This enormous guide will give you lots of ideas and opportunities. It lists freelance websites for beginners – and experts.
Even if you’re a more seasoned freelancer, this guide will prove useful. You may find you’re already familiar with many of the sites on the list, but there’s a write-up of each one that provides tips and useful info, and you’ll probably uncover some gems you’re unaware of too.
The list covers everything from the big freelance job boards to the sites that provide genuinely useful freelance advice, rather than those that are desperate to scam you or sell you something.
Let’s get straight to it!
Freelance Job Boards and Bidding Sites
The big freelance job boards make many people shudder, but you can’t leave them off a list of the best freelance websites for beginners.
BUT…these job boards are also the places where thousands of new freelance gigs are listed every single day. As long as you’re cautious and discerning, you will find legitimate clients with money to spend, and household-name companies using the platforms to find contractors. Over the years I’ve found my fair share of both.
You’ll find some tried and tested tips for improving your chances on these job boards.
Upwork is the biggest of the big when it comes to freelance websites. A quick search whilst typing this revealed over 110,000 open jobs. Yes, some are garbage, and some are even scams – but there are diamonds in that rough. Any one of those jobs could be the start of a relationship with a new, regular client.
We have a big, comprehensive review of Upwork here and an enormous article that compares Upwork with Freelancer, Fiverr and PeoplePerHour, the “big four” of all the freelance websites.
A smaller but similar site to Upwork, PeoplePerHour is UK-based but the workforce is global. It suffers from the same afflictions as Upwork, including annoyingly high fees, but the same positives apply too. We have an article on this site from a freelancer who’s done plenty of work on the platform.
Around since 2004, Freelancer.com is definitely a reputable platform and one of the worthwhile freelance websites for beginners to check out. That said, it’s arguably the one that gets the most negative press online from disgruntled contractors.
Even so, there are typically over 15,000 jobs on the platform, so there are inevitably some good quality opportunities among them. Sadly, doing the sifting to find them is on you…
You’ll find some general information on avoiding scams here.
Due to the monopoly the larger job boards have on freelance listings, it’s really hard for new boards to make an impact. Hubstaff Talent is a site that’s tried, and it definitely has its attractions, the key one being that it’s a free platform.
On the downside, it still attracts the inevitable scammers and “bottom feeders.” Furthermore, the far lower number of jobs (around 900 at the time of writing) means its appeal is more limited. Still, you might find something here, and you can read a review of the platform via this link.
It’s also notable that there are 50% MORE jobs on this platform than there were when we last looked, which indicates this is a growing site for freelancers.
Branded as a “freelance services marketplace,” Fiverr works in a different way to the other job boards. People list tasks they will carry out for a fixed price and sell them on the marketplace – anything from writing an article to building a website.
It can be a bit “bargain basement” and there’s a lot of competition, but plenty of people make do money on Fiverr.
Yes, this website is known for its bottom feeders and scammers. However, once in a while you may find a legit gig. They DO get posted to Craigslist.
Often these gigs tend to be something on the more casual side, versus a posting at say Journalism Jobs that might want years of journalism experience at a national publication. So that makes it a decent option for beginners. Just be incredibly careful of anything that seems remotely scammy.
This is an online community for designers. It handles graphic design, photography and illustration, as a few examples. It also has a part of the site that lists jobs.
Many of these jobs are listed as freelance and you can search for only freelance roles.
Through this site, you can create a profile so that businesses can find and hire you. It helps connect businesses with remote workers. The site outlines many different jobs to apply to, however, many are full-time. If you’re looking for something closer to a freelance role, you might search the part-time remote roles, or specifically for “freelance.”
If you’re in the design and creative fields, you’ll want to check out Dribble. The site has both a job board and a page listing different freelance projects.
You can contact potential clients through the system. Just running through the freelance project board, it looks very active on a daily basis at the time of writing.
This is a digital community for start-ups. You can also search the site directly for freelance tech and start-up jobs.
One of the perks of the site is that it allows you to see the salary being offered before you apply. That’s a massive timesaver. Too often, as a freelancer, you can contact a company, only to find out the pay is insultingly low.
