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High-Demand Job: How to Become a Virtual Assistant (or Digital Assistant)

The pandemic has created a huge demand for virtual assistants...
Can you make money as a virtual assistant?

I Love Making Money Staff & writers

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You want to make money working from home as a virtual assistant? The pandemic has forced companies to re-structure and ditch the office for a work from home setup. That puts Virtual Assistant as a high-demand job right now.

Can you make money as a virtual assistant? Let’s discuss…

What Is a Virtual Assistant

A virtual assistant (also known as a Digital Assistant or VA) is someone who takes care of administrative tasks for companies and clients from a remote location, usually their home.

What skills do you need to become a virtual assistant?

Virtual assistants need basic typing skills, organizational, and communication skills. This year, VA’s are being recruited for content management, social media management, blog post writing, and graphic design.

These are ways that virtual assistants help companies, entrepreneurs, and professionals:

  • Plan, Schedule, and Strategize Time
  • Prioritize Revenue-Generating Tasks
  • Batching Similar Tasks
  • Communicating More Effectively
  • Developing Sales Skills
  • Basic Accounting
  • Professional Development

I personally have a virtual assistant who handles all email that comes through any website.

Six Steps to Becoming a Virtual Assistant

Step 1: Plan a Business Strategy

There are a few factors to consider before you start a career as a VA. Your current location, your family situation, and your financial needs are a few.

Determine your needs first.

  • How many hours can you work each week?
  • Do you need health insurance?
  • How much money do you need to clear each week?

If you need full health care, then, you’ll want to consider a “work from home” position with a company rather than a self-employed freelance position. If you need part-time, you may consider a freelance – you set the hours and accept the gigs – position.

Step 2: Specialize Your Area

Once you have decided to become a VA, decide the field you are strong in.

If you are an expert in accounting, plan to become a VA in the finance department. It’s incredibly rewarding when you work from home around your strengths rather than chasing money.

Having said that, there is no rule that says you can’t change the field once you start with another. This flexibility is what makes the Virtual Assistant jobs highly desirable.  You can also search for Virtual Assistant jobs here.

Step 3: Decide Your Pay Rate

Quoting a perfect rate for your service is crucial. Know the market rate by browsing other VA profiles and quote accordingly.

In Step 1, you will list out your needs including your pay. How much do you need to make while taking into consideration that you won’t need money for gas, car, clothes and lunches?

Step 4: Jobs Versus Gigs

There will be two different routes you can take to land a virtual assistant position.

Route 1: The Job
S
econd Route: The Gig

Route 1: Once you have decided on your field, start to apply for VA jobs. You can use these platforms to apply for digital or virtual assistant jobs. You apply for the positions.

This route simply means you’ll be working for one or two companies usually at a salary with benefits.

Route 2: The second route would be the freelance path where you land short-term and long-term gigs. You can use these platforms to setup your own gigs where employers come to you.

This route simply means you’ll be self-employed while attracting clients who want to hire you on a per gig basis. I wrote this guide on how to create a side hustle that is perfect for working from home.

Step 5: Promote Yourself

If you choose the “gig route” or the freelance route, you’ll want to promote your gig on social media platforms for wider reach. One of the best ways to showcase your talent is by training and teaching different aspects of your job. Related: Best Platforms to Find Virtual Assistant Jobs

Now only will you be sharing and inspiring others to make money, but you’ll be attracting people who want to hire you.

Social Media has the potential to get you your dream Virtual Assistant Job.  If you’re looking to get traffic to your website, try these 21 proven methods to get internet traffic.

If you choose the “job” route, then you’ll want to create a professional Linked In & do a quick social media clean-up check. This clean-up is a way to remove all your unprofessional social media posts & present a more professional version. Yes, this is important to landing your first VA job.

Most employers will do a quick Google search, review your social media posts and double check what kind of energy you’re putting out there.

Step 6: Build Relationships

Building a good relationship with your past and present clients gets you a constant flow of business as they hire you again for gigs. Also, every gig is an opportunity to get a 5-star rating, a review or a reference for your Linked In (or resume).

Word of mouth plays a big part in your growth as a VA. I also find that shoutouts & helping others build their business helps BUILD yours.

What Skills are High Demand Right Now

While there is an endless number of services you can provide, here is the list of some of the skills in high demand.

  • Social Media Management
  • Copywriting / Content writing
  • Email / Telephone Management
  • Calendar Scheduling
  • Graphic Designing
  • Online Researching
  • Photo/Video Editing
  • Customer Service

My advice is to keep as professional as possible when delivering your work. If you have any of the above skills, then you will have no problems landing gigs or high-paying jobs.

