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michaelajornlin
Community Manager
Community Manager

Boost Your Proposal to the Top of List (March 2022 Update): Questions & Feedback

Today we’re reintroducing the boosted proposals feature with some changes. Read the announcement from James, Director of Product, here and let us know your thoughts about these updates in the comments below.


Thanks,
Mike J.
Content Program Manager, Community
ACCEPTED SOLUTION
2c724a5e
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hello Everyone,

 

First, we want to acknowledge the ongoing feedback you all are sharing. We appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts, opinions, and concerns with Boosted Proposals and want to ensure you our product teams are listening and reading every comment. 

 

Second, we want to reiterate that part of our mission at Upwork is to connect talent with more opportunities which is why we launched Boosted Proposals in support of that. With that in mind, we know there are lingering questions and we want to take this opportunity to be transparent on the value of Boosted Proposals to freelancers and clients, and also answer a few of the recurring questions/themes. 

 

Why Boosted Proposals? We created Boosted Proposals as an opportunity for freelancers to show a strong interest in jobs they feel they are the best fit for. Additionally, Boosted Proposals increases the chances of getting noticed and receiving their desired rate. 

 

What is the true value for freelancers and clients? Boosted Proposals provides an additional lever for freelancers to pull when submitting a proposal without removing existing features (JSS, Top-rated, etc.)  that signal success. Freelancers with a Boosted Proposal have more control over their outcomes while clients gain insight on who has a strong desire for a job. Additionally, boosting improves a freelancer’s chances of being hired by 43%, this means that a freelancer can use the feature as a way to secure the same amount of work they did before, but lower their proposal volume, saving their time and effort.

 

Based on the test, it appeared there was a lot of negative feedback in the Community, how did you decide to move forward with Boosted Proposals? We collected feedback via multiple channels and methods within our testing, including tracking hire rates and speaking directly with freelancers and clients—this evidence fueled the team to move forward with this feature. 

 

 

We hope this addresses some concerns regarding Boosted Proposals and the Upwork team always encourages feedback as we look to make Upwork The World’s work marketplace. 

 

Best,

 

Christopher

Content Program Manager, Community

 

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376 REPLIES 376
petra_r
Member

So you took somehing that was already absolutely dreadful and absolutely detested by the majority, made two miniscule changes, and brought it back.

 

Would that accurately sum up what's been happening over the last few months?

 

Maybe the Director of Monetization could explain how this helps clients find the most suitable freelancers rather than the ones throwing the most money at applying, which is what has been wrong with this absolutely ghastly idea from the start.

 

More freelancers will keep "generating" free connects by applying for all the never-ending scam and spam jobs Upwork seems to be unwilling or unable to do anything about, knowing fully well they WILL get interviewed and get their free 10 connects each time, and throw those at sponsored bids. And if you think I am exaggerating, it's being traded as the lasted hot Upwork-hack on the Interwebs...


I am deeply disappointed that despite everything Upwork decided not to listen to their freelancers. Disappointed, but I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

 

 

Petra our Leader💪

 

Hi Kira,

 

I would be happy to help. I would like to clarify that outbid means that other user spent more Connects for boosting proposal than you. 

If during the auction you are outbid, your proposal will no longer be shown as boosted (it will still be visible, just lower on the list). Also, if you are outbid and your boosted proposal didn’t lead to an eligible interaction, we’ll only charge you the standard number of Connects required to submit a proposal. If it led to an eligible interaction with the client while you were boosted, you will be charged the Connects you bid.

 

You can find more information in this help article. Let us know if you have further questions. 

~ Nikola
Upwork

Thank you for your reply; so, if I understand correctly, if does not mean, that, what I offered to get paid for my services was outbidded then, correct? it just means that used more connects, is that right?

Can you define "eligible interaction" here, please?

The point is we are having to compete with connects which means anyone regardless if they are a scammer or not can be pushed to the top simply by bidding 100+ connects. It's ludicrous that we need to compete this way and a bad idea in my opinion. 

