how to succees on upwork

How To Succeed On Upwork: 7 Tips to Increase Your Success Rate

If you have been looking for a place to jump-start your freelancing career, then Upwork may just be the place for you!

Founded back in 2013, Upwork has helped hundreds of thousands of freelancers connect with sellers and people in need of freelancing services. Freelancers have been paid millions of dollars through the Upwork platform and with the rise of people requiring freelancing services, Upwork won’t be slowing down anytime soon.

However, there are things that you need to keep in mind if you want to succeed on the platform.

Things like writing proposals and creating a killer profile are going to help increase your chances immensely!

So if you want to find out more about Upwork, how to apply to Upwork, and even get some tips to increase your success rate, then this is going to be the article for you.

How Do You Apply for Work on Upwork?

upwork logo

Upwork is very different from marketplaces like Fiverr.

On Upwork, it’s the buyers/clients (i.e. the people in need of freelancing services) are the ones that put up their work offers and what they are looking for. The freelancers can then search through the job offers and see what they would like to apply for.

In order to apply on Upwork, you need to use what they call “Connects.” Connects are like points or coins that you can use to apply for different job proposals. Most jobs cost anywhere from 2-8 connects. There are of course higher profile jobs that may demand more.

Each user gets around 10-80 connects every month for free from Upwork, but you can also purchase Connects yourself.

You can browse through the job offers and favorite the ones that you are interested in and apply later, or you can apply as soon as you see it. If you have optimized your profile correctly, Upwork will first show you the best offers according to your profile.

Then, you can apply for these jobs by writing a killer Upwork proposal that will get your client’s attention.

Don’t worry, I will tell you how to do both in this article.

Why is Upwork a Great Place to Work?

Upwork is a platform where freelancers and clients find each other. It is an online marketplace that connects freelancers with clients who are looking for their services. Upwork has been in the industry for more than a decade, and it has been able to grow due to its dedication to providing quality services to its users.

Upwork has managed to provide quality service by constantly adapting to the needs of its customers. It started out as a freelance platform and then added many features such as project management tools, payment processing, client management tools, etc. This helped the company expand its client base and also improve its customer retention rate.

Upwork has also managed to provide quality services because it is always open to feedback from its customers on how it can improve its products or services in order to meet the needs of its customers better.

How to Increase Your Success Rate on Upwork As A Freelancer

making money online

The Upwork marketplace is a great place to find clients as a freelancer. However, getting work on Upwork isn’t as easy as just signing up and getting jobs. In order to start getting some visits to your profile and some jobs, you need to know how to increase your success rate on Upwork and get the best results.

Here are some tips on how to increase your success rate on Upwork:

1. Post a Good Profile Picture

You need a good profile picture.

This may sound silly, but trust me, it is one of the most crucial steps when it comes to optimizing your profile. Matter of fact, having a profile picture that is an actual picture of you is a requirement of Upwork’s TOS (Terms of service). So not only is it against the rules to not have a profile picture, but it also causes most clients not to take you seriously.

Clients want to get to know the person that they are going to hire, and having a face to a name is important. Plus, it shows that you are open and have nothing to hide.

2. Be Selective with the Jobs You Take

Unfortunately, on Upwork, not all jobs are created equal.

Upwork does have a few processes in place to make sure that there is a sense of security for both freelancers and clients. However, some bad eggs still manage to find their way onto the platform.

As a new freelancer, it can feel so tempting to just apply for everything and anything. This is something that you should avoid if you want to get the best jobs and avoid getting scammed.

Yes, that is a possibility.

What to Avoid on Upwork

Here are some quick things that you need to keep in mind when you are looking for jobs:

  • Only apply for jobs that have verified payment
  • Try to apply for jobs that have already paid some money to freelancers.
    • If you do find a brand-new client that has not yet hired any freelancers, make sure you have a thorough conversation with the client to see if they are trustworthy before you accept.
  • Avoid job postings that tell you to contact the client on Telegram, WhatsApp, or anywhere outside of Upwork before you start working with them.
  • Avoid jobs that try to pay you outside of the Upwork platform.
  • If you have no prior experience on Upwork, avoid applying to jobs that already have over 20-50 proposals sent it.

3. Writing a Killer Job Proposal for Upwork Clients

man speaking business

One of the best ways to make sure that you get hired on Upwork is through a killer job proposal, which will convince employers that you’re the perfect person for the job.

