It might be difficult to enter the world of freelancing. That’s why I’ve gathered all I know about Upwork, my favorite site! Here are my top Upwork suggestions for newbies, based on three years of freelancing on the platform.
What is Upwork?
Upwork as Freelancing Marketplace where designers, developers, marketers, and other skilled individuals can connect with company owners and find employment.
With so many evaluations, people may worry if Upwork is authentic; nonetheless, I can assure you that it is an ideal spot to begin your freelancing business.
Upwork as Freelancing Marketplace is really beneficial since it manages payments, disputes, and even has workers that can advise you on how to find jobs on Upwork by applying with your talents listed in your profile. Upwork charges a 20% fee for this service until the client spends more than $10,000 with you, at which point the rate drops to 10%.
There are many great freelancers on Upwork, much as on the other famous site Fiverr, thus competition is fierce and it might be tough to know how to acquire projects on Upwork as a new freelancer. However, if you have a job and perform outstanding work, you’ll have more opportunities than you ever imagined.
I’ve worked with tiny family companies as well as huge organizations that own football stadiums on Upwork. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d be able to work with some incredible firms while learning how to acquire jobs on Upwork, but thanks to the advice below, I was able to do just that.
Upwork as Freelancing Marketplace Job Types:
Upwork jobs are divided into three categories, which are as follows:
Fixed-rate jobs are those with clearly defined, one-time deliverables.
For example, for $5,000, you could create a website for someone. For $2,000, you could design a logo.
Approximately 80% of the jobs listed on Upwork are hourly employment. Clients frequently indicate a range of how many hours of weekly labor they’re looking for, as well as a price range, for these assignments.
I truly enjoy hourly contracts, contrary to what I believe every other post on the internet claims. I believe they provide unrivaled flexibility, allowing you to quickly adjust to the demands of the client.
These contracts are readily extensible if you provide value to your clients, leading to more work for you and satisfied clients.
This is practically a hybrid of the two, in that it can handle long-term work while being based on the flat-rate model.
For instance, you might establish a job paying $200 per week to plan out and produce social media material for the week.
You would submit for the milestone every week or month (depending on the task), and the customer would accept it.
Easy Steps for Becoming a Upwork Freelancer:
1. It’s Important to Have a Good Profile:
Your profile is essentially a resume/CV, and you should handle it as such. To use as your profile photograph, get a professional headshot. I’ve seen profile photographs with a plant or a cat in them, and that’s not acceptable.
You may also add items to your portfolio; however, this isn’t essential unless you’re developing logos or need to demonstrate your abilities in some way.
2. Define your Service and Offering:
To become a freelancer, you must first convert your expertise into a service. To accomplish so, you must first realize how your abilities might benefit a potential customer. Put yourself in your ideal client’s shoes. What are their difficulties, and how can you help them address them?
Recognize that your customers are searching for a solution to problems. To be a successful freelancer, you must first understand your client’s condition and then use your services to solve their problem. How you bundle your abilities as a service will be based on your answers to these questions. Now you must write a brief description of the service that will assist you in selling your freelancing service to businesses. Try to describe what you can do, how you do it, and for what sort of business/client in as few words as possible. Don’t worry about the price just yet; we’ll talk about it later.
3. Identify your Target Audience:
You’ll need to discover a target audience now that you have a freelancing service to offer. Try to discover the types of customers who will benefit from your offering. Is there a common problem and personality trait across these clients? Do they work in a certain field?
As a new freelancer, simply being good at what you do will not guarantee that clients would seek you out. It’s critical to get in front of potential customers so they can learn about your offerings. In order to discover new clients, you’ll need to be proactive. There are three avenues for most freelancers to find clients:
- Platforms that allow freelancers to submit jobs
- Make the most of your current contacts and networking opportunities.
- Marketing, public relations, and outreach are all important components of any business.
4. Create a price plan:
It’s time to decide your price when you’ve properly defined your service and your target market. The idea is to maximize your pay while avoiding losing out on prospective opportunities. So, start by looking at your market’s rivals. How much do they charge for similar freelance work?
In truth, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to pricing freelancing services. Many factors can influence how much clients are ready to pay:
- Complexity of the project
- Geographical location of the client
- Project duration
Fortunately, Upwork provides a number of resources to assist you in determining how much to charge for your freelancing services. Check out the two main price models used by freelancers: hourly pricing and project-based (fixed) pricing, for more details.
5. Create your Portfolio:
Developing a strong portfolio is a crucial part of being a successful freelancer. Your portfolio indicates the quality of your work as a freelancer by exhibiting your successes and previous assignments. This is your chance to show, not just tell, clients what you’re capable of and how valuable your knowledge is.
Your portfolio should showcase your greatest work in the field of your service. Each component in your portfolio should clearly show what you contributed to the project and how it helped the customer. Case studies, testimonials, data-driven outcomes, photos, charts, work samples, and mock-ups are some of the elements of a successful portfolio. Before including project materials from previous clients in your portfolio, be sure you have their permission.
6. Make a great proposal.
Your first project as a freelancer should perfectly resemble your job experience and competencies to guarantee a good start. It’s time to submit a proposal once you’ve found a project for which you’re convinced you can give exceptional service.
