40 Most Demanded Freelance Skills in 2016 (Yearly Research Report)

The developing community of freelancers brings about 5,000 unique skills from capable experts around the globe. New businesses, Startups and SMEs alike are acknowledging that they can defeat the talent crunch and locate particular skills they require, by posting freelance jobs on job boards and take advantage of the boundless network of freelancers available online.

Freelancers often wonder about the needs of Clients and how to better suit their needs by updating their own skill sets as per the current demands and they end up asking questions like:

Which were the most popular skills in the year 2016? What skills will clients be looking for in 2017?

To put these questions to a rest, we conducted an in-depth research, studied the market & client needs and gathered some data for you.

From content writers and user experience designers, to animation video makers, to SEO and Lead generation, organizations post several employment opportunities every year, and freelancers are hired from across the globe through these freelancing websites.

As you contemplate on the past year and plan ahead for achievement in 2017, it’s critical to comprehend the skills that have been the most prevalent throughout this year and most likely to have demand in the coming year. These important bits of knowledge aim to demonstrate what skills are likely to be in demand in the coming year so that you can brush up yourself to maintain the competitive edge.


Here are the Top 40 most demanded freelance skills Ranked in order:

1. Content Marketing Specialist:

Content Marketing is really in demand in present times. With the growing importance of customer engagement, content marketing enables businesses of all types to engage their customers and help build a brand.

Average National Income: $84,883


2. User experience design:

In present times, website and mobile applications demand to meet the visual and user experience standards. UX designers accomplish these criteria’s by developing websites or apps that are anything but difficult to-use and upgrades the user’s experience altogether.

Average National Income: $87,883


3. ASP development:

Organizations are hunting down web designers who can use Active Server Pages, access databases and provide security. ASP development has been in demand throughout 2016 and is likely to increase through 2017.

Average National Income: $89,000


4. Mobile App Development:

App development is likewise a skill that is sure to earn you a decent amount of cash each month. A portion of the abilities required to be a mobile application designer is versatile UI planning, backend processing, programming, testing and writing codes among others. With a consistent ascent in the quantity of individuals consuming the web through their mobile phones, the eventual fate of mobile app developers looks truly brilliant.

Average National Income: $84,562


5. Content Writing:

For each word composed on the web, there’s somebody sitting before his PC and draining his creativity out. With all the websites, blogs, online news sites, online journals, and magazines out there, envision the sort of freelancing opportunities a content writer might get. The annual income of a freelance writer goes up to $50,000 and can increase up to 10 times based on your level of skills..

Average National Income: $40,951


6. SEO:

Without SEO, having an online presence is almost impossible and this is what makes SEO one of the most demanded skills online. The practice includes developing a variety of strategies visible to search engines like Google or Bing by composing engaging, relevant and keyword optimized articles.

Average National Income: $45,000


7. Blogging:

Blogging is a very flexible skill and can facilitate you to start your own blog or get hired by someone else as a blogger and make money. There are a variety of niche categories like technology, digital marketing, travel, entertainment and the list goes on. If you are wondering how much can you make through blogging? Then the sky is the limit.

Average National Income:$50,000


8. Copywriting:

When it comes to marketing materials copywriters create the content, for promotional materials, like, pamphlets and brochures, and in addition content for websites and social media ads. On the off chance, that you are a talented copywriter, this may the ideal freelance business opportunity for you.

Average National Income: $38,000


9. Technical writing:

Technical writers create data that are similar to, charts, diagrams and guides to explain complicated data in a simple manner.

Average National Income: $52,490


10. Proofreading:

Proofreading is a skill which a freelancer can use to review and fix errors in written documents. The skills required are to have a small grasp in English and be proficient in AP and MLA formats.

Average National Income: $47,663


11. Photography:

The demand for photojournalists have declined over the years, however, there’s still a lasting demand for photographers for businesses and commercial purposes. Truth be told, there’s been a 30% percent increase in the demand of freelance photographers since 2014.

Average National Income: $42,375


12. Graphic Designing:

Graphic designing is another freelance skill in demand and is going to stay so. Online businesses look out for talented graphic designers who can work with software’s like Photoshop and Coral Draw. There is a plethora of opportunities available for graphic designers available and can earn you a decent living.

Average National Income:$61,750


13. Animation:

These imaginative people create animations for movies, TV programs, or games. In today’s web 2.0 the demand for animators has gone up and will ascend through 2017.

Average National Income: $50,195


14. Virtual Assistant:

Entrepreneurs and business visionaries are utilizing virtual assistants to help them oversee assignments like planning appointments and replying to emails from a remote area.

Average National Income: $39,183


15. Search Engine Marketing Specialist:

Lead generators are the heart and soul of the digital sales process and it is responsible for generating new sales leads for brands and companies through digital mediums like Google Adwords and Email marketing.

Average National Income: $23,890


16. Social Media Marketing Specialist:
Over the previous decade, social networking platforms like Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and Snapchat have developed as a great platform for businesses to engage with existing and potential customers online. In order to collaborate with potential clients online at these online networking destinations, businesses require specialists.

Average National Income: $46,402


17. Data Mining:

Described as the ‘best job in modern times,’ data miners are basically data scientists who analyze big data to analyze trends.

