How to Become a Virtual Assistant

When I first started side hustling last year, I was mainly interested in getting paid to write for blogs. I had heard from several more experienced bloggers that freelance writing is a good way to make money online. And it is, but there are lots of other ways to make money online too.

One such way is to become a Virtual Assistant.

What is a Virtual Assistant?

A Virtual Assistant (VA) is basically someone who assists business owners with any tasks they are assigned to do.

In some cases, a VA may work on only one contracted project such helping with an E-book or some other digital product, or they may be contracted to work on things for a business over the long-term.

What Does a VA Do?

Long-term VAs are a great way to outsource different tasks in your business that you simply don’t have time to do. These could be things like responding to emails, commenting on behalf of your blog, managing day-to-day operations of your blog/business, or handling social media.

Depending on the VA you reach out to, they may or may not offer these services as part of their VA business. Some VAs are very specialized and only handle certain tasks and others are more like a jack of all trades and can handle almost anything they are asked to do. Here are some more ideas of what a VA might offer as part of their services:

  • Blog Design – Although this task is pretty technical in nature, some still consider it to be part of their VA work rather than a separate category.
  • Editing – Lots of VAs work on editing posts written by staff writers, or by the blog owner themselves. Every post needs to be edited by more than one person, that’s the best way to catch all the little mistakes that are bound to happen.
  • Research – Some VAs perform a lot of research to help small businesses with the launch of new products or services.
  • Technical Website Assistance – If you have problems with your site or need it managed from a technical aspect, some VAs will help here. These are sometimes referred to as technical VAs.
  • Writing – Although you can make a living as a freelance writer, some VAs also offer writing as part of their services.

These are just some of the tasks that VAs do and there are a lot more possibilities out there too.

How Much Does a VA Earn?

Depending on what services you decide to offer as a VA, you can earn anywhere from $15-$100/hour. This also depends on the size of your client and their budget.

For more complex and involved tasks, VAs usually charge more, and as the client increases the scope of their work over time, they may be able to ask for a raise too.

VAs also have the option of charging for their services by the hour, or by the project.They just have to be careful that they aren’t putting in too much time that is not billable to their clients.

Get Started as a VA

I was really lucky in getting my start as a VA because my first VA client had originally only hired me to do some writing. But after working with her as her VA, I knew this was my calling.

I love writing, but it’s easy to get burned out if all you do is write all day long, every single day. By offering both writing and VA as part of my online business, I am able to diversify my income somewhat and keep myself from burning out on writing. Plus, I know I wouldn’t be earning as much if I hadn’t started working as a VA.

To get started working as a VA you could try getting a gig on a job board, like ODesk. The only potential problem with this is that many VAs on job board websites are from other countries and are able to work for a much lower wage than what you’d probably like to be earning.

Another way to get started as a VA is to send out cold emails (pitching). Cold emails are a scary thing at first, but in my experience they usually end up working out in a positive way. Even if you don’t find a new client right away by sending out a cold email, you’ve at least made contact with that person in case they are ever looking for a VA down the road.

Have you ever considered becoming a VA to earn more money?

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