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Boosting - to boost, or not to boost?

About this Boosting --

What is your opinion?



 We generate revenue from both talent and clients, with a majority of our revenue generated from service fees charged to talent for access to our work marketplace, Upwork 10-K Feb 15 ,2022.


Community Member

I rely on my charm instead. It's got me one hire in the last 30 days and 24 proposals.

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I mean, this is just getting ridiculous at this point.



It is a brilliant connect monetizing strategy if you think of it --- driven by greed, but brilliant, and yes bidding 32 connects for a job on Upwork is excessive, I agree. 

As I said, my clients - and those I interview with - all tell me that they don't see how this makes any difference in percelating the best fit to the top - so I suggest don't boost if thinking of it and stop boosting if you are.



I agree, it's brilliant but not great lol

Yeah I only boosted for like a week, hoping by us all providing feedback that Upwork will make a change sooner. 

Why do you consider bidding less than $5 for a job that might pay thousands or tens of thousands of dollars in the long run "excessive"? 

Doesn't that depend on the job? Most of my clients end up paying thousands or tens of thousands of dollar--hardly seems a big deal to spend less than $5 to get in front of them.


Since my boosted proposals are 2-3x as likely to be opened, I won't be stopping any time soon.

Interesting--I think it is just the opposite. I often see freelancers with skills largely interchangeable with many other freelancers talking about the importance of being among the first to bid. I have a specialized skill and often successfully send proposals after a job has been posted for a few days, or even more than a week. 

Not applicable

The best time to boost is NEVER, it is gambling on the fact that someone else won't see it, and the connects to get there grow and grow.

Community Member

I despise this new system. I was seeing a 10% submit to interview rate prior to this feature & haven't seen a result from it yet. It is 100% selfish from Upwork in my opinion. It takes away from the most important aspect of our careers = the skillset we've acquired. It does a major disservice to the clients too for that same reason. By promoting a "pay-to-play" world, the client essentially sees who pays the most & not who is the most qualified for the job. Take it away. -10/10 do not recommend. I'm using the rest of my connects & probably going to look elsewhere for projects. Shame as I was working on building an agency on this platform. 

As I have said above, I think clients are getting wise to it, those I ask have noticed no correlation between bid-races and freelancer capability/fit and they understand it to be a revenue-generating scheme.  I wouldn't worry much about it as I foresee its eventual demise: when client begin to complain!!!


When you view UW's revenue, you'll note that, for a worldwide-reach, they generate very little revenue annually, and the majority of UW revenue is generated by fees they charge freelancers for access to their network.  I am not disparaging Upwork or their business model: I generate a nice chunk my living here and I mostly like the experience.  However, when you charge 20% of $3/hour projects, you aren't making big bank, esp for a US registered Pubco, so I can imagine the network-monetizing brainstorming session in Santa Clara when some wise MBA suggested bidding wars using connects. 

Community Member

A system created *only* for Upwork's cash machine. I've seen proposals with freelancers bidding over 30 connects! if you take out the cost of connects + Upwork's % fee, then the revenue is actually not worthy. And sends an horrible message to the clients, that think that if you don't boost, you're not as interested on their project.

Well done, Upwork!

welcome to the hunger games!

Andrea P wrote:

And sends an horrible message to the clients, that think that if you don't boost, you're not as interested on their project.

Many people think it's the other way round - if you boost, you are desperate.

Community Member

First of all, the stats. The boosted proposals have more success because you personally boosted them for the fact that they are more relevant to you. So you hand picked the ones that have more relevance and boosted them. This doesnt mean boosting gave you the success. 

Second, some person on upwork thought this is a good idea so it got developed and released. But who has the final say? Primarily freelancers. So if you keep on using it, they will say its a huge success. If not they will turn it off. Actually they may pretend its a huge success for a while until they give up 🙂 

Personally i have never boosted so far. Because i know it won't get me into a better position. It may change from person to person though, based on how you'd like to market yourself

Community Member

Seen a project yesterday with 80,75, & 60 as the top boost.


