The Future of Freelancing in SaaS: Emerging Trends and Opportunities

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Globally, approximately 1.57 billion people work as freelancers. If you’re part of this group or want to join it, a freelance career in the software-as-a-service (or SaaS) industry is an excellent option.
In this guide, you’ll learn more about the current state of freelancing in SaaS, the emerging trends every freelancer should be aware of, and how those trends into new work opportunities for SaaS developers.

The Current State of Freelancing in SaaS

Many software developers work on a freelance basis and earn a good living as a result. Here are some relevant statistics regarding freelancers in the SaaS space:

  • Over 180,000 freelance software developers currently work in the United States (Source: zippia.com)
  • The highest percentage of freelance software developers work in the manufacturing and technology sectors (both 16 percent)
  • Freelance software developers in California earn the highest average salary at $135,788, followed by Washington ($124,683) and Vermont ($119,283)

Opportunities and Challenges for SaaS Freelancers

As with any career, freelancers in the SaaS space face unique challenges and experience benefits that other professionals don’t.

Also according to our Freelancer Study 2024, the following are some of the most noteworthy benefits a career as a freelance SaaS developer has to offer:

  • Flexibility: Many people initially seek out freelance job opportunities because they like the flexibility this path offers. Freelancers can generally work when they want and where they want.
  • Work-Life balance: Because they can work where and when they want, freelancers tend to have a greater sense of work-life balance compared to those who work more traditional jobs.
  • Higher earning potential: Since freelancers typically get paid per project (as opposed to getting paid an hourly wage or annual salary), they have the potential – in some cases, at least – to earn more than others in their industry.
Reasons to go freelance - Freelancer  Study 2024

Of course, there are downsides to being a freelance SaaS developer, too, including these:

  • Income uncertainty: Although there is greater earning potential, a level of income uncertainty also comes with a freelance career, especially at the beginning when you’re building your client base.
  • Finding clients: Speaking of building your client base, freelance SaaS developers face another challenge: finding clients who need help building SaaS solutions.
  • Isolation: Working as a freelancer can come with a certain amount of isolation, which can cause loneliness and additional stress for some people.

The SaaS sector is changing rapidly, especially with the growing popularity of machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies.

The following are some of the most significant SaaS trends that will affect (or are already affecting) the SaaS industry and freelancer SaaS developers:

#1 Increased Emphasis on Security and Privacy

Cyber crimes are on the rise worldwide. As a result, SaaS clients – and the developers who work with them – must focus on creating secure solutions that protect their clients and their clients’ customers.

#2 Increased Focus on Mobile-First Development

Mobile devices are everywhere these days, and just about everybody has at least one on their person at all times. Because of the growing dependence people have on their mobile devices, many businesses are working with SaaS developers to create mobile-first solutions.

#3 Growth of Micro-SaaS Solutions

Micro-SaaS businesses are small-scale SaaS organizations that cater to a specific niche or domain. As more of these businesses pop up worldwide, there will be a growing demand for SaaS developers who can help them create their solutions.

#4 Increased Focus on Interoperability

When SaaS solutions integrate effectively with other tools, businesses can run more smoothly, and employees can get more done. SaaS developers must keep the importance of interoperability in mind and ensure they’re creating products that integrate with popular tools and provide clients with a more streamlined experience.

#5 Increased Popularity of Freelance Platforms and Marketplaces

By 2027, over half of the country’s workforce will likely participate in the gig economy.

The growing popularity of gig work means that there is an increased demand for gig platforms and marketplaces like freelancermap where people — including freelance SaaS developers — can find work.

Furthermore, the ability to stand out on these platforms will play a significant role in helping SaaS developers find jobs consistently.

🚀 Learn how to create an appealing freelance profile to enhance your client acquisition

#6 Growing Demand for Upskilling

Another way that SaaS freelancers can stand out from their competitors is by continuously learning and upskilling. A commitment to learning new skills and techniques will give them more to offer their clients and, as a result, more opportunities to generate income from their services.

Tips for Freelancers in the SaaS Industry

Whether you’re a new SaaS developer or have years of experience, these tips can help you enhance your offerings and provide a higher level of service to your clients:

Clarify the Problem You Need to Solve

When meeting with a potential client, spend plenty of time talking to them about the problems they’re facing and how the SaaS solution you will build can resolve those problems. The more clarity you get upfront, the easier it will be to provide superior results.

Focus on the UI and UX

The user interface and user experience are two of the most important aspects of a well-designed SaaS product. Give yourself sufficient time to work on these elements and ensure they are done to the client’s liking.

Improve Your Marketing with Quality Content

Even if you’re not a writer by nature, regularly creating and publishing written content can help you advertise your business and drive more potential clients to your website. Write blog posts or create other types of content (such as videos or infographics) that answer frequently asked questions and encourage readers to utilize your services.

Offer Robust Support

Remember that your relationship with your client doesn’t end just because you’ve handed over their new software solution. They will need help adapting to the new system and incorporating it into their business. If you offer ongoing and robust support, you can foster long-term client relationships and create a better reputation for your business.

Profiles of Successful Freelancers in SaaS

Plenty of people already work as freelance SaaS developers and many more are expected to join them in the future. What do current freelance developers have to say about their experience?

“I started doing contract work while still holding full time web development jobs until it was simply too much work where I was consistently pulling 80 hours weeks. After a few years of this I finally had a son on the way so I quit my full-time job to just do 100% freelance and have more time to spend with him. I’ve been just doing freelance now for about 3 years now and I love it.

As far as money goes, in general I make more than I did doing senior level programming positions. It would likely be comparable (or slightly higher) than director/CTO positions at a small/mid size company. I do work a lot though.”


– jjanzer, Reddit

“If you are the kind of person who makes his own luck, or wants to be location-independent with freedom to travel, or is a good sales person, or enjoys working alone and has high discipline and a good work ethic then freelancing will be better for you and will be worth it. You can find consistent work through networks if you provide high quality, good service and fair prices, and it gets easier over time as you build up a reputation and get word-of-mouth referrals.”

-Technical_Guy, Reddit

Real Examples of Profitable SaaS Freelance Projects

What kinds of projects will you work on as a freelance SaaS developer? The options are practically endless. However, here are a few examples of profitable projects handled by freelancers to give you some ideas:

Naveen R., Payment Transaction Platform

Naveen acted as the full-stack developer for Juspay’s Express Checkout tool, which handles millions of transactions daily.

Gabriel B., Candidate Scheduling App

Gabriel built a candidate scheduling app and integrated it with Zoom, Slack, Microsoft, and Oracle.

Olha B., Health App

Olha developed Simplex, a mobile app designed to help patients find doctors and book appointments virtually.

Final Thoughts

The future of freelancing in SaaS looks very bright. If you’re interested in a career as a freelance SaaS developer, follow the guidelines shared above and keep the latest trends in mind so you can differentiate yourself from the competition and make a great impression on potential clients.

Stefania Volpe

Stefania joined the international team at freelancermap in 2020. She loves marketing, the digital world, foreign languages and meeting different cultures. She moved from Italy to Germany thanks to an exchange program at the university and worked as marketing manager for several startups. Now she focuses on helping freelancers and IT professionals to find jobs and clients worldwide at www.freelancermap.com.

By Stefania Volpe

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