106

I absolutely understand what you mean. A couple of years ago I faced the same dilemma. No matter how low I bid, I could never get a project. But as of today if I bid on a project, 90% of the chances are that I will get it. Thanks to more than 110 Five Star Ratings. I was almost on the verge of giving it up but then someone gave me some advice which helped ...


48

Since I work as both a contractor and employer, I will share my experience by combining both roles. Sometimes I have too little money for some project, so I'll tell the guys that I am seeking someone good who needs experience. Try to look for such jobs. Apply by telling how much experience you have and how you plan to finish the job. Seek for smaller jobs ...


41

I have never used any online freelance service to acquire work. Ever. Not even for one project. Without any direct experience as a worker, they all seemed like a less-than-ideal business venture for me to make market-level money. I have hired workers from guru.com and have ultimately never been impressed. The hoops one has to jump through make the entire ...


29

[A bit on my background, I'm a PHP developer, and I do all my hourly contracting through oDesk - been doing that for quite a while now.] First, getting started can take some time. Not having a reputation / experience contracting is similar to not having a reputation / experience being a PHP Developer. Don't be discouraged, I mention this so you won't feel ...


25

Where do I start? Why I almost didn't read this question? Why most of guys on this group probably skipped reading your question? Why I would not hire you based on this bid? Bad English You addressed the client as "freelancer" you said nothing about the project and how you would approach to it bad formatting - no extra space Clients have 3s to like or ...


22

Not a direct answer, but hopefully a helpful one. I've found most of those sites to be impossible to book work from. I tried it for a few months and just gave up after awhile. Most of the freelancers on those sites are working at dirt cheap hourly rates, sometimes as low as 5.00/hr. Not sure where you are or type of quality of life you expect, but I know I ...


20

I have never gotten a single client from any web-based crowd source site. Ever. All my clients have come via word of mouth. Networking in real life is far more valuable than anything online in my opinion. If you network properly all it takes is one or two of the right contacts and you'll have all the work you need. Look at it this way.... you can float in ...


19

In my experience, when prospective clients specify technologies, they're coming more from a place of having heard of others using them successfully, rather than of having considered the use case and made an educated and informed decision. I talk to them about why they chose the tools they did. If their reasoning is sound, awesome. If not, I remind them that ...


17

If I intend to charge at all for a minor thing, I charge a minimum of 15 minutes. Like you, I traditionally won't charge for anything exceptionally minor. However if the requests become more frequent, then I can't allow my workflow to be interrupted repeatedly for many "minor" things. In my experience, there's no such thing as a "30 second" or "1 minute" ...


16

In my experience, a website will - in itself - give you nothing. Clients are only found by actively seeking them. When you have lots of face time with a potential client, a website should make no difference. However, a website could be helpful as a supplement, as it allows a short chance encounter in which contact details were exchanged, to perhaps become ...


15

This is a common scam on Upwork. Well, not a real scam, but here is the thing: You CANNOT rate him before he finished the work. So if he is not sure he can finish the work, he will work on it, but without accepting the offer. So if you are unhappy, or he is not in the mood to finish the contract, you CANNOT DO ANYTHING about it. And if you are happy, he ...


14

Geographically, it depends on where you are. I'm based in the US and answering from that point of view. I've been a full-time freelance UX designer since mid-2012. I began by looking for projects on Elance and oDesk. I was requested for several projects before I made my minimum rate public. Over several months, I probably wrote about 5-10 proposals ...


14

I believe that being a 'Westerner' definitely works to your advantage for many reasons. Let me share part of my experience on the subject, as a freelance developer who started in London, then moved on to other 'western' countries. I had no portfolio, having done only bar work since I left Uni, but I was really motivated. First, as you said, the market is ...


14

Generate an invoice marked "past due". Send certified. That's all you can really do in your case, at this step, without getting an attorney involved. The $10,000 is probably more than any state's small claims process. Other than that, don't lift a FINGER until you've been paid in full. You might hear your client trying to bargain with you, but you've ...


