Job interviews are an integral part of any job search process, regardless of whether you’re seeking a full-time position, looking for freelance jobs or hoping for a side hustle to earn some extra cash. No matter the role, there are still some common questions that potential clients or employers will want to know from job seekers. What are some typical client interview questions?
Read on to find common interview questions you can expect from clients and some sample answers to prepare for that next job interview.
Knowing how to answer those client questions could help you land your next job!
- 10 Client interview questions freelancers should be ready to answer
- Why should we hire you?
- What would you say your main strengths are?
- What are some of your weaknesses?
- What other similar projects have you worked on?
- What value can you bring to my business?
- How many projects are you currently working on?
- Why do you work independently?
- If I hired you, what is the first thing that you would do?
- What happens if we’re not happy with the work you deliver?
- What are your freelance prices?
- Freelance interview questions that you should ask too
10 Client interview questions freelancers should be ready to answer
#1 Why should we hire you?
This is possibly one of the most common job interview questions. Employers and potential clients want to know that they are hiring the best candidate, and asking interviewees why they should hire them is an easy way to determine who to give the job to.
Answering this question is similar to submitting a business proposal for a job, something you’ll probably also need to do if you’re a freelancer looking for a job.
This is not simply an opportunity to talk about how you can do the job or your years of experience. You want to be able to convince the client that they will benefit more from giving you the job, compared to other candidates.
Read the job description or resume carefully and come up with examples of how your particular skill set and experience can further enhance what they want to accomplish. Talk about how you have helped achieve similar goals in your last job or even what you are accomplishing in your current job. Investigate existing problems they may have and offer cost-effective solutions.
#2 What would you say your main strengths are?
This is another question that comes up in almost any job interview, no matter which field. So, of course, it’s also included in a freelance job interview.
One thing you should remember is to not just list common adjectives such as team-player, motivated, out of the box thinker, etc. These are all great adjectives, but worthless unless you can prove them.
Support any description of yourself with little examples and anecdotes of how that strength helped you or the business you were working with.
Here’s an example to show that you are a Team Player:
“On one of my last projects, I was part of a huge website redesign with a new branding approach. We all worked together to define deadlines, brainstorm, and relaunch the website on time. I think teamwork in groups that have a good synergy can increase productivity and overall performance and so it showed in the end result. Everyone could communicate concerns openly and so we were able to fix issues as they arose.”
#3 What are some of your weaknesses?
Okay, first things first. You don’t have to burden your soul with this answer. By this we mean that you don’t have to tell the hiring manager what your biggest (or worst, depending on how you look at it) and most terrible Achilles heel is, the one that keeps you up at night. You don’t want to throw up red flags, but at the same time, you have to be honest.
How do you do that? Talk about the weaknesses you have identified and are working on. It’s probably best to focus on a skill weakness rather than a personality weakness: it’s often easier to improve a skill than to change your personality.
When talking about your skill weaknesses, make sure you don’t shoot yourself in the foot by identifying something that means you won’t be able to do your job.
For example, if you’re interviewing for a freelance writing job, don’t say your biggest weakness is grammar or spelling. You could rather say, you’re focusing on improving your persuasive writing.
#4 What other similar projects have you worked on?
This question allows your clients to figure out the type of clients you have worked with as well as the strategies and plans you’ve used in the past. It also gives them a confirmation that you have expert understanding of the project in question.
#5 What value can you bring to my business?
You could have a variety of different skills and accomplishments under your belt but at the end of the day, if your work doesn’t bring value to your client, you’re setting yourself (and your freelance business) up to fail.
The most important thing to remember then is that instead of showing your clients your various skills, you need to show them how you will use those skills to add value to their business.
For example, if you’re a web designer, you can show them how your smooth designs have helped improve user experience and made users stay on the site for longer.
#6 How many projects are you currently working on?
One of the main problems clients have when working with freelancers is that sometimes they take on more projects than they can handle at the same time. This sometimes leads to irregular performance, late deliveries and client dissatisfaction.
With this question the client is looking for an answer that gives them peace of mind and assures them that the mentioned problems won’t happen if you work together.
Having more than one simultaneous project is not always a bad thing though, which is why you should consider this question thoughtfully.
Try and list out all the ways in which you organise your time and really impress upon your client your ability to deliver your work professionally and on time.
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#7 Why do you work independently?
A clear answer to this question can be the difference between someone who is a freelancer by choice and someone who is a freelancer by necessity.
