23 Business Tasks You Can Outsource to a Virtual Assistant

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Last updated on September 14th, 2017 at 10:21 pm

Thanks to technology, an increasing amount of business tasks are able to be completed online, which opened up the market globally for a position aptly titled: “virtual assistant”. Virtual assistant services are springing up everywhere but what exactly do they do? Virtual assistants are personal assistants in an organization that work online and remotely instead of in your office space. However, over time, the position expanded to encompass even specialized tasks that can be done online, that don’t require having to be there in person.

Hiring a virtual assistant does not mean that you found some amazing deal where you can employ one person to handle all types of specialized tasks related to your business at a quarter of the price of a professional. First off, one person will never make the progress of a dedicated team working towards the same goal. And second, if you’re looking for someone with a specialized skill set, like video editing, it’s important to make the distinction between a professional video editor who has past experience, implements best practices and utilizes top of the line software and a virtual assistant who can stitch together footage in iMovie. The price points will, of course, be different as well which should be one indicator of the type of professionalism, complexity, and product outcome you should expect. The same goes for a web developer, graphic designer, and other roles which can technically also be done online and remotely. Having said that, you will find talented people who do have specialized skills and still market themselves as a virtual assistant but this post will focus on the role and tasks of a “General Virtual Assistant”.

Virtual Assistant Tasks

virtual assistant services

Email Marketing

Email. One of the major time-sucks of our day, yet essential for any business operating today. Some businesses swear by an email list as an essential part of their strategy to increase sales. But how many hours a day do you spend constructing emails, replying to questions, deleting spam, and reading through newsletters before even logging in any sales that day? Outsource this task and free up a few hours in your day for the things that matter – which could include personal activities, like an hour workout at home or at the gym. Your virtual assistant could:

  • Maintain your email list in applications such as ConvertKit
  • Setting up your email marketing service
  • Create email marketing campaigns to send out to your list
  • Answer customer inquiries or troubleshooting emails
  • Filtering emails by priority
  • Following up on leads

Scheduling

An exciting milestone as a business owner is when you stop recognizing every itty bitty detail of every single client job or project you have for the simple reason of having so many projects or clients. By this point in your business, it’s probably a good idea to have a secretary or administrative assistant to help keep the office running like clockwork. But if you have a remote team, these would be excellent tasks to have a virtual assistant handle:

  • Appointment scheduling
  • Maintaining calendars
  • Travel planning and arrangements
  • Social media or Pinterest scheduling through CoSchedule or Tailwind
  • Scheduling blog posts

Organizational

I’m a bit of OCD when it comes to organization. It’s no secret that things run more efficiently when they’re organized. Now it’s even more imperative in this era of web applications, information, and unlimited desktop folders. All this data that we compile for reference and future use need to be arranged in a way where they’re accessible, easy to be found, and easy to read. Since there’s no need to have a physical filing cabinet when everything can be stored on a cloud, this is definitely something you can have a virtual assistant do:

  • Data entry
  • File management in DropBox or G Suite
  • Preparing presentations
  • Updating CRM or contact lists
  • Uploading products and descriptions into your online store

Administrative

Administration is probably how your virtual assistant will be spending most of their time. Basically a bit of task management along with the random tasks that crop up every other day or so that someone needs to get done to keep things moving. After an admin task is done, it usually moves over as an organizational or scheduling task where it lives out its life as a reference or crossed out.

  • Online research
  • Competitor analysis
  • Moderating social media, forums, or blog comments and replies
  • Video or audio transcription
  • Personal errands such as sending personalized cards for thank you’s, events, and occasions
  • Invoicing clients
  • Project management between teams

Are you considering hiring a virtual assistant to help you in your business? First thing you need to do is make a list of all your business activities. Next, filter out the time-consuming and/or low-value ones that are ideal for outsourcing. Read THIS POST for more information on how to outsource.

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25 Comments

  1. Pingback: Outsourcing Social Media And The Hats That Don't Fit

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  3. This is so important – I started out my business totally thinking that I could do everything on my own but outsourcing is almost necessary to run everything smoothly! These are all great suggestions for different things to outsource.

  4. I’ve seen sosososo many bloggers using Virtual Assistants and I’ve been curious for quite some time about them. I currently do everything myself, and I definitely agree that it’s a LOT of work. Someone to help out with my email marketing would be absolutely amazing.

    Christie’s Take on Life.  xx

  5. Thank you for this post. I’ve been considering a virtual assistant. But I have no idea what a reasonable fee should be. Hopefully someone will write a post on that soon.

    • Hi Ola – If you’re interested in a VA from India or Asia, expect to pay between $5-10/hour. If you need one from Western Europe or the US, the prices are a bit higher – between $15-$25/hour for general admin tasks, up to $40/hour for more specialized tasks like video editing, wordpress maintenance,, etc.

  6. Thank you for highlighting the roles virtual assistants can play within a business/organization! I didn’t really grasp the important role virtual assistants can be until you broke their duties down.

    • It’s a recent industry – only a few years back – when businesses started realizing that most of the workload can be done from home, as long as you have a computer and internet 🙂

  7. Interesting, so many bloggers use VA these days. It’s a lot of task to do everything for yourself, specially I get so much to do due to 2 sites I have.. Shall look out for some VA’s.

  8. Technology really helps a lot. Virtual assistants nowadays gives an opportunity to those moms to be able to work from home too. Thanks to technology and to companies and businesses who hire virtual assistants.

  9. I’ve thought about getting a virtual assistant. Mainly for social media. No one tells you that being successful on social media requires you to make it a full-time job! lol. Instagram alone takes so many hours from my life. Maybe one day I’ll finally hire someone!

  10. Having a VA is a goal for when I am earning an income from my blog. I would love to have someone who could just focus on the marketing aspect. Keeping up with all the promotional threads in different Facebook groups takes so much time.

  11. Bookmarking this for reference as I’m thinking of opening my VA Business soon. There’s a big market in social media marketing and it’s vital to disseminate these tasks to a VA so you can be more productive and focus on content development

  12. These are all great suggestions for different things to outsource. As a blogger, outsourcing is almost necessary to run everything smoothly because it’s a lot of task to do everything for yourself. It really comes as a relief to have someone take all these little tasks off your hands 🙂

  13. Virtual Assistant has become an important part of small businesses as well as trends in blogging world these days. One can focus on their core business if they have VA support!

  14. This is so informative for business owners.Most of the small business owners try to do everything alone.But,outsourcing is the best way to save time for other important tasks.

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