What is Upwork.com about – Is it still worth it? Upwork has seen a rise in users flocking to it to begin their freelancing careers, particularly with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Let’s talk about Upwork and how it can help you in your freelance career.
Let’s get started!
What is Upwork?
You must have heard about Upwork if you were ever interested in online jobs. It is a platform that allows clients to do business securely with contractors.
Upwork had more than 12,000,000 registered freelancers as of 2017. This makes it the second-largest freelance platform after Freelancer.com.
What is the Best Way for Freelancers to Get Started with Upwork?
It is simple and intuitive to use Upwork as a freelancer. Here’s how it usually works: Sign up, get work done, and get paid.
- Optimize your profile
You must make it easy for clients to get to know and understand you in order to have them work with you.
- Approve your Upwork profile
As Upwork’s freelancers increase, it is working to balance the supply and demand.
Upwork doesn’t accept some freelancers or can have their accounts deleted after they fail to secure a contract.
It is not a social media platform that requires account creation in less than 2 minutes. To be accepted, there are some things you must do.
It’s becoming harder than ever to be accepted onto Upwork. It developed a system that automatically disqualifies freelancers from the platform based on their inability to work hard or offer the same services to 95% of Upworkers. Submit proposals and apply for jobs.
How Upwork works
After Upwork has activated your account, you can apply for jobs or submit proposals.
- Interview the client
If the client likes your proposal, they will send you an email. This is a great time to learn more about the client and position yourself as a source of assistance.
If everything goes well, the client will send a job offer to you according to what you discussed.
Perform the task, and/or submit deliverables.
Next, complete your service and send the deliverables you have agreed to. Receive payment and transfer the funds to your bank account
Upwork will bill the client based on the hourly rate you both have agreed to.
You will need to send a payment request to your client if you are on a fixed-price basis. This will allow Upwork to release funds from Escrow where the client has deposited the agreed price.
You may choose to have your money sent directly into your bank account. This process can take days. PayPal was also an option, but the conversion fee for any native currency could be too high. Payoneer is the best way to transfer money at the moment.
Is Upwork Reliable?
Is Upwork safe and legal? Based on my experience, I can confirm that Upwork is legit.
Many freelancers have earned six figures from Upwork. Here’s a sample from Danny Margulies, a well-known copywriter: Danny made more than 200k dollars at Upwork.
Upwork has never committed any malpractice to my knowledge. Yes, it is a platform that anyone can trust to the core. They can handle your payments and make sure you get paid.
Two sub-programs are available for this feature:
- Hourly protection for hourly contracts
- Fixed-Price Protection
Protect yourself from the ravaging effects of Upwork Hours.
You will need Upwork’s Time Tracker to do this. It records your activity and takes screenshots. Then, it stores them in your Work Diary.
You should note that Upwork automatically charges clients for hours worked. However, your client can verify the work by checking the work diary.
Its time tracker tool allows you to write down what you are currently working on. Below the total hours worked, you will find a form.
How to Create a Memo Using Upwork’s Time Tracker
My experience has taught me that it is safer to write memos when you are working on hourly contracts.
Sometimes a client may dispute a screenshot. You can win the dispute by using the memo you wrote.
Upwork Fixed-Price Protection
Upwork uses Escrow to manage fixed-price agreements. Escrow is a financial arrangement tool that regulates and holds funds for a transaction.
You get paid for your deliverables, and it ensures that your clients receive what you agreed to.
After you have agreed on the deliverables, and the price, the client must deposit the agreed amount via Escrow on Upwork.
You will need to send the client a payment request and submit the deliverables after you have completed the work. Escrow will release funds to your account once the client has signed off on the contracts.
Fixed-price jobs require that you clearly define milestones and ensure that the client has made a deposit before any work can begin.
Is Upwork a Scam?
The short answer is no. Although Upwork is a trusted platform, scammers are also possible.
Upwork horror stories involve clients who ran amok with the freelancer or their work has likely been shared.
If you don’t know how Upwork scammers work, you could fall for their traps.
How Do You Spot a Scammer at Upwork?
No matter how skilled the scammers may be, there are warning signs that indicate a scammer. For example, they can request your bank or card details.
Upwork will only send all contracts placed via its network to your bank account. You don’t have to reveal sensitive information such as bank and card credentials to your client.
Scammers may request a “Processing Fee”. They will also try to trick you into paying them money for a job. Some people will even tell you that they’ll use the money to purchase equipment and supplies. Freelancers don’t have to pay money to get started.
Scammers may also try to trick you into accepting work for no cost. They will usually send you a list with deliverables, but not a contract. Fixed-price agreements are the most common example.
You can tell it is a scam if he or she asks for your bank details or a processing fee, or asks you to do work without a contract.
How Much Do Upwork Freelancers Make?
There are many ways to make money with Upwork. The following factors determine how much you make:
- Hours worked
- Service and niche
- Pitching skills
- Negotiating skills
Take, for example:
A $10/hour designer who works 20 hours per week will earn less than a $50/hour programmer who works 40 hours per week.
Is Upwork a Good Place to Work?
Service fees are one of the downsides to Upwork, a platform that allows freelancers to work from home.
If you had a $2,000 project, Upwork might take $250. This would leave you with $1,750. Although the fee was not that high, it is still a significant amount compared to what you got. However, $250 is still quite a substantial amount.
What Does Upwork Charge?
Here’s how Upwork charges for its services:
- 20% on the first $500 that is billed to the client
- 10% off lifetime billings for clients between $500 and $10,000
- For every $10,000 in client billings, it charges 5%
You should note that freelance platforms often charge more or less for the same services. The fees may get you discouraged by the fees, but they are the price you must pay to find a client.