13

Most of these sites have a reputation based system, meaning that your chances of being hired are drastically increasing as you complete more jobs. Generally, from the client's point of view he has two choices: To hire an expensive freelancer with great reputation To hire a cheap freelancer with little or no reputation As a new freelancer on the site, you ...


13

As someone said, you should consult your lawyer. He will read the agreement you both signed and then see if they are right or wrong. Most companies sign binding contracts with their developers which do not allow that their employee work in the same branch. For example, if your company develops slots machines, then you are not allowed to do such coding after ...


12

Do you have a portfolio of previous projects? How are people going to know if you're any good without previous work being available? When I designed websites (back when I did), I had asked every client, before starting, if I could use it in my portfolio. Every one of them said to go ahead. That's the first thing. Until your name is well known, you may not ...


12

Short answer Mail to the client and ask them what can be done to get things recovered. Mutually agree on scope and rate. Best if after all they change their feedback at oDesk, but even if they can't, it still worth trying. Improve the way how you communicate with the clients. The ultimate goal is to make them absolutely certain what are you currently doing, ...


12

Don't provide anything. Avoid these clients. Seriously, don't even consider working for clients such as this. If the client can not take the time to at least attempt to describe their issue as thoroughly as possible, especially in a written description, then they will not take the time to interact with you appropriately. A lack of any detail shows a clear ...


11

On the first place, PHP is the toughest to get job in since there are simply too many people. So, I have a couple of advices for you: Tech advice Don't just offer PHP since competition is too high. Specialize yourself in something narrower like Symphony or other PHP things. You are a new guy so offering something that a client can get from the ...


11

Your client expects specification document which is nothing more than a list of all features, man hours for each and your hourly price. This can be a usual word document with text only or excel sheet with table and additional calculations like risk or unpredictable events, etc. If you're writing it for the first time, then a normal work doc is OK. You may ...


11

NOTE: I am not and have never been an attorney. I post merely based upon my own experience over a freelance career spanning a couple decades. For legal advice, it is always best to speak to an attorney directly. First, I'd contact the product producer and ask about branding/copyright removal. It's often not an issue with additional fees. Second, I'd ...


11

[Bit of background, I've done contract work exclusively through oDesk since 2006.] As far as I see it, the single most important thing you can do in your cover letter is tell them how you'll solve their problem. That's really what (in most cases) they're looking for. They only care about your past work, your experience, or how well you're rated in terms of ...


11

Plain and simple.... If you don't have 6 months to 1 year of savings to live off of, you aren't adequately prepared to start freelancing full time. You can do it part time and keep your job. However, until you are prepared to live, without income, for several months you aren't ready for full time freelancing. And this is how you prepare for "no work" ...


10

I get many requests of this nature as others have mentioned and most of the time I tended to follow the advice given here about how best to say no to these project requests. However, 18 months' ago I was approached by 3 partners who were looking for a fourth to deliver a new startup idea. It was the usual approach of offering equity due to them having no ...


10

I see you have a ton of experience which is good, but it's not enough to convince a client. I have been working for almost 8 months now and I'm starting to get more work than I can handle. Here are some tips to get more jobs: Don't start with " I have a lot of experience...". It's good that you have, but keep that to the end. You must first catch the client'...


9

Most often what I do is send the client a link.... Hi Client, Here is a link to the hosting package you'll need: (insert link here) Please follow the steps to sign up, including paying for the hosting. You can register your domain at the same time, so it should be a simple one-time processes. This hosting provider is one of the best I've ...


9

Sounds like you're using Upwork? If not, let me know and I'll adjust this. Personally, I've been using Upwork for over a year and pretty much stopped using it because of low-quality clients. If there was no issue with your work during the development process and the client was able to see your work and then all of a sudden is not happy, that's a little ...


9

Agreed! Upwork charges a hell of a lot of the Fee. On the top of that Freelancer had to pay withdrawal fees, currency conversion fee, bank fee, etc. and the actual amount which a freelancer receives is very small. So, strategy is to deliver good work, make your clients happy and take them out of Upwork with mutual agreement. Upwork charges a Payment ...


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