Finding the right freelancer for your project depends very much on your budget, the complexity of the project and the availability of the freelancer. On Unicorn Factory we help you find the right freelancer faster by categorizing freelancer in five different categories.
Newbies are freelancers who have just started working for themselves. Often times they come from a creative background and have finally made the leap into self-employment.
One of the key advantages of hiring new freelancers is that they are best value for money. Their work is often times as good as some of the professional freelancers, but they are still in the process of learning how to run a business.
The key challenge you are likely to have working with Newbies is that they need clarity and direction in terms of the outcomes and deliverables. If you are a great communicator and have clear goals, it will be easy for you to guide them to delivering a fantastic solution.
The most common way for freelancers to charge is hourly. The average hourly rate will differ between services, but I would expect to pay between $35 - $65 per hour.
Side Hustlers are part-time freelancers. They usually have a full-time job but freelance on the side to make a bit extra money or do what they are passionate about. A lot of freelancers with the ambition to go full-time try out part-time freelancing to see how it works for them.
Hiring side hustlers is great for smaller projects. Because they do what they are passionate about, they often times deliver stunning work at a fraction of the cost that it would otherwise be Pro or Studio. Because they are not dependent on their freelancing income, they often also are flexible in how they price their services.
The biggest downside of working with part-timers is that they are only available part-time, meaning that if you are up against a deadline and you need something done urgently, then these types of freelancers are not the right fit.
As Side Hustlers are more flexible they usually work around what works best for you as the client. Some freelancers charge a fixed project fee others work by the hour. Once again depending on the area of expertise a side hustlers might charge between $50 - $150 per hour.
Pros are full time freelancers. Unlike consultants they typically do the work meaning that they help you all the way from strategy to implementation. They usually also work by themselves making freelancers a great alternative to working with agencies or hiring a full time employee.
The key advantage of hiring a full-time freelancer is that you know you are dealing with someone dedicated to their craft. Besides the fact that they have a good understanding of strategy and implementation, they are also likely to understand how that strategy and implementation works in context of your business.
The biggest challenge with hiring great freelancers is that usually other businesses are trying to hire the same freelancers often making them unavailable. Also, the higher the demand for a freelancer, they higher their charge out rate will be.
About 70% of Pros charge per project rather than per time, because they can be very efficient with their time. You will also often see that they charge based on the value they add to your business rather than the actual input. This pricing model is popular because it is really a win/win for everyone involved. The more complex a project gets, the more likely the freelancer is to charge an hourly rate. Hourly rates can range anywhere between $50 - $300 per hour.
Consultants offer advice and expertise to help businesses perform better. Often times consultants come from a specific background like product, design, sales, marketing or business in general. Unlike with pro freelancers, consultants usually don't implement the work.
The biggest benefit from hiring a consultant is their experience and expertise in their niche. Prior to being consultants they would have done a lot of the work themselves meaning that they can now apply all those learnings to your business.
The downside of hiring a consultant is that you still need someone to implement the strategies and advice of the consultant. This again adds and extra layer of cost and time. If you are however someone who wants to learn how to operate different areas of your business faster than consultants are the right choice.
There is probably a 50/50 split between consultants who charge by the hour and consultants that offer package solution. In either case the hourly rate of hiring a consultant will exceed that of hiring a freelancer significantly. The average rate for consultants is between $100 - $500 per hour.
Studio owners operate a creative business and have a team around them to deliver the work. This is another typical progression from being a solo freelancer.
A big advantage of hiring a studio is that they are often able to offer a wider range of services that they both advise on and implement. This will mean that you don't have to deal with or manage multiple different freelancers at the same time.
The only real downside with hiring agencies is that it costs a lot more than to hire a freelancer. But if your business is in need of a wider range of services than that is often worth the extra cost.
Agencies typically charge by the hour but depending on the area you might also have agencies charge per project. What a studio ends up charging is often related to the complexity of your project.