I haven't boosted in a while but I contacted support asking to be refunded all of the connects I wasted on the feature. I suggest anyone who's used the feature & hates it to do the same. 

Brandon M wrote:

Seen a project yesterday with 80,75, & 60 as the top boost.



They allowed us to bid to get the top spot for our proposals. 

Then they showed us the connects needed for the top 3 placements...

Now the only "feature" missing to make this a perfect system is to allow us to raise our "bet" or bid by adding more connects after initially boosting...so if someone outbids a proposal we should be allowed to raise our "bet or bid ...:) Can't wait for this ...


So...you contacted customer support and said, "I repeatedly made what I now consider to have been a bad decision, entirely of my own volition. Please protect me from the consequences of my own choices."?

Community Member

Do you think clients are considering boosted proposals over nonboosted? I'm hugely confused about the best way to go. I'm finding myself spending a lot on connects now, when I typically don't need to ever buy more connects as part of my membership. I usually have more connects than I need, and now I run out weekly. I'm not seeing a lot of difference in my interviews. 

I am definitely seeing boosted proposals viewed at a much higher rate than non-boosted.


But, since the ability to see how many proposals were opened is new, it's impossible to say whether this represents a change over the pre-boost era.

Community Member

I've been boosting my proposals not to compensate my lack of experience but I was thinking that if there's a higher chance for my proposal to be seen then the clients will see I am very qualified for the job. Also I prefered to spend 30-50 connects on a bigger job for which I felt that I am a very good fit instead of applying to a lot of jobs.

Turned out it was a waste of time and money. I boosted my proposal on job posts for which I already have the work done from the past and I could deliver results within minutes and I didn't even got a reply.

Here are my Proposals stats.
Screenshot 2022-11-06 at 10.06.23.png

If with my profile I have a hard time finding a good job then I don't want to be in the shoes of a new freelancer on Upwork.

The question is: did Upwork changed something to 'hide' more the non-boosted proposals? What are my chances to be seen with a non-boosted proposal now* compared to back in the times when this system was not implemented.

*Lets say if we ignore the top 3 boosted proposals which a client sees first.

Paul Eugen R wrote:

Turned out it was a waste of time and money. I boosted my proposal on job posts for which I already have the work done from the past and I could deliver results within minutes and I didn't even got a reply.

The stats in your screen grab seem to tell a different story - your boosted proposals were viewed more often and you got more interviews compared to your non-boosted proposals. Seven out of your 8 interviews were a result of boosted proposals? If I were getting results like that (which I'm not), I'd keep boosting.

Not applicable

I don't boost and since the boosting thing was brought in my attitude to Upwork has gone downhill considerably. I have proposed 1 job recently, didn't boost and got the contract, but I believe the proposal was key. 

I refuse to get involved in a race to 1000 connects for a job.

I noticed that Upwork only allows you to buy 80 boosts now, it used to be much more, I wonder why that is.

Community Member

Upwork milking the cow to the fullest 🤣

Screenshot_20221219_163238_Freelancer - Upwork.jpg

 totally not cool lol

I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion.
I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate.
All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die.
Community Member

Hello Upwork, 


It has become worst since the boost feature comes in the action.  Please remove this feature. Connects were perfectly fine. 

Community Member

The boosting feature is one of the worst things I have ever seen in my 15-year experience on odesk/upwork.

Despite being top-rated plus, and thus not being the last kid on the block, I can't get a job anymore as my proposals are never ever seen as they are surpassed by fools who go all-in and waste 60 to 100 connects to boost. 

I understand that upwork "needs" the money, but they should instead trying to limit their costs if they want to rise their revenue, their 20% fee seems to me sky-high already, and this is not counting the clients' fees. It's not like freelancer must always pay for others...it works like that with government already

Community Member

I've been a member of upwork since 2015.  I think the boosting idea is completely ridiculous.  I am a freelancer and I also hire freelancers.  I do not hire someome who has boosted.  Why is this needed.  I am thinking of leaving UpWork because of this ridiculous idea.  They should remove it from the process for sure.

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