re: A fluff-free guide to pre-freelancing VIEW POST

re: Do you have any suggestions for avoiding Upwork, which many of us view as a race to the bottom? $20/hr is ...not a competitive rate for a professi...

Are you only looking to avoid Upwork due to $20/hr?

If so, the time and money it would take to land freelance projects will be a bigger loss than this initial rate. Keep in mind, you are not quitting your job to work $20/hr. You are working this lower rate to make your life substantially easier down the road when trying to land clients who are willing to pay $80/hr.

Think of it as your initiation price to freelancing :).


To be honest, I glazed over the word pre-freelancing when I read this, so this makes a little more sense to me now than it did at first. But I avoid Upwork entirely for the simple reason that it's a race to the bottom. The few times I have tried writing proposals on work posted there I saw that the RFP was swamped with obviously underbid work by people who are clearly not going to deliver good work (obvious because if you can't deliver a good proposal, you're not going to deliver good work either).

The same is true on the other side as well: there are countless RFPs that are total crap: they want 1000 hours of work for the price of 50 - and they still get bids.

I work on both sides of the fence. Using Upwork to find freelances and using it to find work.

I will say this, 90% of those proposals are BS. It's actually great that you can see them because everywhere outside of Upwork is the same but, you can't see how many and who is applying. That's amazing insight.

When looking through those proposals, you filter them down very quickly. The first to go are usually agencies and spam. First to be read are those who respond as if they read the description, which is why I mention the formula above.

The few times I have tried writing proposals

Keep in mind, it's a numbers game. Not much will happen from a few proposals. I can send out over a dozen of quality proposals within an hour and proceed to do that a few times a week if needed. With my profile, I usually get 5-9 people inquiring by the end of the week or the next week.

Also, keep in mind, lot's of people first go with cheaper developers for the sake of price then find out it's more expensive due to lack of quality. The second time around guess who they target :)

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