If you look out the window as you drive down your town’s main drag, it may seem like businesses have all died. Yes, travel and tourism is flatlining right now, along with restaurants and many other forms of brick-and-mortar retail.
But it’s not all gloom out there.
When the economy nosedives, there aren’t just losers – there are winners, too. And those businesses need freelancers of all stripes, from writing and editing to video, design, coding skills, and more.
For some businesses, economic hardship is their opportunity. A recent FlexJobs list of companies hiring for remote work (both freelance and full-time) shows some types of business are going full steam.
Once you start thinking about who benefits from hard times, it’s easier to find good freelance prospects to pitch.
To get you started, here’s my alphabetical list of 21 recession-proof industries that make good prospects for freelancers today.
21 Recession-Proof Industries for Freelancers
1. Business consultants – Struggling businesses will want help from the experts on how to reorganize and scale back (and ramp up again) profitably.
2. Business brokers – Some business owners will want to give up and sell – and wealthy investors will be waiting to buy up distressed businesses for cheap.
3. Commercial construction – Big firms are still out building skyscrapers and offices.
4. E-commerce/drop-shipping – Online selling has possibly never been hotter, along with all the online tools that make it possible. Many people are spending their time at home clearing their closets – maybe you are too! Get them listed on sites like Poshmark or Mercari.
5. Education online – With universities and K-12 buildings shut, companies that enable sophisticated teaching via the internet are booming. Also, expect growing demand from businesses that usually hold annual conferences to train remote staff, to move that training online. Check out this posts for online tutoring jobs.
6. Finance – Whether it’s business, personal, investing, loans, retirement – the changing landscape has skyrocketed the call for expert help and advice.
7. Fitness/workouts online – Gyms and yoga studios are switching to video fast – and need help producing and marketing what they do digitally.
8. Gardening – For many of us, it’s all we’re allowed to do – and many garden stores remain open for supplies.
9. Grocery and grocery delivery – This most essential of services has competitors vying to win your isolation-era business. There are more companies than ever that will pay you to shop for and deliver groceries and other essential – and nonessential – goods.
10. ‘Happy distractions’ – Everything that keeps us entertained at home, from online games to jigsaw puzzles, is seeing a sales spike.
11. Home improvement/renovation – This is a DIY effort right now, with home-supply stores such as Home Depot still open. Expect residential construction to come back in shortly, too.
12. Insurance – With rising claims and a new open-enrollment period, insurers are looking to gain new signups and keep people reassured and informed.
13. Legal cannabis – Consider an essential service in some states, the industry is still cranking out product to anxious customers. There’s lots of back-end technology in this sector, too, with companies competing for market share in this nascent sector.
14. Marketing automation – Salesforce.com is one of the companies that made FlexJobs’ list – anything that enables companies to get more leads online is in high demand, now that salespeople can’t knock on doors.
15. Real-estate speculators – For big firms that buy up distressed real estate, opportunities will abound – and they’ll be looking to attract more investors to participate in their purchase groups.
16. Remote-work tools – Zoom and all its rising competitors can hardly keep up with demand – and need to show why they’re different and should be customers’ choice for video meetings. You will find many of these companies are currently ramping up their remote customer service forces.
17. Self-help – Everything from inspirational speakers to meditation-group leaders is scrambling to convert to digital communication, and meet the needs of an anxious populace.
18. Tax – With delayed filing deadlines and new rules to comply with, accounting firms are hoping to win new customers. You can find openings for remote tax preparers, accountants, bookkeeping clerks and beyond.
19. Technology – It touches almost everything in our lives now – and it can be created and delivered remotely.
20. Telehealth – With a huge shift to delivering many physical and mental-health services online, companies that specialize in enabling remote doctor visits are busy.
21. YouTube influencer businesses – Name your video guru, this is their moment, with many people having unlimited hours to discover and get hooked on their content. Find out how to monetize your YouTube channel here.
Recession-Proof your Freelancing
Once you start looking for winners, you find more and more industry niches that are busy-busy in the current economy. Target the companies that benefit from a downturn, and you’re sure to find more freelance work.
–Carol Tice writes the Make a Living Writing blog, and is the author of the new e-book The Recession-Proof Freelancer. Grab your free copy HERE.