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ยป Forums ยป Freelancers ยป Let's put an end to this ABSURD bidding war!
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ivydocarmo
Community Member

Let's put an end to this ABSURD bidding war!

We used to be charged from 2 to 8 connects to send a proposal. So far so good.

But now, not only Upwork is charging 16 connects to do it, but also we have to bid even more connects to have a chance to be seen by the client! I'm a top-rated-plus Brazilian translator and my fellow freelancers are bidding over 60 connects on some jobs! This is simply absurd!

Oh, and Upwork is now notifying us when a client sees our proposal, just to make it clearer that we won't stand a chance without accepting to be explored by this absurd bidding scheme.

I'm already outraged by this change in the fee system (I worked my a** off to achieve the five-percent fee and now they make me go back to the "standard" ten-percent fee? Oh, come on!) but this bidding thing is really making me mad.

 

How much more money will you guys take from us???

99 REPLIES 99
jacyle-santos
Community Member

Wow, finally someone spoke the truth! I don't wanna have to buy hundreds of connects just to prove to the clients that I'm a good professional. I think Upwork should eliminate this bidding feature and just keep a fixed amount of connects for each job. And it should be only from 2 to 8 because they only give us 10 connects each month.

Jacile, please remember that no one forces you to bid for jobs. Save your money, if you have a good profile and a good cover letter (particularly the 2 first sentences - beware) chances are you'll get jobs. Many of the freelancers that are applying for the same job as you don't stand a chance to get it because they are not at all "a good fit".

On top of all that, many have not even read the job post correctly and should not apply at all.

joansands
Community Member

I do not boost my proposals. And quite often my proposals do get read and I do get interviews. I am also careful on what jobs I do bid on and the required connects to do so. I have been on Upwork for five years and the platform has always been very compeitive because there are so many freelancers, not many clients in relation to freelancers, and many clients are unrealistic in their expectations. One has to just keep plodding along and building up good feedbacks, and those feedbacks really help in getting additional jobs.

 

I agree with you, Joan. I never boost offers, it's not necessary.

I've been on Upwork for 7 years now, and I have many "repeat clients" that regularly contact me with new jobs anyway.

No, it's not necessary. But, in my experience, it more than doubles the chance that a proposal will be opened. That's something I'm willing to pay for, since the vast majority of clients who open my proposals contact me. 

 

For sure, it's not for everyone and it's being overused and used ineffectively. But, it's nothing more than a business decision that should be made strategically.

f7546bfa
Community Member

dismayed  by the steep increase in required connects for bidding and the added challenge of securing visibility, raising concerns about the fairness of this new system. 

The system was not designed to be fair, it was designed so Upwork would make more money...

I see all the time this advice that "You don't need to bid to get jobs" "Please improve your profile" blah, blah, blah, but the truth is that this bidding system is making me get fewer jobs, the few ones that come out have more than 50 proposals in a few minutes,  so most of the time your proposal isn't even viewed, it doesn't matter if you take your time to write it, by the time you send it the customer they already have a lot of them, and I don't think they get to read them all. 

In addition, with all the new unskilled freelancers in the platform, the customer would get what? more than 50% of proposals that are not suitable for them? 

How can you compete in this scenario? I don't know, but it's frustrating. 

 

P.S. I know complaining doesn't work either, and no one is going to do anything about it, but just wanted to say it. 

 

 

karywiiky
Community Member

I agree with you, as a premium member 80 connects a month aren't enough and, despite bidding higher, there's no guarantee that the client will see your proposal. and in my field (video editor) there are freelancers bidding over 50 connects, that's insane 

Karina,

 

Please go through the Academy and work on your profile. Currently, you are a target for scammers. I don't understand what your beach guide video has to do with being a "film-maker, editor, and screenwriter" but to me, it seems unprofessional. And as someone who has been online and on this platform for years, it is going to attract attention you do not want. Your video is an extension of your profile. If you are not doing videos of yourself, or you are not a "beach guide" then it should be changed. The introduction should be in paragraphs without the emojis/graphics.

