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To all freelancers looking for help

I have always had freelancers come to me for help. In the last year, the river has swelled into an enormous ocean.


You don't need me; Upwork provides an enormous amount of information that few ever use. If, after you have gone through all the information I provide, you still have questions, that is when you ask additional questions in the forum.


If you think you will make big bucks right away, you are mistaken. The majority of freelancers never land a job because they have no skills and aren't interested in educating themselves. Others believe online freelancing is a path to full-time employment. It can be, but highly unlikely on this platform.


Freelancing is not for everyone. It means you are self-employed and must adhere to all regulations and laws governing responsibilities, such as paying taxes. Freelancing means you are on your own. No one has your back, including Upwork. If you don't follow the rules, no one will or can help you.


If you are willing to work hard, follow the rules and prepared to spend a lot of connects and proposals, you can be successful, as many are on Upwork. While so many fail, it is almost always due to lack of skills and treating freelancing like employment  where the employer will make sure you do the job correctly.


If you want to succeed, start with the Terms of Service, then read this from Wes. 


Then go here. Then here.  Next, check this site regularly for events such as webinars and other learning opportunities.

After that, go here for safety information, and then here. If you still need help, after you have gone through all the previous steps, you can find additional help here. This thread is dedicated to new freelancers. And here are announcements from Upwork that can help keep you up to date.


It will take some time to go through all the information. I'm not suggesting people should not post in the forum, I am suggesting before you ask questions and want help, you need to help yourself first.



From Prashant P: "And have relevant profile picture of your face.  Not some desks, or Mickey mouse, or full face covering." 

From Susan S: "And patience! Have patience! It takes a while to get started, even after going through all the information available."

From Martina P:  "Only one thing you forgot, namely telling people to use all 15 skills, if you have all 15 skills"

And with advice from Maria T, I will say, 

Refrain from personal messages, please read all the links I have added.



1,779 REPLIES 1,779

The public ratings are a tiny part of your JSS. Although we don't know the algorithm or program for controlling the JSS, we know the private feedback carries significant weight. There are additional factors, including length of job, amount, etc.


All you can do is write stellar proposals and look forward.


Because every freelancer has different rates, fees for services, methods of working, amounts for jobs, etc. the JSS calculation will be different. The formula is secret, because if known, some people would cheat.


Being a native or bilingual speaker in three languages sets you apart from the many program translators that exist here, and should benefit you. If you know what happened with the client, resolve to make sure those issues do not exist for the next job. Although 69% seems awful, there are plenty of freelancers who have recovered and went on to be highly successful.


At this point, all you can do is write stellar proposals, and do will when hired. It won't be easy or quick, but you can recover. Good luck.


Hey, Jeanne! Your words of encouragement mean a lot to me. Thank you! I'll take your advice, submit proposals and be patient for now 🙂

Community Member

I really appreciate this helpful information! As someone new to job hunting, I'm eager to adhere to all the necessary rules and guidelines.

Community Member

i have no connects  because i am a poor girl I need a job on upwork please help me 

No one can help you get connects. You either use the ones you get for free - and don't apply for any jobs after that, or you have to buy connects. If you have so little money that you can't spend it, and not be depriving yourself or your family, then perhaps freelancing is not the path you should be taking now.


Freelancing requires marketable skills, money to run the business, including buying connects, time, patience, motivation, and, again, those marketable skills. If you don't have one or more of those qualifications, you will not make any money here. I'm not being mean or discouraging you, but I am being honest. I hate seeing anyone lose their last few dollars here.


If you want to freelance, go back to the top pinned post, and follow every link. You need to create a complete and professional profile, and learn how to use the platform safely. Only you can decide if you can afford to freelance.

Community Member

Great input.

Community Member


Hey Jeanne,

Your insights are invaluable for freelancers navigating Upwork. It's true, that success here requires more than just signing up. Education, diligence, and patience are key. Your roadmap of resources is gold. Remember, self-sufficiency is crucial in freelancing. Dive into the wealth of info Upwork offers, and you'll be on the right track. And thanks for highlighting the importance of a professional profile picture — it's your first impression! Keep sharing your wisdom; it's a beacon for newcomers.

