I have been on UpWork for a long time now, and I have been submitting proposals for more than five months, and these proposals are always tailored to match the job they are being submitted to (Not the copy & paste stuff) without getting hired at all. Moreover, in all that time I just had my very first job three days ago that pays little to nothing for a lot of work, which I was compelled to accept to start having a job success score, which seemingly helps improve the chances of being hired.
I follow the best guidelines available here when I am writing any proposal, and try my best to describe why I am the best fit for this job, and I also do my best to write a very convincing cover letter.
I have scored "1st Place" in two English spelling tests, a "Top 10%" on another English test, and a "Top 10%" on the English to Arabic translation test. Please view my profile for more details.
The problem is this; I see most of the people who get hired have mostly "Above Average" test scores -especially in the most important test, English to Arabic translation- , terrible grammatical and vocabulary mistakes in their overview (which should logically destroy your reputation as a translator), a feeble profile that reflects very weak English and/or Arabic skills.
How is that possible? Is there something wrong with my profile or what exactly is the problem here? Does UpWork previous job experience really matter so much to the point of favoring someone who is evidently unskilled over another highly skilled freelancer? And don't get me wrong; I'm not trying to say that I'm better than anyone, and it wouldn't even make sense to say so because I'm not even getting hired.
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@Youssef S wrote:
I'm not lying about that one, I can do more than 5000 words per day, I can work for 20 hours straight, absolutely no problem.
That sounds terrible. I'd kill myself first.
Youssef, your profile could do with an overhaul.
You have no portfolio. As a client I would feel positively cheated to click through your "portfolio" pieces and not find a single sample of what you do.
You completely waste the most important part of your overview (the first couple of lines) by talking about test results which anyone can see on your profile anyway, and which mean little or nothing because millions have the same.
Your English, whilst absolutely excellent for a non native speaker, is not "native or bilingual." You should really concentrate on translating into your native language.
I would suggest you set your English to "Fluent" and change your title to reflect English to Arabic. Then use those vital first 2 lines to really capture a client's attention by showcasing the reason why you are head and shoulders above all the others. Lose the bla bla about test scores, or what you don't translate. Concentrate on reasons to hire you, not reasons not to.
Add a meaningful portfolio - with examples you created yourself if need be. Right now there is nothing at all to SELL you, it's all a bit of "much nicely worded hot air, nothing to back it up!"
Youssef, your profile may not be perfect but looks fine to me, you express yourself very well, if not perfectly, in English, both in your profile and your post here, and you're a Rising Talent. So be patient, continue to write good proposals, and things should improve. One suggestion I would make, and many veteran freelancers would disagree with this, is compare your rate to your competitors -- if your rate on average is much higher than theirs, that would partly explain your difficulty. If I needed a translator, of course, I wouldn't choose a mediocre translator over a qualified one just to save a few dollars, but unfortunately many Upwork clients are penny pinchers.
"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce
Thank you very much, John, Can you please explain to me the type of mistakes you found in my profile or in this post? I would be very grateful, and I will work on improving them.
And my rate is actually based on what you just said, I based it on the average per hour rates of most Arabic translators on UpWork.
I'd pitch your profile cuz you make promises you can't keep. Typical noob mistake. Underpromise, and then regular deliver is like overdeliver but you get to sleep and sleep is good.