When most people think of freelancers, they think of creative jobs: writing, editing, perhaps advertising and marketing gigs. While those areas are full of opportunities for entrepreneurial types who want to work at home, either on a full-time or part-time basis, they’re far from the only occupations that lend themselves to the freelance life. Here’s a roundup of several freelance jobs — some you’d never expect.
Let’s start with the obvious: freelance writing is the classic work-from-home job. If you’re not already toiling away in virtual ink, however, you might not realize how many different types of freelance writing jobs there are. From journalism to copywriting, blogging to social media, there are writing jobs for every temperament and type of experience.
Editing and Proofreading
Whether you’re a seasoned grammarian or just someone with a solid eye for detail, the internet teems with editing and proofreading gigs for your level of skill and experience.
Marketing and PR
If you have a phone and an internet connection reliable enough to sustain a Skype meeting, you can do your marketing or PR job from the comfort of your own home. Just be prepared to take the occasional on-site meeting. In many cases, the client will want to look at their marketing or PR pro in the eye once in a while — and not just over a webcam. Social media coordinator and manager jobs also fall under this umbrella, and as easy to do from home as from an office.
Transcription jobs generally come in three flavors: medical, legal, and market research. The latter requires the least amount of study, in terms of familiarizing yourself with the specialized technical language of the field. In most instances, transcription jobs are meted out by an agency, which will require you to take a typing test and then set you up with jobs as needed.
If you can type 60 words a minute or more, and find repetitive work more Zen than dull, data entry jobs might work for you. Just beware: ads for data entry jobs that promise big bucks or ask for bank account or other personal info before allowing you to get started are red flags for scams. (More on work-from-home job scams at the end of this article.)
Virtual Assistant Work
If you have experience as a personal assistant, administrative assistant, or office manager, you can do a similar job for a variety of clients, from the comfort of your own home. Virtual assistants provide administrative support over the phone and internet, often working through an agency that connects them with clients.
Virtual call center jobs are the same gig as the in-person job, minus the trip to the call center. One caveat: make sure you know if the company will provide paid training, or if you’re supposed to pony up for your own start-up costs. The latter scenario could cost you a pretty penny, or turn out to be a scam.
Coach elementary, middle school, high school, or college students on a variety of subjects, via the internet. Most companies will want teaching experience in the subject you’re tutoring, plus a college degree.
Your Full-Time Work, as a Freelance Job
Don’t assume that your current occupation is incompatible with freelance life. Many jobs that seem firmly rooted in the brick-and-mortar world of physical offices and facilities are actually perfect for freelancing. For instance, Registered Nurses can find a variety of freelance gigs that require their licensure, skills, and experience, including case management for insurance companies, telephone triage, and medical call center work.
Also, check out these work-from-home computer jobs for more options to consider.
Beware of Scams
Hidden among the many legitimate work-from-home job listings are scams of varying degrees of cleverness and malicious intent. To avoid getting caught by a work-at-home job scam, always research companies before you commit. Don’t send money, account or social security numbers, or any information that would make it easier to steal your identity. Beware of organizations that require you to buy a kit before you can get started, or promise to help you get rich in a hurry. Bottom line, remember the adage: if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.