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tomasmcadam
Community Member

Catch 22 new to Upwork - Help needed

Hello. I've recently joined, 2 days ago, and I've been making good, strong proposals, 24 in total. My portfolio is good, but I'm not even getting any profile views. 0 views. I don't know what I'm doing wrong.

 

I've already purchased another 60 connects, but I feel like it's a waste of time and money. I have no job score and clients aren't even checking my profile. I have all the skills, experience and time to complete every project I bid on. I'm offering myself for a fraction of what I usually charge, but still, no view, no contract, not even any replies. 

 

I know what people will say, that it's just the way it is and be patient. But I'd like someone to answer one fundamental question, please. 

 

How can I get jobs here without already having done jobs here? It's a total catch 22. It's not like I have no portfolio, no experience, and no skills. The opposite in fact. 

 

How do other people get started?

 

Should I be working for 0 money just to get the job score and feedback?

 

I heard this is frowned upon, and I understand why, but then how can I ever get a job?

 

I'm genuinely interested in what others did to get those first few jobs. Any help would be much appreciated. 

 

Thank you.

 

 

14 REPLIES 14
prestonhunter
Community Member

re: "Should I be working for 0 money just to get the job score and feedback?"

 

Work done for free does not result in feedback appearing on your profile page and does not lead to good JSS. Contracts with zero earnings only hurt JSS.

Tomas, your profile is professional. However, while it's clever to start out discussing how many hats you wear, that doesn't say what you do and my understanding is clients only see the first 2 lines of your profile when you send a proposal, and someone whose primary language isn't English may not understand the expression.

Pay no attention to profile views. My understanding is they only count how many times your profile was visited in the course of a freelancer search. If a moderator or other highly knowledgeable person reads this, please confirm if my understanding is accurate.

24 proposals in 2 days seems excessive to me; perhaps you can be more selective. When I started out freelancing long ago, I tried to apply to jobs for which I was highly experienced or which would be unattractive to experienced freelancers for reasons such as low pay for a complex task. Don't work for free as Preston advised, but be willing to be underpaid, at least on a fixed price job. For instance, bid less than the proposed fix price budget. There's nothing immoral about doing so and in my experience, most freelancers automatically bid the full budget, so you will draw the attention of value-conscious clients.
__________________________________________________
"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce

Thanks for your comment. I actually just changed the opening to try to sound a bit different. I will change this back to a clear intro about my skills.

 

Re the proposals. I didn't realise there was such a thing as excessive. Every project I've bid on I am more than capable of delivering and all of them interested me to some extent. I just want to get started with a job and start to build my Score. 

 

So in terms of being selective, I'd say that I am being, but I'm also eager to get work. Also I always bid under the project budget and I've lowered my rate to as low as I possibly can do really. 

 

I guess I'll just keep trying!

Tomas, there's one more thing I noticed about your profile: you're not a Rising Talent. If at all possible, do what it takes to meet the requirements for the badge. As things stand, you're at a slight disadvantage compared to new freelancers who are Rising Talent, and Upwork will even give you some free connects for your troubles. 

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

 John I think I am eligible for the rising talent badge, but I have no idea how to apply for it?

petra_r
Community Member


John K wrote:

Pay no attention to profile views. My understanding is they only count how many times your profile was visited in the course of a freelancer search. If a moderator or other highly knowledgeable person reads this, please confirm if my understanding is accurate.

Correct


undefined:

John K wrote:

Pay no attention to profile views. My understanding is they only count how many times your profile was visited in the course of a freelancer search. If a moderator or other highly knowledgeable person reads this, please confirm if my understanding is accurate.

Correct


I thought they changed it a few months ago to include some other types of views. That was why the number of views increased significantly. At least mine did.

Thanks for clarifying that. 

a_lipsey
Community Member


Tomas M wrote:

Hello. I've recently joined, 2 days ago, and I've been making good, strong proposals, 24 in total. My portfolio is good, but I'm not even getting any profile views. 0 views. I don't know what I'm doing wrong.

 

I've already purchased another 60 connects, but I feel like it's a waste of time and money. I have no job score and clients aren't even checking my profile. I have all the skills, experience and time to complete every project I bid on. I'm offering myself for a fraction of what I usually charge, but still, no view, no contract, not even any replies. 