Hi, I am knew, does it makes sense to enter a new bid for a lower proposal when I got outbid the first time? what is your advise please???

  • Last 2 months.. don't get any requests... what can I do now ...

"More freelancers will keep "generating" free connects by applying for all the never-ending scam and spam jobs Upwork seems to be unwilling or unable to do anything about, knowing fully well they WILL get interviewed and get their free 10 connects each time, and throw those at sponsored bids. And if you think I am exaggerating, it's being traded as the lasted hot Upwork-hack on the Interwebs."

It scares me a lot. I was wondering why am I not getting any replies. I create an absolute killer proposal after spending one hour on preliminary research (Because I love the job description), and I am 200% sure that I will get a reply. Na-Da nothing at all. I keep an eye on the job for 3 days and only 1 interview. I go back after 6-7 days and no one is hired.  I really think this boost system creates a further "class" system on an already polarized platform. For some people buying connects is just a cost of doing business. Others have to disrupt their budgets to fit it into their monthly income (at least at the scale it's going someone showed that people are putting up 20-30 connects for each boost)

I feel stupid, but I can't even figure out how I have connects. My clients are long-term and I've kept them on the platform because I like the security of payment without invoicing. However, "connects" keep piling up even though I am not knowingly paying for them. If anyone wants to enlighten me, I would appreciate it. Otherwise, I have to cull through this god-awful website to find the answer. 

You are totally right and we freelancers agree with your every point of view. Thank you

I never used boosted proposal when it was first introduced. Now I see freelancer are bidding with 30 connects for a $40 project to be displayed as 1st on the list.

This feature will not help any freelancer, nor client, as I think UpWork algorithm before was already good.

Not to mention freelancers also pays 20% to UpWork.

UpWork is a good platform, but this feature is just outrageous. 

Anonymous-User
Not applicable

Petra

Well said.

First I've seen this thread and definitely wholeheartedly agree with you.

 

I also doubt the statistics, stated as clients I have spoken to and read on threads aren't all that happy with getting boosted proposals that don't mean the best freelancers, just the ones desperate enough to load connects onton the proposal.

Hello, I have read almost the entire messages line and I feel Petra is wright.

But I would like to add my point of view about this.

 

First, as I have express in other platforms, a good way to prevent scam proyects would be if Upwork clients are also verified as well as freelancers. In this way only serius customers that really want to have freelance services will be inside the platform.

 

In a second line, I understand that in crisis periods all, freelancers, and platform are interested in have better incomes, but I thinks boosted proposals are not the best way to get it.

 

Under my point of view, I would like to share and idea for improvement this method. As I have been in the two sides of a contract, as a freelances or as a customer, I have seen that customers must ask for some skills in there project offers, also freelancers have to add a certain number of habilities in their profiles.

The algorithm can match those habilities to show freelancers the projects that best match with them. From here, the algorithm should give the chance to freelancers to boost the project by adding connects up to the number of their habilities that match with the project ones. So in this way, only freelancers that really matchs the habilities for the project should be on top.

 

This still not a certain idea for customer that the freelancer can really match the spectation of the project since there are freelancers that have habilities in their profile that they don't manage correctly or not in a profesional standard, but in my opinion, it looks like a more efficient and equilibrate way of competition between freelancers, and the way to get on top with clear habilities.

 

Just an idea.

P.D.: But if this have any sence, I will appreciate some free conects for the help... LOL

I support your opinion. Securing jobs here shouldnt be based on the number of connects one used for bidding. It should be based on who is actually qualified. I get tired most times when i try to submit my proposal and see the number of connects thats some used for bidding.

richards37
Member

This is honestly the height of it all... I wonder why upwork will keep disrupting the initial system. I don't think they actually put the freelancers who are actually working their ass out in mind with all these their strategies. Why reintroducing this rejected strategy that has nothing meaningful to offer than to frustrate the work of freelancers? 

roberty1y
Member

Please read what Petra just wrote before you go ahead with this insane idea. The site is already in serious trouble, with its scam-saturated job feeds. It's unbeliebable that Upwork is devoting time and money to fixing something that wasn't broken, while doing nothing about the fact that finding work here is a game of "spot the real job" in the avalanche of fake postings.