This site caters to companies looking for technical help, like software developers, product managers and designers. It specializes in helping freelance professionals of this nature find work.
However, do note that it’s geared towards experienced workers. So if you’re beginning in freelancing, this site might work best if you’re coming from years of full-time experience.
This is another site that connects companies with freelancers. It hosts four of the major types of popular freelance jobs: writers, editors, graphic designers and translators. You set up a profile within the system to increase your visibility. A real perk is that this site does not have bidding.
This site allows you to design projects like logos in a contest setting. However, you can also set up your portfolio through the site and clients can work with you directly.
It’s free to sign up with the site. Rates vary by project, but the site says you get paid within three business days.
We have a dedicated article on how design contests work here.
This is another site where you can connect with companies looking for freelancers. There’s a page full of gig ads. Many projects will also display a fixed cost right up front, so you know what you are getting paid.
A downside is that some of the rates listed tend to be very low. However, when you are just starting out, this can help you get the experience you need.
This is another site that allows designers to compete on projects by submitting their designs. Then the client picks the one they like the most.
These sites can be frustrating if you’re not a competitive type. It can also mean hours of work you don’t get paid for. However, if you’re just starting out, it might be a fun way to test and improve your design skills.
Remote Working Sites
The next two sites on the list curate jobs that people can do from home or remotely. It’s fair to say they lean more towards teleworking opportunities, and they both have a small subscription fee which some people object to paying.
In reality, however, ten bucks or so really isn’t much money if it helps you uncover an opportunity you otherwise wouldn’t have heard about.
Of the two sites in this section, Flexjobs is my personal preference at the moment. This is primarily because the company does a lot for the home working / freelance community, shares some interesting research studies, and runs some useful initiatives such as a remote working “job fair.”
On the negative side, the website is a bit cluttered and the focus is defintely on remote workers more than freelancers. We’ve published a full review here.
Virtual Vocations (review here) is Flexjobs’ closest rival. However, it’s a smaller concern and the jobs are almost exclusively in the US, which isn’t great for people anywhere else! On the bright side, the user experience is a little friendlier and you get to see more of the site without subscribing.
If you’re tempted to try one of these sites but can’t decide which, they’re compared in more detail here.
Gig Work Sites
I make a distinction here between freelancing and gig working, although the two do blur into one. The sites in this section are more for the kind of gigs that involve at least some in-person contact, such as assembling furniture, taking on some ironing work, or doing some odd jobs.
TaskRabbit is a great system that puts people who need small jobs doing in touch with individuals (taskers) who would like to be paid to do them. It’s a refined platform with a presence in several places including the US, UK and Canada.
AirTasker is a very similar service to TaskRabbit, but covers a wider range of tasks. Some of these have more crossover with the kind of things you’d usually find on the freelance job boards above, such as business admin, design and marketing.
The site gives people the ability to list services they offer for a fixed price (rather like Fiverr, above.) Currently available in the UK and Australia only.
Microworking is something that some people look down on, but it’s a good way to earn some steady (if not big) money. It’s also completely flexible, in that you can log on when you have some time.
If you’re just getting started in freelancing, it can prove incredibly useful to have some microworking to fall back on to fill in any gaps in income.
Amazon’s Mechanical Turk (MTurk) is a well-established microworking site where you’ll always find a steady stream of tasks to do. There’s a huge community of people working on the site, some of whom manage to find tasks that earn them a decent entry-level hourly rate.
We’ve published a detailed review of MTurk, written by someone who’s spent plenty of hours working on the platform.
Clickworker is another microworking platform, and one we felt had improved when we recently updated our review. For many, it’s the fact that Clickworker offers a route into UHRS (explained here) that makes getting involved worthwhile.
It won’t make you rich, but can often be a steady source of microwork that’s great as a side income.
Appen was recently awarded the number one slot in Flexjobs’ round-up of companies listing the most home-based jobs. They offer everything from microtasks to more “bulky” freelance gigs in things like linguistics and transcription.