Community Member

Appreciate this!

Community Member

Please review my profile:  https://www.upwork.com/freelancers/~011077541f38cf4134 and leave some suggestions on how to increase profile views and invitations. Looking forward to your help.
Thank you

I reviewed your profile and while I see you have worked on it, it can be improved. Don't use greetings or names in the introduction. The top line of your profile is all clients see in a search. The first line should be rewritten to tell the client why you are the best choice for the job. Don't list every country where you have worked in the top portion. If you want to use it, put it below. Instead of the lists, use paragraphs. The introduction should be in paragraphs.


Use a comma or other way to define your skills title. It can easily be mistaken for a 1 or an I.


Why does your large business card say "Virtual Assistant"? You have too many skills floating around and need to present a professional image throughout your profile. Decide what your skills are, and what you can do with them.


You will benefit from reading the top post, and following all of the links.


I under
asi khan
Community Member

Yowtch!  What else are you thinking?  Respectfully.

I'm guessing you are addressing me, because I wrote the post.


I'm thinking that you don't believe freelancers are responsible for themselves. That, and offering helpful information, is all I have written. I'm thinking you must be new to the realm of freelancing.


If you would like to elaborate, I will respond. I'm always curious why people will not take responsibility for themselves.


If I am misinterpreting your comment, please let me know. Also, if you tell me what you find disturbing, I can enlighten you to the issues of using a platform safely.

Community Member

Hello Jeanne! Thanks for the helpful work you do.

I'd like you to review my profile and let me know what I can tweak to make it better - https://www.upwork.com/freelancers/~0106dc70d4dc76ac21

Thanks and I'll be looking forward to feedback.

I'm glad to see you have put in the work for your profile. Nice.


Since you have found work in a variety of areas on YouTube, I would put that in your skills title. Police bodycam related jobs will probably not sustain you. Because you have found some success, I am hesitant to have you make too many changes. While Upwork, freelancers, managers, clients, and others have their idea of the perfect profile, the truth is, it's whatever works for you.


Be careful with your first sentence, which is all the clients see in a search. Use that sentence to tell the client why you are the best choice, and don't use names, greetings, or similar. With proposals, it's the first and second line.


Form the text into paragraphs. I would add a bit about your ability to cover diverse subjects. Include something about your attention to detail and facts when writing scripts.


I would remove, "you're here now, so message me immediately." There are better ways to write a call to action. Clients don't like to feel they are being pressured. It's better to say something about being available, ready to work for them, etc.


Thanks a lot, Jeanne. I'll make corrections where necessary as you've pointed out. Cheers.

Yes correct :hundred_points: No fuss straight talk

Community Member

Jeanne, can you read my profile, please?

I daily applied 10s of proposals although there is no response


and done below it's my last cover letter to a proposal I applied

"Hey! I can consolidate and format a second sheet-like sheet one within two hours. I am an Excel expert. any questions regarding this? I will ensure I will complete it in my given time frame. thanks"


Your profile needs work. If you haven't, you need to go back to the top pinned post, read it, and follow all of the links. The first line is all clients see in a search. While it's OK, your first sentence can be better. Use it to tell the clients why you are the best choice. The long lists need to be formed into paragraphs.


I am dedicated to delivering outstanding results that surpass your expectations. If you're not fully satisfied with my work, there's no obligation on your part.


It sounds like you will not charge if the clients don't like the work. Never, ever, give the client free work. I understand wanting to offer something that will get your foot in the door, but all you will find are scammers. If a client asks for free work, it is a Terms of Service violation. It is not if you volunteer, but you harm yourself, other freelancers, and the platform when you do. Some clients are more than happy to get free work and disappear without hiring or paying.


When you send a proposal, the client sees the top two lines. Your example, will not get you real jobs, but it will get you scammed. Perhaps you were frustrated when you sent it, but that's not how you write a proposal.


I'm not sure why you are hiding your earnings. I see this a lot, with advice from some "gurus." Clients like to see that you've earned money. If you are hiding because you have taken $5.00 jobs, or ones definitely too cheap for the work, you shouldn't be taking those jobs. If you have the skills, charge for them. A discount is one thing, think 5, 10, or perhaps even 15%, but paying pennies isn't going to help you in the future.


