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Boost Your Proposal to the Top of List (March 2022 Update): Questions & Feedback

Today we’re reintroducing the boosted proposals feature with some changes. Read the announcement from James, Director of Product, here and let us know your thoughts about these updates in the comments below.

Community Member

Hello Everyone,


First, we want to acknowledge the ongoing feedback you all are sharing. We appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts, opinions, and concerns with Boosted Proposals and want to ensure you our product teams are listening and reading every comment. 


Second, we want to reiterate that part of our mission at Upwork is to connect talent with more opportunities which is why we launched Boosted Proposals in support of that. With that in mind, we know there are lingering questions and we want to take this opportunity to be transparent on the value of Boosted Proposals to freelancers and clients, and also answer a few of the recurring questions/themes. 


Why Boosted Proposals? We created Boosted Proposals as an opportunity for freelancers to show a strong interest in jobs they feel they are the best fit for. Additionally, Boosted Proposals increases the chances of getting noticed and receiving their desired rate. 


What is the true value for freelancers and clients? Boosted Proposals provides an additional lever for freelancers to pull when submitting a proposal without removing existing features (JSS, Top-rated, etc.)  that signal success. Freelancers with a Boosted Proposal have more control over their outcomes while clients gain insight on who has a strong desire for a job. Additionally, boosting improves a freelancer’s chances of being hired by 43%, this means that a freelancer can use the feature as a way to secure the same amount of work they did before, but lower their proposal volume, saving their time and effort.


Based on the test, it appeared there was a lot of negative feedback in the Community, how did you decide to move forward with Boosted Proposals? We collected feedback via multiple channels and methods within our testing, including tracking hire rates and speaking directly with freelancers and clients—this evidence fueled the team to move forward with this feature. 



We hope this addresses some concerns regarding Boosted Proposals and the Upwork team always encourages feedback as we look to make Upwork The World’s work marketplace. 





Content Program Manager, Community


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485 REPLIES 485
Community Member

So you took somehing that was already absolutely dreadful and absolutely detested by the majority, made two miniscule changes, and brought it back.


Would that accurately sum up what's been happening over the last few months?


Maybe the Director of Monetization could explain how this helps clients find the most suitable freelancers rather than the ones throwing the most money at applying, which is what has been wrong with this absolutely ghastly idea from the start.


More freelancers will keep "generating" free connects by applying for all the never-ending scam and spam jobs Upwork seems to be unwilling or unable to do anything about, knowing fully well they WILL get interviewed and get their free 10 connects each time, and throw those at sponsored bids. And if you think I am exaggerating, it's being traded as the lasted hot Upwork-hack on the Interwebs...

I am deeply disappointed that despite everything Upwork decided not to listen to their freelancers. Disappointed, but I guess I shouldn't be surprised.



Community Member

Petra our Leader💪

Community Member


Hi, I am knew, does it makes sense to enter a new bid for a lower proposal when I got outbid the first time? what is your advise please???

Hi Kira,


I would be happy to help. I would like to clarify that outbid means that other user spent more Connects for boosting proposal than you. 

If during the auction you are outbid, your proposal will no longer be shown as boosted (it will still be visible, just lower on the list). Also, if you are outbid and your boosted proposal didn’t lead to an eligible interaction, we’ll only charge you the standard number of Connects required to submit a proposal. If it led to an eligible interaction with the client while you were boosted, you will be charged the Connects you bid.


You can find more information in this help article. Let us know if you have further questions. 

~ Nikola
Community Member

Thank you for your reply; so, if I understand correctly, if does not mean, that, what I offered to get paid for my services was outbidded then, correct? it just means that used more connects, is that right?

Can you define "eligible interaction" here, please?

The point is we are having to compete with connects which means anyone regardless if they are a scammer or not can be pushed to the top simply by bidding 100+ connects. It's ludicrous that we need to compete this way and a bad idea in my opinion. 

Hi Nikola,


I'm almost a year late to this forum, but I haven't had any eligible interaction for the past couple of months and my connects just seem to vanish into thin air and I was not charged the standard number of connects like you mentioned.


