A Freelancer’s Guide to Building a Kickass Portfolio in 2022
Team Fueler

24 Jul, 2022

A Freelancer’s Guide to Building a Kickass Portfolio in 2022

Your portfolio is the most important asset to help you bag good and quality clients, network with people, or even just flaunt your skills to the world.

If you’re reading this, you’re probably someone who has some work they’d like to present but doesn't know the best way to do so.

Maybe you’ve built a website for a local clinic in the past, or perhaps written a few social media posts for your college society, or maybe you have a LinkedIn profile where you write about your life experiences.

How do you go about bringing these pieces of work together and showcase them to people in the best possible way?

Sounds relatable? This blog is for you!

Here are 5 pointers to help you get started as you build your portfolio as a beginner freelancer:

#1: Keep it Simple!

First things first: most people never even start building their portfolio because the process seems like a Herculean task.

Well, I’m here to tell you otherwise:

It’s better to not think of the term ‘Portfolio’ as a fancy website with perfect aesthetics and work samples.

Instead, think of it as a place you get to show your achievements and projects you’ve built passionately -(and maybe even show a little personality!)

For perspective: my first portfolio was a folder of word documents containing essays and poems I wrote in school! And guess what -it got me some great internships! 

Of course, over the years as I got more experience I added better work samples, and put effort into aesthetics -but I couldn’t have done that had I kept waiting to make my work look perfect!

So basically, don’t think about making your portfolio perfect -just start somewhere!

For starters, here’s what you need to build your portfolio:

  1. A clean, well-presented space.
  2. An easily shareable link to your work.
  3. A few work samples/projects you’ve done in the past.

Here’s what you DON’T need:

  1. A fancy website.
  2. A large social media following.
  3. Work samples for every kind of work.

The lesson: Keep it simple (Just like Fatima's portfolio 👇)

Fatima's Portfolio (She is a generalist marketer, and has used Fueler to create her marketing portfolio)

Fatima's Portfolio (She is a generalist marketer, and has used Fueler to create her marketing portfolio)

#2: Keep your work relevant!

Stick to one niche -at least when pitching your work for a specific role.

If you’re applying for the role of a social media content writer -your portfolio doesn’t need to contain newsletters and emails. 

If you’re applying somewhere as a copywriter -you don’t need to add samples of videos you shot -even if the editing might be great!

You get the point - keep your portfolio relevant to the role you’re applying for

It might even be a good idea to make separate subsections in your portfolio for different kinds of work -and send the relevant one to your client!

#3: Don't wait for clients to build a great portfolio!

Ah, the classic freelancer catch: I want to work with clients but I have no experience. But I can’t build experience unless I have clients!

The solution: Stop waiting for a client! Pick a project to work on -doesn’t matter if it’s a college poster or a website revamp -as long as it shows your skill -it’s good enough!

Here are some portfolio project ideas you can work on without a client to get you started:

  1. For web designers: Pick a website you don’t like and redesign its design.
  2. For video editors: Shoot and edit a video for a local grocery store.
  3. For content writers: Start a blog or a newsletter writing about topics you're curious about.

And many more!

P.S. If you are someone having a hard time coming up with ideas. You can head to this website for more ideas and projects to work on: 500+ Project Ideas around Design, Development, Marketing, Writing, Community, and Copywriting, Check it out here

#4: Add Case Studies

Case studies show the transformation of how you helped a person or business achieve their desired goals with your skills.

It can be as simple as a google doc or a notion page detailing your process -“Here’s what I helped X achieve in 3 months - here’s how I did it.” (For example, Check out, how Rohan is creating his portfolio)

Why you should add case studies to your portfolio: Results can be faked, but skills can’t.

By putting your process out there you convey that you’re the real deal - it builds unmatched credibility, and also makes you stand out.

The catch here: It might be difficult to build detailed case studies if you’re just starting out.

A way around: offer your services for free or at a discount in exchange for insights and detailed analytics from your client - which you can then add to your portfolio.

Although this step is not necessary -it does make you stand out as a freelancer and make you trust worthy.

#5: Details matter -pay attention to the little things!

Great, so you have a basic understanding of what goes into a good portfolio, what else can you keep in mind?

This last one is based on personal experience: 

First impressions matter, even when it comes to your portfolio!

By putting in as little as 15 minutes of extra work you can exponentially improve the experience of someone browsing through your work.

Here are some points to keep in mind once you have your basic work samples in place:

  1. Create Fueler buckets for different types of work.
  2. Spend time with titles and descriptions of all your projects.
  3. Provide context to your work wherever needed.
  4. Make sure all the links are valid.

…And so on!

Harsh is a designer, he is using Fueler Bucket to show all his thumbnail work without mixing it with his other work

Harsh is a designer, he is using Fueler Bucket to show all his thumbnail work without mixing it with his other work

There you go, you now have a direction to build a kickass portfolio for yourself -all you need now is to create your profile on Fueler and start creating an impressive portfolio :)

I hope this helps you bag some great clients and be more confident in presenting your work to the world!

An online tool to create your freelance portfolio for free || Fueler.io

An online tool to create your freelance portfolio for free || Fueler.io

Get an impressive freelance portfolio in less than minutes, let's try


Special thanks to Agrima for writing this insightful guide to create a freelance portfolio

A bit about Agrima:

Agrima is a Copywriter, helping B2C businesses with copy that converts and content that communicates.

Connect with her, on Twitter & LinkedIn

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