Being a freelancer can be a fulfilling and profitable career path.
In digital industries, where job mobility is high and five years with a single employer is 'a long time', many professionals view freelancing as a viable and attractive career path.
But make no mistake about it: freelancing is a business and as with any business, starting up, surviving and thriving can be difficult to do.
Here are 12 success-promoting things every freelancer, new and experienced, should have in place.
Last year, Google launched a new initiative designed to help small and medium-sized businesses pay for their AdWords campaigns.
The AdWords Business Credit credit card has since been adopted by 1,400 companies in the United States and, according to Google, 74% of them now say they use the Google credit card as their primary form of payment for AdWords spend.
Technology has disrupted a seemingly countless number of industries over the past decade, from advertising to real estate. When looking at the industries grappling with technology-driven change, however, arguably few have been more affected than the multi-trillion dollar payments space.
The advent of mobile phone, and the smartphone in particular, has created significant opportunities, many of which upstarts like Square are trying to exploit.
While daily deals giant Groupon deals continues to struggle with being a publicly-traded company, its biggest competitor, Amazon-backed LivingSocial, continues to try to prove that the daily deal model is viable when done right.
One of the biggest challenges in doing that is getting daily deal customers to return to the merchants that lured them in with a bargain.
Indeed, much of the criticism that has emerged around the daily deal model is that many if not most daily deal customers hop from business to business in search of the best deal. In the worst cases, this leaves some merchants with losses they can ill-afford.
When you go shopping online, most retailers are ready to welcome your business provided that you have one thing: a credit card.
Thanks to the wide availability of credit cards in the Western world, online retail has become a multi-billion dollar business. But how much business are online retailers missing out on from would-be customers who don't have credit cards?
If payment upstart Square has its way, payment-taking iPads will be in far more than just taxis.
In its quest to become a payments powerhouse, the company has a much larger target: those ubiquitous POS systems used by millions and millions of businesses large and small in the United States.
The battle between traditional payment processors and financial institutions and upstarts looking to dethrone them is on.
The upstarts, obviously, have their work cut out for them. Entrenched players like Verifone have significant marketshare, and are increasingly employing interesting strategies in an attempt to ensure they always have a seat at the dinner table.
That means one thing: the upstarts have to get clever and creative. And that's just what they're doing.
Last week, Blippy, a Twitter for purchases, created quite a stir when
it was revealed that the company had exposed the credit card numbers of
The company's co-founder, Philip Kaplan, sought to downplay the
severity of the mistake but as more and more individuals cozy up to the
growing number of services that encourage 'oversharing' of
financial-related information online, a number of parties involved with
commerce will be affected.
When Twitter launched, it asked users a simple question: what are you doing? Blippy, a new startup co-founded by Philip Kaplan of F*cked Company fame, asks an equally simple question: what are you buying?
A bevy of high-profile investors, including Twitter co-founders and CEO Ev Williams, are betting that internet users won't be able to resist answering Blippy's question. They've funded the company to the tune of $1.6m.
A potentially valuable customer visits your site, chooses their products, proceeds through the checkout, and submits their payment details. The worst happens, their card is declined. What can we, as etailers, do to provide these customers with the best experience, and not lose a sale?