I believe in having ranges when it comes to applications. I mostly apply to Intermediate to Expert job levels but before I decide to write a proposal, I check what information is available on the client.
I normally check:
1. Average pay per hour
2. Work feedback
3. Rates paid on similar job posted by the client
I just finished an hour of scouring for potential clients and even in the expert level I see "bid at $3/hr" or a client that is notorious for paying not above $5/hour regardless of job expertise (for the Writing category).
It's insane. I haven't bid at my lowest rate yet but I might just have to if I don't find more active clients. Some of my favorites are either on vacation or are simply not requiring anything from me.
I made freelancing as my main source of income and right now, I'm hoping to get at least $300 this week just to get by.
P.S. I'm from the Philippines so $300.00 is still a lot of money, enough to survive for two weeks. And no, I don't bid $3 per hour. Just look at the current jobs on my full portfolio. Don't mind the irate review. That client wanted a cheap VA (I'm a writer, not a VA) and wanted me to lower my price for them.
"I just finished an hour of scouring for potential clients and even in the expert level I see "bid at $3/hr" or a client that is notorious for paying not above $5/hour regardless of job expertise (for the Writing category)."
I don't know thoroughly the W&T industry, but some clients clearly don't understand that the lowest bid won't necessarily output the best quality. I believe that saving connects and just filtering out really well the clients will result in less time squandered with clients that want ludicrous rates.