Average National Income: $59,021


18. Web Development:

With numerous variety of sites up and running, organizations require somebody to handle the backend procedure of the website and guarantee the site doesn’t go down. That is where the skills of a web designer come into play. Web development is an independent skill that you can ace and make a lot of cash by working a couple of hours as a freelancer.

Average National Income: $74,205


19. Voice Over Artist:

From radio commercials to corporate recordings, there’s a tremendous interest for VO specialists. Also the compensation is exceptionally amazing. Along these lines, if you think that you’ve got a wonderful voice, try being a voice over artist. It’s loaded with opportunities.

Average National Income: $40,000


20. Translation:

For those individuals who are fluent with more than one language, being a freelance translator brings immense opportunities for you. If you have a good understanding of foreign languages, it can surely help you make decent money crooging.

 Average National Income:$43,590


21. Auto Cad:

With this expertise you can recreate and energize 2D and 3D designs. Data reveals that, visual content is the most consumed content in the world.

Average National Income: $49,215


22. AngularJS development:

With this expertise you can develop HTML vocabulary so you can manufacture portable and desktop web applications. Since this is the framework for dynamic web applications, the demand for this interest is likely to increase through 2017.

Average National Income: $102,000


23. Java development:

Java developers create complicated web-based applications, like animated website menus. Without fail, Java is the basis for many open-source projects, so the demand for this skill should grow through 2017, bringing ample amount of opportunities for Java Developers.

Average National Income: $70,773


24. Accounting:

Businesses still need to turn to accountants to help them understand information like tax codes and deductions, which keeps this an in-demand skill and will keep bringing opportunities for freelance accountants.

Average National Income: $65,940


25. Data Entry:

For data entry you don’t need any formal training. The most basic skills that you need is having awesome typing speed, good computer skills, proficiency in MS Excel and a good attention span

Average National Income: $30,330


26. Audio transcriber:

Sound transcribers, transcribe recorded audio into composed content. The basic skills required for this job is to have a fast typing speed and have good hearing abilities. Additionally, you might need some equipments.

Average National Income: $41,000


27. Web researcher:

Utilize your web research abilities toward a freelance gig that allows you to do your internet research. The skills required are searching for information through online databases and providing information from credible sources only.

Average National Income: $57,000


28. Podacasting:

From business enterprise to cooking, on the off chance that you have in depth knowledge in any particular niche, podcasting is a good freelancing option.

Average National Income:$26,000


29. Tutoring:

From chemistry to English literature, if you are knowledgeable enough and have a relevant degree in it, you can make decent money teaching online, helping students prepare for their exam or simply assist them with their homework.

Average National Income:  $85,000


30. Art/craft teaching:

Have that artistic worm wriggling through your nerves? Then you can make a decent living out ofcrafts making. It’s advisable that you wait no more and start finding your gig right away

Average National Income:$55,000


31. Tour guiding:

In the event that you are enthusiastic about where you live and cherish sharing a local viewpoint, whether it’s the historical backdrop of the neighborhood scene or where to locate the best neighborhood brew then tour guiding can be your freelancing gig.

Average National Income:$25,490


32. Travel agent:

While an enthusiasm for travel is pretty cool, to be a fruitful travel specialist it is more vital to have a comprehension of particular travel goals and finding the best arrangements on transportation, lodging, attractions, and assembling a total itinerary schedule for clients.

Average National Income:$34,800


33. Event planner:

Love to organize events and going to parties? Then you can utilize these skills as a freelancer and organize parties to make a decent living out of it.

Average National Income:$50,190


34. Medical interpreter:

Medical interpreters have an interesting job. Similar to translators they help non-English speakers and medical professionals communicate with each other.

Average National Income:$42,066,


35. Yoga instructing:

In today’s world more and more people are turning to yoga, you can not only give classes online through mediums like Skype, but can give personal sessions as well.

Average National Income:$24.83 per hour


36. Life coaching:

This is a perfect freelancing option if you have the ability to motivate others. With people having low self-esteem, life coaching cannot only make youa lot of money, but can bring satisfaction and positivity in your life as well.

Average National Income:$235 per hour


37. Affiliate Marketing:

If you are a freelance affiliate marketer, you get to generate a lot of leads for your clients. You would need to market your client’s products online and in return you would get commission for each sale. In some product categories, affiliate marketing can get really colossal commissions.

Average National Income: $12,823,19


38. Public Relations

The demand for a PR professional will never run out. Since PR services can be provided working from home. The demand is never going to run out. However, there is a good amount of experience required to land a gig.

Average National Income:$105,720


39. Game Development:

Even though game development is similar to app development, the processes to develop the game is different and has quite good amount of pay. Understanding of games and how they work is a must.

Average National Income:$71,445


40. Business consultant:

If you are a freelance business consultant you would have to work specifically with business owners to guide them with their business goals and help them accomplish it. Finding entrepreneurs and creative business owners is a good place to start.

Average National Income: $90,000.


Since you are now aware which skills are going to be in-demand in the coming year, it’s the perfect time to start developing your skills, and kick start finding freelance gigs.

Are you a freelancer? Then, tell us which skill you are going to brush up for the coming year by leaving a comment below.


18 December, 2016
  • Swathi Rajan

    I was expecting Mobile App Development to be on the top. Great list by the way.

    • Dev Hisaria

      Content Marketing & Blogger Outreach has gained a lot of importance recently and rightfully enough. It looks to be growing for coming few years.