Has the rule changed or was there a glitch?




That's just Upwork's way of robbing us picking our pockets. If you want to quit, you don't get back your money. Someone should put a class action lawsuit on these buggers

Community Member

Now a days, it needs too much connects to send a proposal which is very costly for new freelancers. Please reduce the connects. 


Community Member

  • Last 2 months.. don't get any requests... what can I do now ...
Community Member

So true. It destroyed all the hard work we've been doing on the platform.

"More freelancers will keep "generating" free connects by applying for all the never-ending scam and spam jobs Upwork seems to be unwilling or unable to do anything about, knowing fully well they WILL get interviewed and get their free 10 connects each time, and throw those at sponsored bids. And if you think I am exaggerating, it's being traded as the lasted hot Upwork-hack on the Interwebs."

It scares me a lot. I was wondering why am I not getting any replies. I create an absolute killer proposal after spending one hour on preliminary research (Because I love the job description), and I am 200% sure that I will get a reply. Na-Da nothing at all. I keep an eye on the job for 3 days and only 1 interview. I go back after 6-7 days and no one is hired.  I really think this boost system creates a further "class" system on an already polarized platform. For some people buying connects is just a cost of doing business. Others have to disrupt their budgets to fit it into their monthly income (at least at the scale it's going someone showed that people are putting up 20-30 connects for each boost)

I feel stupid, but I can't even figure out how I have connects. My clients are long-term and I've kept them on the platform because I like the security of payment without invoicing. However, "connects" keep piling up even though I am not knowingly paying for them. If anyone wants to enlighten me, I would appreciate it. Otherwise, I have to cull through this god-awful website to find the answer. 

The problem I have is there really needs to be a status of the job. Can you have someone working a job and yet the job status still appears to be "open?" If the job is still open, why is it still open? Has the person not found any good candidates? If it is an illustration job, have they not found someone they "like?" If they haven't found someone they like, there should be a way to convey that to job prospects. When I see a job that has been around for a month, I assume the person who posted the job either abandoned it on Upwork, or somehow managed to start a contract with someone without properly starting a contract with them.

i think so

Md Mostafizur Rahman
Community Member

You are totally right and we freelancers agree with your every point of view. Thank you

I never used boosted proposal when it was first introduced. Now I see freelancer are bidding with 30 connects for a $40 project to be displayed as 1st on the list.

This feature will not help any freelancer, nor client, as I think UpWork algorithm before was already good.

Not to mention freelancers also pays 20% to UpWork.

UpWork is a good platform, but this feature is just outrageous. 

I agree, My skills are really great, my account top-rated. But, its been months I can't land a client. No replies to my proposals and I'm literally making nothing at the moment. I'm even almost out of connects to bid for another job. And what makes it even worse is that I don't get invites even when my available badge is on. I think Upwork should do something. 

I am facing the same issues last 6 months even after good profile and top rated

We may have to look up more advertising platforms. Learn it’s system and
work it through. What you think?

Oh my God, if that's your situation, even though I already have a good record and good grades, what awaits me because I haven't been able to get a single client, I mean, I have 0 0 0 in everything and in what I'm applying for I have experience, but I think that's what Neither upwork nor the client knows it and they will never know it if their doors don't open for me.


Yes, It is true, I don't think, the boost proposal help to freelance after boost even client hasn't viewed the proposal. I think It is only to purchase connects and waste to boost outbid.

What is the outfit boasting proposals? Do you post ads or create your own
ads to profit?


You also need to also  calculate your cost of doing business!

Conects plus fees and then add...

Taxes - accounting - CPU/hardware payments - Timesheet entry - Software-Electricity- Storage - FTP site - and of course YOUR LABOR!

So you really only took home $3 on the $40 job!!

Not applicable


Well said.

First I've seen this thread and definitely wholeheartedly agree with you.


I also doubt the statistics, stated as clients I have spoken to and read on threads aren't all that happy with getting boosted proposals that don't mean the best freelancers, just the ones desperate enough to load connects onton the proposal.