Traditional Job Boards
Plenty of companies – often large companies, still use “old school” job boards to advertise freelance positions. You may need to do a bit of searching, but simply inputting things like “freelance” and “independent contractor” usually yields results.
You can’t search for jobs of any description online without seeing some listings from Indeed. While the name is primarily thought of in association with “traditional” jobs, I’m listing it among the best freelance websites because there are always some freelance gigs lurking in the listings for those willing to look for them.
Whilst typing up this article, I did a search for “freelance” in my area and turned up just under 1500 opportunities.
A similar beast (or should I say monster?!) to Indeed, Monster.com has a global presence, and companies do use the platform to recruit for freelancers.
There’s perhaps not the volume of freelance positions here that I saw on Indeed, but there were some interesting roles when I last looked, including “day rate” jobs for project managers and SEO consultants.
Many beginning freelancers are still students or recent grads. This site connects people in that position with part-time, seasonal and entry-level jobs.
Just doing a quick search yielded a temporary contract job. The downside is that the search engine is barebones and hard to search by job type. There is no option to search just freelance that I could find. Roles seem to be location-based, as well.
This job site actually has a surprising amount of freelance gigs on it. One of the benefits of this site is that it’s typically fairly easy to apply through “quick apply” options.
A downside is that searching for certain jobs may yield many headhunter ads, rather than direct companies. However, you can also search by contract or temp jobs.
Companies that Hire Freelancers
There are thousands of companies of all sizes that hire freelancers, and some of them are on this separate list of firms hiring home workers.
For the purposes of this particular article, I’m focusing on a handful of companies with a good reputation that I know recruit regularly for freelancers, rather than those that do so occasionally. If you prefer the idea of working on a single project instead of hustling for gigs on the job boards, these could be worth a look.
Rev specialise in transcription, translation and closed captioning. They’ve worked with more than 20,000 freelancers and there always seems to be a steady stream of work. Rev’s clients include CBS, Disney and The New York Times.
Having seen Booking.com, the travel site, appear in a similar roundup of freelance websites for beginners, I thought I’d check it out. I found opportunities in content writing, and for language specialists in various global locations. It seems this is a company happy to hire freelancers and one well worth looking at.
Sticking vaguely to the theme of travel, we have Airbnb. It’s always pleasing to see a company have a seperate section for “remote” on its careers pages, and I saw freelance opportunities for photographers to visit Airbnb properties, as well as freelance jobs for property inspectors.
Deliveroo has a presence in a number of countries now, and plenty of people make a side income (or a living) from doing food deliveries at times that suit them.
Let’s face it, Uber’s not without its controversies, least of all protests and even bans in some cities, but it’s very much a pioneer in gig working. Almost any driver can choose to drive for Uber on a flexible freelance basis.
Publoft is a company that provides marketing and SEO to businesses. As such, the company has a writer’s network. However, it also has a significant vetting process to show your skills in areas like grammar and research.
The site does state that the company is open to pros and beginners alike, and it offers helpful feedback.
Websites for Freelance Teachers
If you teach, you should find yourself spoiled for choice with freelance opportunities.
There’s a huge market for online teaching these days, and VIPKid is arguably the best-known player in teaching English online. If you’re a native English-speaking graduate, you can build a business around teaching on VIPKid.
Preply is a little different, because it’s not only about teaching English. It’s essentially a teaching marketplace where you can set up as an online teacher in any subject you like.
For more on Preply and on several other freelance teaching opportunities, check out our guide to teaching online.
The Best Freelance Websites for Beginners in the Writing World
My research has shown that MANY people think about writing when they dream of a freelance life. These sites are all good places to get started along the road to finding gigs.
OK, I admit that this is a shameless plug for HomeWorkingClub’s sister site, but it features lots of advice for aspiring writers, and I have set out to make it one of the best freelance websites for beginners – just like this one 😉
ProBlogger Jobs is a small but perfectly formed website for freelance writing gigs, which we’ve reviewed in more detail here. The fact that the board charges advertisers means that scammy ads are kept to a minimum.
