What are the 16 top in-demand freelance skills for making a regular income? Because of widespread digitization, greater connection, and the thriving freelance economy, the world of work is changing quickly. But each of them is beneficial since it opens up new job opportunities for both independent contractors and traditional employees.
To stay employable today and in the future, master (or brush up on) these top freelance skills:
Top In-Demand Freelance Skills for Making a Regular Income
1. Ethical Hacking and Cybersecurity
Cyberattacks may target any company, no matter how big or small. Hackers continue to innovate, and occasionally their plans are even more complex than the technologies they make use of.
Global cybercrime may cause firms to lose $10,5 trillion by 2025 (somewhat more than Japan’s current GDP!).
Therefore, businesses are actively acquiring superior cybersecurity skills and technology. Specialists are required to safeguard confidential data, identify system flaws, develop policies in case of a breach, and educate staff on cybersecurity issues.
Contrary to popular belief, skilled hackers are in high demand. The practice of “good men” imitating “bad guys” to break into systems is known as ethical hacking. They may then advise businesses on how to close gaps in current security systems while creating even stronger ones in the future using their practical experience.
However, because everyone is hiring, there aren’t enough full-time employees on the market. Up to 3,5 million cybersecurity positions might go vacant by 2025.
Therefore, if you already enjoy tinkering with software and paying close attention to details, think about developing some cybersecurity expertise for freelancing work, such as:
- Penetration testing (pen testing)
- Network Administration
- Threat monitoring and analysis
- Threat hunting
2. Social Media Management
Social media management skills have become increasingly important in today’s digital age. With the ever-growing popularity of social media platforms, businesses and individuals alike are recognizing the need for effective management of their online presence.
One crucial skill in social media management is the ability to create engaging and compelling content. A skilled social media manager understands how to craft posts that resonate with the target audience, using attention-grabbing headlines, high-quality visuals, and concise yet impactful messaging. They know how to tailor their content to each platform, taking into account the unique characteristics and preferences of each audience.
Another essential skill is community management. A social media manager must be adept at building and nurturing an online community. This involves responding to comments and messages promptly, addressing concerns or issues, and fostering positive interactions with followers. They understand the importance of cultivating relationships and creating a sense of belonging among their audience.
Furthermore, social media managers should possess analytical skills to measure the effectiveness of their efforts. They use various tools to track metrics such as reach, engagement, and conversion rates, allowing them to make data-driven decisions and optimize their strategies accordingly.
Adaptability is key in social media management. With the rapidly changing landscape of social media platforms and trends, a skilled manager stays informed and adaptable, embracing new features and adjusting strategies as needed.
Social media management skills encompass content creation, community management, analytics, and adaptability. Possessing these skills enables individuals and businesses to effectively navigate the dynamic world of social media, build brand awareness, engage with their audience, and achieve their goals.
3. Digital Marketing
Digital marketing skills are crucial in today’s highly connected world. With the rise of online platforms and e-commerce, businesses need professionals who understand how to effectively reach and engage with their target audience in the digital space. Key digital marketing skills include search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, social media marketing, email marketing, and data analytics.
A skilled digital marketer knows how to optimize websites for search engines, create compelling content that resonates with the target audience, leverage social media platforms to build brand awareness, utilize email marketing campaigns for lead generation, and analyze data to make informed marketing decisions. These skills are essential for businesses to stay competitive and succeed in the digital marketplace.
4. Project Management
Project management skills are critical for successfully executing and completing projects within organizations. Effective project managers possess a range of skills, including the ability to plan, organize, and coordinate tasks and resources. They are skilled communicators, capable of clearly defining project goals, delegating responsibilities, and ensuring team members are on track.
Project managers excel at problem-solving and risk management, addressing challenges, and mitigating potential issues. They are also proficient in time and budget management, keeping projects on schedule and within allocated resources. Leadership and teamwork are crucial, as project managers motivate and guide their teams toward achieving project objectives. Overall, project management skills enable professionals to deliver projects efficiently, meet stakeholder expectations, and drive organizational success.
5. Admin skills
Admin skills are essential for maintaining efficient and well-organized operations in various professional settings. These skills encompass a wide range of tasks, including managing schedules and appointments, handling correspondence, organizing files and documents, and coordinating meetings and events. Administrative professionals possess excellent organizational and time management skills, enabling them to prioritize tasks and meet deadlines effectively.
They have strong attention to detail, ensuring accuracy in record-keeping and documentation. Additionally, admin professionals are often skilled in communication and interpersonal relations, as they interact with colleagues, clients, and stakeholders regularly. Their ability to multitask, problem-solve, and adapt to changing situations makes them valuable assets in supporting the smooth functioning of an organization.
