Outsourcing a Project, How to Find a Good Freelancer

Outsourcing is a new wave of doing business, not only because something you simply cannot do, but it is becoming more affordable to outsource something every day. Let’s take owning a website as an example, it’s just like running any other business, do you know everything there is to know about your website? Can you code, do HTML, PHP create custom designs using CSS, or do you know how to write high quality content, do you know how to do SEO and marketing? It’s very unlikely that you know all of it, so one or more things need to be done by someone else, that is where outsourcing is needed, but today you can outsource something cheap. Any project that you need to outsource can be done by a freelancer found on many freelancing websites, so how do you find a good one?


On average if you are looking for a writer, you would have to pay $15 to $20 or even more to have an article written by a US writer, but you can have an article written for $3 to $5. You are probably thinking for that money you will be getting a freelancer from India or the Philippines and that is not what you had in mind, there is no use in hiring someone to write an article that you have to proofread and edit. But that is not necessarily so, first of all you don’t need to find a native English speaker to have a good article written, English became a necessary language for all of us long time ago, so it’s not something to fear. On the other hand, if you need a programmer it doesn’t matter what country your designer is from, programming languages are the same in all countries! The fact is that in some countries people can live normally with $500 to $1000, and that is why they can afford to write for $5 per article, so the question here is how to find a good freelancer, that is the key to outsourcing.

Before I explain what to look for in a freelancer, above mentioned is not a prerequisite, you do not have to look for a cheap freelancer, but most people do. There are plenty of native English speakers working as freelancers in many fields. So, the question here is how to find a good freelancer? There are two types of freelancer that you are going to find, established freelancer in their field and newcomers. In most cases you can’t go wrong with an established freelancer, but some of them can be more demanding and really a pain to work with, so they also have their flaws. On the other hand you have newcomers that have little reputation or none at all, so most of the times people avoid them.

Ok, so which to go for, established ones or new ones? I say both, you have to give a newcomer a chance, because you never know, you might be sitting on a gold mine, the fact of the matter is that there are few things to look for in a freelancer, and they are the same for newcomers and established freelancers.

OK, so apart from established reputation and good scores from previous employers what is there else to go on? The first thing that I look for in a freelancer is availability, now I am not talking about a freelancer that is working exclusively for you, the guy has to eat, so that means he will have other projects. When I say availability I mean your freelancer has to be available for consultation at arranged times, if you need to make a last minute change you will not be able to do that if your freelancer is busy doing other things, communication has to be top notch.

The next thing I look for are not examples of previous work, hey that could be anyone’s work, even if it is published on Ezine, I ask for a short live example, if I need something written I ask for a 300 to 500 words article on a very rare topic, I am an expert in finding rare topics that are hard to research. That may fall under torture but if a guy can write what I ask him to I know he is good. If it is programming, well, that is something you will have to go with examples, look for usability if it is design or speed of it is HTML or PHP, I’m not an expert in other things so can’t help you much with that.

The last thing is to study their application letter; I can tell a lot just by reading their application. I know how to recognize a pre written application, they are easy to notice, it’s the equivalent of comment posting spam in my book and I turn those down immediately. Always include something at the end of your job post that they have to repeat in order to acknowledge that they read the entire post. Half of the freelancers that apply for your job post won’t even read the entire post, so that eliminates unprofessional freelancers. And of course there is the presentation itself, if they read your post and the letter doesn’t look like a pre-written form look for the confidence. Too cocky is not good, no confidence, not good as well, so it’s like making a good cake, you need to make it balanced and you have yourself a good freelancer that will get the job done.

I hope you like my recipe, How to Find a Good Freelancer. If you are actually looking for work check out my recipe, Find Freelancing Jobs.

About The Author

is the founder and CEO of Practical SEO and also a passionate blogger. All of his free time he dedicates to his Practical SEO blog and giving free advice as well as participating in the blogging community.

Connect with me on Facebook | Twitter | Google + | LinkedIn

9 Response to Outsourcing a Project, How to Find a Good Freelancer

  1. JennyB on August 22, 2010

    Zarko another great article! And you make some excellent points that my recent post did not elaborate on.

    Thank you for always provided informative posts, you’re one of my Hub favorites :)


  2. Zarko on August 23, 2010

    Thanks Jenny :) nice of you to drop by, catch you on HubPages!

  3. Alex@gifts for wife on February 24, 2011

    Good thing i found your article now, i’m just in the need of a programmer for magento to outsource some coding i don’t have time to do (i actually have no idea how to do it, but whatever). I know there are some websites where freelancers gather, i just don’t know which one is safer and provides more quality.
    I don’t like taking chances when i have to pay a lot of money in advance to a guy i don’t know, but i’ll risk it this time.

  4. Zarko on February 24, 2011

    Hi Alex, you can use oDesk, it is the safest I know. But if you are looking for a magento developing company i can recommend one, or I can even recommend a magento developer if you need one. Been working with quite a few over the years.

  5. Alex@gifts for wife on February 24, 2011

    I don’t have a big budget, i only need some modifications since the website is mostly built. I’m sending you my contact details through the contact form.

  6. Veronica@Miami real estate on May 30, 2011

    Finding a good freelancer is not an easy task, you’ve to go through many applicants carefully to find one who will do the job for you the way you want him to. If the assignment is for more than a month especially when you outsource your SEO campaign, make sure that the person is not using any blackhat techniques and also see how much eager and dedicated that person is to work with you.

  7. Neo Design on June 7, 2011

    I think while outsourcing a project one should see that whether person is trustworthy or not. You can check that in many ways. Such as detailed mentioned in their personal information is correct or not.

  8. Antonia@Conversational hypnosis on June 17, 2011

    I know there are some specialized websites where we can find freelancers (there are actually a lot of them, but only a few trustworthy), so i occasionally drop by and see what’s new over there. Usually i do it to find work, but i admit there are some cases where i have to hire someone because my skills aren’t enough in some areas. Only problem is the high prices these freelancers ask, compared to, say, Fiverr.

  9. Mike on November 29, 2011

    I am a Seo freelancer and some of the bidding sites like odesk or freelancer is difficult for me to get a client and as what I understand of that sites I mentioned, there is a middle man between the employer and the employee like odesk or freelancer?, because I am a little bit confused. So I decided to get a client like in easyoutsource.com or onlinejobs.ph is easy to get a client and you can contact onm your own. Does anybody know any sites where I can get any projects but bidding sites… Thanks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.