I was told a quote once upon a time: “You have the same amount of hours in a day as Beyoncé.”
But… let’s be honest; she can afford to get some help!
For those of you that aren’t Beyoncé and don’t have an entire team of people assisting you, it might be hard to figure out how to increase your online income without working more hours.
I’ve been there too! Having a team now is great, and we can get so much more done in a shorter amount of time, but there was a day in which I was a one-woman team!
Throughout those first solopreneur years, I struggled a lot to reach my income goal, so I had to learn a lot about how people make money in less time.
Here are my 6 best tips for working less and making more:
1. Raise your rates with existing clients
You should evaluate your work, with the help of your clients, every 6 to 12 months. This works the same way as it would when working for a company. You know, like when your boss tells you you’re doing a great job but only gives you a $0.30 raise?
If you find (and you usually will!) that you’ve upskilled during that time and are providing great service and value to your clients, you should increase your rates!
For example, if you’re currently charging $20/hr for content creation, 6 months down the line you should have the skills to notify your client that you’ll be raising your rate to $22/hr.
New clients that come in around this time should be starting at your raised rate. With your experience, your work is worth more now!
If you have learned new skills that can be added to your resume, make sure to raise your rate for that as well.
Not sure what to charge for online services? Click here to read more and download my FREE pricing guide!
2. Move clients into flat-rate packages
As time goes by and your skills increase, you’re able to work faster.
What once took you 20 hours may only take you 10 now. But guess what? If your clients are paying by the hour, that’s 10 hours of work you just lost out on!
Imagine you’re starting off in podcast management. It may take you 2 hours to edit an episode today, but next month it’ll only take you 1. But you’re still doing all the same work you were doing before!
In this case, you can charge your clients a package for x-number of episodes per month, or put together a social media or graphic package to go with that so that you’re charging for the work you do, not the hours you work.
That is why it’s so important to offer flat-rate packages. You’ll eventually reach a level of skill where you’ll be performing better and faster, and you don’t want to lose money when you get there.
3. Upskill & target higher-end business owners
Unfortunately, newer or smaller businesses typically don’t have the budget to pay you the big bucks.
When you’re just starting out, it’s more than okay to work for lower rates as you learn more skills. But you’ll eventually get to the point where working with smaller businesses isn’t going to cut it.
This is why going after established or high-end businesses is a must. But how does one do this?
Make sure what you offer is suitable for high-end clients. You can do this by taking more courses in your niche or through experience working or interning for someone who is where you want to be.
Showcase websites you’ve worked on, online courses you’ve designed, or complex sales pages you’ve done.
Maybe learn a specific program that allows you to produce higher-tier end products, whether that’s graphic design, video production, or marketing.
The more you learn, the better clients you’ll be able to sign. And better clients means better pay!
4. Offer skills that generate clear ROI
People love clear results.
That’s why it can be really helpful to learn skills that show a direct ROI (return on investment). These make it crystal clear to the client exactly how valuable you are.
Marketing is a great way to show your clients a clear ROI. Maybe you’re helping them build a digital product or rebrand their website to get more investors. Either way, your work makes the numbers move directly.
Or say you’re working on Facebook ads for a client’s business. Because of how income generation in the ads space works, they’ll be able to see the direct correlation of your work to money made, and how much they’re gaining from investing in you.
These are tangible ways that a client can see how important you are to their business and make it a no-brainer to have you on their team!
5. Start an agency & outsource to subcontractors
There will come a time in which you’ll have way more job offers than you’ll know what to do with. So what do you do when you’re fully booked and don’t have time to take on more clients?
Instead of saying no or adding them to a waitlist, say YES to everything and outsource the work!
This step is usually for VAs who’ve had more time and experience with their niches, but it’s good to start thinking about of as an option at whatever level you’re at.
You can start an agency and hire subcontractors that can work for you. A great way to do this is by offering internships or entry-level positions where you mentor your subcontractors.
Your agency gets paid by the clients and you pay your subcontractor a share. Of course, you’ll have to provide guidance and management, as well as proofing the end product and checking for quality.
But, at the end of the day, you’ll be making a percentage of the project pay without having to spend the time doing it from start to finish.
6. Set up multiple income streams
I’m sure you’ve heard the term passive income, which is income that takes little to no effort to earn and maintain. Whether you’re fully booked or just want to make some extra money on the side, setting up multiple income streams is a great way to free up your time.
Here’s some ways you can make a passive income online:
- Writing helpful e-books and advertising them on your website
- Creating online courses based on your areas of expertise
- Designing templates for websites, resumes, or social media graphics
- Consulting for larger businesses
- Coaching smaller businesses
There are so many ways to increase your online income without having to work more hours.
Remember your worth and the effort you are putting in for each client; you should be paid accordingly! Every little bit you learn is just another stepping stone to your income goal.
If you’re new to the online world and would like to learn more about becoming a virtual assistant, check out my FREE masterclass for more information! 90 Day VA will be opening for enrollment soon, so why not take the first step? You could become one of our many students who are out there owning agencies and consulting for businesses.
In 90 Day VA, Esther teaches her students how to research and repurpose current content into blogs for the VAI website. Sandra is the student we’ve chosen this week to feature what she’s learned in the course. Get to know her:
Jordan Stephens is a virtual assistant here to make your life easier and more productive. When she’s not expertly managing tasks that you don’t have time for, she’s traveling, playing with her dog, or searching for her new favorite food. She’s a member of 90 Day VA and assists with everything from blog writing to social media to PR. To learn more about the services she offers and how she can help you, reach out to her at firstname.lastname@example.org.