 

I know what people will say, that it's just the way it is and be patient. But I'd like someone to answer one fundamental question, please. 

 

How can I get jobs here without already having done jobs here? It's a total catch 22. It's not like I have no portfolio, no experience, and no skills. The opposite in fact. 

 

How do other people get started?

 

Should I be working for 0 money just to get the job score and feedback?

 

I heard this is frowned upon, and I understand why, but then how can I ever get a job?

 

I'm genuinely interested in what others did to get those first few jobs. Any help would be much appreciated. 

 

Thank you.

 

 


Tomas, it's rare for anyone to get their first job in just 2 days of having been on the platform. I don't know who set that expectation for you, but I believe most freelancers land their first gig within the first 1-2 months, not days. I know for me it took a couple of weeks to land the first gig, and I certainly wasn't sending out dozens of proposals a day. Read up on how to be more selective on what you apply to and understand that building up a portfolio of freelance clients takes time. It is not something that is done overnight, or even in 48 hours. 

Upwork set that expectation. They say most people get a gig within the first 5 proposals. I didn't realise it would take months. 

 

But, why doesn the length of time mean anything? Surely it's a numbers game. THe more I propose, the more chance I have of being hired, right? So sending 10 in one day and 10 over ten days is the same, except the latter takes more time. 

 

Maybe I'm wrong. 

 

Anyway, thanks for your help. I'll keep going, I'm just reluctant to if it's costing money and time, for  something that isn't getting me work. 

re: "Upwork set that expectation. They say most people get a gig within the first 5 proposals. I didn't realise it would take months."

 

Oh.

Probably best to just ignore that.

Who knows who wrote that.

Anyway, each freelancer is different.

 

What are your skills?

What kinds of jobs are out there right now?

Who else is applying to those jobs?

 

There are many factors. Nobody can tell you when you'll get hired.

Thanks Preston.

 

I think that's my main concern. There are a lot of people out there who are willing to work for $3 an hour it seems, or do a day's work for $10. I suppose I'm just not there, yet! 

 

It's a shame. I'm a genuinely skilled worker and just want to be able to get started. 

 

Thanks


Tomas M wrote:

Upwork set that expectation. They say most people get a gig within the first 5 proposals. I didn't realise it would take months. 

 

But, why doesn the length of time mean anything? Surely it's a numbers game. THe more I propose, the more chance I have of being hired, right? So sending 10 in one day and 10 over ten days is the same, except the latter takes more time. 

 

Maybe I'm wrong. 

 

Anyway, thanks for your help. I'll keep going, I'm just reluctant to if it's costing money and time, for  something that isn't getting me work. 


It's not just a game of numbers though. People who are successful don't send out numerous proposals but quality proposals to the RIGHT clients. It's better to be more selective and look very carefully for the very best fitting jobs (and not waste connects and money) then to just throw connects/money at as many proposals as you can get out and hope you get hired. I would strongly disagree that it's a numbers game.   Just look through the forum here at all the posts of people who bought HUNDREDS of connects and never got a job. It's not a numbers game, clearly. 


Tomas M wrote:

Upwork set that expectation. They say most people get a gig within the first 5 proposals. I didn't realise it would take months.


Do they really say that? Well, I don't believe it's true. In fact most freelancers who join Upwork never get a gig. However, if you're persistent, skilled and professional you should get there eventually.

 

But, why doesn the length of time mean anything? Surely it's a numbers game. THe more I propose, the more chance I have of being hired, right? So sending 10 in one day and 10 over ten days is the same, except the latter takes more time. 

The difference is that you can focus your efforts on those jobs where you have the best chance. Of course, if you have enough time to do your very best on those proposals and still have time to apply to the other jobs too, then go ahead. Or maybe in your line of work there are many equally promising opportunities. Anyway, focusing on the most promising opportunities worked for me.

 

One reason my proposals took a lot of time was that I would often do part of the job, enough to demonstrate I could do it well, and send that with my proposal. Some people here might frown on that, but when you're getting started you have to do what it takes. And I preferred to do that than offer to work for peanuts.

 

Good luck!

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