What does that have to do with connects? The more you learn, the better you can recognize scams and jobs that will never hire. Don't apply to any job unless you know, that you will be one of the top two. How do you know? Look at the job description. Can you do all the skills to perfection? If you can't, and can do part of it but really need a job - don't apply. It's a waste of connects. And never boost, unless you not only know you are one of the very best, you also really want the job. Look at your return on your investment. If the job pays $5.00 and requires 10 connects, you are losing $1.50 plus Upwork's cut. It would make little sense to apply for this job, and would be pointless to boost. On the other hand, if it's a $500. job, then it makes more sense to apply and consider boosting if you think it might help. Be selective, and don't apply for just any job.

Hi Jeanne H

do you work for Upwork? just wondering....

It's sad how so many freelancer assume any freelancer who knows how to use the platform effectively is a secret Upwork employee. I really hate the fact that so many freelancers see success and managing their businesses strategically as such an impossible dream that their first response to seeing success is "must be fake! Upwork is paying them!" 

Can you please feedback on my profile?

almostanangel
Community Member

Well, this hurts.

marjan22
Community Member

I still dont get, this expensive conncets thing!

Freelancers are geting away from the platform since they cant apply to jobs.

Upwork in the new financial results reported loss of $(4.0) million,

Clients are getting mostly freelancers that can pay, not  the best freelancers.


debi-f
Community Member

It seems that Upwork is doing its business selling connects, that's why there are jobs that require 4 connects and they allow people to boost their bids with 50 connects or more (especially the new freelancers), and they keep the scam jobs until people post their bidsโ€ฆusing connects, of course.

 

Maybe if Upwork will not earn extra-money from us, will decide to control the platform and check the clients before they post jobs.

 

I suggest even not paying for a membership. Use the 10 free connects and only buy 10 connects more ($1.5) if you find a job that fits your skills without boosting! If Upwork does not get money from the freelancers, maybe they will care to avoid the scammers, or do something about clients that post jobs and never hire anyone. 

Ooooohhh! Now it all makes sense! I did the maths and could not for the life of me understand how any freelancer can make any money here lately. Seems we as freelancers need to stop buying connects!
How about "1 connect = 1 bid proposal" (like Freelancer.com)

If you'd like the few remaining good clients on the platform to run screaming, that's a great idea. 

A loss of $4 million is a massive improvement for Upwork over the past several years. Typically, they're losing tens of millions every quarter.

Going from plus +17 to minus -4 is not improvment!

debi-f
Community Member

Today... 50 connects for a job that asks for 4 connects??!!!  

 

Nueva imagen (1).jpg

 

 

 

68160d6c
Community Member

68160d6c_0-1691950041026.png

This happens within only 1~2minutes.

 

 

bet me that those freelancers that applied and bidded have nothing to offer

jarankowsky
Community Member

Upwork is likely surviving from connect's bidding. With tech recession in full force, I doubt it has even 20% of the paying clients mass than it had in 2022/21.  Now you see agencies in bidding wars, paying 50 dollars to get a 30 dollar job, averaging on volume, with freelancers in asia making well under 10 dollars an hour. 

So you think  these 50 connects bid are done by agencies? What allows you to think so?

if you think that the 50 connect bidding is being done by agencies, that's not true. But you are 100 percent right about the Asians. 

Paying clients for freelancing gigs have declined dramatically because (by its own statement), Upwork is no longer advertising for them. They have shifted their attention to the long-term market, and a huge focus of their last quarterly report was about their success in shifting to long-term relationships as a source of revenue. They are not interested in drawing in true freelancing gigs anymore. 

And still, I see red in the future.

We'll see. I think acting more as an employment agency or provider of misclassified employees in freelancer form will be much more lucrative for them--and with a much smaller staff and less infrastructure.

crart
Community Member

Then it is not a freelance platform anymore and yet they still advertise it as such, which in itself is questionable. As many "features" they provide. Frankly, I am not an employee and there is nowhere in ToS said that I am employed by Upwork or the client, therefore it is all a big mess, as I imagine even Upwork is lost in their own "rules". Sends quite clear message to potential clients and freelancers.

