If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably bootstrapped most of your business ventures. This means that spending extra money on outsourcing your business task is out of the question in the beginning stages, but there will come a time when it’s an absolute necessity.
So, how will you know?
A good example is my recent attempt at electrical work. My wife and I are in the process of finishing a bonus room above our garage, and a few weeks ago, I spent most of Saturday and part of Sunday afternoon trying to wire a 4-way switch. I mean, how hard could it be?
But even after watching numerous YouTube videos and reviewing diagrams and instructions, I couldn’t make it work. Finally, I swallowed my pride and contacted an electrician who had it fixed within an hour. It was worth every penny of that $190 service fee.
My only regret was that I had not called him Saturday morning. I wasted hours and hours trying to do something that I already knew was not my forte.
What’s my point?
When you own your own business, you are inevitably going to have tasks you don’t enjoy or you’re not good at. It’s just part of it. But little by little, it’s essential to find people who excel in the things you don’t and outsource these business tasks. Otherwise, your business will never grow the way it should and you will quickly become burned out.
But how do you outsource on a budget?
When you’ve finally started earning a little cash and can see that your business could benefit from hiring some extra help, it’s time to start looking for some assistants. Believe it or not, it’s probably a lot less expensive outsourcing than you think. If you know where to look, you can find quality freelancers on even the tightest budget. Just remember to try them out before investing too much or agreeing to contracts!
3 Popular Marketplaces to Find Freelancers:
- Fiverr: Fiverr jobs start at $5 for a basic gig. You will find all kinds of freelancers from SEO work to blog writing.
Some of the gigs that I have purchased on Fiverr were useless – not even worth salvaging. But I have also had some good results, which makes it worth the small risk. Several of the freelancers that I now use for graphics and editing, I found on Fiverr.
Tip: Once you find someone that does quality work, tip them with each job so that they’ll be motivated to keep producing quality work.
- Upwork: The freelancer who currently adds products to my store, I found on Upwork. Like Fiverr, there are a lot of low-quality freelancers, but I usually hire two or three freelancers to do a test job and hire the one who meets my criteria.
Tip: When choosing a freelancer, don’t automatically go with the cheapest bid. Sometimes that will cost you more in the long run. I found this out the hard way when I hired a writer whose articles I couldn’t use. I now use a freelancer who is a writer by profession.
- 99designs: For quality graphic design, 99designs is a great website. Here, designers compete for your business. You submit a detailed report of what you need designed, pick your package, and then designers can pick up the job. They will all submit their designs to you and you pick the one you want.
Which tasks should you outsource?
This answer is a little different for everyone, but in general, I always suggest delegating tasks you hate. As your business grows and you’re making more money, you can begin delegating more of your work until all you’re left with is what you’re best at.
Three Tasks I Always Outsource:
I would be embarrassed for you to read my posts prior to having them edited. I love to write and share my thoughts but editing is part of the process that I do not enjoy, so I outsource it.
Every article that I write for the Work at Home Inspiration blog and every description on my ecommerce page is edited by an excellent editor.
- Mundane Details
When I started my online store, I spent hours upon hours adding products. It was tedious work, and many nights, I was up until 3 a.m. doing the mundane task of adding specifications, product images, and dimensions. It was mind-numbing!
It was during this process of the business that I questioned if starting my own business was worth it. But thank God I stuck with it, because owning my online business has changed my family’s life!
Through many trial and error, I finally found a guy on Upwork who enters all of my product descriptions, which frees up my time to do the things I enjoy and excel at.
I actually still do my own accounting, but one of my goals for 2017 is to find the right person to take over this task. It’s just not something I enjoy and feel it would be best outsourced to someone else. If it’s not a strength of yours, you will want to consider handing it off to a professional as well.
Bottom line – outsourcing tasks wisely will make and save your business money in the long run, but be sure to vet your freelancers well. Test jobs and small tasks are always a great way to begin a relationship with a prospective hire.
Check back soon for a future post on the many outsourcing services that are available. And if you need help finding a freelancer, please email me and I’ll be happy to take a look at your project and recommend someone.
In the meantime, what tasks would you love to outsource?