work from home as a virtual assistant

Work From Home as a Virtual Assistant

Would you like to work from home as a virtual assistant (VA) or a digital assistant but not quite sure where to start?

This article will help answer all your questions and give you the tools, free virtual assistant training and most of all, the confidence you need to get started. 

This site contains affiliate links to products. I may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

What is a Virtual Assistant? 

A virtual assistant is a freelance, self-employed individual who works remotely to perform specific tasks for a business or multiple clients.

It’s a great way to make money from home and comes with many perks, including choosing your own hours and who you work with.

Kayla Sloan explains the basic steps to get started in her free training. 

What do Virtual Assistants Do?

As a VA, you can help businesses with many tasks that they do not have the time or capacity to complete themselves.

Some may say it’s similar to a personal assistant, where you will assist with general duties, such as managing a director’s diary or helping to plan events.

However, the main difference is, you offer services that you specialise in rather than overall assistance.

If you choose to, you can perform a variety of services for a client, it’s completely up to you.

Here are some ideas of what you can offer clients as a VA:

1. Email Management

Are you a highly organised person who enjoys cleaning up digital clutter?

As a VA, you can offer email management services, where you can:

  •  clean up your client’s inbox
  • set up rules
  • sort emails into folders
  •  archive and delete

all from the comfort of your own home!

2. Blog and website management

Are you’re familiar with WordPress or similar platforms?

 You could offer assistance to bloggers and companies who are looking for help with web admin tasks.

 Your digital capabilities such as managing plugin updates, making edits to content and expiring old pages and links can all be put to use to make money.

3. Graphic Design 

In an attempt to cut costs, a lot of people try (and fail) to design their own logos, website banners, and general graphics and imagery for their company.

This is where you swoop in and help them make great design choices! 

Put your keen eye for detail to good use and help companies brand themselves for success by offering your graphic design services.

4. Transcription 

Transcribing is probably one of the less exciting, yet most profitable virtual assistant tasks.

Lawyers, property surveyors, doctors and many others all use dictaphones within their profession. 

 A lot of them don’t have the time to type up their own notes.

If you’ve got excellent listening skills, the patience to rewind recordings multiple times, plus fast and accurate typing skills, this will be perfect for you!

5. Customer service

Many companies are now opting to hire people who work from home full-time. 

Do you enjoy speaking to people and have great problem solving skills?

Online chats or telephone customer service could be right up your street.

6. Social media 

Social media is still something some businesses have yet to get to grips with.

That’s why they need the help of virtual assistants to boost their following and share their message.

You might be asked to complete tasks such as:

  •  scheduling content
  • creating content of your own
  • sharing stories
  • replying to comments.

Is there a demand for Virtual Assistants? 

Absolutely! In 2020 particularly, there is a demand for people to work from home as a virtual assistant.

Now more than ever, employers are cutting office costs and seeking out remote employees and contract staff.

You might think the market is flooded or that you’ve missed the boat, but there is always another business wanting your expertise and willing to pay.

Especially if they don’t have the time or skills to do it themselves.

How much money can you make as a Virtual Assistant? 

A lot of people ask,

“Can you really make money as a virtual assistant?”

Good question!

You can DEFINITELY make money!

The average rate to charge in the UK is currently £25 but for specialist services, some charge up to £50. How much you make is entirely up to you and the effort you put into your business.

There are a few varying factors involved here.

How much are you going to charge?

 How many clients do you want?

What hours are you prepared to work?

Will you do this full-time or part-time?

Some virtual assistants earn thousands each month, while others become a virtual assistant as a side hustle to supplement their regular, full-time income.

 It’s up to you how much work you take on and how much you want to earn.

Plus, some projects take longer than others. Clearing out someone’s inbox, for example, might not be as time consuming or as challenging as designing a brochure or PowerPoint presentation for a client.

Work from home as a Virtual Assistant Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

How long does it take to become a Virtual Assistant?

That’s the beauty of being a VA.

You can start straight away!

You don’t need any formal qualifications, just a positive personality and skills and experience that a client will find valuable. 

