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metalgear3
Member

Why are there so many scammers on Upwork?

I have been a member on Upwork for almost 2 years and I have only been able to secure only 1 paid job. 98% of all jobs I submit a proposal to don't respond. I followed every advice there is to take, I changed and optimized my proposals, I optimized my profile but the results have been thr same. The ones that do respond are trying to get me off the platform and work without a contract. I really expected more from Upwork and now I'm regretting ever setting up a account with this platform. I'm actively seeking alternatives.
10 REPLIES 10
yitwail
Member

Jesse, I'm sorry to hear that. I'm a developer so have no idea what it's like bidding on customer service jobs. However, I did a search for freelancers using "customer service" as the search term and the first page at least is full of apparently successful freelancers. If one's paranoid, one could believe those accounts are fakes, but I doubt it because I'm not fake and I have made a fair amount of money here, though not as much as some of the top customer service freelancers. Only thing I can think of is study a number of these profiles, and compare them to yours, and maybe you'll see something they're doing that you aren't. I would also be negligent if I didn't point out that all but one of the freelancers on the first results page are women, but no point in fretting over something you can't control. In any event, I wish you luck with your career, either here or elsewhere.

__________________________________________________
"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce
sjbercot
Member

I'm sorry you don't seem to be having much luck. About how many jobs are you applying to? How often are you checking the job feed?

 

It's tough because you're in an area with high competition and often lower hourly rates from your competitors. One thing I didn't really get from your profile is why I should hire *you*. Lots of freelancers have the things you say. It comes across as generic, and you really want to focus on standing out. What can you do for your clients that other freelancers can't? What's your specialty or niche? Identifying that is one way you can stay competitive here. Also, you'll want to closely proofread your profile as there is a bit of grammar awkwardness and a few errors, and that will turn off clients.


Sarah B wrote:

I'm sorry you don't seem to be having much luck. About how many jobs are you applying to? How often are you checking the job feed?

 

It's tough because you're in an area with high competition and often lower hourly rates from your competitors. One thing I didn't really get from your profile is why I should hire *you*. Lots of freelancers have the things you say. It comes across as generic, and you really want to focus on standing out. What can you do for your clients that other freelancers can't? What's your specialty or niche? Identifying that is one way you can stay competitive here. Also, you'll want to closely proofread your profile as there is a bit of grammar awkwardness and a few errors, and that will turn off clients.


I agree. Instead of using a profile that targets every CS job, niche down. What industries have you worked with in the past? Note your areas of expertise with more specificity. And, since Upwork can't format the "&" symbol correctly in profiles, remove all of those. 😉

Over the past 2 years, I've applied to over 350 jobs but only landed 1 paid gig. I'm actually in the red because I have spent so much on connects to submit proposals. To think of it, I could have created my own website and advertised my services via social media (with the money I have spent on connects) and yielded better results.

 

However, the main issue now is the number of scammers that reach out to me. Most of the clients who are interested in my services and have responded to my proposals are trying to get me off the platform and make me pay for equipment, wants me to work without a contract, or trying to collect information about me via clicking on a suspicious link.

 

I do have other skills I'm good such as photo editing and social media marketing but I haven't used any of them for work. Only for hobbies and fundraiser events.

Hi Jesse,

 

I'm sorry to hear about your experience so far. I checked and it seems that our team already took actions on a few job posts as they were in a violation of the Upwork Terms of Service.

 

Please check out this post for more tips on how to avoid questionable jobs and use the flag option found on each job post or message anytime you’d like to report a violation.

 

Thank you.

~ Aleksandar
Upwork


Jesse W wrote:

Over the past 2 years, I've applied to over 350 jobs but only landed 1 paid gig. I'm actually in the red because I have spent so much on connects to submit proposals. To think of it, I could have created my own website and advertised my services via social media (with the money I have spent on connects) and yielded better results.

 

However, the main issue now is the number of scammers that reach out to me. Most of the clients who are interested in my services and have responded to my proposals are trying to get me off the platform and make me pay for equipment, wants me to work without a contract, or trying to collect information about me via clicking on a suspicious link.

 

I do have other skills I'm good such as photo editing and social media marketing but I haven't used any of them for work. Only for hobbies and fundraiser events.


Scammers target new freelancers because experienced freelancers are less likely to fall for the scams. Even though you have been around long enough to not fall for the "pay for equipment" and other scams, criminals probably assume that you are new and target you. If you were successful in landing several jobs and had more of a history on the platform, you'd probably start to see fewer scam invites. 
With regard to scammers that find you via your proposals, you could start track of the characteristics their job postings have in common. There may be some red flags that you are missing when you apply. 
Of course, if you are losing money by using the platform, then it might be time to look for other ways to build your business. Try networking via social media or, as you mentioned, creating your own website.
Do a 2-month experiment--spend the time and $ you would spend on Upwork marketing your business in other ways and see if you have better results. With the holiday season coming, surely there are e-commerce businesses that will need excellent online customer care. 

feed_my_eyes
Member

It's never a good idea to limit yourself to one platform and one marketing method, even if you had landed more jobs on Upwork. And after two years, you should definitely try something else.

015c1681
Member

Jesse is right, this site is so infested with scammers it is unusable. I've wasted my time and money trying to boost my profile, only to be met with international scam job listings. How does a service with this many scammers on it exist for so long??

debi-f
Member