How to Build Your Business Using Freelancers
That's it, I've had it, I am now officially pissed off. Before I tell you that I'm writing this because there's a $15,000 writing and SEO contest on freelancer.com, I'd like to apologize because I would have most likely wasted your time. You should be out there, making your own entry and article.
You should be the one who should get the $15,000.
You should be the one who should get the $15,000.
As a blogger/writer, I hate SEO or Search Engine Optimization. I mean, who in the world wants to build an online business by writing about the same thing, again and again just so we can please the search engine? Who in the world would like to create dummy accounts and blogs just so they could build links? Who in the world would like to do this again 10 more times?
Sorry, Matt Barrie, but it's just not the natural order of things. The web should not have been built like this. The web would have been better and less spammy if there was no search engine optimization.
It's not his fault really, nor is it the fault of the Filipino freelance writer, the Pakistani "SEO specialist", the Indian "content manager" or the American Internet marketer, it's none of their fault.
This whole "industry" as the practitioners would like to call it was built - grew as a mutation on Google assuming that people were going to play nice. It was built on the assumption that people were going to be honest when they do blog.
The SEO Mutant
From Flickr: MadWomanIntheAttic
For Dummies: How To Build Your Business Using Freelancers
1.You start with a product (Or sell somebody else's) let's say "Blue Bananas"
Step 1. The Product
Picture from Flickr: Keepon
2. Build a website - or hire a developer (affiliate link) or freelancer to do it for you
Step 2. Hire a Developer To Build Your Website
Go ahead and try searching for your own dot com.
It's FREE to search
Then nobody visits your website... so
4. You start a blog and write about everything and anything about your product. You get a few more visitors everyday.
5. You link to your website and out of 1,000 people who go to your blog, 10 of them go to your ecommerce website and 1 of them buys a blue banana.
6. After a while, another website pops up on Google search called cheapbluebananas.com. It's on top of the search rankings and your blog and e-commerce site, dansblueb.com is not.
8. Somebody emails you or chats with you, offering their SEO service. SEO what? Search Engine Optimization - that should put your website on the top of the search engine rankings. How do they do this?
9. They have a network of 100 to 1,000 blogs and an army of freelance writers who will write about the same thing, in a thousand different ways. Each blog post has a link pointing to your blog or e-commerce website, thereby in theory, driving traffic to your site and again, in theory, making your website go nearer the top of the search engine rankings. This means more visitors.
Is it Ethical?
The way they do this may or may not be ethical. Let me ask you the following questions:
- When their writers write, do they have actual experiences with the product?
- Do they disclose the fact that they wrote about it with commercial intentions?
- Are they writing in their own names or with pseudonyms?
If none of these questions make you uncomfortable, then ethics may be the last thing that we should be talking about.
The Value of Freelancer.com
I've written so many times about Freelancer.com, ranging from praising it to sometimes being mad at it (or the third party people I encounter in it)
But at the end of the day, it really does make things easier for the small and medium business owner.
I highly recommend this book about outsourcing. My dad made me read it when I was working for him and it's deep reading, full of insight but still enjoyable. Really, read it.
Downsides to Outsourcing
Along with the good, there are certain disadvantages to outsourcing your web project. These are:
- Keeping track of what all your freelancers are doing. Let's say you have 5 freelancers designing your e-commerce website, 10 freelance writers writing on different blogs, 2 virtual assistants helping you promote on social media, 2 SEO practitioners optimizing your content and 5 customer service representatives helping you out.
- Without a project manager dealing with all the details, you would have to patch up the work yourself. Do yourself a favor and hire one to check the work of the others.
- Communication. Dealing with different contractors from different parts of the world, entails a certain amount of communication gap.
- Security. If you're building the next great web startup, would you really like to outsource it to some guys who could do the same thing? Imagine if Mark Zuckerberg did the same with Facebook. Always ensure that the people you are working with are well vetted and known.
I didn't really consider myself an Internet marketer until I've actually sold somebody else's product. Besides, Internet marketers are generally shunned online. I prefer to call myself a blogger or a writer since that's the bulk of what I do.
Doing it yourself is extremely tiring and exhausting. There was a time when as a blogger I did everything myself. From choosing the domain name, buying it, finding a host (in my case blogger), editing the HTML code, adding the widgets, making the Facebook pages, creating the social media accounts, tweeting, etc.
True it was enjoyable at first, and I still do enjoy some parts of it today, but then it gets old and repetitive.
Over the course of these years, I dawned upon the truth that I cannot do it on my own anymore.
Maybe we're at the same stage in our online business endeavors or maybe you're just starting out. You can try the same route that I did and learn everything on your own first and it will be an amazing experience. But when you do decide that you need help, freelancer.com would always be there to help you out.
Read Part 2: How to Build Your Business Using Freelancers: Trust
My freelancer.com user name is daniel1024