Since the beginning of the health crisis, there have been many opportunities for gig workers, particularly in deliveries. Nevertheless, expansion hasn’t been uniform. Many companies in Canada have been forced to reduce their work, therefore, making it challenging for independent contractors or freelancers to get by. This is a problem taking into consideration that workers are generally low-paid and can’t afford to stop due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The market is likely to experience a downturn, even after the coronavirus pandemic passes over.

It’s paramount to be prepared for unpredictability. In this respect, have a look at these tips that you can start putting into action right now.

1. Prioritize adding income over cutting expenses

Generally speaking, a drop in income warrants a lifestyle change. More exactly, you should make an effort to cut down on expenses. Revisit your spending plan and divide expenses into the following categories: priorities, fixed expenses, and variable expenses. Priorities are the expenses that you can’t live without. This includes rent, mortgage payments, car insurance, clothes, food, and so on. Reduce optional expenses and build better saving habits. Eat out only once a week. It’s better to stay in and try your hand in the kitchen.

While cutting expenses is important, you should focus your attention on adding more income. There’s not too much that you can eliminate from your budget, especially if you live frugally. If you earn enough money in a month, you’ll be able to improve your cash flow the following month. Try to negotiate a higher rate. Rather than working by the hour, you can charge per project. Don’t work from the perspective of what you believe your services are worth.

Take the time to consider the client and the project. If you write a sales page copy for a middle-sized business or a large corporation, your price tag should reflect the situation.

2. Keep your network active

It doesn’t matter if you’re a seasoned gig worker or a full-time freelancer, your network of clients should be at the top of your mind. To keep your job prospects, it’s essential to maintain a strong network. If you’ve completed several jobs for a certain group or company, reach out to them and see if they might have recommendations. Who knows? Maybe they’re interested in working with you once again. You’ll undoubtedly find that circumstances are different with clients. While some of them don’t need your services anymore, others could be looking for help.

Connect with other gig workers. They can provide a sense of community and perhaps opportunities to thrive. Even if you’re your own boss, you still need the support of others. Create a solid network with other independent contractors or freelancers so that you can ask questions, get referrals, and secure aid in times of need. It’s perfectly normal to feel overwhelmed at times, but keep in mind that you don’t have to go at it alone. Like many successful people, you’ve always relied on yourself, but now it’s time to let other people in your life.

3. Take advantage of financial aid

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about economic distress and uncertainty. Therefore, special programs have been implemented to relieve some of the financial burdens individuals are currently facing. If you’ve seen your business decline, don’t worry because there is some financial help available. You can be granted a taxable benefit if you don’t have access to income support. Policies are being created and updated all the time, so find out what’s happening in your state. It’s essential to stay informed. Be aware of scams that claim to give you free money from the government. Officials rarely reach out to citizens and they don’t use social networking platforms in this sense.

Equally, you can apply for a loan if you need extra financial support. Examples of loans you can apply for include personal loans, microloans, lines of credit, crowdfunding, and invoice financing. You’ll need a car to move around, especially if you’re a translator/interpreter. If you can’t afford the payment anymore, consider auto refinancing. The process of auto refinancing in Canada isn’t as complicated at all. You can apply for a loan quickly and conveniently online. Just fill in the application and wait for the approval. Even if life doesn’t go as planned, the money will give you the confidence to move forward. If you’ve never taken out a loan, you’ll want to get a better understanding of how the process works.

4. Become an irreplaceable expert

Make yourself invaluable. People have no interest in spending money on something that doesn’t produce the expected return on the investment. It’s up to you to convince clients that you’re irreplaceable and they can greatly benefit from your services. Needless to say, change doesn’t take place overnight. To become an expert, you have to work hard. It’s a reputation that you must earn and build with every relationship. It doesn’t matter if you’re a content writer, web designer, or a data scientist. Your career depends on how much you’re willing to devote to becoming better.

Do things in reverse. To be more precise, learn the principles that apply to every situation, regardless of the circumstances, rather than starting from the beginning. You should be practicing what’s important. Become a thought leader. In case you didn’t know, experts aren’t happy with the current status quo. They’re always trying new things, experimenting with new concepts, and adding value. Create your own blog and start writing. You should also engage with people on social media. You can amplify your thought leadership without much difficulty. Plus, you can reach your audience in an instant.

To sum up, a market downturn can cause a lot of fear and anxiety, so you may be tempted to panic. If you’ve managed to survive until now, chances are that you’ll do good in the future as well. Keep calm and don’t act irrationally. Change directions and pivot quickly. Impossible as it may seem, it’s possible to build a thriving business while the economy is going down. You just have to be willing to put in the time and effort. So what do you say?