I really don't want to bore people by posting the same story twice - but since there hasn't been any development or answer I will. Because I would really like to understand this process.
It's about finding the right freelancer for your job. I (freelancer) offer, among other things, legal translations. And I put the search algorithm provided to clients to a test re one of my skills.
I selected "intermediate level" and found myself on page 11 (my hourly rate is $44); fine, I haven't been here for a very long time. But legal translations is one of the skills displayed on my profile and it's one of my selected categories. The words legal and translation are mentioned in my overview, title, employment history and portfolio. What more could I do?
There's a female translator listed on the first page who mentions the word legal in her overview and job history. She has completed one single job (nothing legal). On page 9 there is a freelancer from India who specializes in web and mobile apps, functional & automation (QTP) testing - and of course does not offer anything resembling translations at all.
Then I selected "expert level" and that's when it got interesting: none of the people on the first page even had "legal translation" selected as one of their sills. That means they selected it at least as a category, right?
I chose one translator, who also didn't use the word legal at all in a very detailed profile overview. He had one job out of 43 that mentioned the word legal in the job description (legal content proofreader). It was a $13.33 job for which he hadn't received feedback.
So, that makes him a legal translations expert how exactly? I am not saying he's not a great translator - but why do I choose skills, carefully write my overview, select categories when other people get listed at the top in my field who don't even promote themselves for this kind of job? And then get invites for this kind of job?
I have no idea how that search algorithm works - what it looks for. If somebody else does - please educate me, so I can amend my profile accordingly. Because I only receive utterly irrelevant invites. And that doesn't benefit anyone.
Here is the answer Valeria gave in another thread of how the search engine works and why you may find yourself different then someone else.
I understand your concern with your profile being shown to clients searching for particular skills. We have algorithms in place that expose a broader set of freelancers to clients according to the job requirements. Also note that search results vary from person to person, so the way you see yourself in search results may be very different than how different clients see you.
Thanks for quoting Valeria. When she wrote, "search results vary from person to person, so the way you see yourself in search results may be very different than how different clients see you", I guess she's implying that the search algorithm somehow customizes results for each client. But without knowing what factors the algorithm takes into account, it's difficult for freelancers to tailor their profiles to improve their search ranking.
I wasn't logged in when I was testing the search - so Upwork didn't know that I am not a client.
It just seems so random when a system comes up with people who don't offer a certain service at all. I am quite sure that the IT guy on page nine didn't select legal translation as a category either...
Ela if this makes you feel any better, when I search Legal translator you come up at the top of the page on page 2.
One thing I did notice about everyone on page 1 was that the main keyword they all had in common under skills was Translation.
I share Ela's point of view and I have the same frustration when I see the search results.
When I search for French translators through the Hiring hub, I am amazed at the results on the first pages...
I see one person who is an italian translator, some people who have not been active for several months, some people with almost no job history. Many are not top-rated...
The problem is not my personal ranking (page 7) but the fact that I see abolutely no logic in the ranking.
And if I search by category and I select "Intermediate" (with a rate of $18/hour, I think i could belong to this category), then unfortunately I am completely out of the listing...very penalyzing because I think most of the employers choose this category and very little look for experts...
Since I have been top-rated, I feel like i have been put in an invisible box that nobody can open...