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How to verify a potential client

Being a freelancer is tough. You need to meet new people daily and convince them to buy / subscribe your services. Finding a customer a truly difficult and convincing one to work with you is really tough. You put all your energies to explain your new customer your worth. At the end of the day if you are hired then it’s not the celebration time indeed time to put all your efforts to make your customer happy. What if at the end of the day after doing all work you are not paid? This thing can happen to anyone you / me / other freelancers. According to a survey 70% freelancers are unpaid worldwide. This also includes me and perhaps you too!

Potential clients always pay. They people who have put all energies in making their business never cheat. This I know from my experience. But when meting first time, it’s difficult to chalk out if a client is a potential, if he/she will pay you for your efforts. You need to judge your customer silently without making noises. In my experience, generally fake customers make too much noise. Everyone likes to be labeled an entrepreneur. However, entrepreneurs are those who have a property and want to build something on it and want to see it truly big.

Please bear in mind entrepreneurs’ work for name and fame not money. Ofcourse money is a driving force in doing business. For entrepreneurs money is part of business. For fake ones money is everything. So you do not get cheated or best can void the disaster here are few tips:

•    Verify his/her web properties if he / she truly own them. For example if your customer have a website use Who.is or other similar services to know under whose name a domain is registered.
•    Ask for work days and hours. Entrepreneur has set work timing and they adhere to it. Check for availability if your new customer is available during said times.
•    Ask for email. An email like a at xyz dot com is more trustworthy than name at thirdpartyemail dot com This does not mean if a client don’t have customize email then he / she is a crook. But a customizable email is factor in deciding trustworthiness.
•    Entrepreneurs keep email address simple. If his / her mail address begins like jackofalltrade then chances are you are talking to a crook.
•    Invoice upfront. If your customer has problem in paying upfront them ask for daily payment Or in small chunks like USD10 or INR 500. Entrepreneurs are not shy of paying small funds.
•    Are you hired easily? A good entrepreneur should not hire you easily indeed will verify all your previous work.
•    Check your new customer’s social media account. A good customer always has friends from similar industry and makes presence in groups whether active or not.
Over to you, these are not quick fix but just some thought from my own experiences. Often I come across people on social media who are unpaid after doing work.  Hope this article will help you in identifying potential clients.
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