"Can you please take my opinion and think for a while, is it going to bring you sales and make the user purchase your connects?"
I'm sure it does make users purchase connects. If they run out, and they want more, then they have to. I'm sure a lot of people don't buy any more, but some do. That brings extra money to Upwork. If they have a system where users don't have to buy more connects or they can get them back whenever they want, then nobody would need to buy more connects... and as a result, they won't buy more connects. That doesn't bring extra money to Upwork.
The thing is that revenue from connects is secondary to revenue from fees. You need 10 people buying an extra 10 connects to equal just one person working on one $1000 project. As a result, we need more clients posting $1000 projects than we need freelancers buying extra connects, but it's a nice little side effect for Upwork when they do.
One thing that might drive clients away, is getting a large number of bids from people who might not be the best person for the job. If connects are free or plentiful, or easy to get back if you withdraw... then every guy and his dog is going to apply as there's less vested in doing so. Making it expensive for people to submit proposals should result in a higher quality of proposal, as in theory, people are more likely to only spend their connects on projects they are more likely to win. And they're more likely to win if they have experience working on similar projects and have the skills to do so. As a 'sometimes' client... I'd rather have 25 qualified proposals than 100 from any old rabble!
That's the way I see it anyway.
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