All last year I was getting a few jobs here and there . Now I am submiting more proposals. In fact I am buying double the amount of credits. I have re-written my profile, for a while I stopped adding my web address to my cover letter. I have even asked directly for a response. I put a ticket into the help desk and they told me there was nothing wrong. I have even dropped my hourly rate to $10 a hour.
There has to be something I can not see.
If you're buying credits to submit proposals you're trying too hard. Gaining a hire isn't easy and the competition is intense. Trust me when I say you're not alone. One thing that immediately caught my eye with your profile is your JSS. This is one of the most contributing factors to not getting hired. Unfortunately once it has reached a certain level it can become increasingly difficult to recover.
Good luck to you!
Getting established is very difficult, especially if you are in a technical field where you have competition from SE Asia. It just takes a lot of time and perseverance.
By way of more specific feedback on your profile:
1. Your JSS is currently 75%. This is probably the biggest issue. You need to get that above 90% by getting a few wins under your belt.
2. You seem to have two stale projects, which are likely contributing to the low JSS. Get them closed. One of them seems to have a high budget yet you've been paid very little, which doesn't look good.
3. The nearly universal advice here is to keep profile rates on the high side. I don't always agree with that but I do here. I expect a native English speaking 3D expert to charge a lot more than $10 an hour.
"If you're buying credits to submit proposals you're trying too hard. Gaining a hire isn't easy and the competition is intense."
These two things actually contradict each other.
There are many ways to improve the chances of getting work here, and buying connects to bid on more jobs is one of them. As long as the bid is for a good project and the proposal is well written, this is an entirely valid way of getting traction here.
I remember spending a ton of money on connects to get re-established on Upwork when I came back after the merger. It worked, and now I don't have to do that any more.
> I have even dropped my hourly rate to $10 a hour.
That's counter-productive, especially coupled with a low JSS. It makes it look as if you don't know what you're doing whereas a higher rate with a low JSS could give the impression you simply had bad luck/a bad fit on a project.
Your profile could be better written, highlighting *precisely* what you do and avoiding mention of what you don't. You could also try re-ordering your portfolio so your best pieces come first.