Worth Reading: Best Posts of the Year for Freelance and Self-Employed Women

As we all close out 2013 in our own ways, whether preparing our taxes, running a full annual review, or simply putting away our holiday decorations, it pays—literally—to take some time to refresh yourself on the best blog posts for self-employed women that came out in the last 12 months.

Building Your Business

  • Lifehacker: The Complete Guide to Setting and Negotiating Freelance Rates
    A numeric, deeply finance-and-accounting-based look at setting your rates and how to counter common client questions to those rates. What I love most about this guide is that it makes you look at both how much time and energy you are putting into your work and the value you provide to the client.
  • Time Management Ninja: 10 First Steps to Make Your Dreams Happen
    Here at FreelanceMom.com, we talk a lot about how to figure out what is the right home business for you, but once you do, how do you get going? Time Management Ninja succinctly lays out 10 almost no-fail steps to set yourself up for success.
  • IttyBiz: Which Coaching Model Makes More Money?
    Conversely, while it’s important that your business is a good fit for you, sometimes the best fit is the type of work that makes the most money in the least amount of time. In her typically frank, detailed style, small business marketing expert Naomi Dunford of IttyBiz lays the exact figures that you can realistically expect to make from different types of coaching, whether small group, big group, one-on-one or product-based.

Growing Your Business

  • FreelanceMom: Your Complete Prospecting Guide Part 1, 2, 3, & 4
    Our behemoth guide (more than 5000 words) to getting clients for your business from who to go after, where to find them, how to lure them in, and how to get them coming to you.
  • The Sparkline: Generosity Pays: Results from Launching a “Pay What You Want” ebook
    It seems to be all the rage these days. Business owners take a product, whether something new they’re trying out or something old they’re thinking of retiring, and offer a “pay what you will” sale. It’s a great gesture, but how well does it work for your bottom line? This post breaks down exactly why and how this strategy is so effective.
  • IttyBiz: How to Double Your Revenue and Profit. Really
    The name says it all. Who wouldn’t want to make twice as much money from the work they’re already doing? We talk about this in FreelanceMom’s new 10-week auto-responder series on getting more clients, but Naomi’s two-part guide walks you through a variety of quick ways to get more money from your business now.

Maintaining Your Business

  • Penelope Trunk: Your Spouse is Always a Partner in Your Business. Here’s How to Make it Work
    Whether just one of you has your own business or both, there will always be times when the other spouse gets involved in the business. Through quirky anecdotes—only Penelope Trunk could successfully combine a fashion editor and manure in one post—she illustrates how to and how not to negotiate that line.
  • NYTimes.com: Dealing with a Client who Calls and Calls and …
    Self-employment, particularly successful, established self-employment, has become so mainstream that the New York Time tackles a core contractor issue: how to say no (or dump) clients who aren’t worth your time.
  • Productivity Flourishing: Why Strategic Planning is So Hard for Creative People
    I love to bust through the fears and psychological factors that hold women back from self-employment success, and in this post, business productivity expert Charlie Gilkey unlocks the things that hold us back not just from taking action for our business, but from even planning big actions.


  • The Mogul Mom: 7 Ways Document Business Procedures Can Make You a Better Mom
    Addressing the central issue for moms who work at home—choosing how to allocate your time between family and business—this post looks at concrete ways to organize your business that allow you to get more done in less time.
  • Productivity Flourishing: How to Recover from 10 Types of Demotivation
    Departing from a philosophical view that what we think of as demotivation is actually many different issues hiding in the same disguise, this guide to busting procrastination and malaise diagonoses the origin of your demotivation in any given moment and provides a concrete plan to work around and past it.
  • Penelope Trunk: Slice Time in New Ways to Have More of It
    As moms, we often face a choice between family and work time, but Penelope explains how she has discovered how to “recategorize” mommy tasks that used to drain her (driving for hours to a music lesson would drain me too!) into useful time.


  • Leaving Work Behind: Your “Hire Me” Page: How to Get More Clients and Increase Your Rate”
    A stellar “hire me” page is an essential part of any inbound marketing strategy, and one that newly self-employed women often neglect for too long. Tom Ewer explains how to create a page using a method that has helped him earn around $100,000 as a freelance blogger.
  • Escape from Cubicle Nation: What Story does Google Tell About You?
    We all know prospective clients Google us. Sometimes that’s how they even find us in the first place. But beyond googling yourself periodically (which actually doesn’t show you what prospects see anyway), have you thought of the complete picture your Google results paint to prospects?
  • Book Yourself Solid: How to Develop a Memorable and Unique Personal Brand (The Illustrated Guide)
    Though the illustrations may remind you more of something you’d read to your kids than what you’d expect from a business blog, this illustrated guide proves a crucial point to marketing yourself today: branding is an all-encompassing visual exercise.

Case Studies

  • Leaving Work Behind: An In-depth Look at the New Leaving Work Behind
    “In-depth” is an understatement! This is a mini e-book. In more than 3000 words, Tom Ewer walks through exactly how he redesigned his website, including how to find a designer, how to correspond with the designer, and what style factors you need to consider.
  • I Will Teach You to be Rich: Case Study: This mom used to work 14 hours/day. Now, 8. And she makes $82,000/year
    In conjunction with a mini e-course (the sign-up link is at the bottom of the post), Ramit Sethi explains how he helped one mom negotiate her way to this amazing new status quo. Though this mom works for a company, not herself, the lessons are as true to negotiating with clients as they are to negotiating with a boss.
  • The Sparkline: 30 Day Blog Challenge Results: 100% More Traffic, 30% More Sales and #1 on Amazon
    We all know that the more work we put into our business, the more tangible results we reap. But exactly what is the proportion between elbow grease and increased sales? In this 4,000+-word case study, The Suitcase Entrepreneur lays out step-by-step how she achieved an astounding community response by setting up and guiding a 30-day challenge.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Lisa Stein owns FreelanceMom.com, is a college business professor and a mom to Gabriela and Elle. Lisa is dedicated to playing a part in helping women and moms run a business they love, help support themselves and their family and create a flexible lifestyle. You can find her online on Facebook and Twitter or at home burning something in the kitchen.