What Platforms Can I Apply for Jobs

What Tools Do Virtual Assistants Use?

It’s time to improve your proficiency when completing tasks as a virtual assistant. The faster you complete the tasks, the more productive and professional you become.

Here are the top tools to help you save time & make more money:

Website Builders:

WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace are top contenders for website building. 

  • WordPress is my favorite because you can create a stand alone resume type of blog or add offers & coaching offers to your website. Here’s a step by step on how to install WordPress. Did you know you can also charge $200 to $1,000 to build WordPress sites for local businesses?
  • Wix is a cakewalk when it comes to ease of use. It offers a drag-and-drop system to create websites in minutes. No coding required.  They allow you to get started for free at your basic level. Click Here to Check Out Wix
  • Squarespace is more professional in design. It provides excellent templates to start with. It demands some technical knowledge to create websites.  Click Here for More Website Builders.

Professional Email Service

Build customer trust by giving everyone in your company a professional email address at your domain, like susan@yourcompany and joe@yourcompany. Also create group mailing lists, like sales@yourcompany.

Choosing a custom email provider is easy. As a Virtual Assistant, you should go with the one that is easy to set up and easy to use. Professional customer support is highly beneficial.

We actually started using GSuite because they provide an unlimited cloud storage for less than $12. And, it comes with all the business apps that integrate with Google.

  • Unlimited Cloud Storage
  • Your Own Custom Email Address (instead of gmail)
  • Meet Video Conferencing
  • Team Chat Messaging Platform
  • Business Calendar
  • Word / Sheets / Slides
  • Sites Website Builder
  • Access from Any Device

Click Here to Check Out Google’s Suite of Tools

You can also setup your own blog & use the free email service that comes with your hosting company. That will give you the name@yourdomain.com email address that looks more professional.

We recommend Bluehost because you get a free domain name for one year, and you can build a professional site for less than $4 per month.

Click Here to Install a Blog with Bluehost

Communication Tools for Virtual Assistants

Reliable and fast communication is the foundation of Virtual Assistant jobs because of the remote nature of the job. A faster response time builds trust between the VA and the client.

These three tools come at the top:

  • Skype: Skype needs no introduction. The mother of all Video conferencing apps allows you to video chat, share files, make phone calls, and many more. 
  • Zoom: The video conferencing app that has seen a surge in this Covid-19 situation. It offers more features than Skype. Dedicated meeting URL, Session breaks, and customization make Zoom unavoidable for VA – Client interaction. 
  • Slack: This text chat and communication tool is unique in its own way. If you require to work as a team, Slack is what all you need. 

Time Tracking Tools for VA’s

Tracking the time you worked on each task is crucial in a Virtual Assistant job. For per-hour payment jobs, it is a must-have tool. 

  • Toggl is a popular tool to track your work time. Their cross-platform apps and web platform let you track time, generate reports, generate invoices, and more. 
  • Free Invoice App – Create invoices and send to people with this free app called Slim Voice.
  • Time Doctor lets you track time for two tasks simultaneously. It also alerts you if you are distracted.

File-Sharing Tools for Digital Assistants

Sharing the files over email and losing track of them is the thing of the past. File sharing and management tools are key to succeeding at Virtual Assistant jobs.

The top tools in this category are:

  • Dropbox: Extremely popular and very powerful. It offers free 2 GB storage and many more features. 
  • Google Drive: Integrated with Google docs. You get a whopping 15 GB storage. It is a part of all Android devices. 
  • OneDrive: This File sharing tool from Microsoft is tightly integrated with its Office Suite. It offers 5 GB of free storage. 

Payment Tools

If you are not a contract employee from freelancing sites like Fiverr or Upwork, then you need a third-party billing system. You can use a payment tool that supports international currencies to get paid for your work.

  • PayPal: The most popular tool for payment. Despite its high commission fees, it remains to top preference all over the world. 
  • Payoneer: This is an effective alternative to consider. It supports direct withdrawal. 

How to Become a Virtual Assistant Summary:

Are you ready to make money as a virtual assistant? Which route are you going to take? Are you going the freelancer path or are you going the work from home job?

Make sure you bookmark this page as I’ll be updating it as often as I can to keep you informed on How to Become a Virtual Assistant or Digital Assistant.

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If you know anyone looking for How to Become a Virtual Assistant or Digital Assistant, please share this page with them. If you have any questions or suggestions, please leave a comment below.

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