47 Services You Could Provide as a Virtual Assistant Using Skills You Already Have

By Tanya Kuhrt

If  you are a PA, EA or Administrator you almost certainly have skills which are in demand from small business owners and entrepreneurs. From traditional skills such as typing and making appointments to events management and PR, there’s something for everyone if you’re thinking about becoming a freelance Virtual Assistant.

I wouldn’t recommend providing all of these services by any means: it is far better to specialise than to be a jack-of-all-trades. However I’ve written this pretty exhaustive list to give you an idea of the range of services it’s possible to provide as a freelance VA.

  1. Diary management:
    Plenty of small business owners and entrepreneurs out there need someone to make their appointments. Use Google Calendar, ICal or the Office.com calendar so that you can share the latest info with your client and be as efficient as possible.
  2. Travel management
    Booking cabs, hotel reservations, plane and train tickets, itinerary planning: do it well, do it efficiently and you’ll be highly sought after.
  3. Events planning
    Finding venues for workshops and seminars, arranging bookings and payments and promoting the event – a large proportion of events planning can be carried out on a remote basis which is good news for Virtual Assistants!
  4. Inbox management
    Simply manning an email inbox for your clients and responding to emails on their behalf can be a real help and means they’ll never miss an email from a potential new client again.
  5. Inbox detox
    For those who just can’t cope with the huge volume of email that we’ve all become used to these days, an inbox detox is the answer! I have a couple of clients for whom all do is log into their inboxes a few times a week and clear out the junk, arrange emails into easily manageable folders and create rules or filters to automate processes. Simple but effective.
  6. Taking minutes
    Minute taking is a dying art and if this is one of your skills you can charge top rates. You might think that minute taking can only be carried out on-site but more and more meetings take place online these days and minutes still need to be taken.
  7. Gift shopping 
    Many entrepreneurs either don’t have the time to shop, or simply don’t know what the heck to buy. Everything’s online these days – help them out!
  8. Card Writing
    It may seem laughably simple but again, there are those who don’t have the time to write and send cards and can never remember a birthday so this is definitely something that you’ll find a demand for.
  9. Online research
    Here are some examples of things I’ve been asked to research for my clients: best electricity deals; practice management software; cheapest credit card service provider; most appropriate CRM program; task management software; email subject lines….. the list goes on.
  10. Document formatting
    Whether it’s sorting out complex indented numbering, creating an index or simply prettifying a report, document formatting can be both frustrating and time consuming. With your superior word processing skills you can take away the pain.
  11. Data entry
    Boring. Yes – very. But it needs to be done and someone is willing to pay you for it. So why not? (until something better comes along!)
  12. Sales calls
    I admit this is my number one pet hate. But there are those of you out there who love sales calls and are good at it – so why not provide it as a service? There are some great low cost phone deals out there and of course you pass the cost of the calls on to your client anyway so it’s a win-win.
  13. CRM
    CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management. Whether it’s managing a CRM program or actually communicating with the customers, even small businesses need CRM. There is a whole host of free CRM software out there which would benefit small business owners – for example Hubspot and Capsule. Research them, trial them and become an expert so that you can provide a top-notch service.
  14. Customer Services
    As a freelance VA, you’ll soon find out that following up on potential clients can be very difficult to keep on top of, so offering to do this for your client client is a hugely valuable service to offer.
  15. PowerPoint presentations
    Creating effective PowerPoints is time consuming, and many clients don’t know about all the features – such as animation – which can take a presentation up a notch. I have done countless PowerPoints for clients over the years.
  16. Copy Typing and Audio Typing
    A traditional skill which is still very much in demand.
  17. Audio Typing
    Again, it’s a traditional skill and will always be needed. Audio typing equipment and software can be purchased pretty cheaply these days.
  18. Market research
    If you’ve worked in the field of market research, you can provide these kinds of services as a Virtual Assistant. There are all sorts of tools out there that can be used in a small business context and many of them are free including Survey Monkey, Makemypersona, and Social Mention.
  19. Survey Design 
    Use Survey Monkey, Google Forms or Wufoo to create surveys for your clients.
  20. Survey Analysis
    For those experienced in the field, consider providing an in-depth analysis report of survey results as an additional service.
  21. Email Marketing
    Whether it’s simply a monthly newsletter or setting up complex autoresponders, email marketing is a highly sought after VA skill. Have a go using Mailchimp which is free for up to 2000 subscribers.
  22. PR
    Again this is one of those “corporate” jobs which can translate well to the world of small business and entrepreneurs – everyone needs PR and providing these kinds of services as a Virtual Assistant will make you stand out.
  23. Social Media Management
    Social media offers huge opportunities to small business owners, with many already using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and all the rest. But there are still many who haven’t cottoned on yet, and even those who do use it don’t have time to post. So if social media is your bag you’ll definitely be in demand. Use scheduling tools such as Hootsuite, Postplanner or Buffer to help.
  24. Facebook Group Admin
    Many online entrepreneurs use Facebook Groups as part of their marketing. But managing these groups and keeping them clear of spammers can be a full-time job in itself.
  25. Blog Writing
