As you may have figured out right now, being a virtual assistant is one of my favorite ways for women to work on their own terms, whether it’s a side hustle or a full-time gig. In fact, I wrote about 5 reasons it’s GREAT to become a virtual assistant.
One thing I stress is that you DO NOT need to have special technical skills and all sorts of bells and whistles to get started as a virtual assistant. A good computer, a headset, some free tools, a willingness to learn and determination…that’s about all you need to start.
However, once you’ve been at it awhile and you have some clients, there are a few ways to increase your income as a virtual assistant without burning yourself out. Try one of these when you’re ready to take your VA biz to the next level.
(Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a small commission on purchases made through links on this blog, which helps me keep this blog up and running. I only promote products I love.)
Learn New Skills
So many virtual assistants start out thinking they need high tech skills to make any money, and that’s just not true. When I started, I could barely navigate the Genesis theme for WordPress, my social media graphics were HIDEOUS, and I had never even heard of Asana. I still don’t know how to do things like Infusionsoft, and you know what? I’ve still got work. You don’t need special skills to start. Do what you know how to do and keep learning and improving.
When you are ready to upgrade, learn some in-demand skills such as:
- Advanced email marketing – Infusionsoft, ConvertKit, Active Campaign.
- Webinar software.
- E-commerce platforms.
- Facebook ads.
Not sure where to start learning? If you’re on a budget, check out Udemy, but if you have a little more cash to spare, definitely look into VA Classroom University, which will open again for enrollment in May 2017. They have an AMAZING array of courses full of valuable info and upgrades for virtual assistants of any experience level. Bookmark them and sign up for the email list for an enrollment reminder + great VA tips.
Package Your Services
Most virtual assistants start out hourly or with hourly retainer packages, and that’s usually the best way to start until you know how long it takes you to complete tasks and can package your services with that in mind. When you reach an income plateau, packaging your services can revive your business, lessen the burden of client work, and please your clients because they’re paying a flat rate for services provided…no messy hour tracking or worrying about running out of time!
Packages usually contain a very specific breakdown of what’s included. For example, my WordPress blog maintenance package looks like this:
- Formatting, editing, tags/categories, and basic SEO for up to 12 blog posts per month.
- Website updates.
- Website backups.
Then I have packages that build on that one in tiers to make different options available to my clients.
I calculate my packages based on the estimated number of hours it will take to complete the work + a bit of wiggle room. That way, if I go over, I’m not losing too much money, and if I use fewer hours, I make a profit. Good stuff.
Search Out High-End Clients
Raise your prices a bit. You’ll probably find that most of your clients don’t mind the increase. Then start searching out some high-end clients who will buy more expensive packages. Take your ideal client, then figure out what traits they have if they’re a top-tier client and will buy the biggest packages you offer.
For example, if you work with coaches and have a few coaches with smaller businesses, figure out where coaches with larger businesses are hanging out and start building relationships and marketing to them. Make the right connections and target the right clients in your advertising.
There will always be masses of people who can’t afford you, but there will be those who see your value too. Seek out those people. They are your clients.There will always be people who can't afford you. Look for the people who see your value. THEY… Click To Tweet
If you want to take on more clients, but don’t have the ability to take on the workload, consider subcontracting to other virtual assistants. I started this in December, and it’s my biggest goal this year.
I’m building a team because I prefer long-term working relationships with my subcontractors, but many virtual assistants subcontract work to other VAs on an as-needed or project basis. Some virtual assistants even create agencies, in which they match individual assistants to individual clients and collect a percentage as a “finder’s fee” kind of deal.
Do what works for your business!
That’s really the thing I want you to take away from this post: do what works for your business. Some of these might not be right for you or for the way your business is structured. Maybe you try one and it isn’t a good fit. Try another. Find the methods that work for you.
How are you increasing your income as a virtual assistant?
If you’re a new virtual assistant and not sure where to start or just have some questions and want to pick my brain, schedule a guidance session with me. I’d love to chat with you!