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Cheapskates posting in "expert rates"

janetmcmonagle
Ace Contributor

When I search new opportunities on UpWork, I filter for the higher rates.  It is my expectation that ths cuts out entry level workers, and also clients who post jobs that are more likely good fits in budget and scope for people in countries outside North America, where wages are lower. I have been a virtual assistant for 10 years in the USA, and am not interested in entry level work or entry level wages.

So I pulled a few this morning in my category of personal assistant, admin tasks, etc, and found that they were really interesting until I got to the budget size,  Miniscule.  They appear to want a lot of highly technical and detailed work, native English, good skills.  And they say they will pay high rates.  But the budgets are low. None of the offerings I found today specify that they prefer a particular area.  I realized that the clients themselves are either from India or Latin America.  

Is this because clients do not know how to post the budget, or are the "highest rates" meant to be relative to the market where they are looking (ie India, Bangladesh, Philippines, etc) In the USA, these rates are impossible for me.  How can I filter better? 

Also I am frustrated that so much of my feed is clogged with "payment method not verified" and very little job description. 

Anyone else experiencing this?  How do you find the best clients?

9 REPLIES 9
eepsheep
Active

I have yet to find an exerienced freelancer here in the community willing to divulge their secrets. 

 

I have all the same complaints - so I am going to tag along and see what happens here.

 

Smiley Indifferent

re: "Is this because clients do not know how to post the budget, or are the "highest rates" meant to be relative to the market where they are looking (ie India, Bangladesh, Philippines, etc) In the USA, these rates are impossible for me."

 

If the work you do is the same as the work done by those contractors, with the same level of quality and customer service, then clients should save money by hiring those contractors.

 

I live in the U.S.

 

When clients hire me at a high rate to work for them, they do so not out of any sense of national loyalty, but because nobody is available in those countries to do the type of work I do at a far lower rate. If anybody in other countries is on Upwork who can do the type of work I do at the same level as me, they're charging the same type of rates that I charge.

csjarmitage
Community Guru

You will save yourself much angst if you learn to stop assigning geographical marketplaces to Upwork.  This is a global community.  Once you free yourself of that mindset, you'll find that you can position yourself as being the best person for the job, regardless of location.

 

On average, I apply to 2 jobs/month.  I'm very selective.  I don't search based on rate.  I search on client history alone. 

 

There are some gems in the low-budget category and some real stinks in the high budget.  Ultimately, it's what you have to offer for the rate you require that will get you noticed.  I've found that the key to success on UW is specialization.  

+10 Christy.

 

I have just applied to what I think is probably a well-paid job at entry level. I might be rejected because I have put myself at expert level in my profile.

 

Sometimes clients who are genuinely high rankers, will offer what to them is an entry-level rate, but in some categories on Upwork, this would seem generous to a freelancer. 

 

Like Christy I will ignore the levels if I am interested in a job. (Not that I am often awarded them;))

 

 

Lol, me either, but often enough that I don't starve

 

 

 

Nichola L wrotecolettelewis wrote:

 

+10 Christy.

 

I have just applied to what I think is probably a well-paid job at entry level. I might be rejected because I have put myself at expert level in my profile.

 

Sometimes clients who are genuinely high rankers, will offer what to them is an entry-level rate, but in some categories on Upwork, this would seem generous to a freelancer. 

 

Like Christy I will ignore the levels if I am interested in a job. (Not that I am often awarded them;))

 

 


 

If after 10 years of working as a virtual assistant, you don't have your own marketing and network, then you may be stuck "paying your dues." On a new platform, you can tell people you have experience, but they are more likely to believe what they see. Make sure your profile demonstrates your core abilities and only bid on jobs that require those unique talents. The overall market rates for a global platform are going to be based on global economics.

lindseyhgregory
Community Leader

Every one of us has to sift thru the **Edited for Community Guidelines** that is Upwork, BUT there are ways to make that easier on yourself:

 

  1. Don't worry so much about country where the client is located, but where they want their provider located  (if it's someone in Murica who wants someone in the Philipines or India or w/e only, then I know not to apply)
  2. Check out the history of people they've hired in the past; bonus points if it's for the same job but they need a new better contractor. If they have a history of paying $10/hr for an expert copywriter or social media strategist, I'm not wasting my connects
  3. How complete is their RFP? If it's scanty on the info, i.e. "Need X" then I don't know why they bothered wasting their own time
  4. Show that your work is worth the investment of whatever it is that you're charging

... Uh that's all I got now for now

Lindsey, You were the first person to actaully answer the 'finding a client' question.

 

Only issue I find is that if I find a job more that 20 minutes old in the design catagory it's already got over 50 proposals and I have literally NEVER gotten an interview in that case.

 

I *really* wish we had more filtering options though. I *really* wish there was some trick to filtering that you guys could relate. 

 

A lot of the other answers spoke on how we need to be better as freelancers. I get that I need to 'pay my dues'. I get that I need to build up work. I get that I need to start out low for my pricing and take what I can get, work hard and get rated high for those. Honestly, I get all of that.

 

But being new to the platform is a lot like banging your head against a wall. I discount my work for every job, I have a short, sweet, informative proposal (that I tailor as neccesary), and I have a 100% complete profile, with tests, certifications and surprise party glitter. I understand I can do some work to make my design portfolio stand out more. I guess I will be doing that this weekend.

 

I just can't get over how HARD and demeaning this is to someone trying to break in; especially when I was top 3 in my class. It's not easy being 'declined' over and over again when you know your work would *blow them away*. I don't even have a big head about it. I just know that every time I deliever work I always go above their expectations. 

 

The barriers to entry seem so high I have caught myself wondering if I should try a different route. Smiley Frustrated I suppose I will someday, probably should work on my own website for just those reasons this weekend as well as my portfolio.

Amber, I'm not sure what types of jobs you're applying for, but it sounds like you might be submitting proposals for anything and everything? For me, the key to success has been to specialize. I only submit about 10 proposals a month, but I usually win two or three of them. I don't waste my time applying for jobs with low wages, vague descriptions or for jobs that already have 50 proposals (there are plenty of tips in other threads about what kind of jobs to look for and which ones to avoid).

 

Also, you sound a bit desperate (not that I blame you!), but perhaps you're coming across as too desperate and eager to please when you're bidding for projects? That might undermine a client's confidence in you.

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