You’re called a freelancer, but one thing is for sure – the cost of doing business is not free. If you have been in business for yourself for any length of time, you know that there are many expenses that come along with owning your own business.
The good news is that some expenses can be averted. Below, we’ve gathered some of the best online tools and resources you can use to create project assets for free.
Free CV Templates
As a freelancer, you may write and edit CVs for other people. Or, you might find yourself applying to a gig or with a client that requires the submission of a CV.
Online CV makers are available that allow you to use their templates for free. Check them out to discover the best CV format for you. You will be able to create a beautiful and professional CV in minutes.
Free Stock Photos
If your work includes graphic design, constructing your own website, or social media marketing, you know that visual assets are very important. They draw people in and keep them clicking.
If you are able to take all of your own photos, that’s great. But if not, there are several websites available that offer free professional stock photos.
These are some of our favourites:
- Shutterstock offers a weekly free stock photo that you can download from the email newsletter.
- Pixabay allows you to search and download thousands of free images.
- Dreamstime sends out periodic emails containing a free stock photo download – sign up for their newsletter.
- Envato offers a free stock photo among its monthly free downloads. You’ll need to sign up for their emails in order to get the link.
- Pond5 has an archive of free stock photos.
How can you use the stock photos you download? Typically, the free downloads come with a standard royalty-free commercial license. This means that you can use the image on social media, in your graphic design projects, as an element of a video, or as an element in a product. You will want to read the details of each website’s offerings.
Clipart, illustrations, and vector images can be used in a variety of ways. Like the free stock photos above, most of these can be used in various commercial applications. Again, always read the agreement with each individual company.
Our favourites include the following:
- Pixabay has thousands of free vectors and illustrations to choose from.
- Shutterstock offers a free clipart image in its weekly newsletter. They also have an archive of themed sets of free clip art images.
- Envato occasionally includes 3D illustrations as part of its free monthly downloads. You’ll need to subscribe to their newsletter.
Videos are all the rage, from YouTube to social media. Sometimes, your webcam or smartphone camera just isn’t enough. You can spice up your videos with free stock footage.
- Subscribe to the Pond 5 newsletters, and you will get a link to a free weekly download. They also offer an archive containing hundreds of royalty-free stock videos.
- Envato often includes video clips in its monthly freebies. Sign up for the newsletter in order to receive the links.
Free Audio Tracks
YouTube has a library of stock music and sound effects that can be used in YouTube videos. However, keep in mind that this license does not extend to use on other platforms.
To use audio elsewhere, check out these sources:
- Sign up for Envato newsletter and you’ll receive a link for a monthly Audio Jungle audio track download.
- Pond5 has an archive of free audio clips.
Every freelancer needs a good website. Wix is one of the premier sites for creating a portfolio website for free.
There are tons of features that can be added, some of which require a monthly subscription fee, for example, if you need to sell online or book appointments.
MailChimp, WordPress, and BlogSpot, also offer the ability to build your website for free.
Free Email Automation
As you grow your business, you will see your email list growing in importance.
But you might say, “I use social media for that!” The problem, however, is that you don’t own your audience on Instagram, Facebook, or any other social media platform.
If those websites go down, are victims of cyberattacks, go out of business, or simply decide to revoke your account privileges, you can lose your audience in an instant.
If you have their email addresses, however, you can always get in touch with them. Mailchimp allows you to store several thousand email addresses on its free plan. You can also embed contact forms in your website and set up automated emails, such as weekly blog post updates or welcoming emails.
- You can remediate your business expenses as a freelancer by taking advantage of free assets for your projects.
- These include free CV templates, free stock photos, free clipart and vector images, free videos, free audio tracks, free websites, and free email management.