes out of omissions, and for others carelessness.
  • Avoid leaving your customers unsatisfied

As business ethics have it, you should know that your customers are always correct. I know there are always problem clients, but find the best way to discharge them. Leaving them unsatisfied on a site like Fiverr can fetch you an immediate negative review?

Now what about social networks like Facebook that have no provisions for reviews? Let me share this story with you...

Late 2017, I got two Indian clients, Saeed and Rafiq. I got Rafiq first and after my first article for him, he was so happy with me and introduced me to his friend, Saeed. We worked for two to three months and then parted, but were still friends on Facebook.

On April 5, 2018, Saeed got on his timeline to appreciate people he had recently worked with and my name was the 7th there. He had gotten a permanent writer and felt it necessary to thank those who satisfied him, and I was among.
When I saw the post, I was so happy. I knew it was really great to satisfy my customers, not knowing another gold mine was on the way.

I came back that evening, logged in to my Facebook and there were about 19 friend requests, all Indians. They all needed content writers.
Well, to cut the whole story short, I landed another permanent client and have been supplying articles to him everyday since then.

Many were trying to price me too cheap, and many actually needed more than I could offer and I rejected.
I also scrolled through the comment section and saw that more people actually needed my services, and I went further to message them.
  • Never deliver late to your clients

We're all humans and we need and love money, and we need them. However, it is very bad to deliver on time, it will be better you didn't accept the job at all.

A negative review can do you more harm than you can imagine. Forget about all the tricks you use for Fiverr to get reviews, the main war begins when you get the real offer.

I once stayed in a place where I had access to electricity only at night. There were not much offers, but I didn't have the mind to reject because I needed money badly then. I couldn't deliver what I accepted, and at the end I couldn't still get the money.

The clients got the impression that I was good at late deliveries, but thank my goodness, I later corrected that. It might not be same for you.
  • Learn To Reject Offers

You will never enjoy freelancing until you learn that not all offers are meant for you. How can you be a jack of all trades and master of none? You're good in cryptocurrency, law, health and still a translator. It isn't good. A freelancer should be versatile, but if you aren't a translator, save yourself the embarrassment and don't accept related offers.
  • Never Be Too Cheap

It's easy to write an article for $2.00 right? But someone somewhere else is writing the same stuff for $10. If you get $100 from writing 50 articles, they make it writing only 10, which means you should have made neat $500 from those your 50 articles.

If you know your worth, then avoid being cheap, it kills people's careers.
  • Stop Asking Your Clients To Pay What They Can

I used to be like that until I observed it makes me look more desperate and eager to work, and like I'm begging. It's 100% unprofessional. Set your rates, allow negotiations and pricing especially for bulk work and discharge anyone who doesn't value you. Most people actually prefer patronizing expensive people.
  • Always Have Many Forms Of Payment

Any freelancer who doesn't have a PayPal account will actually be loosing more money than he's making. If your country doesn't accept PayPal, then hire me to set up one for you, it's very essential!

I have a Payoneer account, a Skrill account and a PayZa account. It's not that I find it so interesting splitting my funds, but I have to do it to secure them.
  • Stop Failing To Communicate

Failing to communicate with a foreign client can make them forget your name, especially if you don't post much and there's no chance of his/ her remembering your name. You should also avoid excessive changing of your names as it can make you to be lost in the vast world of the web.

A freelancer needs to work on his brand, and your name is the easiest way to do that.
  • Stop Keeping Problem Clients

Some clients request for reviews and editions till you get bored of them. Craftily discharge those ones and move on with your business.
  • Always Accepting Offers

C’mon we have to be wise! How can you have five articles to work on and still accept the sixth? You’d end up piling the works and then submitting late, and the works wouldn’t be presentable. At the end you see yourself loosing clients.

Stick to a limit in articles and you’d make much money from few clients than having the whole world as clients.


Starting a career as a freelancer in Nigeria comes with a lot of setbacks, especially coming to electricity and high cost of data.

It is more interesting if combined with blogging, and you can check out our exclusive guide to $500+ per month as a blogger.

Thanks a lot for reading along!
Don't forget to drop us a comment and share to your friends.

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