Community Member

Hello, I have read almost the entire messages line and I feel Petra is wright.

But I would like to add my point of view about this.


First, as I have express in other platforms, a good way to prevent scam proyects would be if Upwork clients are also verified as well as freelancers. In this way only serius customers that really want to have freelance services will be inside the platform.


In a second line, I understand that in crisis periods all, freelancers, and platform are interested in have better incomes, but I thinks boosted proposals are not the best way to get it.


Under my point of view, I would like to share and idea for improvement this method. As I have been in the two sides of a contract, as a freelances or as a customer, I have seen that customers must ask for some skills in there project offers, also freelancers have to add a certain number of habilities in their profiles.

The algorithm can match those habilities to show freelancers the projects that best match with them. From here, the algorithm should give the chance to freelancers to boost the project by adding connects up to the number of their habilities that match with the project ones. So in this way, only freelancers that really matchs the habilities for the project should be on top.


This still not a certain idea for customer that the freelancer can really match the spectation of the project since there are freelancers that have habilities in their profile that they don't manage correctly or not in a profesional standard, but in my opinion, it looks like a more efficient and equilibrate way of competition between freelancers, and the way to get on top with clear habilities.


Just an idea.

P.D.: But if this have any sence, I will appreciate some free conects for the help... LOL

Community Member

I support your opinion. Securing jobs here shouldnt be based on the number of connects one used for bidding. It should be based on who is actually qualified. I get tired most times when i try to submit my proposal and see the number of connects thats some used for bidding.

I just don't have the time to waste on sending proposals to every scam and spam job posting out there. I would much rather work. At the same time I am not the biggest fan of boosted proposals, but understand the need for connects to (at least argubly) ensure that job posts won't be spammed by scammers.

I agree, My skills are really great, my account top-rated. But, its been months I can't land a client. No replies to my proposals and I'm literally making nothing at the moment. I'm even almost out of connects to bid for another job. And what makes it even worse is that I don't get invites even when my available badge is on. I think Upwork should do something. 

Community Member

Unpopular opinion: I love this feature, thank you Upwork!

I love it too!! But most of all skillshop is at an all time high for me,
and I can see the changes within my platform immediately ##- Please type
your reply above this line -##
Community Member

I agree with you.

Community Member

I totally agree with every word. 

Thank you so much

Community Member

This is honestly the height of it all... I wonder why upwork will keep disrupting the initial system. I don't think they actually put the freelancers who are actually working their ass out in mind with all these their strategies. Why reintroducing this rejected strategy that has nothing meaningful to offer than to frustrate the work of freelancers? 

Community Member

Please read what Petra just wrote before you go ahead with this insane idea. The site is already in serious trouble, with its scam-saturated job feeds. It's unbeliebable that Upwork is devoting time and money to fixing something that wasn't broken, while doing nothing about the fact that finding work here is a game of "spot the real job" in the avalanche of fake postings.

Community Member

Well, at least you've admitted it's about monetization. Upwork has no other interest in making sure that bigger spenders have a higher acceptance rate than the most qualified — and, as Petra pointed out, with real-world data, Upwork is willing to choose monetization over the integrity and welfare of the platform.


So is the "product" now connects, in preference to professional services?

Community Member

From the Director of Monetization

Mike J wrote:

For many freelancers, the question at the core of this feature is ‘does boosting help me get jobs?’ Yes. The highest bidders who occupied the 3 boosted slots during the beta collectively had a 37% higher chance of being hired for the job, with the highest bidder enjoying a 43% boost in their chance of being hired.

This is written as though it's a positive, but it isn't.

It is THE OPPOSITE of good. It's atrocious.

Good would look something like this: "We found the best qualified people were more likely to be hired", but quite the opposite is true.

That people were more likely to be hired for no other reason than they threw more connects at it is a ****ing abomination.

Would somebody responsible for this care to explain how this is positive for Upwork and it's clients?

This seems so short-sighted. Some extra revenue from connects in exchange for what? - An inevitable drop in client satisfaction after being mislead into hiring poorly qualified freelancers over those who are perfectly capable.

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