Using this article as a guide, you can set up your business instantly and get your first client in a matter of hours.

How do I become a VA at home? 

It’s so easy to get started at home.

I recommend finding a space in your home where you can concentrate and close off when you’re not working. 

Do you have a spare bedroom or garage space you can convert?

 If not, try and work during quiet times in the day in your living room or bedroom when other members of your family or housemates aren’t home distracting you.

Top Tip

It’s also important to register as self employed and perhaps speak to an accountant or look online for advice on how to proceed. As you are working from home, you can claim certain expenses back on taxes such as office equipment and utilities, including your broadband bills.

Virtual Assistant top tools

Speaking of office equipment…You might be wondering what tools you need to get started.

Don’t worry, you absolutely do not need any fancy equipment.

Especially while you’re just starting out.

For a lot of virtual assistants, the low start-up costs are one of the most appealing factors of becoming one. You can even get started for free!

Here are some recommended tools to help you start your VA journey:

  • A laptop/computer with a good internet connection  

             Check prices USA 

             Check prices UK 

  •  Skype or similar to contact clients
  •  Business cards – you can design them for free on printing sites like Moo and get decent welcome rates for printing
  • A LinkedIn profile – great for online networking and finding clients!
  • Trello or similar online task management system to help you stay organised
  • Dropbox to exchange files with your clients
  •  Basic printer/scanner depending on if you need to print or scan documents 

              Check current prices USA

               Check current prices UK

  •  Business PayPal or bank account dedicated to client payments

That’s pretty much the essentials covered!

Where to find digital assistant jobs

You can find virtual assistants in a number of places.

A good, old school way of gaining clients and virtual assistant jobs is through word of mouth.

It can be quite scary putting yourself out there, but if you let friends and family know what you’re planning, they might have some work for you.

This can be a gentle entry point into the business and help build your confidence.

Other ways to find digital assistant jobs include:

  • Looking on job boards such as under ‘remote’ ‘temporary’ or ‘part time
  •  Joining blogging groups on Facebook and keeping an eye out for posts from bloggers who need help with tasks and introducing yourself
  •  Using freelance gig marketplace sites such as Fiverr and People Per hour to post adverts
  •  Posting on professional networking sites such as LinkedIn and messaging connections directly
  •  Looking on dedicated virtual assistant sites like Society of Virtual Assistants to find jobs. They suggest you make a donation of £10 towards the cost of the upkeep of the site.
  •  Advertise on social media – ads can cost as little as 79p and will attract your target clients

The best Virtual Assistant course

   In a rush or hurry?

Main Points 

 ⭐Becoming a Virtual Assistant gives you the flexibility to work 

       from home.  

⭐It is written by an exceptionally successful VA Kayla Sloan.

 ⭐10K VA is the best online Virtual Assistant course.

            (in my humble opinion)

⭐The course will pay itself back many times!

✅Dip your toe in!Watch this free training and see for yourself!

Pitching to clients

You can also go directly to clients and pitch to them if you feel you are a good fit for their business.

The key here is to think about who your perfect client is.

What is your niche and unique selling proposition?

 Why should they work with you?

It’s important to think about things like this before you get in touch so that you can sell yourself.

You can also go directly to clients and pitch to them if you feel you are a good fit for their business.

The key here is to think about who your perfect client is.

What is your niche and unique selling proposition?

 Why should they work with you?

It’s important to think about things like this before you get in touch so that you can sell yourself.

As a VA your pitch emails need to be friendly and personalisedPhoto by Vladislav Klapin on Unsplash

Make your first email personal

Firstly, find the name of the person you are trying to contact by looking on LinkedIn or their website company page. 

There is a fine balance here between not sounding like a robot and using casual language like you would with your friends.

Try to come across as a real, approachable human, use links and examples of work to back up your email and ask them if they would like to arrange a phone call if they’re interested in finding out more.