Jobs here appear in their tens rather than their hundreds, but it’s worth a regular check for gigs that are a good fit. I’ve personally both advertised here and picked up client work.
The FreelanceWritingGigs site lists new writing jobs every day. While they do offer companies seeking writers inexpensive paid ads, some ads are linked to third-party sites likes Craigslist.
You need to proceed with caution and be mindful of scams, but this is a legitimate place to search for new freelance writing assignments.
Constant Content is one of the most well-known content mills. It’s definitely something to do at the beginning of your career. Often these types of projects don’t give bylines.
However, working for a site like this can help you build positive habits for working from home and help you grow your skills as a writer while getting paid. Unlike many other content mill-style sites, this one allows you to submit your own articles set your own price.
This is a favorite site in the writing world. You can find anything in the media profession, from freelance remote jobs to full-time local jobs. It’s also a great way to get in contact with some local editors when they post gigs.
The site is easy to search by contract, telecommute and freelance jobs.
This is a weekly email that goes out on Fridays. Inside, there are sections listing ways to get paid as a writer.
There’s a section listing paying markets that are accepting submissions. There’s even a section detailing where you can find grants.
The Write Life has been a go-to in the writing community for some years. It offers invaluable marketing tips and pitch tutorials. It helps you learn about different types of writing and publishing. Basically, everything writing is at this site.
This is another content mill-styled site where you’re getting the practice of writing and working from home. Again, work for sites like these often doesn’t have bylines or make for amazing portfolio pieces.
The system works on a star rating system. The more stars you amass, the higher paid projects you can claim. It’s a decent way for beginners to practice writing articles, following style guides and writing to a deadline.
We have a detailed TextBroker review here.
MediaBistro is a hub for writers that includes a job board. Many of these jobs are for companies rather than individual blogs, with the clients typically looking for solid experience. I saw such big names as Dow Jones and CNBC when I last looked.
That said, there are also some listings for more junior writers, so MediaBistro is worth at least a glance, regardless of where you’re at with your writing career.
This site used to be known as All Indie Writers but has since rebranded. In addition to the wide selection of articles and resources to help with your career, you can also search jobs for writing gigs. Often, rates will be posted, many in the $250-500 pro rate category.
The downside is that jobs are posted to the board somewhat infrequently. As of Feb. 10, there has only been one posting this month. There are, however, periods where it seems a few job ads go up every several days.
Staffing Agencies for Freelancers
If you’re keen to find temporary contracts to carry out on a freelance basis, it’s well worth considering approaching some staffing agencies. These are best suited to experienced professionals in fields like IT, finance and project management.
Examples of agencies known to offer freelance / contract positions include: (links lead to profiles of the companies).
The Best Freelance Websites for Advice
There are MANY websites out there offering advice to freelancers. You’re reading one of them!
It’s worth being aware that many such sites have a hidden agenda, and want to sell you secret formulas and membership deals. The two sites here have more to offer than that, and are worth a frequent read.
I am slightly biased because I’ve been known to write the odd post for The Freelancer’s Union, but it’s a site offering consistently good advice in a very approachable format. It’s well worth adding to your bookmarks.
Due is a little bit different in that it’s a site that helps you get paid easier online. It helps with invoicing, payments and the like. It also features a digital wallet to help you make digital payments.
However, it has a blog full of information on how to find clients and manage your business.
This course site allows you to learn new skills to help your freelance business succeed. You can learn coding, illustration, business growth tips and website design. If you’re just starting out, it can’t hurt to practice your skills and boost your portfolio.
Entrepreneur.com can feel a bit focussed on startup businesses sometimes, rather than individual freelancers, but there’s still more than enough good content. Also, while there are ads on the site, you can read it without the feeling somebody’s trying to sell you something.
Founder of HomeWorkingClub.com – Ben has worked freelance for nearly 20 years. As well as being a freelance writer and blogger, he is also a technical consultant with Microsoft and Apple certifications. He loves supporting new home workers but is prone to outbursts of bluntness and realism.