If you put more effort into your profile, it can be quite good.

Community Member

Hello Everyone, Good day!


I've been noticing a lack of job invitations lately. Any advice on how to increase my chances of receiving more invitations?


You need to invite more clients here. No clients - no invites.

Certainly, could you please explain your point once more? I'm having difficulty grasping it.


Clients gone. As result less works and invites. It is going within last 2 years.

I think so too. Now what should be done according to your opinion?

Everything is as usual, continue to improve your skills and work hard. We cannot tell upwork what to do, only advise. If they don’t need professionals then other platforms need them. History shows that betting on manipulation and gambling excitement is immediately profitable but leads to complete collapse and shame. 

But your knowledge always will be with you. 👍

The algorithm for the searches is unknown. The best thing you can do is to have an excellent, completed profile.

Community Member

Hello, Senior Jeanne 

I am new here  and I was wondering if I could pick your brain for some tips or advice. Your experience and expertise would be incredibly helpful as I work on tasks.

Looking forward to hearing from you and learning from your wisdom!

Harshit Gupta

I appreciate your kind words. I don't know about wisdom, but I will offer my suggestions.


If you haven't yet, go back to the top pinned post, read it and follow every link. It will take you to Upwork's and other resources. Make sure you know the Terms of Service and the Red Flags on Scams. In your profile, the only thing a client sees in a search is the first line, so you need to use it to tell the client why you are the best choice. Don't use names, greetings, or an explanation of skills in that line. In proposals, the client only sees the top two lines - and this is the same for everyone.


Change your photo by removing the background. It is too "busy", meaning the stuff in the background detracts from your face. Clients like to have a face to go along with the work.


Add to your profile with information on what you can do with your education, experience, and skills. Form the words into three or four paragraphs without long lists. Also, you need to have work in your portfolio for clients to see. Make sure anything you use is your property, or you have explicit permission from the owner to use it for your portfolio. If you don't have something, create something of your own. Can you create something in the portfolio to go with your Projects?


Be cautious when accepting invitations. It's easy to be excited over your first potential job, and feel good someone found you, but it is often a scammer. Scammers will look through the search for gullible-appearing freelancers. The best way to defend yourself is by following the rules, including, don't go outside Upwork for anything with a potential client, before an Upwork contract is in place, and by having a professional profile. A complete profile will help deter scammers and attract clients.


There is a lot of advice on Upwork, some quite good, some OK, and some that will cost you your account permanently. New freelancers are often encouraged to take very low paying jobs. So low, that the freelancers are essentially working for free. It can be difficult to find your first job, but set a fee and stick to it. It's one thing to offer a discount of 10% percent or a bit more, but another to be working for a few pennies. Avoid the cheapest jobs, the $5.00 jobs, etc. If you have the skills, charge for them. Good luck.

I have learned a lot from reading this in less than 5 minutes. I am so grateful and I agree with every point in this article.

Community Member

i am new on upwork can someone please help me to review my profile and suggest me what should be change so i can get invitations by different sellers

You need to go back to the top pinned post, read it and follow all of the links. Use the first sentence, which is all clients see in a search, to tell them why you are the best choice. Remove all of the personal stuff. If you are selling yourself as an architect, remove everything about writing documents. You need to add more about your skills, and your previous work. How have you used your skills, and how did you complete jobs using them?


Add more to your portfolio, to showcase your work. If you don't have anything, create something new.


Follow all the rules, learn the Terms of Service, and the Red Flags on Scams from Wes. Never go outside of Upwork, before an Upwork contract is in place for any reason, including talking and texting. Protect yourself, because no one, including Upwork, will do it for you. Be safe.



Community Member

Hello William,

Thank you for your help. Please take a look at my profile and help with any suggestions that can improve it. 


The first thing you need to change is your photograph. Use a plain neutral background, without any objects or lights. Clients want to see a face to match with the profile.


Then, you need to write the first sentence to tell the client what you can do for them with your skills. Remove the "with high client satisfaction" because the clients can clearly see your JSS is 60% which is certainly not high client satisfaction.