When pitching your services as a virtual assistant, make sure you do it with your personality and ensure you sound like a human being. Photo by Stephen Phillips – on Unsplash

The real money is in the follow up email 

It’s easy to take it personally when people don’t reply. The reality is, we’re all busy. Maybe they just forgot to reply or had set themselves a reminder to follow up with you at some point down the line? Wait about a week or two and send them an email back asking if they had a chance to think about your proposition. If you don’t hear back, it’s ok. Simply move onto your next email.

Top tip: Decide how many emails to send before you accidentally pitch to too many clients and take on too much work – while that’s a nice problem to have, it can also cause burnout so remember to keep a work/life balance

Client Calls

If you’re brave, you can ‘cold call’ a client to ask for business.

However, most people opt to send an email to give them a talking point when they get through to a potential client.

prepare a structure to your client calls for your virtual assistant services Photo by Dylan Ferreira on Unsplash

How to structure calls 

Following on from my point before, we’re all busy and the last thing you want to do is get a reputation for harassing businesses, keeping clients on the phone for too long, or being too salesy before you’ve established rapport.

Be polite and write a script in advance of key talking points.

Also, keep a glass of water close to avoid dry mouth if you get nervous.

Here is a rough structure for your calls:

  • Start with a hello and ask them how they are.
  • 2-3 selling points max including relevant people you’ve worked with and/or your specialities.
  • Wrap up and let them know you’ll be in touch to confirm what you can offer and your rates.

Managing expectations of the client 

Once you get in touch with your client, it’s quite easy to get carried away during your call. Remember, though, it’s always better to under promise and over deliver. If a client is pushing the limits and asking for all sorts of unachievable projects and deadlines, you can always set boundaries and say you’ll think about it or let them know later via email if you can commit or not.

Remember, one of the perks of being self employed is that you can choose who you work with.

Payment methods 

Another aspect of becoming a virtual assistant is deciding how you will receive payments. You can set up a dedicated business bank account or a PayPal account.


Design a simple invoice template if you’re emailing invoices to clients using free tools such as Canva or Google Docs or send PayPal invoices within your account.

It’s also good to establish early on whether you will charge late fees for non-payment and what charges clients will incur.

Explaining your policies and practices 

 As I said earlier, it’s important to create boundaries with your clients. 

As a virtual assistant, you aren’t technically they’re employee and you have your own set of policies and practices, which may differ to other staff on their payroll.

It’s good to think about things in advance such as:

  • Drafting up a contract template for clients to sign.
  • Establishing work hours and appropriate contact times and channels (e.g. tell them if you don’t feel comfortable with them calling you after 5pm during the week / on weekends, or adding you on personal social media accounts).
  •  Any days you of the year you are categorically not available (i.e. birthdays and upcoming holidays).
  • Billable hours and any additional costs involved with extra work.
  • Agreeing milestones and catch up points throughout your contract term.

How to establish yourself as a trusted VA

Firstly, you should always be professional.

 Word travels fast in any niche or sector, so if you’re working for a money blogger for example, they will most likely recommend you to their private communities and close circles.

They can also tell people to avoid using your services if you behave unprofessionally. Being blacklisted can do severe damage to your reputation.

It’s the same in any type of business.

To establish yourself, here are a few things to do in order to grow your virtual assistant business:

  • Be polite and approachable to everyone you talk to, whether it’s over the phone, on social media, via email or video chats
  • Meet any deadlines and complete work to a high standard
  • Collect testimonials from previous clients to show to potential ones (or past employers/friends you have helped out if you’re just starting out)
  •  Be willing to meet the client halfway or put a positive spin on why your way works for both parties as an alternative solution
  •   Don’t be afraid to sell yourself and set up a portfolio website or advertise on dedicated social media pages – make sure you stay active on here so clients know you’re still available for work
  • Always keep business cards spare, you never know when the opportunity may present itself
  • Never get complacent – every day is a school day and you can always learn from others

Wrap up 

Becoming a virtual assistant is so rewarding, as you can help other people grow their business and see where you add value.

Remember, you are running a business too.

Take care of yourself, follow these top tips, and watch your business flourish!

Still have doubts?

 Take a tiny leap – watch the free training.

See whether becoming a Virtual Assistant is a great fit for you by taking the free training. Go on, I dare you!