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Top 7 in-demand tech skills for freelancers

Ceylin Güven

Freelancers are expected to make up more than half of the entire US workforce by 2027. This is not an isolated case either; the number of freelancers are rising throughout the world day by day. This rising interest in becoming independent has also led to an increase in demand for skilled freelancers in the workforce. With more and more companies looking to hire remote and freelance workers, the market competition is getting tougher by the second. To combat this, you should consider extending your skillset and providing a unique set of skills that can make you stand out in your field. One of the best ways to elevate your freelancer career is learning some of the top in-demand tech skills.    

Web design & development

Web designers, in the most basic terms, create and maintain websites for their clients. This includes its general look, performance adjustments, visual compatibility, and general tweaks for both the desktop and mobile versions of the website. Web designers can also go into web development, where they’ll focus more on the technical construction and features. Front-end and back-end development are what keeps the website up and running, while designers focus more on the aesthetic aspect.  The web and digital design industry is projected to grow over 23% in the following ten years, making it one of the most in-demand industries with a steady growth. It’s one of the top tech skills you can learn to expand your skill set and develop your portfolio. There is no official knowledge repertoire to becoming a web designer and/or developer. However, if you want to become one, here are some skills that you should work on:

  • Theories of basic design
  • Basic design tools (Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.)
  • HTML
  • CSS
  • UX & UI design

You can also consider learning other programming languages (such as JavaScript or PHP) to be able to create interactive websites. Other crafts you can add to your belt to become a better freelance web designer include:

  • Content management
  • Online sales and product tools
  • SEO
  • Graphic design

Graphic design

A graphic designer uses technological tools to create art pieces for consumers, ranging anywhere from logos, to website graphics, to actual advertisements and billboards. The main goal is to employ basic design concepts to create aesthetically pleasing visual content that everyone can enjoy. The most popular design tools for visual illustration are Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign, but there are also other options available. You don’t really need to know how to draw to use them, but it’s definitely a plus. Familiarity with design concepts, keeping up with marketing trends, and a good eye can go a long way.  And though you don’t officially need a degree in the field, most job listings will require at least a bachelor’s degree and/or valuable certification for higher-end jobs. You should definitely keep this in mind when evaluating if this is one of the tech skills you want to pursue.

Content/product management systems

Content management systems (also known as CMS) are designed as easy-to-use tools that can help you manage your webpage’s content without extensive technology skills. When you learn to master your CMS of choice, you can create a great looking and secure website. A basic knowledge of HTML and CSS alongside it will be enough to handle the customizations.The most popular and extensive CMS is WordPress, which you’ve probably heard of by now. Other options include Joomla, Wix, Squarespace, etc. You’ll find many free online tutorials to master these tools. However, the best way is to create a website of your own to play around with the settings and extensions.  Similarly, product management tools allow you to manage the product listings on your website. This is especially useful if your website will need to integrate a shopping/eCommerce feature. The most popular tools you can learn for this are Shopify and WooCommerce, which can be integrated into your CMS-built website.

Search engine optimization (SEO)

SEO, or search engine optimization, is an integral skill for any business looking to further their online presence. Being well-versed in SEO means that you can track trends, know what can best respond to users’ needs, and know how to rank higher in search engines with your content to be able to reach more people. These skills are essential to work in SEO:    

  • Content writing and copywriting
  • Content marketing
  • Google Analytics & Google Search Console
  • HubSpot, Moz, ahrefs, and similar keyword research tools
  • Content management

One of the most important parts of SEO is that you should always keep up with the trends and changes within the industry. For this, social media skills are also nice to have, so that you can expand your marketing and keep up to date with recent news in your target audience. Additionally, you can look into HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to learn how to optimize your website and content to best fit in with Google’s ranking requirements.

Data analytics

Data analysts are able to, as the name suggests, analyze any given data, interpret it, and present their inferences in an appealing way. The popularity of freelance data analytics jobs is growing day by day, and it’s a highly sought-out skill in the current business market. The most in demand tech skills for this field include:

  • Statistics
  • Excel
  • SQL
  • Data management
  • Statistical programming languages, such as R and Python
  • Machine learning

If you decide data analytics is among the right tech skills for you, then you should definitely take a look at Google’s own Data Analytics Professional Certificate. It covers all the basics and has high validity in the industry. We recommend starting with that, and learning at your own pace.  

App development

App development is similar to web development, but is instead focused on a single type of operating system. So the first thing you need to do is decide which device(s) you want to create apps for (iOS, Android, etc.), and familiarize yourself with their operating system. Afterwards, these are some of the technology skills you’ll need to develop the apps themselves:

  • Coding and programming languages (JavaScript, C++, C#)
  • Product management
  • UI/UX design + general basic design rules
  • Cross-platform app development skills, based on the devices/systems you want to develop for
  • Backend computing skills (security, databases, hardware, etc.)
  • Business analytics
  • Software analysis and QA testing

Information technology (IT)

Information technology experts oversee the installation, building, and maintaining of programs within a company. It includes a wide array of work; anything from fixing problems on an individual’s computer to setting up servers. They are key people to keep company-wide operations up and running. Not every company keeps a full-time IT manager these days, but instead hires freelance IT experts to fix quick problems, do consultations, or work on things on a contractual basis. In that way, having information technology skills can get you freelance work with many important clients and large companies. If you’re looking to go into IT, you probably have above average tech knowledge. Below are some of the areas you can try to take courses on and improve yourself in, depending on which part of the sector you want to go into.

  • Computer operating systems (Windows, macOS, Linux, etc.) and networks (LAN, WLAN, VPN, etc.)
  • Programming languages, such as Python, JavaScript, and C++
  • Security: Cybersecurity, encryption, malware analysis, firewall installation, ethical hacking, risk analysis, etc.
  • Data analysis skills

Take your freelancing career to the next level

We hope our list of the 7 most in demand tech skills can help improve your freelancing career and unlock more business opportunities for you!If you want to upgrade your career even further, register to Ruul now and explore Ruul’s comprehensive work, finance and compliance features. With Ruul’s services, you’ll spend less time worrying about managerial work and have an all-in-one business platform to have your career under your own rule. Become a member of Ruul’s community and stay up to date on modern work with informative articles published regularly on the Ruul Blog.


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