    If you love writing, get into blog writing. There is a knack to it so if you’ve not done any blogging yet, do some research and get practising. Blogging is in demand as a marketing tool and a good blog writer is worth their weight in gold.
  26. Blog Management
    Even if you don’t actually write blogs you could be managing them. From uploading and formatting, to researching suitable images and moderating comments – bloggers will be grateful you’ve taken this off their hands.
  27. Proof Reading
    It takes a keen eye to spot small errors but with the proliferation of websites, blogs and all the rest of it, if you can provide proof reading services you’re onto a winner.
  28. Copy Writing
    If you are good at writing to communicate a message, whether it’s copy for a website or for printed materials, specialising in copywriting will help you get ahead as a VA.
  29. Website Maintenance
    Many small business owners create their own websites but then don’t have time to maintain them. More often than not they’ll be created in WordPress and there’ll be updates to be done from time to time as well as changes to be made to the content. So if this is your area why not provide it as a service?
  30. Website Creation
    Or go one step further if you are creative and provide website creation. Many small business owners can’t afford the exorbitant rates charged by many professional web designers. You certainly don’t want to be selling yourself cheap but chances are you’ll be able to do it for less. Just make sure you really know what you are doing.
  31. SEO
    Ah! The elusive SEO! SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation and basically means: the art of getting on page one of Google. Personally I drive traffic to my website through my blog because I have to admit that SEO is a complete mystery to me. If you are experienced in this area you will already have realised that there is a massive demand for this skill!
  32. Simple Graphic Design
    Now I’m not talking about claiming you are a graphic designer. However there are a myriad little graphic design jobs that need to be done in a small business, particularly when it comes to images for social media. If you are creative, have a muck about with Canva and PicMonkey (both free) and think about providing this service to your clients.
  33. Video and Audio File Editing
    With more and more online entrepreneurs using YouTube and creating podcasts, if you know what you’re doing with video and audio files there is work to be had.
  34. Setting up Webinars
    If you know how to set up a webinar in GoToWebinar, Webinar Jam or any of the popular webinar programs you are a gem. I’ve just switched Webinar software and it took me over a week of fiddling about and going back and forth with the help desk to work it all out. So one thing that you could think about offering is a quick training package where you show clients how to use the software during a shared screen session. I would definitely have gone for that!
  35. List Building
    If you are into email marketing you will know that creating a list of subscribers is no mean feat. Whether it’s creating a tempting free download (lead magnet) or designing a landing page these skills are in demand.
  36. Order Processing
    Managing customer orders including preparing quotes, ordering in stock and arranging deliveries is a valuable service you could conceivably provide on a remote basis depending on the nature of your client’s business.
  37. Expenses Management
    I can’t remember a small business I have worked with whose owner doesn’t have a big pile of screwed up expenses receipts somewhere in their office. It’s down to you to sort them out. To make the job easier use the Receipt Bank app. Your client will be in your debt forever for taking this hideously fiddly job off their hands.
  38. Bookkeeping
    If you are an experienced bookkeeper, having this as your specialism will help your VA business grow quickly. You’ll need to make sure you’re registered with HMRC under the anti-money laundering regulations as an Accountancy Service Provider if you are dealing with any financial data for a business. If you are a member of AAT, ICB or a similar body you should already be covered – check with them.
  39. Invoicing
    So many business owners get behind with their invoicing. It’s often a simple job  only taking a couple of hours a month but they’ll keep putting it off. Providing this as a service will be a godsend.
  40. Credit control
    A good add-on if you are a bookkeeper is chasing up unpaid customer invoices. Many small business owners feel embarrassed calling their clients to chase payment themselves and having a professional to do it for them can be extremely effective.
  41. Financial reporting
    If you’re good with spreadsheets and pivot tables then providing financial reporting services as an add-on to your bookkeeping will boost your appeal.
  42. Data migration
    Exporting data from one piece of software to another is a skill in itself, requiring careful checks and “cleaning” of the data. If you are experienced at this, you may just have found your niche.
  43. Paraplanning
    If you’ve worked as an administrator in the financial services industry, you may be surprised to find out that paraplanning is also in demand on a freelance basis. There are plenty of mortgage advisors and IFAs who are independent, one-man-bands and need the help of an experienced, specialised administrator.
  44. Fund Raising
    With the rise of the social entrepreneur comes a demand for fund raising skills, so if you have worked in this sector there are definitely clients to be found for your VA business.
  45. Grant Applications
    Effective completion of grant applications is a skill in itself, involving complex factors and requiring someone with experience. If this is you then you are sorely needed!
  46. Project Management
    Managing a project and the team working on it takes a great deal of effort in terms of co-ordination and effective communication. There are business owners out there who would dearly love to have help in this area. There are some great tools for small business project management, some of them free including Trello and Asana.
  47. Effective Time Management & Systems
    Believe me, many businesses suffer due to poor time management and lack of efficient systems. With a bit of organisation and by putting the right tools in place you can help them to become more productive and therefore more profitable. Become the go-to productivity troubleshooter!

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