There are lots of ways to land new freelance work.

From referrals and in-person networking to freelance job sites and social media, it seems as if you should always have another job lined up.

However, that’s not always the case and many freelancers tend to shy away from freelancing sites.

While you can make a living solely off of freelancing sites, the likelihood of that is not very high.

What freelancing sites are extremely good for, though, are making connections and building relationships with clients you might not have connected with otherwise.

That’s why I love this list that Freshbooks has put together.

They’ve scoured the web to find 71 of the best freelancing job sites out there and #2 on the list might surprise you.

“2. Craigslist

Wait, what? I thought Craigslist was only for buying and trading random stuff in the neighborhood…?

Believe it or not, Craigslist is actually a fantastic source for freelancing jobs. I have found five of my top ten highest paying clients through Craigslist. That’s because I’ve developed a system, which I’ll explain below.

How it Works:

You can either choose the city you live in from the list, or you can select one of the major cities in your country. I use the U.S. cities list that pops up on the right hand side once you actually go into a city’s page.

Check both the “jobs” section and “gigs” section for each city.

Freelance writers look in writing – developers look in web / info design…etc. Read the posts and follow the instructions for applying. If there are none, send an email with a cover letter and resume to the address next to “Reply to this post” at the top.

If you hear back, you can proceed like you would a regular job interview.

Do:

  • Look in as many cities as possible. I check all of the U.S., Europe, and Canada when I apply for jobs.
  • Read each post carefully. Some give you words to put in your email to make sure you read the whole thing.
  • Include links or attachments with your work. That way employers can see what you can do and how well you do it..

Don’t:

  • Fall victim to a scam. Craigslist offers tips to avoid this matter here.
  • Go back too far in the postings. I usually limit my searches to the past week, and then I move on to another city.
  • Sort by telecommute. Even though this would be logical to do for freelance work, many clients don’t click that option for their posts. You may miss out if you limit your search this way.

Final takeaway: Craigslist isn’t the obvious choice for freelancing jobs, but it can lead you to some extraordinary opportunities online. Best part of all – you don’t have to pay anything to use it.”

Check out the other 70 freelancing sites at Freshbooks.