It’s vital to have a proposal that performs for you since the perfect proposal might spell the difference between getting a job or not.
Submitting a project proposal on Upwork is simple and uncomplicated. You may use this proposal template to illustrate your worth to potential clients on sites or channels other than Upwork. See freelance copywriter Andreea-Lucia Mihalache’s essay on how to draught a winning proposal for best practices. In other words, a well-written proposal should be a powerful selling point for your skills. It should include a description of the company’s needs, how you can assist, and your credentials and capabilities. Finally, it’s critical to maintain a professional and welcoming demeanor, therefore utilize appropriate language to help you stick out.
7. Establish a relationship with your customer:
Your clients are your company as a freelancer. While it may appear self-evident, it is critical to have a great working connection with your clients. Rather of thinking of their business as a one-and-done contract, successful freelancers build connections with their clients. Long-term relationships can result in recurring business and new customer recommendations. When building a relationship with your clients, keep the following principles in mind:
- Build trust by being consistent: You may create confidence and demonstrate that your customer can rely on you in the future by regularly finishing your task on time and giving correct deliverables.
- Consult with the customer: Client communication that is both effective and efficient builds a better business connection and motivates clients to work with you on future projects.
- Perform admirably: For client satisfaction, high-quality work is required. To have a chance of developing a long-term connection with a customer, you must provide value and address the client’s problem.
- Seek out chances to add extra value: You exhibit your potential worth to the customer and open up new methods of working together by taking the initiative, identifying new solutions, and accepting greater tasks.
8. Continue to improve your abilities.
Clients engage freelancers because of the service and capabilities they provide. As a result, freelancers must constantly enhance their abilities, adapt to changes, and broaden their knowledge. Keeping up with current trends is also important if you want to provide the best service to your customers. Udemy, LinkedIn Learning, Coursera, and even YouTube are excellent places to start if you want to keep your skills current.
Additional Steps that freelancers must adopt:
a) Communication Is Key:
You may need to communicate with the customer before getting hired for a contract, whether through Upwork messaging or a video interview. Keep a professional tone throughout and handle this as if it were a business meeting. I’ve had bosses refer to me as “mate” and “buddy,” but I’ll still respond in a professional manner.
Make an effort to reply to communications as soon as possible. Employers on Upwork want to recruit as soon as possible, therefore if you don’t respond within a day, the position will most likely be gone.
You should also clarify the criteria with the company and what they anticipate from you. Especially if there is anything in the contract about which you are unsure. Things are better to ask than to get wrong, so don’t be scared to do so.
b) Double Check the Contract:
Between the time you apply and the time you receive the offer, the contract might be amended. As with any contract, study the offer carefully and double-check that the pricing you agreed on is the same. This is a no-brainer in my opinion.
c) Don’t Give Up:
You could apply for ten jobs before getting a response from one. However, if you hear back from one of them, it’s possible that you’ll be hired for the following year. Never give up on whatever you do in life, not only Upwork.
Upwork as Freelancing Marketplace, here’s how you find the right clients and jobs
I. Take a look at how much money they’ve put into the platform:
This can be a good sign of whether or not they’re interested in hiring on Upwork, so you don’t spend time with those who aren’t comfortable doing so.
It’ll also tell you a little bit more about their financial situation and whether or not they’re willing to spend on high-quality services.
Ideally, they’ve recently spent $1,000 on the platform, but if they haven’t, don’t dismiss them totally!
I recommend checking at their prior work to see how they’ve compensated other freelancers rather than just looking at totals.
You should avoid a customer that has spent $20,000 on Upwork yet pays freelancers an average of $2.75 per hour.
II. Look at the feedback left by other freelancers:
Nothing can inform you more about a potential customer than others who have already dealt with them.
You may get a decent feel of what it’ll be like to work with you by reviewing what other professionals have said about working together.
III. Apply to jobs posted in the last 24 hours
If you’re serious about finding a job, check in every few hours to see what’s fresh.
The faster you respond to a new job ad, the more likely you are to be invite for an interview or employed.
I’d avoid any position that’s been posted for more than five days — unless they’ve recently visited the job (as you can see), the customer has most likely given up on hiring and it’s not worth your time.
IV. Do not apply for jobs where payment is not guaranteed
But, in general, you don’t want to waste time working for a customer just to discover that they haven’t set up a credit card on Upwork and that you won’t get paid. This can bring a lot of newbies into problems on Upwork.
When you’re looking for jobs to apply for, you can check if their payment is confirm right on the site before you even click to explore the position.
V. Take a look at how many people applied, were interviewed, and were hired
Jobs with more than 30 to 50 candidates are sometimes too competitive to be worthwhile.
I’d recommend targeting positions with 5-10 applications and less than 3 interviewers.
VI. Don’t get stuck in a bad job
If you’re having problems getting work on Upwork and taking a low-paying job to get started, you’ll find yourself locked in a cycle of low-paying gigs.
That’s not to say you can’t increase your prices later, but if you want to charge $40 an hour, you shouldn’t accept a $15 assignment. Again, being a starter on Upwork isn’t always simple, but stay patient and the nice offers will come.
You see, doing that job, even if it’s only temporary, diverts your attention away from seeking clients who will appreciate your time and pay you the $40 you deserve.