6. Talent acquisition
Talent acquisition skills are vital in today’s competitive job market. Professionals with these skills are adept at identifying and attracting top talent for organizations. They have a deep understanding of recruitment strategies, including sourcing candidates, conducting interviews, and evaluating candidates’ qualifications and fit for the role.
Talent acquisition experts possess strong networking skills and utilize various channels to connect with potential candidates. They are skilled in assessing skills, experience, and cultural fit, ensuring the right candidates are selected for positions. Additionally, they have excellent communication and negotiation skills, allowing them to effectively engage with candidates and negotiate job offers. Talent acquisition skills enable organizations to build high-performing teams, driving growth and success.
7. Data entry
Data entry skills are essential for accurately and efficiently inputting information into databases or systems. Professionals with data entry skills possess a high level of attention to detail, ensuring accuracy and precision in their work. They are proficient in typing and possess excellent keyboarding skills, allowing them to enter data quickly.
Data entry specialists are often familiar with various software and tools used for data management, enabling them to navigate and utilize these systems effectively. They also possess strong organizational skills, allowing them to manage and categorize large volumes of data efficiently. Data entry skills are crucial for maintaining data integrity and providing reliable information for decision-making within organizations.
8. Data Science
Humanity generated over 64.2 zettabytes of data in 2020. One autonomous vehicle will produce a zettabyte of data per day by 2030.
Smart data scientists can sift through all the dispersed information to unearth useful business insights in the midst of this data flood. They collect, arrange, and pre-cleanse the accessible data in addition to building sophisticated statistical and predictive models to operationalize the information. Then, share key findings with the rest of the team, including patterns you’ve noticed and any areas where you think there may be an improvement.
Demand for data science positions is expected to rise by a staggering 295% in 2021. Due to a lack of available talent in the employment markets, it is expected to stay in the double (or maybe triple!) range going forward.
Data science and analytics positions will be the toughest to fill in Q42022 and Q12023, according to six out of ten recruiting managers.
Data science, big data visualization, and data mining are therefore among the most in-demand and lucrative freelancing specialties.
9. Voice user interface design
Take a deeper look into voice user interface design if you want to master a creative ability that will be in demand in the future (VOI).
Voice user interfaces (VUIs). Utilizing spoken instructions, a user can interact with an application using voice user interfaces (VUIs). Popular instances of VUI include virtual assistants like Siri or Google Assistant. However, many companies now use speech chatbots and sophisticated auto-responder software in addition to these.
By 2027, new speech-enabled applications including in-car voice assistants, retail voice-enabled apps, and more are expected to be widely used, driving the worldwide voice user interface market to $45,94 billion!
Someone will need to create those guided experiences, as you can probably understand, and that someone may be you. Materials for VOI training are currently available on websites like Udemy, Careerfoundry, or LinkedIn Learning. The Conversation Design Institute also offers premium certification programs.
10. Voice-over acting
Before you dismiss something, give it a go! Voice acting is a quick and enjoyable method to earn additional money. Additionally, if you offer your voice to any long-term lucrative freelancing projects,
- platforms for on-demand video that are adapting their content for new markets
- organizations that create voice user interfaces
- online resources for learning languages
Voice-overs are also utilized in a variety of other media, including video games, audiobooks, podcasts, webinars, cartoons, and documentaries.
The good news is that you don’t need a voice like James Earl Jones to succeed; instead, your voice should be a multifaceted tool that can communicate a variety of ideas and feelings. Additionally, voice-over performers constantly train and perfect their vocal range, much like singers do.
11. Cloud Engineering
Budgets for businesses continue to allocate more money for cloud computing. By 2025, according to Gartner, conventional software will account for 50% of all IT investments instead of the public cloud. By the same year, cloud technologies will get two-thirds of all app spending.
So, for the foreseeable future, cloud computing will continue to be one of the top freelance abilities. There are a few attractive freelancing options available here if you are already familiar with AWS, Azure, or GCP:
Cloud cost optimization consultant. Organizations are growing more worried about soaring TCO as more data is transmitted to the cloud. If you know how to reduce the cost of cloud deployments, you may easily get some high-paying clients.
DevOps engineer/consultant. Already an expert at automating cloud application deployments and setting up CI/CD? Awesome! Your skill set is highly sought after!
Cloud solution architect. Identify the ideal design patterns for new cloud users for seasoned cloud engineers who are interested in working on a few side projects, this field of work might be ideal.
