Types of Virtual Assistant Jobs: Find the Right Role for You

Types of Virtual Assistant Jobs: Find the Right Role for You

A virtual assistant (VA) is an independent contractor who provides administrative, creative, or logistical support to a company remotely. VAs are typically freelancers who work from home.

You’ll find that virtual assistants generally communicate with their clients over the phone, via email, or through other collaborative apps like Slack. They help their clients improve productivity by efficiently managing work and providing administrative and creative inputs.

While several types of virtual assistants provide overall and general administrative support, hiring VAs with specific skill sets is common these days.

Often, full-time employees have too much on their plates and have difficulty balancing their load of important and strategic tasks. Many of these can be outsourced to a virtual assistant.

Let's take a closer look at some of the different types of virtual assistants in the market.

Types of virtual assistants:

Data entry

If a company’s employees spend large amounts of time entering data into computer systems, hiring a data entry virtual assistant can allow in-house employees to focus their time and effort on other value-adding tasks. They can assign VAs tasks like inputting data into databases, transcribing audio and video recordings, maintaining customer records, entering notes into calendars, and maintaining internal records to a virtual assistant.

The ideal candidate for this role would be detail-oriented, thorough about checking and double-checking their work, and a fast typer. Employers in fields like health care, transportation, retail, law, and finance will probably benefit most by hiring a data entry virtual assistant.

The job primarily involves:

  • Manual typing
  • Managing calendars
  • Transcribing
  • Note-taking

Aspiring virtual assistants can easily find data entry jobs using Upwork. Browse through dozens of data entry jobs on Upwork and contact employers if you think you fit the role. Alternatively, virtual assistants looking for work can create predefined projects advertising their skills on Upwork’s Project CatalogTM. Using the Project Catalog, you can create a project that displays your skills to potential clients and gives them a clear sense of what you offer.

Social media

Social media management isn’t everyone’s favorite job activity. Maintaining an active and relevant social media presence requires extensive time and creative skills. Often, businesses will need to hire an expert to take care of social media content. For a small business, this work can be handled by a social media virtual assistant.

A social media virtual assistant is the perfect job for those who love engaging with social media audiences, executing marketing strategies, and building online communities.

The work would involve posting content on social media, replying to comments, answering direct messages, writing and scheduling posts, analyzing how content is performing, and making recommendations for future posts.

The job typically involves:

  • Creating social media content
  • Planning and scheduling posts
  • Engaging with the brand’s audience
  • Managing paid campaigns
  • Writing content

Find freelance social media-related jobs on Upwork by browsing through employer posts.

LinkedIn assistant

Professionally managed LinkedIn accounts can help businesses build credibility. Posting regularly and creating original content on LinkedIn that links back to your company or personal website can help you find new audiences and lead to more traffic and sales.

LinkedIn can also be leveraged for hiring employees. With more than 875 million members in over 200 countries and territories worldwide, LinkedIn is largely viewed as one of the best places to look when you want to hire professional talent.

For this reason, a LinkedIn virtual assistant is a must for businesses looking to enhance their presence.

A LinkedIn VA’s work typically involves:

  • Optimizing their client’s LinkedIn profile
  • Creating new content
  • Connecting with the right people
  • Recruiting potential hires
  • Creating job posts

It’s important to remember that a LinkedIn VA can help clients by recommending changes external to the clients’ accounts. LinkedIn discourages businesses from giving others password access to their profiles.

If you have specialized experience on LinkedIn and can help companies optimize their profiles to network better in professional circles, this may be the right job for you. You can find freelance LinkedIn specialist jobs easily on Upwork. Browse through employer job postings and submit proposals to those that appeal to you.

Bookkeeping

Small businesses often don’t employ full-time accountants; they instead outsource accounting work to virtual assistants who are familiar with the basics of accounting, finance, taxes, and bookkeeping.

VAs use financial software such as Quickbooks to perform tasks like:

  • Managing accounts and records
  • Bookkeeping
  • Completing year-end accounting
  • Processing payrolls

Bookkeeping virtual assistants can find accounting jobs easily on Upwork by browsing through hundreds of jobs posted by potential employers.

Graphic design

Artists who are pros at working in Photoshop, InDesign, and Canva can easily work as virtual design assistants for businesses. With the knowledge and skills needed to create attractive artwork, these VAs can help businesses:

  • Design social media posts, posters, banners, and websites
  • Create graphics to use on their social media pages and website
  • Design illustrations
  • Create and improve presentation decks
  • Edit and manipulate images for branding

Media houses, digital news platforms, retail businesses, and small publishers often employ graphic design virtual assistants to help with their design needs.

You can use Upwork to find graphic design jobs by browsing through thousands of jobs posted by employers looking for design virtual assistants.

Real estate

A real estate virtual assistant helps an agent handle time-consuming tasks like market research and paperwork. This can free up the agent’s time to focus on sales and marketing, which are key to running a successful real estate business.

A real estate VA would be responsible for:

  • Posting listings on real estate websites
  • Posting ads
  • Scheduling home viewings
  • Managing paperwork
  • Researching the real estate market
  • Setting up meetings and following up with clients and potential buyers

This job is perfect for anyone who has a background in real estate or is interested in keeping up with the latest property market trends.

Real estate VAs can set up their profiles on Upwork’s Project Catalog and post predefined projects that potential employers can buy. Employers can post job requirements on Upwork that VAs can apply for, as well.

E-commerce

As e-commerce gains unprecedented popularity, more and more businesses are beginning to explore the idea of setting up online stores. For this, they usually need someone who knows how virtual stores work and understands how to improve them. An e-commerce virtual assistant can help businesses set up and expand their e-commerce front ends.

