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The Internet is quite possibly the most powerful communication tool on the planet right now. For millions of people, the internet has become a medium that allows for freelancing opportunities that were impossible just a few decades ago. Freelancing on the internet has become a dependable source of income for many people, especially for skilled professionals from countries where jobs are scarce and salaries are low by international standards.
If I had to pinpoint the start of the ?E-Lancing? boom I guess it would probably sometime in the early 90’s. Computers and even the Internet had existed before then but until the release of the major personal computer operating systems like Windows 95, marketing on the Internet had not become ubiquitous. During this time in the U.S. software companies realized that they could save a lot of money by hiring overseas programmers who would work for less. These developers and programmers were well-versed in web design, application and database development, as well as system administration.
Studies have shown that 1 out of every 5 contracted websites, software development, and graphic designs worldwide, are the products of outsourcing to freelancers. Beyond software requirements, internet freelancing now involves such services as design (graphic design, logos, brochures, illustrations, etc.), writing (advertising copywriting, web content, creative writing and ghostwriting), business consulting (competitive analysis, marketing planning, accounting and bookkeeping, email management and direct marketing) legal services, administrative support, engineering, architecture and a host of audio, video, and multimedia services and applications.
Today there are many online marketplaces where buyers and sellers of such services meet and do business. These websites provide a forum where buyers can post their job requirements and qualified coders can submit proposals for these jobs. Based on these proposals, the buyer chooses who they believe to be the most qualified for the job and awards that job to them. Once the selected coder completes the job the buyer sends payment to the online marketplace. The online market place deducts its fee and sends the rest to the coder.
If the coder lives in a country where jobs are hard to find or where salaries are low, they have the potential benefit of earning US dollars. Perhaps the best thing about earning money in this manner is that they do not have to leave their country or even the comfort of their own home.
The buyer benefits as well. They are able to get the job done in a professional manner at a relatively low cost. With this kind of win-win situation, it is no surprise why the online outsourcing industry has become a flourishing business. And with the presence of escrow services on many of these websites, the element of fraud is taken out of the equation and coders are assured of collecting their fees. Such is the beauty of online freelancing.