I'm getting annoyed...I try my best to do great jobs (I have all 5 star reviews, and have one person who didn't leave a review), I log my work, yet my success rate is 81%.
This is frustrating, because I feel that I keep getting passed up for jobs just because my score is low. I've heard that it might be because my messages to clients (while applying for gigs) are usually short messages. Well, I worked in Social Media Marketing for three years, specifically tracking engagement with clients, and for the last two years straight, I had the highest engagement score out of 80+ employees. I find it so annoying that my strategy to get responses is a proven method that involves shorter messages, yet UpWork punishes me for this (if that's true about lowering my score based on short messages).
Can someone tell me if that might be why my score is low? Also, can someone share how to raise a success rate? Does it matter how much a freelancer gets paid? If not, I might just take a bunch of $5 gigs to raise it quickly.
The JSS is a beastie.
I don't see anything immediately evident from your profile. Since the primary metric for JSS is "jobs successfully completed" it could very well be a differential between the private and public feedback you're receiving.
If you had any contracts that were closed such as if you refunded money or the client decided they no longer needed the work done, that private feedback is also used in calculating the JSS.
The catch 22 of taking a bunch of five dollar jobs is that you become the "five dollar holler" which then has a tendency to attract the lowball clients (they're always floating around anyway, but, low dollar jobs on the profile send out some type of "I'm cheap, hire me" pheromone).
I think the person who told you it was because of short messages to clients is making stuff up. The exact inputs into our JSS are proprietary and Upwork won't tell us the exact formula. But Upwork has documented several things they look at, and none of it has anything to do with the length of messages to clients.
They mention things like:
*public and *private* feedback from clients on completed contracts (even if no payment is made on the contract)
*long-term relationships with clients
*a "pattern" of contract closures with no feedback from clients (apparently they assume no feedback=bad feedback if it happens too often)
*inactive contracts that have been open a long time (how long?)
Many people don't realize if they close a contract before they complete the work (and are paid) then it is still a contract that factors in their JSS. The client still can leave private feedback even if it doesn't show. Also sometimes freelancers give 100% refunds to raise their JSS. The private feedback still counts. I am not saying you did those things, just that it is hard to guess by looking at a profile since the score factors in other things.
Also as a freelancer, you don't actually know what private feedback a client left. Apparently, they answer why the contract is closed, and they rate you 1 to 10 whether they would recommend you to others. There is a hint in your "stats' page about the percent of clients who would recommend you. I am pretty sure that stat does not update in real time (probably so we can't tell which client left negative feedback).
More than likely it has to do with the private feedback unless you fully refunded clients in the past. It doesn't make any sense for Upwork to factor in the length of your messages to clients. If the clients are happy and paying, then Upwork is happy. (I find it annoying that inactive contracts count negatively, but it is what it is.)