Well, at least you've admitted it's about monetization. Upwork has no other interest in making sure that bigger spenders have a higher acceptance rate than the most qualified — and, as Petra pointed out, with real-world data, Upwork is willing to choose monetization over the integrity and welfare of the platform.

 

So is the "product" now connects, in preference to professional services?

moonraker
Member

From the Director of Monetization


Mike J wrote:

For many freelancers, the question at the core of this feature is ‘does boosting help me get jobs?’ Yes. The highest bidders who occupied the 3 boosted slots during the beta collectively had a 37% higher chance of being hired for the job, with the highest bidder enjoying a 43% boost in their chance of being hired.


This is written as though it's a positive, but it isn't.

It is THE OPPOSITE of good. It's atrocious.

Good would look something like this: "We found the best qualified people were more likely to be hired", but quite the opposite is true.

That people were more likely to be hired for no other reason than they threw more connects at it is a ****ing abomination.

Would somebody responsible for this care to explain how this is positive for Upwork and it's clients?

This seems so short-sighted. Some extra revenue from connects in exchange for what? - An inevitable drop in client satisfaction after being mislead into hiring poorly qualified freelancers over those who are perfectly capable.



Jamie F wrote:


That people were more likely to be hired for no other reason than they threw more connects at it is a ****ing abomination

 

Maybe logic is next - in pool of similar, equally skilled people there's a need to filter us out in other way. Since each person creates their own advertisement only what Upwork has been left with is to control who gets on a "shelf" on the line with the eyes. As in groceriers shops choices are many for the same thing and what we choose is most often what we see first.

Makes sense, just - since when people don't like to lurk around? Though, to make this harder for them is a bit tiresome. On the other hand, if you force a client to scroll down through seemingly endless number of freelancers they'll probably give up soon and close the tab. 

 

Maybe you should ask clients whether they want to lurk around and spend good portion of time to pick their service provider - or do they want a quick solution? Sometimes you are in a hurry and buy first t-shirt that stands there, and sometimes you can take an hour to choose one.

____________
Don't correct my grammar!
moonraker
Member

And what's even the point of putting it into the 'feedback' section when you completely ignored us last time? Posting it under 'feedback' knowing that we're just going to be ignored (again) is treating us with contempt.


Jamie F wrote:

And what's even the point of putting it into the 'feedback' section when you completely ignored us last time? Posting it under 'feedback' knowing that we're just going to be ignored (again) is treating us with contempt.


Where's the proof we all agree (the whole freelance community) with what people are saying here. Who knows? Maybe 80% of people actually do want to pay more to get visible to potential clients. 😜

____________
Don't correct my grammar!


Vesna M wrote:

Jamie F wrote:

And what's even the point of putting it into the 'feedback' section when you completely ignored us last time? Posting it under 'feedback' knowing that we're just going to be ignored (again) is treating us with contempt.


Where's the proof we all agree (the whole freelance community) with what people are saying here.


Now show me where I said we all agree... Do not strawman, it's crass, and you're just plain wrong.

BUT. This is the second time this was released and the overwhelming consensus that first time was that it's an awful idea. Asides from few excpetions - mostly from those that don't understand who Upwork works.


Vesna M wrote:


Maybe 80% of people actually do want to pay more to get visible to potential clients. 😜


Really?

Do you get that impressions from comments in this thread so far?

m_terrazas
Member

Well, once again Upwork ignores the comments.
By the way, back in the day I complained about this because clients could tend to hire whoever had the badge since the others, possibly more prepared, with better skills, more experience, etc., would be relegated. And, what a surprise, you have confirmed it for me.
Between "available now" and "boosted proposal", those of us who are not in the business of activating it will remain in the proposal queue.
Disaster once again.

I have been part of this freelance community since 2007, when it was still Elance. Every couple of years, I noticed how the company made 'changes' it advertised were for the 'betterment of the community,' when in fact it was and has been ONLY about money. 

