If you read my income reports, you can see that most (actually, all (but stay tuned for March’s income report!)) of my income comes from freelancing. This blog is fairly new (I started it at the end of September 2014) and is by no means paying any of my bills. I do hope to one day earn a good income from it, but I know that day is not now.
In addition to this blog, I bought another domain (!!) and have a few others that I want to buy, too. Blogging so far has been a lot of fun and I like that I am completely my own boss. I can write what I want to write when I want to write it. Don’t get me wrong, I also love freelancing, but with freelancing I do have a boss (my client), I have deadlines to meet and I don’t always get to pick my topic.
I plan on doing both for a while, but wanted to weigh in on the pros and cons of freelance writing versus blogging. Both can be full-time or part-time jobs, but you can’t do both full-time at the same time (at least, I can’t…). I think you get to a point where you have to choose if blogging is better for you or if freelancing is the way to go. I really do enjoy both, but lately finding the time to devote to both has been difficult (hence the lack of posts on the blog).
So first, let’s take a look at the pros of freelancing. This is from my perspective only and I’ve been freelancing for almost three years now!
Pros of Freelancing
I write, I get paid. I’m extremely lucky in that I’ve never had a client not pay me. My regular clients pay me on a certain date and my other clients pay me as soon as I complete my assignment for them. Every month, I can, in a sense, decide how much money I need to make and go out and make it (of course, assuming I have the time).
Another advantage is I have complete control over my income. If I’m traveling one week, I let my clients know that I won’t be able to take on any assignments. So far, no one has ever had a problem with that. If my husband is slow with work, I can hustle and try to pick up more work, therefore increasing my income. I love that the harder I work and the more assignments I complete, the more money I make.
Cons of Freelancing
It’s Not Passive
Sure, I can set my own schedule and work in my pajamas, but I’m not necessarily “growing” a brand. One day I hope to generate enough passive income (through means such as investing, real estate, blogging and other business ventures) to where John and I don’t have to work. Freelance writing is a job – an incredible job – but a job. I trade my time for money. There is no way I will ever make any passive income from freelance writing alone.
Pros of Blogging
This is a huge pro. If you’re a regular blogger, you’ve most likely made a friend or two who also blogs. I love waking up each morning and reading my favorite blogs, personal finance and otherwise. Blogging isn’t just about building a business or making money, it’s about making friends and connecting with people all over the world. I love that aspect of it.
Eventually, a blog can be a way to make passive income. While personal blogs (like this one) would most likely have to be updated regularly to continue earning an income, there are specific “niche” blogs that you can get up and running and have them generate continuous income month after month, almost completely passively. Plus, even with this blog, once I do start making consistent money (by increasing my traffic) I don’t think I’ll all of a sudden have to work 10 times harder on it. At least, I hope not…haha.
Cons of Blogging
No Instant Income
While blogging can be a great way to make money, it’s not going to happen overnight. Blogging takes months and months (and months…) of hard work, day after day, before you’ll ever see a dime. Most bloggers give up after three months because it ends up being too time-consuming, the blogger loses interest or the blogger didn’t pick a topic they could write about all day long on.
Freelance writing is challenging, too, but getting a blog up and running, dealing with technical issues, marketing your blog and learning SEO strategies is almost a whole new language. I’ve come a long way from when I first started, but sheesh – it’s not as simple as I thought! People (read: other bloggers) sometimes make it seem like it’s the easiest thing in the world, but for me that’s not the case. There have been many late nights, especially when I first started.
As you can see, freelance writing and blogging both have their pros and cons. Lately I think this topic has been on my mind because of how many things I want to do in both these fields. I want to grow my freelance business, I want to have a steady stream of high-paying clients, I want to write on all things personal finance, I want to write for high authority sites, etc. But, I also want to grow my blog. I want to see this blog start earning a steady income (even if it’s small), I want to have time to work on my new blog, I want to buy and grow even more blogs. It never ends, haha.
I guess that’s how it goes when you’re building a business, right? There’s always something to do – but the struggle lies in finding the time to do it. I have to remind myself that Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither will any of my business ventures. All I can do is take it one day at a time, whether I’m working on my blog, taking on extra freelance work from clients or spending time with my family (which of course comes first).
What are your thoughts? Do you struggle with balancing freelance writing and blogging? Which do you like better?
photo credit: Flickr via Patrick