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Top 12 Upwork Jobs That Pay Well in 2024

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12 Upwork Jobs That Pay Well

Upwork JobsAverage Earning Potential
Machine Learning Engineer$125 per hour
Automation Specialist$40 – $110 per hour
Mobile Application Developer$40 – $100 per hour
Virtual Reality Developer$100 per hour
Video Producer$40 – $85 per hour
SEO Specialist$75 per hour
Product Manager$150 per hour
Website Developer$15 – $80 per hour
Social Media Manager$14 – $35 per hour
Virtual Assistant$7 – $40 per hour
Writer$15 – $40 per hour
Graphic Designer$150 per hour

Machine Learning Engineer

Machine Learning Engineers design programs capable of learning from data and improving its accuracy. In practice, these programs help businesses use automation for routine tasks. 

With their ability to shift operational models, these programs also help businesses achieve maximized efficiency and optimized costs. Considering the complexity of this job, Machine Learning Engineers earn an hourly average of $125. 

To qualify for this position, you’ll need to have extensive knowledge of data science, and programming languages, like Java and Python. You should also have expert-level skills in algorithms and applied mathematics, distributed computing, and statistics.

Automation Specialist

Compared to Machine Learning Engineers, Automation Specialists have a more specific job context. They focus on streamlining processes, making it possible to lessen human input, helping companies save on labor costs. 

To become an Automation Specialist, some of the skills and knowledge you should have are Python programming and Computer Science. You’ll need these to write automated tests, build frameworks, and develop configuration management software. 

Through Upwork, Automation Specialists can earn at least $40. Depending on their expertise, rates for this job can go as high as $110 per hour. 

Mobile Application Developer

Another job that highly requires talents with a background in Computer Science and programming is Mobile Application Developer. Professionals in this field are responsible for developing apps for mobile and computer devices. 

Typically, these talents don’t work for individual clients but provide their services to other businesses. 

As such, the earning potential in this line of work is quite high, with some senior developers earning $100 per hour. 

If you’re a beginner developer, you can expect at least $40 earnings per hour. Of course, the more skills you can put on the table, the higher the rate you can negotiate. 

Virtual Reality Developer

Among the technological breakthroughs of the 21st century are Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR). As a VR developer, you’ll be working on apps capable of creating simulations for its users. 

Such applications have extensive use in: 

  • Education
  • Games
  • Sports
  • Military training
  • Medical training

VR Developers are expected to have expertise in machine learning, computer vision, 3D modeling, and animation. 

Upwork clients are also looking for talents with broad knowledge and experience in software development and programming. Due to its strict qualifications and high demand, VR Developers can earn an average of $100 per hour.

Video Producer

Just in the last two years, video consumption has increased drastically. Cisco, a California-based multinational tech company, predicted an increase of 82% in video content across digital platforms. 

It’s no surprise that Video Producers are among the most in-demand jobs these days.  After all, they are responsible for managing all facets of video production. These include: 

  • Creative planning
  • Scriptwriting
  • Budgeting
  • Communication
  • Logistics

Considering the wide range of skills video producers must possess, it’s also one of the well-paid jobs at Upwork. Video producers make an average of $40 to $85 hourly through the platform.

SEO Specialist

Search Engine Optimization is among the widely used marketing strategies these days due to its high effectiveness. SEO Specialists are responsible for improving a website ranking on search engines, like Google. 

Websites ranking high on search engines typically gain a significant increase in organic traffic. Following that are more leads, and possibly higher conversion rates. For websites monetizing through ads and affiliate links, this also means earning more.  

SEO specialists need to have extensive analytical skills and up-to-date knowledge of Google tools. 

They should also have experience in conducting keyword research, link-building, and HTML programming. 

With these skills and knowledge, SEO Specialists can look for clients on Upwork and make around $75 per hour. Expertise level and related skills, such as content creation, can also increase an SEO Specialist’s rate.

Product Manager

Product managers play crucial roles in the life cycle of a product.  Thus, it’s typical for clients to look for talents with educational backgrounds in Business or any related field. 

Additionally, product managers should have a skill set relevant to the product they are managing. On top of that, they are also expected to have knowledge in budget management, pricing models, and marketing. 

As for skills, Product Managers should be capable of analyzing and solving problems, and communicating effectively. Considering all the must-haves for Product Managers, it makes sense that this job pays an average of $150 per hour. 

Website Developer

Website Developers are responsible for creating websites from scratch through programming languages, such as PHP. 

Web Developers specialize in either Front-End or Back-End web development:

  1. Front-End Developers create the user interface elements, such as search bar and drop-down menus.
  2. Back-End Developers deal with data management and algorithms that power the entire website.

Some website developers’ specialization is Full-Stack Development, which means that they do both front and back-end jobs. Full-Stack Developers are usually employed for smaller projects or as a manager to oversee a project as a whole.

Average website developer earnings go between $15 to $36 per hour. Expert web developers also set hourly rates as high as $80.

Social Media Manager

Social Media Managers are responsible for handling social media accounts for businesses. One of the points of this job is to use social media as a platform to market products or services.

In some cases, you can work as a Social Media Manager responsible for increasing audience engagement for a brand.  Other companies hire Social Media Managers to use the platform as an extension of customer support. 

Generally, Social Media Managers have expert skills and knowledge in the use of social media and marketing. On top of these, some experience in social planning, copywriting, and content writing is expected. 

Depending on qualifications and competencies, Social Media Managers on Upwork can earn up to $100 per hour. However, the average hourly rate is between $14 to $35.

Virtual Assistant

Virtual assistants (VA) provide remote administrative work, such as data entry, marketing campaigns, and customer support. Since VAs offer a wide variety of services, rates depend on how complex their tasks are. 

For example, entry-level VAs, which are typically responsible for data entry and related tasks, earn around $7 to $15 hourly. In comparison, advanced VA consultants make $30 to $40 as their job includes project management and business consulting.


Content is an important contributor to marketing campaigns. Thus,  working along with SEO Specialists, Social Media Managers, marketing-niche VAs, and project managers are writers. 

As businesses resort to digital marketing strategies, the need for writers increases. On Upwork, writing jobs come in different niches and require varying skill levels. 

For example, content writers may be hired as part of the SEO strategy, requiring them to write articles following SEO best practices. They earn an average of $15 to $40 per hour.

Graphic Designer

Graphic Designers are among the well-paid professionals at Upwork due to its increased demand. Their job includes creating infographic designs, such as logos, images, illustrations, and social media content for businesses. 

Some top designers make up to $150 per hour.  Others, however, charge clients based on projects, instead of hourly. 

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Kate Starr


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