The following list has been compiled from some of my favorite resources and tools! When setting up my own freelance business, I found many of these sites invaluable. I’ve tried to include mostly free and inexpensive tools in this article feature. I hope you find them useful. If you have a better resource , let us know and we’ll add it to the list!
Marketing and Advertising resources
Text and banner ads on over 20,000 sites – reaches a lot of people for not a lot of money; campaigns purchased on a CPC (cost per click), CPM (cost per thousand impressions), or CPV (cost per view) basis
Cost-effective text and image/text ads
3. Professional On The Web
My favorite freelancer listings site – free listing
Tools to help you manage and track your work.
A Start/Stop little timer that tracks jobs on a main web interface – create a free account
Timetracking application for tracking your budgets-Free version available and free iphone app version available
Online time tracking -basic free version available
Ensure that you stay on top of your billing and invoicing!
1. MS Office Accounting Express
Free Microsoft Accounting program
Easy to use invoicing software – basic free version available and free iphone app version available
3. Side Job Track
Free web-based tracking, invoice, reporting and project management
Tracks time, sends invoices by email or U.S. mail – free version and iphone app version available
Easy invoice tool – get quotes From anywhere – free “lite” version available
Manage projects, clients, and deadlines
1. Proposal Kit
Proposal and contract management tools
2. Ta-Da Lists
Free to-do list application that can be shared with the world
Web-based text documents that you save and share with others – so you can collaborate and compare
Organize and improve ideas – share your ideas with friends and clients
A web based to-do list – iphone app also available
A list application that sends task and job reminders to people
7. Remember The Milk
To-do, task, and reminder program – iphone version available
Royalty free stock photography that you have to pay for but its probably the best available!
Free stock photography
3. Template Monster
Lots and lots of web templates!
Best for free fonts
Free vector stuff
Flash stock – free!
All kinds of free stock, vector, flash and other “bitts”
Lead Generation, Networking, and Business Tools
1. Google Apps
Messaging, storage, file share etc – Communication and collaboration tools from Google
Suite of free online web tools offering easy collaboration
Invite a client, colleague, or vendor to chat, collaborate, and make decisions – conferencing and iphone version available (not free – will cost you)
Make forms to survey your clients – free version available
5. SBA (Small Business Administration)
Small Business help and advice
Online payment system
Trends and consumer insights resource
Faxes for Free via the web
Faxes for Free via the web
Forms and Advice
1. Designers Toolbox
Free legal forms for graphic designers (also has other great resources)
US copyright and copyright forms
3. AIGA Form of Agreement
Essential form of agreement for design services template
Licensing and Licensing law – free tools to inform people how they can reuse and share your creative works
Find jobs and Leads
1. 37signals Job Board
Mostly full-time design and programming jobs
2. Authentic Jobs
Job board for freelance designers and developers
3. Coroflot Job Board
Designer centric job board
Jobs for pro web esigners, developers, copywriters and marketers
Full time and freelance jobs for the Creative industry
Webcentric jobs board
Freelancer listing service with job board
No.1 site for listing and freelance jobs
The other major freelance job and project listing site
Tools to get your presence running and optimized
Build a website. Start a blog!
All kinds of hosting options
Low-priced domain registry
4. Media Temple
Simple and complex hosting options
Content management for designers and ad agencies
The designers choice for content management system (CMS) app
A free blogging tool for web designers
User-friendly web publishing
The No.1 best blog management tool
Other useful sites and tools
Back-up and store important files (invite only – either wait for a space to be free or be invited by another user)
2. You Send It
Send up to 2GB online
Plugins for Acrobat, Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign and Dreamweaver
Share, store and retrieve files online
Simple web forms – $9 per month
Color schemes and importable themes
A color picking utility made especially for webmasters and designers
Remote Desktop – $30 per month
All the essential web tools you need in one place
Wow, what a great list! Thanks for sharing, and it’s certainly useful. I’ll definitely be bookmarking, and putting most of those links to good use!
Great list! I’d also like to add http://www.freelanceshack.com to the list for useful tips and resources for freelancers.
This is a great resource list. Thanks for putting together, I’ve already shared with a few friends!
Thanks. This is helpful.
Wow so helpful! Great blog, thanks for sharing!
Just an FYI, Your link above to FWjobs goes to a job site for Fisheries & Wildlife Employment Opportunities. Nice post. Thanks for sharing.
Thank you…very informative!
Thanks for sharing these excellent resources!
This is a superb collection of valuable links — much appreciated.
Rock Street Studios
Fall River, MA.
Another useful tool is http://www.wetransfer.com. Transfer up to 2 gigs for free and it’s super easy!
don’t forget brandsoftheworld.com – vector art for logos
and another font site fontspace.com
This is an awesome collection. Thank you for putting it together! 🙂
Wow!!! What a comprehensive and valuable list of resources. Thank you!!!
Thank you so much…you will be my first choice for all my printing needs going forward…until i buy a print company.
Great information! Thank you for sharing!
Great info, I didn’t know about half of the links.
Thanks for the very usefull information!
Carpet Cleaning Pahrump
Carpet Cleaning Las Vegas
that is a great list… thank you!
Another great program people might want to check out is Mac Freelance.
Great for keeping track of hour, clients, billing, taxes, expenses and more.
Best 100 bucks i’ve ever spent.
Your stock library list is good, but it doesn’t include any audio. I recommend Productiontrax as a stock site for photos, video, music, and sfx.
Thanks for a great posting as always…www.pelayodesigns.com
Great info but with the royalty free stock artwork you’ve gotta check out 123rf.com. It’s a lot cheaper than istockphoto.
Check it out and let me know what you think.
A terrific article with excellent ideas.