Learn about the best freelance jobs available today. Discover how much they pay and the platforms to find work now.
Ditching the traditional 9–5 grind in favor of flexible hours and self-determined income is an enticing prospect. There's just something extremely gratifying about earning your income on your own terms, in your own time. If this sounds like something you’re interested in, this one’s for you.
In this guide, we'll look at what freelance jobs are, what your earning potential could be as an Independent, and list 17 of the best, highest-paying freelance jobs in 2024.
What is a freelance job? 🤔
Freelance jobs stand out as a distinctive approach to work. Unlike traditional full-time jobs, where employees are bound to a specific company and receive a regular salary, freelance work is characterized by its temporary nature and project-based assignments.
Companies usually hire freelancers on a project-by-project basis or for multiple projects, depending on the contract. Also, many on-site freelance job opportunities exist, but most freelance work is remote.
How much can you earn as a freelancer? 🤑
How much a freelancer can earn per month depends on a few factors, and the income can vary considerably. Here are a few key factors to understand to set realistic financial goals:
- The type of work you do
- Your experience level in a particular field
- How many jobs you can do
- How quickly you can do the jobs
- How likely you are to be accepted for a project (discoverability is usually determined by portfolio or credentials)
- The platforms you use to find work
- Your location and currency
To provide a ballpark figure, according to data from various sources like Upwork and Glassdoor, the average freelancer in the U.S. can earn anywhere from $50,000 to $75,000 annually. But remember, this is a broad average, and individual earnings can vary widely based on the factors mentioned above.
17 best highest-paying freelance jobs in 2024 💰
Now that you understand what a freelance job is and your expected earning potential, let’s take a look at 17 of the highest-paying work-from-home jobs in 2024, in no particular order:
1. Graphic designer 🎨
As a graphic designer, you’ll create visual content like logos or product packaging for clients. Creativity and the technical skills to use related software (Adobe Creative Suite) are necessary, and you'll need a great portfolio to land jobs.
2. Content writer ✍️
As a freelance content writer, you’ll craft web-related material for digital marketing strategies. This job requires a solid grasp of language, excellent writing skills, and knowing what voice best connects with readers.
3. Proofreader and editor 🔍
In this role, you’ll read through content and fix errors or find ways to tailor the voice to one more suited to the audience. This role requires attention to detail and strong language and grammar skills. Having a portfolio of proven editing work is crucial to landing jobs quickly and steadily.
4. Online teacher 🧑🏫
You’ll spend your days in front of a webcam, educating students remotely. Your teaching topics will depend on your experience, but teaching English as a second language (ESL) is particularly popular. This job requires subject expertise and good communication.
5. Transcriber 🎧
As a transcriber, you’ll listen to audio and convert the dialogue into text. Some jobs require the written word, whereas others require knowledge of transcribing language. You'll need excellent listening and typing skills and good grammar to finish projects quickly and accurately.
6. Data analyst 📈
Much like the name suggests, you’ll analyze data (consumer data, spreadsheet data, financial data, etc.) to provide insights. You’ll need to know how to use data analysis tools and understand statistics well. Prior proven experience with data analysis projects is advantageous.
7. Project manager 🧑💼
In this role, you’ll oversee project completion by creating project plans, managing resources, and motivating team members. You'll need impeccable organizational skills, excellent leadership skills, and the ability to communicate effectively. Relevant experience in project management methods and proven project delivery is a must to get jobs.
8. Accountant 🥸
You can work as a freelance accountant doing remote bookkeeping for companies to keep their financial records and reports in order. This job relies heavily on knowledge of accounting software and being able to perform financial analysis.
9. Content creator 🖥️
As a content creator, you’ll create online content (brochures, infographics, blog articles, etc.) for companies wanting to improve their brand awareness and authority. You would need skills like video production, design, and writing, depending on the content. A great portfolio of content will land you many gigs.
10. Web developer 🎚️
11. Web designer 💻
You can make big bucks doubling as a web designer, working on the visual aspects of your sites. You'll need a solid understanding of layout, the design software, and an eye for aesthetics. User interface (UI) and user experience (UX) expertise will expedite your job search.
12. Videographer 📹
As a videographer, you’ll record and edit video content to tell a story for your client, whether an advertisement or a short film. You can work remotely using streaming software and provide expert opinions for projects. Naturally, you'll need to know how to operate a camera and video editing software.
13. Photographer 📸
In this role, you’ll take photos and edit them for clients. Many photographers offer their services to stock photo websites. For this, you'll need to understand editing software and composition and know how to use a camera.
14. Digital marketing consultant 🥳
Here, you’ll provide expert opinions on online marketing strategies to help brands increase leads and visibility. You'll need social media, search engine optimization (SEO), and analytics knowledge to create or steer digital marketing campaigns.
15. Public relations manager 🤠
In this role, you’ll manage a brand's image to improve it and create and maintain a voice for the brand that carries across all platforms. You'll need experience in crisis management, media relations, and strong writing skills.
16. Voiceover artist 🗣️
As a voiceover actor, you’ll use your voice to bring characters to life, narrate over documentaries or advertisements, or dub content. An extensive vocal range is advantageous, as is conveying emotion and interpreting the scripts correctly.
17. Mobile app developer 📱
As a mobile app developer, you’ll create apps for mobile devices. Mostly, you’ll work with clients to make their vision a reality. Skills needed for this include app design, coding experience, and being able to debug.
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Easiest freelance jobs to get started 👍
Some freelancing jobs are easier to get into than others because of factors like experience, certifications, and proven participation in projects. However, some are easy to get into that either require little knowledge or no credentials, such as:
- Content writing
- Social media management
- Virtual assistant
- Graphic design
- Online tutoring
Platforms to find freelance jobs 💡
There are many freelance websites to consider regarding where to find freelance work. While some of these platforms/job boards are for seasoned Independents, some have remote jobs for those just starting out. Here are a few:
- Contra: Specifically designed for Independents, Contra stands out by guaranteeing a minimum wage of $25/hour. It's a community-driven platform that prioritizes transparent relationships between clients and freelancers.
- Upwork: Upwork offers a wide range of job categories. Whether you're a writer, developer, or consultant, there's likely a gig here. It offers a minimum wage of $3/hr.
- Fiverr: Fiverr allows freelancers to set up gigs showcasing their services, with a minimum wage of $5. Over time, you can establish yourself and offer premium packages.
- Freelancer: Freelancer is a massive marketplace where you can bid on jobs. Its offerings are diverse, catering to both short-term gigs and substantial long-term projects. It offers a minimum wage of $3/hr.
- Toptal: Toptal is exclusively for the top 3% of freelance talent. And once you're in, you'll have access to projects from top companies with competitive compensation of $50–$80.
Begin your Independent journey with Contra 🚀
The freelance world is flourishing, presenting endless opportunities for Independents to craft their unique career trajectories. If you're ready to embark on this journey, Contra is your ideal starting point. The process is simple: Complete your profile and wait to be matched with clients looking for your unique skill set commission-free. You can also boost your profile’s discoverability by upgrading to Contra Pro.