How Do You Get Paid?
Upwork offers a variety of payment options, which is something you will love.
Here are the Upwork-supported payment methods with their associated fees.
- Direct deposits to your local bank (non-US)
- $0.99 per withdrawal
- You can deposit to your local bank account
- Wire transfer
- $30 USD per wire transfer to any bank
- Direct transfer to U.S. bank account (USD).
- No cost payments to US banks
- Instant transfer
- Transactions must be a minimum of $1, and a maximum of $10,000
- Depending on the location, $1-$2 fees
- Transfers can take up 2 days
- Upwork charges $2 (this varies)
- Freelancers in India are not eligible
Here are my recommendations (applicable for non-US freelancers).
- Use direct bank transfer for $200 or less.
- I recommend Payoneer for transactions exceeding $200.
- Payoneer offers higher conversion rates than local banks. However, it is not recommended for large transfers.
- Payoneer can send $1,000 to your bank, which will give you a better return than transferring directly to your bank through Upwork.
Is it Difficult to Find Work at Upwork?
There are many factors that can affect the difficulty of finding work at Upwork.
- Types of jobs desired
- There are more job opportunities for those who have less experience or can apply quickly, such as virtual assistants.
- At the time of writing this post, Upwork had more than 3,000 virtual assistant positions available. This is a comparison to the number of jobs for mobile app development, which is only 170+.
- You’ll have fewer opportunities if you only want to be a skilled worker.
You don’t have to limit yourself to one type of service with Upwork.
It is also more difficult to land a contract due to the number of freelancers competing for a project.
Many freelancers dislike marketplaces such as Upwork. Sometimes it can become a race to win — the lower the bid, the better the chances of winning. However, this is not always true.
Imagine yourself competing with a lot of people.
Recent changes at Upwork have made things better. Upwork has changed the cost of connections per job and the free connections that new freelancers receive.
New freelancers were able in the past to get 60 connections per month, with jobs that cost only 2 connections. This gives freelancers about 30 proposals before they run out of connections.
However, freelancers now only receive 20 connections per month. 6 connections are required for jobs with a high budget or project length. Upwork limits new accounts to submitting 3-10 proposals per month unless the owners upgrade their connections or purchase new ones.
This means that freelancers have to be more selective about the job positions to which they submit their proposals.
Clients can invite you to a job and it’s more common for them to invite you. If the client likes your proposal, he will contact you.
You should therefore learn how to create a better proposal.
These are some tips for how to create a proposal on Upwork.
- Take care of the client and what he needs
- Ask questions and talk to him about his job and business.
- Mention your credibility and share examples
To increase your chances of landing a contract, you will need to master copywriting. To improve your writing skills, it is important to understand what information you should include in your cover letter.
Is it Easy to Find and Apply for Jobs at Upwork?
Upwork’s job feed allows you to see the most recent job openings
related to your talent clouds and saved searches.
They have also created a COVID-19 section, where you will find all the jobs that are related to the pandemic.
You can search for specific jobs and apply filters to save your search and submit a proposal if you find a job that you like.
How Do You Spot Great Jobs on Upwork?
Freelancers are quick to submit job proposals for all jobs in their field.
This is not always effective. You will need to be selective about the jobs that you wish to propose to with limited connections.
Here are some tips to help you find great jobs on Upwork.
1. Check the price and number of offers
Clients can view fixed-price projects. There are some clients who prefer hourly rates. If your budget is too small, you can take one strike.
It is possible to stretch the budget of clients, but it is rare, especially if there are too many.
A job on Upwork with a low budget:
The client has budgeted $1,500 to write 200 blog articles. This is approximately $7.5 per article. This client has a very low budget and needs to hire an expert.
Some employers will pay large sums to recruit freelancers. However, once you read the job details, it will become apparent that the budget is way too small.
You should also be able to see how many proposals you get for the job. As time goes by, the number of proposals will increase.
The ideal time to start is often within 6 hours of the job posting. It is possible to get a contract for jobs that were posted over 6 hours ago.
Clients will usually only look at the most recent submissions if there are already many proposals.
2. Review past freelancers
Checking a potential client’s past history has two benefits:
First, you’ll see if he is a good client based on what other freelancers have to say about him. Negative clients can lead to poor feedback and a low rating.
You can check out the rates of other freelancers who offer similar services to determine if your client is able to afford your rate.
After reviewing the client’s past history, you may decide to not submit a proposal. Upwork is a great company to build a solid foundation of work, they are reputable and trustworthy.
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6 thoughts on “What is Upwork.com about – Is it still worth it?”
Another great article here on upwork. With the recent covid-19 pandemic, it is definitely a great time to post this article as a lot of people are in need of jobs or just something to keep them busy. I thought this article was very informative and helpful into what upwork is, what it can offer, and how it works for both the client and the freelancer. Great work!
Yes, it’s a difficult time for many people Pat and it would be so hard to have to change careers now. But Upwork is a great place to find out what is on offer and get started.
This post has been very useful. Specially the segment were you deal with how to spot scammers. Although UpWork is a legit platform, I understand that scammers can join the platform and try to take away money (or get free work) from those that are getting started. So, being able to identify them is key. Thank you very much!
We always need to keep our wits about us on the internet Paolo. I’m pleased that these tips will help to keep you safe from scammers.
I am very familiar with Upwork as a freelancer. Since April 2021 I have been with them and have steadily become more recognized as a quality freelancing agent. At the moment, I average $150 per week with the contracts I do.
Upwork has definitely proven to be worth my time and effort!
That is fantastic Kitty! It is great to hear that you are doing so well with Upwork. Keep up the good work.