As a freelancer, I felt need of a time tracking application to track the actual hours spend on different projects. I googled for a free application and it took time to get to the right application made for exactly my requirement. Yes I got one and that also for FREE at – http://www.timeedition.com/
It allows me to manage multiple customer, each having multiple projects. And under each project I can mark different tasks for tracking purpose. It sits in the windows task bar in minimized form. I can start the timer when I start working on a project/task and end it when done. It is not very advanced tool but good enough to be usable. It also provides reports filtered by Customer, project and dates.
Even if I are working on fixed cost projects, I like to track the actual time involved in completing a task. Suppose I got a task to develop wordpress blog. I may estimate that it will take 2 weeks i.e. 80 hours, if worked full time. While actually it may take more or less. Now if I track the time correctly, at the end I come to know how much time it took. Using this data I can better estimate on the similar requirements next time.
It is beneficial for me and buyers both. As if I came to know that it takes less time then I will bid less on the next job, thus winning more projects and earning more clients and hence money. And if it took more time then I will be able to increase my bid and thus avoid bidding abruptly low and then provide quick and dirty code to my clients, who are never going to come back to me after that.
So if you are a freelancer then start tracking your time and win more clients and $$$$.