The Business

2023 year in review

I hit a new revenue milestone!

a bar chart is shown on a blue background

At the end of the year, I like to look back at how the year went—what went well for my freelancing business, and what went not so well.

A new revenue record

This year, I’m definitely super proud of how I hit 6 figures in annual revenue. It’s a new milestone for me. After factoring in expenses (of which my salary is by far the largest expense lmao), I’m left with a pretty decent profit to bring with me to the new year.

Best and worst months

Revenue-wise, my best month so far has been April. It was also a month where I’d overcommitted myself, so that might explain things. 😬

And my worst month was definitely August because I was away for about 2 weeks in Japan. Seeing the dismal numbers hurts, but I have zero regrets about going on my trip, haha.

Going through uncertainty

For reasons that most likely have nothing to do with me, I lost quite a few clients this year.

But with new clients coming in (and me raising my rates and taking on more work where I can), my revenue wasn’t too badly hit. In fact, I find it interesting that I’m ending the year with much fewer clients than I started the year with, but I’m still making about the same amount every month.

The uncertain times aren’t over as I’m waiting to see if one of my contracts will be renewed. At the same time, though, I’ve been pursuing some new leads for work. So, I’m cautiously optimistic about the year ahead.

Other highlights and lowlights of the year

Highlights

  • I made it to my first year of full-time freelancing!
  • Clients telling me I’m an asset to their organisation. And writing me glowing testimonials. I’m super humbled.
  • I got to contribute content towards some huge projects. The work was no walk in the park, but I feel honoured to have been able to play a part.

Lowlights

  • Taking on more than I can handle at times. Everything tends to work out in the end and I still make my deadlines, but not before I do a lot of internal panicking lol. And put in more hours than I would like.
  • Turning down one big-name client because their vendor requirements were so onerous, the financials just didn’t make sense to me. I felt really bad doing so—they were nice people and we had gone back and forth trying to make things work for weeks. I had trouble sleeping that night.

What I’ll want to work on in 2024

Having fewer hectic work days, for sure. LOL.

I’ve been adding more buffer time to my schedule, which I think has helped. But some projects still take way more time to complete than expected, and I sometimes still have trouble saying no to work, so managing—and protecting—my schedule is something I still need to work on.

That’s the end of my recap!

For the last few weeks of this year, I’ll be wrapping up some projects. (This 1+ week is especially busy for me haaahaaa)

I’ll then be travelling, so this will be my last newsletter for the year.

Thanks for being a reader—seriously! These newsletters take time to write, so I appreciate you taking the time to read them.

Take care, and HAPPY HOLIDAYS in advance! 🎇 I’ll see you in the new year!

More freelancer news

Free freelancers’ networking event at SUSS

SUSS is hosting a free networking event for freelancers on 11 Dec, Monday, from 7.30pm to 9.30pm.

The event is moderated by The Freelancers Academy. Among others, representatives from media agency Creatives@Work and talent network Chanceupon will also be there.

Dinner is provided from 7pm onwards 🙂

If this sounds interesting, you can sign up here!

Eligible platform workers to get work injury relief from 15 Jan

From 15 Jan 2024 onwards, eligible platform workers who suffer work injury can apply for S$250 worth of NTUC FairPrice vouchers as injury relief.

Platform workers include private-hire drivers and freelance delivery workers. They’ll be eligible for the vouchers if they’re members of NTUC’s relevant organisation for their trade, e.g. the National Delivery Champion Association for freelance delivery workers.

Other requirements include needing to have been given medical or hospitalisation leave for at least 5 days.

Learn more details here.

This post was first published in my email newsletter on 7 Dec 2023. If you liked it, you can sign up for my newsletter here:

Tan Siew Ann
I’m a freelance writer for some of the most amazing software businesses in the world. On this blog, I share tips on how you, too, can run a sustainable and meaningful freelance business. Let’s forge your freedom. 💪

Leave a Response