The profile is far too long, with too many lists. Form the text into three or four paragraphs, and use the lists, after editing in the profile.


║ Still, we both know it's not easy to trust someone you haven't even seen to work with you on this. That's why I prompt each and every one of my clients to do an interview with me, so we can both clear each other's doubts and questions. After this initial talk is over, trust me, you'll feel way more relaxed! So, do you think working together is what's best for you? If so, hit the green "Invite To Job" button at the right, and let's talk more about your project!


I would remove this paragraph.


Writing an entire paragraph of words is not going to get you to the top of any list, no matter who tells you it will. This method can backfire. Learn about how to use the platform and have clients instead of scammers by reading this post and following every link.



Community Member

Hi Jeanne

I am new to Upwork, and I see that you have been helping others.

It'd be really great if you take a look at my profile and give me some advices on overview.


Joe Onus


I would change your photo, so it is easier to see your face. Have a light, neutral color for the background.


On your profile, the first sentence is all clients see in a search, so change it to a powerful statement on what you can do for the client with your skills. Add more about your skills, and how you use them to do specific things for the client, such as, increase numbers of exchanges, increase number of downloads, etc.


Also, add more to your portfolio. Clients like to see examples, but be careful if clients ask for them. It's fins for a client to ask for a general sample, but not if they want a sample of the job.


With a little more work, you can have a professional profile.


In proposals, the client only sees the top two lines, so don't waste them with greetings, names, skills lists or similar, but instead, sell the client on why you will do the best job, backed up by hard skills.


I'm glad to see you have worked on your business, and if you haven't, read the top pinned post and follow every link. Upwork can be a very dangerous place if you don't follow the rules.

Community Member

Hi Jeanne!


I wouild appreciate a profile review to understand what can i do better to improve here at Upwork.


Im a Senior corporate training manager (BPO) transitoning to Instructional design.


Link: https://www.upwork.com/freelancers/~01361d4938a9a7afff?mp_source=share


Much appreciated!

I can see you have effort into your profile, and with a little work, it can be excellent.


I would change the background in your photo to a light, neutral color.


You are wasting the first line of your profile, which is the only thing a client sees in a search. Use it to tell the client why you are the best choice for the job.


I create training solutions that serve the way businesses and professionals work today.


Instead, tell the client what your skills will do - increase their ROI, serve more clients, improve the post-training results, etc. Change the lists into paragraphs, and add more about how your skills will specifically help the client.


With proposals, the client only sees the first two lines, no matter how much the bid, before deciding to look further or toss it into the "other" pile.


Read the top pinned post if you haven't, because you have to protect yourself from the scams, and understand how to use the platform safely.



Community Member

Hi i need a work can you help me guys?

This is not how you freelance. Go back to the top pinned post, read it, and follow every link.

You need to learn the rules before you are scammed. Your profile needs to be rewritten and completed professionally.


Virtual Assistant - Social Media and Content Coordinator, Good in math $500.00/hr

OBJECIVE EDUCATION To work with a leading company and to use any analytical thinking to the best of my ability combined with perseverance, so as to contribute to organization's growth and goal, as well as to attain my professional goal. • Good in problem solving and time management
Clients don't care about your personal goals, they need a job done on time, and done correctly. Virtual assistants do not charge $500 per hour. Maybe you moved the decimal, but you will never get $500 for a virtual assistant job.
You are at high risk for being scammed because of your profile and your lack of knowledge on how to use the platform. Also, you will not be able to write, edit, or proofread with a fluent level of language. There are millions of freelancers here, and few clients, so the competition is intense. If you can't compete, you will not have a career here. I'm not being mean, I'm telling you the truth.
I suggest you spend some time considering what skills you have that can be used for earning money. You need marketable skills, and if you don't have them, freelancing will not work for you. What can you offer a client? What can you do that is professional? Freelancing isn't for everyone, and careful consideration of your skills, money to run the business, including buying connects, and all the other requirements for being self-employed. Research freelancing outside of Upwork, and learn the facts, and best practices. Being successful or scammed is up to you, because no one will protect you, or give you jobs, including Upwork. Be safe.
Community Member

Great 👍 

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