Top Tips for New Freelance Translators

Apr 15, 2019

Unless you’ve been in the freelance translation industry for a while, the competition and everything else involved can feel overwhelming. Although you might be giving it your best, the beginning is never easy, and you end up feeling like you’ve chosen the wrong path.

Nonetheless, freelance translators, just like anyone else who’s a newcomer at what they do, need some tips to guide their path in the dark. If you want to work as a translator online and strengthen your skills and tactics, here are the top tips that will ensure your success.

  1. Expect Success to Take a While to Settle

Even though you want to be a pro as soon as possible, even the best advice in the world won’t give you overnight success. Every job needs some time until it’s able to shower you with the benefits you seek. That being said, freelance translation work can take as much as a year until you will see an improvement in the results.

However, this doesn’t have to be a downer. It’s important to remember that everything needs to be worked hard on and will eventually pay off in the end. Rushing won’t get you anywhere, and having the mindset that success has to be obtained so early in your journey will only lead to disappointment.

  1. Don’t Undersell Yourself

We’ve all, at one point, been afraid that a high fee for our services will make potential clients run for the hills. They can’t really be blamed, because you’ve too probably turned an offer down due to the magnitude of the price.

Nevertheless, underselling yourself is a no-go. As tempting as it would be to set a small price with the “the smaller the price, the more clients” mindset, it’s a sure way to make people avoid you in fear of bad services. You don’t have to oversell yourself either, but a decent price will be more appealing to companies who are looking for high-quality work.

In other words, a decent price is an indicator that your services are good, and you have more chances to get requests.

  1. Keep Your Clients

Particularly at the beginning, you’re very focused on attracting customers and generating income. This isn’t wrong at all, but besides convincing them to pay you for what you have to offer, you need to ensure you will make a good impression and win their trust. The reason is that winning their loyalty will make them come back to you in the future when they need you.

Maintaining your existing clients will cost less than getting new ones, and it’s a much better way to always have something to do.

  1. Set a Schedule

The best thing about freelance translator jobs is the easy schedule you can create for yourself. Basically, you have the benefit that you can set your own hours, meaning that if you want to work 10 hours each day, you can do so.

However, you must remember to set your schedule in such a way that you work when you’re most productive while allowing yourself days to rest. In other words, don’t work for most of the day and end up working inefficiently, but don’t work each day of the week either. The schedule you make must be healthy and convenient.

  1. Do Your Best

Let’s be honest, nobody likes it when things are done half-way through, basically ending up being of the lowest quality. Having said that, you must always provide high-quality work for your clients.

In the beginning, it might be tempting to sign a translation contract with every possible client in your path, but that’s a sure way to end up with rushed translations. It’s much better to research your topics properly and translate the best you can, as you will get a much better reputation and will surely move forward in a much better way.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to how to become a freelance translator, the beginning can be tough, but that’s pretty much how it is with every other job. This is why tips are most welcome to guide you and help you become best at what you do. Follow these tips, as they will surely steer you in the right direction.