 

Money. Money. Money.

 

Hey. look where Upwork is now. A major company. Kudos to you. However, Sprint was a major company, too, and then decided on monetization ahead of all thought of customer service. What happened? They crashed. Hard. Nearly to the point of total collapse.

 

There's a moment in every company's history when they can 'jump the shark' and begin their slow and inevitable descent into oblivion. Congratulations, Upwork, this is your moment.

 

There are plenty of other options out there for quality freelancers. When you look at the global footprint, seeing how many jobs are posted annually coupled with the number of freelancers in the world ... Upwork has truly become the bottom feeder when it could have been an upper-echelon platform.

 

It's been a slow, sad progression, but one I've seen since the very beginning. Sometimes you can grow too big for your own good. Now you're putting your bottom-line profits ahead of ANY concern for the freelancers who serve your interests. Shame.

roberty1y
Member

Even if you accept that Upwork should put profits ahead of everything else, this move is probably the most deluded and myopic it has ever made. It will make more money on connects (although freelancers can game the system to obtain free connects), but most of its revenue comes from commission on freelancers' fees. To maintain this income, it needs a system whereby clients are offered the best possible system of getting the best match for the jobs they post. Proposal-boosting is the opposite of that.

Yup.

**edited for Community Guidelines** but it's far from the worst thing about it for me.

The more happy clients on the platform the better for all of us, yet Upwork seem happy to risk upsetting clients for short-term gains. Myopic indeed.

marc_compte
Member

When all it takes to get a job is spending money, and one's history and talent gets devaluated like this, then the account of a talented freelancer who has invested years in Upwork will be worth less than before.

 

I hope you did not expect a thank you from your users. If you did, you should go see a doctor.

 

If you keep devaluating your talent pool like this, eventually the ToS will loose all its meaning. You cannot threaten your users with banning them for life if an account of a talented freelancer is worth **bleep**.

I got an option to boost my proposal, does this feature is back? 

Yes, they've revived it, unfortunately, with a few minor modifications.

Awesome!

I haven't seen this yet. Probably not available to everyone 

So, I got this new feature to boost a proposal using connects.

My question is, do clients see on their end that the freelancer boosted their proposal?

Something like in Amazon or Etsy if you have paid to appear first in results, it says "sponsored".

That is obviously paying for to be on top in search results and this is not in search results, but I am sure you get what I mean.

I would sure use this when it comes to some really interesting projects, but if clients see my proposal is "sponsored" to appear on the top, I am not so sure...

Yes, clients can see when a freelancer boosts his/her proposal.

 

The more connects you use to boost your proposal, the higher your proposal appears to the client. More connects = More interest in the job. 

 

Also, this terrible feature is not new and was implemented last year as well (as a test). For some reason, even after the significant backlash it received, Upwork has decided to implement it again.

 

Thank you, Sushant. 

I didn't know it was introduced last year. I was away for months after having covid with severe issues twice.

It appeared to me yesterday. 

What does it say to the client to be exact?

What kind of backlash?

I am not sure if I want to look desperate to the client by "sponsoring" my proposal...


Anneli K wrote:

What does it say to the client to be exact?


Basically, the client sees your proposal marked as "Boosted" if it's in the first three spots. The more connects you use to boost your proposal means the more you're interested in the job.

 


Anneli K wrote:

What kind of backlash?

I am not sure if I want to look desperate to the client by "sponsoring" my proposal...


Most people (including me) hated this feature because they cited it as a cash grab attempt by Upwork.  Before this feature, the proposals were inlined based on the freelancer's expertise and experience, but now, they will be inlined based on how much connects one spends to boost their proposal.


Sushant B wrote:
Basically, the client sees your proposal marked as "Boosted" and by what number of connects. .

Not true. The client does not see by how many connects it has been boosted.


Sushant B wrote:

The more connects you use to boost your proposal, the higher your proposal appears to the client. More connects = More interest in the job. 


Not true. Only the highest 3 appear in the first 3 spots and marked as "boosted". The rest are sorted as before.