Neither option is bad in itself, but it is important to be clear about the reasons why you choose to work this way and why you specialise in doing. Not doing so will give your client the impression that you are really someone who is unemployed and looking for a temporary income.
#8 If I hired you, what is the first thing that you would do?
Most clients want to know what your working process is like and how the project in question will be carried out.
Having a detailed plan will not only put them at ease and show them the kind of structure you have, it will also help them better understand how you communicate and how you will work with their team.
Showing them that you have a plan is a sign that this is not your first rodeo and you know how to operate when collaborating or working with someone new.
There are some great project managing tools for freelancers out there that you could use to organise your work.
Check how you could use
> Trello for your freelance business
To avoid any confusion in the future, it’s important that you really understand exactly what work needs to be done. Only then, will you be able to understand how many hours of work it will take, and if you will be able to fit it around your current schedule.
Something clients really value is a real time schedule with milestones. If you can only start working in a week because you’re so busy, be honest with them. But also tell them: X will be done by X, and then Y will be completed by Y.
#9 What happens if we’re not happy with the work you deliver?
While this question will probably come up later on, once you’ve delivered your work, it could also come up as a client interview question.
It’s worth thinking about this kind of worst-case scenario so that you can also be prepared for them. This question in a client interview could be almost seen as a red flag (it feels like the client expects to be unhappy with your work!), but not necessarily. There are cautious clients (or clients who have not yet worked with many freelancers yet) who need to understand all possible scenarios.
Let them know what would happen, and be honest:
“I would still need to charge you for the work done, but I might give you a discount.”
“I would still need to charge you for the work done, but I’ll throw in XX (additional and related service) at no cost”
Even if the client decides then you’re not the freelancer for them – it’s better that the work didn’t start at all than having problems throughout the project.
#10 What are your freelance prices?
We left this client interview question for the last one, but it’s probably one that will come up. As a freelancer you have two options here:
- Wait until the clients tells their budget
- Tell your prices outright
If you ask your client for their budget, there is a risk that their budget is way lower than what you had in mind. Maybe you liked the client and you wanted to work with them. Would you try adjusting your pricing to match?
Is that really the way you wanted to go?
If you have a bit of information about the client and all the information about the project when the question comes up, go ahead and quote your freelance prices.
You know your value and by being so confident you will transmit confidence to the client, too.
Freelance interview questions that you should ask too
Now that you have a general idea of the types of questions you’ll get from clients, it’s also important that you’re prepared with questions of your own.
With these questions you will get to know the client and it’s important that you also understand if you’re a good fit.
You’ll want to include the following freelance questions in your interview:
#1 Have you ever worked with a freelancer before?
One of the most important things you need to know about your client is if they’ve ever collaborated with a freelancer before. This is because you want to get into business with professionals who have a history with freelancers and can assure a productive collaboration. Or if they didn’t, you need to understand and be prepared to educate them.
If the client does have experience working with other freelancers, politely ask them if you could get in touch with them – if they don’t hesitate, this means that the collaboration went well. This is especially true for bigger projects, it would make perfect sense to check those freelance references.
#2 What type of project do you need?
This question is especially important if you provide more than one type of service. For example, if you’re a graphic designer who’s skilled in content writing as well, your client could expect you to provide work for the latter midway through the project without discussing it beforehand!
The best thing you can do is understand exactly what your client’s needs are by asking them strategic questions.
#3 What is the budget for this project?
This is the parallel question to: What are your freelance rates?
Talking money and negotiating the contract can be one of the most difficult and oftentimes uncomfortable conversations to have as a freelancer and yet it is an essential aspect of a good gig.
If you decide to not quote your prices directly, ask your client, in no uncertain terms, exactly what the budget is for the project and how much will you get paid for it.
If the client tries to redirect the conversation or doesn’t have a number in mind, this could be a potential problem. You could try to mention the budget of past projects to open up the conversation and sette on a number but it is crucial that you be clear about payment before starting the project!
#4 How do you want to communicate?
Client communication is a critical aspect of any productive and successful collaboration and must thus be made clear beforehand to ensure proper synchronisation between you and your client.
Ask your client how they would want to communicate – would they prefer emails, phone calls, virtual meetings, or some other platform?
It’s important that you know how to get in touch with your client incase of an emergency or to just notify them with updates regarding the project.
#5 Is there anything else you would like to share?
This question gives your client the opportunity to speak freely and cover topics not mentioned in the questions above. It allows you to get to know the client better and in turn gives them a sense of control by giving them the chance to express their needs and concerns in detail.
Is there a question we missed? Let us know in the comments below!