I repeat again - Upwork is a middle man, providing a place for clients and freelancers to meet, and for that receiving part of the money from contracts they make possible. If the middle man is not doing the job well, they are fired. Freelancer cannot be fired as they are not employees. I would like people to finally understand that it is us, freelancers and clients, actually hiring Upwork to provide specific services to help us connect.

But every long-term relationship starts with a new client. And I see less and less valuable new clients every day, and presumably existing clients fleeing because of hordes of unskilled people.

 

Plus, having kindly raised from 5% to 10% the fees on long-term contracts, by the end of the year many people will take their contracts outside of Upwork.

 

Not bad for a company interested in long-term relationships.

That's true, but that new client can be advertising for a single blog post or a six-month 30-hour/week commitment or a contract-to-hire gig meant to be permanent. Upwork has said itself that they have shifted their advertising to these longer-term positions. That, I believe, is a big part of the reason we're not seeing good opportunities anymore--Upwork used to spend millions of dollars every month drawing them here and now they don't.  In every category I have checked, 1/3 to 1/2 of all postings are contract-to-hire. 

 

I also believe this is the reason for the change in fees. When 5% of freelancers are in long-term contracts, it's viable to cut their fees. When it's 80% or 99%, cutting fees in half would gut Upwork's revenues. 

I would be curious to see their new advertising strategy, but I do not live in the US and I installed every possible ad blocker on my devices.

 

Additionally - and probably I am a bit naรฏve here - the most relevant part of "freelancing" should be the "free" attribute. The contract-to-hire model resembles more to an ordinary 9-to-5 job, and many people know how it is dangerous to call themselves "freelancers" and at the same time put all their eggs in one basket.

 

 Last but not least, not every kind of job is suitable for a long-term, full-time position. End of my musings.

I am sure that there is an affiliate program by which bloggers attract newcomers. I have met many newbies frustrated by the loss of money many times. They complain that they watched a video on YouTube on how to earn millions in a week without the knowledge of relaxing on the couch. They come, wasted money but there are still no millions.

I don't think that bloggers shoot this just for hype and views.

I found one "life hacker" in my region and tried to find out what his interest was. This type of liar works solely for money. Asked why he talks about untold riches and is silent about scammers, prices and hard work. The reaction was predictable: he instantly wiped my comments and banned me from the channel.

This gives me an understanding that not all Upwork advertising is honest. ๐Ÿ™‚

Funny that you mention the videos on YouTube. Many of them are really misleading. It goes like this, one persons claims to have made a fortune on Upwork. He/she has so much work that he/she shouldn't have the time to make videos on YouTube, and yet that person does. I guess his/her hope is to have get views to make some money on YouTube

...not to mention clickbait articles and other resources created with the sole purpose of generating clicks and traffic.

 

But I was actually wondering about the current, official Upwork ads. I remember the old zombies, a rare example of good taste. Has Upwork continued to delight its target of potential clients with similar masterpieces? 

mayraguerra
Community Member

Upwork is just making us waste money. The majority of these jobs are also fake as the clients do not even respond! 

How is Upwork "making" you do anything? If you're not getting a good return on your investment, the sensible thing to do is stop investing in that channel and shift your efforts. 

sarahharris818
Community Member

I was so shocked today when I was bidding on jobs! 16 credits, just to apply to a job?!?!?! It really doesn't make sense. 

andriyofarts
Community Member

Few examples of "connects pricing" as of now:

$5 fixed-price - **Edited for Community Guidelines** - 8 connects

$20 fixed-price - **Edited for Community Guidelines**- 8 connects

$50 fixed-price - **Edited for Community Guidelines** - 12 connects

$3/h hourly - **Edited for Community Guidelines** - 16 connects

 

This is becoming completely insane!

For last 30 days I applied to 26 jobs and spent 140 connects (8 jobs for 4 connects each & 18 jobs for 6 connects each). With new connects rates it would be 8 and 12 connects instead of 4 and 6. This way Upwork is pretty much forcing me to buy connects to keep applying to jobs. Pay-to-win* (*win is not guaranteed though). This is outrageous and frustrating.

I'm encountering a similar situation. Interestingly, the number of invitations has decreased, and response rates are lower too. It seems Upwork is no longer a reliable job resource.

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