Building a sizable website takes a lot of time and energy.
You can’t do everything yourself because there are only so many hours in the day. Outsourcing portions of your work can save you time and money and it can also help you focus on the parts of building a website or a business that you really enjoy.
Unfortunately outsourcing can sometimes increase your headaches and wasted time.
Avoiding scammers, slackers, and talentless hacks is the key here but where do you start?
There are many websites for finding freelancers and outsourced workers but the following four sites are your best bets. You’re not guaranteed to avoid bad outsourced labor on these sites but you’ll filter out a lot of the noise that is found on some webmaster forums.
There is a very good chance there are great freelancers in your own town.
The best part is you can get together with them first to make sure they are a good fit for your project. Have them meet you at a local coffee shop or buy them lunch and get to know your outsourcer before you commit to working with them.
Having your outsourced worker in town will also make it easier to have an occasional meeting. Skype is great but meeting in person is almost always a better way to communicate with a team of people.
If you live in the States, a local worker may cost more but sometimes paying decent money for great work is the best decision you could make.
Some service providers complain that Elance is lowering the cost of their services but that’s a great thing if you’re doing the hiring.
Some workers from countries like the Philippines will set up a website for you for $100-$200. (I can’t vouch for the quality of $100 website though!)
The tough part is that your outsourcers will likely be hit or miss and the talented and cheap folks often get snapped up so if you find someone good make sure to treat them nice and keep them busy.
With Elance, you’ll need to dig a little deeper to find the top 10% of service providers. Look for great portfolios and those that specialize in only one or two things.
This website specializes in written content.
If you’re building a large website than chances are you’re going to need a lot of content and this is where Textbroker can help.
“I got an excellent value for the price, the articles delivered were of good quality, and they were delivered quickly. It won’t replace flagship content created by high quality writers, but it has a lot of value for the cost.”
If you’re in need of lots of content then head over to Textbroker and test out a few articles for yourself.
Amazon’s Mechanical Turk is a crowd-sourcing network that allows you to pay for others to perform small tasks – most of which can be completed in an hour.
These Human Intelligence Tasks (HITs) are small assignments that are completed for money.
For example, you may have several hundred photos along with a list of 20 products. The HIT may be to select from the set of photos the best picture to represent each product. Or you may use Mechanical Turk to audit user-uploaded images or content on your website for inappropriate submissions. A final example is that you could use Mechanical Turk to have a document translated into Cantonese.
Payouts for HITs start at one cent and can go up significantly depending on the time and knowledge required to complete each task. Work can be rejected if it isn’t good enough and bonuses are also available for exceptional work.
These are just four websites that can help you build up your network of outsourcers. The key to any outsourcing job is to find the best candidate and to thoroughly explain what is needed of them. Don’t leave your outsourcer guessing as to what you want – make it clear from the start and hope for the best.