On Upwork, proposals need to be short and sweet yet informative enough to give the client an idea of who you are as a freelancer.

The first step is to customize your proposal to the specific client’s needs. You can use their job description and requirements as a guide. You can also look at their portfolio or website to get an idea of what they are looking for in a freelancer.

Next, you should create a list of questions that the client might ask you. This will help you prepare for any interview questions that might come up during the proposal process and it will also help them feel more comfortable about hiring you.

After that, make sure to include any work that can show off your skills. This can be a portfolio, an image, a PDF, or even a link to your website. This is important because it shows them how qualified you are for the position and how much effort you have put into this proposal so far.

Finally, end with a thank-you message and make sure to tell them that you are open to discussing more about the fees and terms of the work contract.

4. Keep your Upwork Profile and Skills up to date

Upwork is used by over 10 million employers and freelancers worldwide.

Safe to say, having a profile that will stand out is going to be essential.

In order to be successful on this platform, you need to have your profile and skills up to date at all times and have them tagged on your profile. You should also include a well-written introduction about yourself, including your skills, experience, and availability.

To have your profile more optimized for certain jobs, you need to enter your skills as keywords in your profile introduction.

For example, in my content creator profile, I have keywords such as “SEO”, “content writing”, and “English” in my introduction.

You should include a description of what you do best, why clients should choose you over other freelancers on the site, and what makes you unique. In my case, I mentioned that I speak 4 languages and can do translations in all four languages.

If you want to be found on Upwork, and get accepted for jobs, it’s essential that your profile is up-to-date and tagged with the appropriate skills so that you can be seen by the right people in the right job openings.

5. Be Responsive and Professional

As a freelancer, make sure that you try to respond to any messages or interview requests in a timely fashion.

If you can keep your response time to a few hours, that would be the best. Waiting several days to reply will seem unprofessional.

So in order to keep up with your messages, I recommend that you download the Upwork App and turn on the notifications. That way, you can get notifications directly on your phone, and you won’t even need to log on via a computer to reply.

When you are speaking to a client via message or an interview, make sure you keep your tone professional. You may meet some pretty “interesting characters” but it is your duty as a freelancer always remain professional.

On Upwork, there is a rating system that allows the clients to rate the freelancer according to their experience with them. You want to keep your ratings on a 4 or above to build trust with other clients who see your profile.

This is why it is important to keep this in mind no matter who you are working with or talking to.

6. Offer a Competitive Price for Your Work

On Upwork, freelancers can set an hourly rate and put it on their profiles. However, these rates are rarely set in stone, as the clients also propose their own rates for each job.

As a freelancer, you should always try to match the client’s budget if the job truly interests you.

If you are an expert and have already a proven track record on Upwork, then you probably won’t need to discuss rates too much.

However, if you are new to the platform, you have to be flexible. Most likely, your first job is going to pay you a little less than your original hourly rate. If this is the case, just make sure that your client has a great experience with you and gives you good ratings.

That way, you will be able to build more and more trust on the platform and finally land a job that will pay you your rate (or maybe even more).

7. Use Upwork Effectively

To make sure that you do not waste your time and effort on Upwork, then you will want to use the platform effectively.

The first thing you should keep in mind is that you should not waste your Connects on job proposals that you do not truly believe in.

It is easy to get excited about a proposal and want to apply but you should always ask yourself first: “Do I really fit the profile and do I really have a chance at getting selected?”

The next thing you should think about is not applying to jobs that have too many proposals that have been sent in by other freelancers. If there are already 50 people that have applied, the likelihood of your profile standing out as a new freelancer is slim.

One way to make sure that you are one of the first in line is to filter through job proposals to find the most recent job postings. On Upwork, it’s generally first come, first serve. So the earlier you get your proposal in, the better.


Upwork was a very confusing platform for me when I first started out. I had no idea how to get a job as a freelancer and no one was really sharing the secrets about the platform.

It almost seemed like a secret club of freelancers.

But after a couple of months, I completely changed up my profile and redid my entire introduction. I took the work that I did on other platforms and added them to my portfolio and added my website and other details.

Once I did this, I landed my first job on Upwork in a week and made over $1000 in the first month.

upwork success

This is all thanks to all of the tips that I have shared with you in this article.

Utilizing these tips will help you get more jobs and succeed at working through Upwork! Use them, and you will start getting jobs on the platform in no time.