You could use some extra help these days, but it’s not like your pockets are just overflowing with cash and you can afford a personal or executive assistant to do your bidding at all hours of the day and night.
Wouldn’t that be nice though?
But thankfully you don’t have to break the bank to begin to ease your workload. In fact, you can get started with personal or business outsourcing for less than $50 a month.
I scoured the VirtualAssistantAssistant.com database to compile this list of the lowest cost virtual assistant companies. I’ve tested many of these services myself, and will do my best to share example use cases where I have them.
Ready? Let’s dive in.
1. Mechanical Turk
Mechanical Turk is a unique micro-task outsourcing platform that’s actually owned by Amazon. You can get tasks done for as little as $0.02 each (2 cents!).
The minimum per task is actually just a penny, but Amazon tacks on a one cent fee (or 20% of the task, whichever is greater).
I’ve used Mechanical Turk primarily for data entry projects. In my case, I had a spreadsheet with product SKUs but didn’t have the product names. Gathering the names was an easy — but time-consuming process with hundreds of rows — so I turned to the global workforce at mturk.
What would have taken me hours to do manually was done in a fraction of the time for around $20.
Other use cases for Mechanical Turk include inexpensively gathering user feedback or survey responses, proofreading and correcting passages of text, transcribing audio or video, or tagging and categorizing photos.
On Fiverr.com you can find a huge range of virtual services starting at just $5. You can even find people willing to serve as your loyal virtual assistant for an hour or two at a time.
Over the years, I’ve used Fiverr for:
Social media images
Website technical help and troubleshooting
Site speed tune-ups
Podcast introductory voiceovers
Video intro sequences
There really is a wealth of services on the site and is often the first place I turn to when I have a quick project I’d like to test out. Because it’s so inexpensive, I often test several sellers at once, especially for subjective tasks like graphics, and just pick my favorite.
My basic strategy for finding high-quality providers is to search for whatever I need help with, and then identify the sellers and the gigs with tons of positive feedback.
Pakistan-based Efficise has been serving VA clients for more than 5 years with plans starting at $15 a month for 5 30-minute tasks.
(If you use them all to the full extent, that’s just $6 an hour.)
Efficise virtual assistants are trained to handle a host of tasks, including the standard administrative stuff, web research, and other one-time virtual “gofer” jobs. Many clients turn to them for help with transcription, travel planning, social media management, data entry jobs, and more.
It’s been a few years since my last trial with Efficise, but here’s what I thought at the time:
OkayRelax is a relatively new entry into the task-based virtual assistant space, with plans starting at $19.95 per month for 5 tasks up to 30 minutes.
I’m actually on the next tier of OkayRelax service, which is currently $74.95 per month for 25 tasks — but most importantly, it gives me a dedicated assistant (Karla) I can delegate to every time.
I think tapping into the pool of assistants can work really well for certain tasks, like the general administrative and research tasks listed under Habiliss above, but I like the consistency and learning that happens over time with a dedicated assistant.
One cool thing about OkayRelax is if you have a task that’s longer than 30 minutes, that’s OK — you can just ask your assistant to charge as many tasks as they need to get the job done.
I task Karla with all kinds of online research projects, formatting blog posts, collecting screen shots, and even installing lead magnets on my website.
Perssist operates a similar model with a team of globally-distributed virtual assistants, but with a New York headquarters. And instead of tasks, their plans come with a set number of hours.
Their entry level plan is just $28 and gives you 2 hours of support.
So what can you get done in those 2 hours? Perssist VAs make calls, do research, make appointments, help with travel planning, or make those dreaded phone calls to customer support you’ve been putting off.
Time is billed in 5-minute increments and unused time rolls over to the next month. They’ll even give you a free hour to test out the service.
The venerable Ask Sunday has been providing virtual assistant services for over 10 years. For those dipping their toes into the world of outsourcing, they offer a $29 per month plan that includes your first 2 hours of work.
If you need more help, you don’t have to upgrade or commit to a larger plan; additional hours are simply billed at $15 an hour.
In recent years, the India-based company has shifted toward serving entrepreneurs and small businesses, but still welcomes individual clients who could use a hand.
7. Fancy Hands
Fancy Hands offers all USA-based virtual support starting at $29.99 a month.
That plan affords you access to Fancy Hands’ wide pool of assistants for up to 5 20-minute tasks.
I’ve been a customer for years, and use Fancy Hands primarily for data entry, proofreading, flight check-ins, and responding to surveys on my behalf. (I’m on their 50 request per month plan.)
Unused requests do roll over to the next month and you can save a bit by committing to an annual plan instead of month-to-month billing.
You can also get half off your first month through my referral link.
8. Task Virtual
Task Virtual starts at just $39 a month for 20 tasks, or $60 for 5 hours of dedicated VA work.
The India-based VA company lists real estate management, ecommerce management, and social media management as their areas of specialization — in addition to the typical administrative tasks.
For the task-based plan, tasks are classified as small jobs that take 10-15 minutes to complete.
On the dedicated assistant side of things, $60 is among the lowest price point I’ve seen.
TaskVirtual has even offered Virtual Assistant Assistant readers an extra 20% off your first month of service with referral code VAA20:
9. Tasks Assistant
For just $70, you can buy 10 hours of virtual assistant support from Tasks Assistant, a newer VA company in India. The company also offers a 5-hour free trial, effectively giving you 50% more time for free.
There are no ongoing commitments; if you like the service you can buy another block of 10 hours as needed. That $7 per hour rate is among the lowest I’ve found.
Tasks Assistant was founded in 2014 and can handle a wide variety of remote work.
10. Use Per Wish
Use Per Wish is a startup virtual assistant company in India with backing from some industry veterans.
The setup is unique in that the service is just $10 an hour with no monthly minimums or automatic renewals. Just pay for what you need and use the hours as you go.
Use Per Wish has a large team of qualified assistants at your disposal to help with a variety of administrative tasks.