Their work typically includes:

  • Setting up e-commerce stores and managing them
  • Managing inventory
  • Listing products
  • Writing product descriptions on the e-store
  • Classifying products
  • Integrating apps
  • Writing content

With more than 80% of Americans shopping online, retailers without e-commerce stores are limiting their sales. VAs can help businesses set up stores on platforms like Shopify, write attractive and informative product descriptions, and manage CMS (customer management system) platforms to boost online sales.

Aspiring VAs can browse and explore e-commerce jobs on Upwork to find one that appeals to their expertise.

Administrative

While all of the above VA roles are based on specific expertise, offering a general service can often be just as useful to businesses. Offices often need an administrative assistant who can handle a plethora of tasks that fall through the cracks in a bustling and hectic office space.

Here are some tasks that an administrative VA might handle:

  • Managing work emails and phone calls
  • Scheduling meetings
  • Making travel arrangements
  • Entering data
  • Maintaining expense reports
  • Filing paperwork
  • Research and proofreading

Those with former experience as an office manager or an administrative assistant in an organization are likely to find this role similar and easy to perform.

Employers post jobs on Upwork, which virtual assistants can apply for if they think they’re a good fit.

Customer support

Customer support is a critical component of every company’s activities. Handling customer complaints, answering questions, and ensuring a satisfactory experience are important for customer retention.

For a customer support VA, the job could entail:

  • Responding to customers’ questions and concerns
  • Dealing with customers over different mediums, such as email, phone, and online chat
  • Handling refunds
  • Setting up customer accounts

With 58% of consumers saying they would switch companies because of poor customer service, it’s important for every company to invest in good customer service. VAs can provide that support.

Find customer care virtual assistants easily on Upwork by posting job requirements and inviting customer care reps to apply.

Research assistant

Several fields require research assistants. Industries like publishing, health care, and real estate have a continuous need for research and analysis. A virtual assistant who can lead and undertake such research can be a valuable asset.

Their work could involve:

  • Collecting, analyzing, and summarizing data
  • Interviewing experts
  • Conducting market and product research
  • Editing
  • Writing comprehensive reports

People with a background in academics or with excellent researching, writing, and editing skills would be ideally suited to the job of a research VA. Find jobs easily on Upwork, where employers post job requirements when they’re ready to hire an independent professional.

Marketing assistant

Marketing is a niche skill that is valuable in any industry. With the recent increase in online sales, e-marketing has become a top priority for many retail brands.

The role of a marketing VA is a creative one. Pushing sales through intelligent and out-of-the-box advertising is the crux of the job. Those with an education or experience in traditional and digital marketing are well suited for this job.

A marketing VA may be responsible for:

  • Handling digital marketing
  • Managing email marketing
  • Managing lead generation
  • Writing ad copy, captions, and web content
  • Maintaining social media marketing
  • Doing keyword research
  • Contributing to long-term marketing plan development
  • Developing content marketing

Employers can post jobs on the Upwork platform that marketing experts can apply for when they’re ready.

Website management

Creating websites and managing them are not easy tasks. While website platforms provide several templates to simplify the process of building a website, you must incorporate original and customizable elements to stand out. This is where a website management VA comes in. With specialized experience with content management system (CMS) platforms like WordPress, Wix, or Shopify, VAs can help you save significant time and effort.

A web management VA can assist with tasks like:

  • Designing websites
  • Managing website content
  • Keeping the website up to date
  • Optimizing the website for SEO
  • Updating plug-ins and themes
  • Automating processes like email generation for order placement

Looking to hire a VA for website management? Look no further than Upwork, which hosts countless freelance CMS experts.

Shopify assistant

Shopify is a CMS platform that truly demands its own specialized managers. A highly customizable and moldable medium, Shopify is one of the most popular platforms for e-commerce stores. If a business has a Shopify expert who can help design and manage the platform optimally, the store can find its way to success pretty quickly.

A Shopify VA combines skills from e-commerce VAs and website management VAs and specializes in managing a Shopify website. To excel at their job, a Shopify VA must be skilled in:

  • Setting up a store on Shopify
  • Conducting product research
  • Setting up Shopify apps
  • Installing the right plug-ins
  • Managing store maintenance
  • Processing and fulfilling orders
  • Doing digital marketing
  • Writing descriptions

Aspiring Shopify VAs can find suitable jobs on Upwork.

Find virtual assistant jobs on Upwork

With the demand for so many different types of virtual assistants, practically anyone with a defined skill set can market themselves as a VA. If you’re good at marketing, bookkeeping, administrative tasks, research, or CMS management, the virtual assistant profile is ideal for you. Use any of these invaluable skills to carve a niche for yourself and monetize your talents.

If you’re a VA looking for new opportunities, consider applying for virtual assistant jobs on Upwork. Employers needing virtual assistant services can browse through thousands of VA profiles to find one that suits their needs.

Upwork puts employers needing freelance talent in touch with independent professionals willing to offer their services to clients on a short-term or longer basis. With the collaborative power of businesses and independent talent from around the world, virtually any task can be accomplished with ease.

Sign up with Upwork today to connect with potential future colleagues!

Upwork is not affiliated with and does not sponsor or endorse any of the tools or services discussed in this article. These tools and services are provided only as potential options, and each reader and company should take the time needed to adequately analyze and determine the tools or services that would best fit their specific needs and situation.

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Types of Virtual Assistant Jobs: Find the Right Role for You
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