Do not give up if you are a beginning programmer. Cloud engineers may now find a wide variety of remote positions, the majority of which provide on-the-job training. Additionally, Coursera and Udemy are great places to acquire new cloud engineering skills.
12. Digital currency development
A new exciting job is emerging for folks with an interest in blockchains and cryptocurrencies: digital currency developer.
The potential of introducing a national central digital bank currency (CBDC), such as a digital Euro or pound, is being investigated by almost every central bank in the world. 60% of them are already engaged in “proof of concept” testing, which involves examining the practicality of minting digital money from a legal and technological standpoint.
For instance, the European Central Bank is considering many possibilities for the impending introduction of a digital euro. The US Federal Reserve and MIT collaborated to create a dollar based on blockchain technology.
The aforementioned may sound futuristic at this time. But hey, did you imagine that Bitcoin would become popular in 2010? Most likely not. By providing advisory services to financial institutions and blockchain-interested companies, you could be able to profit from this emerging trend if you have a working understanding of blockchain protocols and economic background.
13. Website Design and Development
For the foreseeable future, web design and development will continue to be in great demand as freelancing talents.
Developers that work independently can specialize in front-end, back-end, or full-stack development. Everything on a website that visitors can view and interact with is considered front-end. Back-end developers focus on all the technical details that are hidden from the common user. They also work as bug fixers and glitch removers. And full-stack developers can handle anything.
When a website is popular, more customers arrive at your email.
In contrast, web designers concentrate mostly on creating graphical user interfaces, often known as web pages and app displays. Thoughtful reasoning and a keen sense of design are also required for this position, thus you should have familiarity with front-end coding languages.
Here are some in-demand freelancing talents to pick up if you want to stay in this field:
- Based on a review of almost 250k front-end jobs, React.js and Angular.js are the top two in-demand front-end development platforms.
14. Low-code development
One of the most profitable freelancing talents is programming, but it’s also challenging to master. Low code can be more to your taste if coding isn’t.
Low code is an approach to program development that substitutes visual drag-and-drop tools with text-based commands.
Consider low- or no-code platforms as a set of LEGOs. You receive several pre-made application components that you may mix to create a unique program. Apps like Zapier and IFTTT are the most basic examples of low-code utilities. Both allow you to create straightforward process automation workflows involving well-known business products.
Then there are more sophisticated low-code systems, such as
- Power apps for building custom Microsoft apps
- Appian for automating all sorts of business workflows
- Appy Pie for building mobile and desktop apps
Consider it this way: You can automate tedious administrative activities for your firm and have more time on your hands by using low-coding abilities. In fact, more than 50% of EU workers think automation would boost the caliber of their work and provide them a chance to learn new skills. Low-code programming is one of the finest freelance talents to master nowadays only based on this fact.
There’s more, though. Your client-facing skill set can benefit from the addition of low-code development, which you can promote in addition to your core capabilities in design, marketing, sales, or project management.
15. Video production
Did you know that, in the last five years, there has been a 263.4% increase in video uploads? That’s hardly unexpected given the social media material and on-demand streaming options available, and our video-watching time increased at a similarly astounding rate.
Each month, 6.8 billion hours of mobile video are watched by Americans alone.
Why should freelancers care? Demand for all types of videography services has increased:
- Tiktok and Instagram Reels production
- Professional video editing
- Short- and long-form video production
- Video retouching and color correction
- Customer video testimonials creation
Companies have realized that video is a new way to interact with target consumers. 56% want to start a video marketing campaign in 2022 and beyond. Therefore, if you are having trouble coming up with a solid freelancing specialty, this may be it!
16. Content writing
Although audio and video are developing media, textual information isn’t declining in prominence.
Although e-books might be the first thing that springs to mind, other digital publications such as e-magazines, corporate newsletters, commercial and personal websites, business profiles, blogs, advertising copy, video scripts, and technical instructions all require content to be written. The list is endless.
Many prosperous freelancers specialize in a particular field and become authorities in it, whether it is law, parenting, gardening, vintage automobile repair, or early Roman history. Learning freelancing skills like search engine optimization (SEO), conversion rate optimization (CRO), and content marketing pays well while generating online material.
There are several subspecialties of writing, including editing, copywriting, and proofreading. Writing is the best option if you’re a grammatical nitpicker and enjoy working alone.
Metacognition is described as the ability to “think about thinking” in an OECD assessment of the talents that will be needed in the future. What does that imply, ahem?
Your capacity to comprehend your own cognitive processes and learning patterns, which you may subsequently convert into specialized learning methods for various contexts.
In other words, if you know the best technique to educate yourself on new talents for freelancing, you’ll always be in demand!