Anybody who has been in online marketing for a while would have heard of the term ‘outsourcing’… and they’d also have heard the horror stories of receiving shoddy work or how some freelancers do a David Copperfield vanish and are never to be seen again.
The truth of the matter is this – outsourcing can be a blessing or a curse depending on how you use it. As a senior who is just getting started online, outsourcing may or may not be the ideal way for you to go about your online business.
In this article, we’ll look at 5 pertinent points that you must be aware of should you decide to outsource. Let’s see what they are.
1 – Know your budget
This is the most important point of the lot. Here’s a fact – when you outsource a job, you are going to have to pay for it. Do you know what your budget is like? Does it allow for you to outsource?
If you have funds to spare, then yes, outsourcing can help you save time and effort. However, if you’re already in debt and struggling with financial problems, outsourcing will just eat into your limited funds.
For seniors in this financial situation, you’re better off doing everything on your own. It may take you longer, but you’ll not sink further into debt or spend money that’s barely enough for your living expenses.
Ideally, the best time to outsource is when you’re already making an income online. Outsourcing then becomes a necessary strategy to scale up. Anything before that and it’s a burden.
2 – Expensive is not always best
When you hire a freelancer, very often the price you pay is arbitrary. How much a freelancer charge depends on how much they value their time and how good they think their work is. Once again, this is very arbitrary.
Very often, you’ll be able to find freelancers who do an excellent job but charge bargain basement prices because they’re trying to get a break in the industry. Yet, they struggle to find work because everyone believes that the guy charging the most must be the best.
Do not fall into this trap. Look for freelancers who charge less but do great work too. Usually, they’ll be new to the scene and hoping that someone takes a chance on them. By being that ‘someone’ whom they’re looking for, not only can you get a great deal, but you’ll get good work done and the freelancer will be eager to please you to get a good review.
3 – Post a detailed job listing
When posting a job listing on freelance platforms, always be detailed in the job description. Add a list of requirements, and always ask the applicant to use a code word at the bottom of their reply.
When you receive applications from interested service providers, check and see if they used the code word. Many freelancers do NOT read the job descriptions and just copy and paste a generic reply to many different job listings.
This little code word will separate those who are truly interested in your job from those who are just casting a wide net.
Ask the freelancers relevant questions and also ask them to send samples of their work. This will allow you to ascertain the quality of their work.
4 – Look for good communication
When you’re communicating with the freelancer, observe how fast they reply you. If they take days to send you a reply, avoid them at all cost. Ideally, they should reply you within 24 to 48 hours.
Someone who takes days to reply a message may take months to deliver the work… if they even do. You do not want to deal with irresponsible freelancers, and there are many of them around.
5 – Watch the quality
It’s common for many marketers to blindly accept the freelancer’s work and just put it out in the marketplace without checking the work. Avoid this mistake.
Always go through their work with a fine-toothed comb and see if it’s good or if there are factual errors, poor formatting, etc.
Clean up the work yourself or send it back to the freelancer and ask for a revision. Human errors occur and it’s not really a big deal if you can spot these errors and fix them.
Putting out a shoddy product/content is worse than not creating any at all. Always check the work and release the best possible products/content you can.
Apply these 5 important points and use outsourcing to scale your business. Finding good people to work with can be a challenge but rest assured that they’re out there. When you do find them, they’ll deliver excellent work and free up your time and energy to work on other aspects of your business. Outsourcing works, if you work it.