I finally committed to becoming a full stack web developer about a year ago. I have progressed very well, but am not an expert by any stretch. But I am happy with my progress. It is time now to build up my portfolio so I can sell myself in the market place. I have three sites in it now, all three are live. But they are, with the exception of one that uses some AJAX, static sites. As a new freelancer, how many projects is good for a new portfolio?

  • 1
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because this is a site for freelancers, not clients really. I think you are asking the wrong market.
    – Scott
    Dec 16, 2015 at 2:24
  • Supporting the opinion of SOIA
    – user4521
    Dec 16, 2015 at 10:49
  • I disagree, but I feel it could be useful. It's an issue that Dave, as a freelancer, is having. I do believe it is a little open-ended or opinion-based, so I would like to see it edited to be brought within our standards. Dave, if you have any questions about this, please check out How to Ask and Freelancing Meta.
    – Canadian Luke
    Dec 16, 2015 at 17:30

4 Answers 4


When it comes to portfolios, this is a delicate situation. It all depends on a few factors;

  1. What position are you looking for?
  2. What is the company you are applying to looking for?
  3. What are your strengths?

Also, it's smart to show resent stuff that you did. I would not show something that you did 5+ years ago. Three years is a decent amount of time. Some people may say that's to old. Now if you have done three to five projects this year, I would stop there.

When you are building your portfolio, you need to show your strong projects. Also, make sure that you have variety as well. Do not show them the same shopping cart five times with just new paint on each one.

Again, depending on what the company you are applying to wants will determine what to add to your portfolio, just like your resume. Also, check the company's career website to see if they have any requirements for submitted portfolios. I hope this adds some insight to your question.


Question seems little bit off topic but title says something on topic.

Portfolio is a thing which increase by experience and course of time. For freelance Portfolio quality is important rather than quantity. Because many freelancer have worked on long term projects like for 2/3 years continue so they have it might possible that they have 2 or 3 projects only to show as portfolio but thing is how those project are strong , what important role freelancer play in those projects and what skills freelancer used.

I have experienced that most of client not interested that what you have in portfolio and what you did , They have more interest in Did you developed similar product which match my current requirement.

So concentrate on strong portfolio which will help you to shine as freelancer.


I have hired dozens of freelancers on Elance and oDesk. For some of my projects, I'll consider NO PORTFOLIO at all.

For most projects, I don't even look at freelancers portfolio, because I don't care what he did for someone else; only what he can do for me.

If someone sends me a clear and helpful proposal, with creative ideas that show understanding of my objective, no portfolio is needed.


If you are looking forward to work as a freelancer developer, I can say 3 portfolio items are convincing enough.

With these three items, you can apply for similar type of projects, so that you can be firm and say "I have done similar projects in the past". It requires high number of portfolio items and reputation to get a big project for which you haven't worked in the past.

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