If you’re a Malaysian, you know how frustrating it is to see the value of our currency drop year after year. The ringgit has been on a downward trend since 2014, and it’s now one of the weakest currencies in Southeast Asia. As of February 2024, one US dollar is worth about 4.5 ringgit, which means that everything imported from abroad is more expensive for us.
But what if I told you that there’s a way to earn in USD and enjoy the benefits of a stronger currency? A way that doesn’t require you to move to another country or work for a multinational company? A way that you can do from the comfort of your own home, with just a laptop and an internet connection?
That’s right, I’m talking about online freelancing. Online freelancing is a booming industry that allows you to offer your skills and services to clients from all over the world, and get paid in USD or any other currency you prefer. You can choose your own hours, set your own rates, and work on projects that interest you. You can also diversify your income streams and reduce your dependence on the local economy.
Online freelancing is not a get-rich-quick scheme, though. It takes time, effort, and dedication to build a successful freelance career. You need to have marketable skills, such as writing, graphic design, web development, translation, or digital marketing. You need to have a portfolio of your work, a professional profile, and a good reputation. You need to know how to find clients, negotiate contracts, and deliver quality work on time.
But don’t worry, I’m here to help you get started. In this blog post, I’ll share with you some tips and resources on how to become an online service based freelancer and earn in USD as a Malaysian. Here are the steps you need to follow:
1. Identify your skills and niche. What are you good at? What do you enjoy doing? What kind of services can you offer to clients online? These are some questions you need to ask yourself before you start freelancing. You want to focus on a specific skill and niche that matches your strengths and interests, and that has high demand and low competition in the online market.
2. Create your portfolio and profile. Once you have your skills and niche, you need to showcase them to potential clients. You need to have a portfolio of your best work samples that demonstrate your abilities and value. You also need to have a profile that highlights your skills, experience, education, achievements, testimonials, and contact details. You can create your portfolio and profile on your own website or blog, or use platforms like Behance, Dribbble, Medium, LinkedIn, or Upwork.
3. Find clients and projects. Now that you have your portfolio and profile ready, it’s time to look for clients and projects that match your skills and niche. There are many ways to find freelance work online, such as browsing job boards, joining freelance communities, networking with other freelancers or professionals in your field, pitching directly to clients via email or social media, or applying to gigs on platforms like Upwork, Fiverr, Freelancer.com, or PeoplePerHour.
4. Negotiate contracts and rates. Once you find a client or project that interests you, you need to negotiate the terms of the contract and the rate of payment. You want to make sure that you understand the scope of the work, the deadlines, the expectations, the deliverables, the feedback process, and the payment method and schedule. You also want to charge a fair rate that reflects your skills, experience, quality of work, and value added. You can use tools like SenangPay, PayPal or TransferWise to receive payments in USD or any other currency from clients worldwide.
5. Deliver quality work and get feedback. The last step is to deliver quality work that meets or exceeds the client’s expectations and requirements. You want to communicate clearly and regularly with the client throughout the project, update them on your progress, ask for feedback or clarification if needed, and submit your work on time. You also want to ask for feedback from the client after the project is completed, thank them for their business, and request a testimonial or referral if possible.
What else can you do?
Online businesses are also a great way to generate income in USD or any other currency you prefer. You can create your own products or services, or sell other people’s products or services, and reach customers from all over the world. You can also diversify your income streams and reduce your dependence on the local economy.
When deciding to sell online, you need to have a unique value proposition, a target market, a business model, a marketing strategy, and a website or platform. You need to know how to create or source products or services, how to price them, how to promote them, and how to deliver them.
Here are some ideas and examples of online businesses that you can start today and earn in USD:
– E-commerce: E-commerce is the process of buying and selling goods or services online. You can create your own online store using platforms like Shopify, WooCommerce, or Lazada, or sell on marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, or Shopee. You can sell physical products like clothing, accessories, books, or electronics, or digital products like e-books, courses, software, or music.
– Affiliate marketing: Affiliate marketing is the process of earning commissions by promoting other people’s products or services online. You can join affiliate programs like Amazon Associates, ClickBank, or ShareASale, or partner with individual brands or companies. You can create content like blog posts, videos, podcasts, or social media posts that recommend products or services to your audience and include affiliate links that track your referrals and sales.
– Blogging: Blogging is the process of creating and publishing content online on a specific topic or niche. You can monetize your blog by displaying ads using platforms like Google Adsense or Mediavine, by selling sponsored posts or reviews to brands or companies, by creating and selling your own products or services related to your niche, or by using affiliate marketing as mentioned above.
– Podcasting: Podcasting is the process of creating and distributing audio content online on a specific topic or niche. You can monetize your podcast by selling sponsorships or ads to brands or companies, by creating and selling your own products or services related to your niche, by using affiliate marketing as mentioned above, or by asking for donations from your listeners using platforms like Patreon or Buy Me a Coffee.
– YouTube: YouTube is the process of creating and uploading video content online on a specific topic or niche. You can monetize your YouTube channel by enabling ads using YouTube Partner Program, by selling sponsorships or ads to brands or companies, by creating and selling your own products or services related to your niche, by using affiliate marketing as mentioned above, or by asking for donations from your viewers using platforms like Patreon or Buy Me a Coffee.
That’s it! These are the basic steps on how to earn in USD. Of course, there’s more to learn and improve as you go along your journey, but these steps will help you get started on the right track.
I hope this blog post was helpful for you. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below. And if you’re ready to start freelancing online today,
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