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Upwork Review 2022: Is Freelancing at Upwork Worth It? (Pros & Cons)

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Upwork Review

upwork logo

Upwork is one of the largest and most well-established freelancing platforms in the world. The platform connects businesses with freelancers, who they can hire to complete various tasks. As a freelancer, it is a great platfrom to get paid for your time and skills. Both freelanceers and businesses can also screen the people they work with, and you won’t have to take on projects you don’t want to.

Experience

Service Fees

Earning Potential

Payout Process

Pros

  • High earnings potential – earnings depend on your skills and the services you offer, but you can earn up to $34 per hour as a freelancer on Upwork.
  • Bid on jobs for free – you will need 1 Connect for every job you wish to bid on. New freelancers get 40 free Connects, and 10 Connects each month.
  • Get extra connects – new freelancers who pass the Upwork readiness test will get 40 extra free Connects that they can use to bid on more jobs.
  • Upwork time tracker – the tracker ensures that you get paid for all the time that you spend on doing work, in blocks of 10 minute increments.

Cons

  • Relatively high commission fees – fees start at 20% for your first $500 in billings with a client, then fall to 10% after $500 and 5% after $10,000.
  • Long waiting time for payment – even after the client releases a milestone, the funds are kept on hold for 5 days before you can access them.

Jump to: Full Review

Compare to Other Job Search Websites

JobGet

JobGet logo

Create a JobGet profile in less than 60 seconds. No resumes or cover letters

Search for jobs close to home and apply with 1-click in the mobile app

Start chatting with employers. No more waiting for emails, hear back instantly

FlexJobs

FlexJobs logo

Remote, work from home, and flexible jobs in 50+ career categories

Unlimited access to 25k+ jobs from $0.96 per week (3 jobs free trial)

FlexJobs guarantees that all its jobs are 100% scam-free (verified ads)

ZipRecruiter

Fiverr logo

Over 9 million jobs available with access salary data for 35k job titles

There are no sign-up or other fees associated with finding a job on app

You can use ZipRecruiter salary data for your job salary negotiation

How Does Upwork Work?


Upwork enables clients to post jobs in various categories, such as writing, graphic design, data entry, and more. Freelancers can then view these job listings on the Upwork job marketplace, and they can apply for the jobs that interest them.

Upwork also allows freelancers to create profiles to help them stand out. If clients are interested in hiring a freelancer’s service, they may also do so directly.

How Much You Can Earn on Upwork?


Your earnings on Upwork will vary depending on various factors.

Some of the different factors that may affect your Upwork earnings include:

  • Your years of experience
  • Number of completed jobs
  • Reviews from clients
  • The category of work you provide
  • And many more
Type of Freelance ServicesAverage Hourly Rate
Administrative$11
Quality Assurance$14
Translation$22
Programming$25
Project Management$34

You can increase your earnings on the platform over time by completing more jobs and gathering reviews. As the number of positive reviews you get increases, your Job Success Score will also increase. Over time, this will enable you to get new clients more easily and charge higher prices for your services.

Who is Upwork Best for?


Upwork is best for individuals looking to do freelance work to earn an income or just some extra cash on the side. Most of the jobs of Upwork offer remote working opportunities, enabling you to work from home in your free time.

Some of the many types of jobs that you can find on Upwork include:

  • Writing
  • Data entry
  • Graphic design
  • And many more

Upwork Features: What Does Upwork Offer?


Chat Function

Upwork features a direct chat function that enables users to communicate directly with clients on the requirements of their projects.

The platform also enables freelancers and clients to schedule meetings with each other.

Time Tracking Feature

To ensure that freelancers are paid fairly for the time spent on their projects, Upwork also provides a time tracking feature. Freelancers working on hourly projects can download the time tracker app and activate it whenever they work on a project.

The time tracker also enables clients to keep track of the work that their freelancers are doing. This can help to reduce the number of disputes between clients and freelancers.

Freelancer Support

With Upwork, you can also get 24/7 support using the Upwork live chat feature. You can access this feature using the Upwork contact page.

There is also an extended and well-written FAQ section where you can find answers to any questions you might have about the platform’s products and services.

Upwork Fees: How Much Does Upwork Charge?


Upwork fees can be broken down into several categories:

  • Connect fees
  • Commission fees
  • Membership fees

Connect Fees

Connects are a form of currency that Upwork freelancers can use to apply for jobs. Each job requires between one to six Connects for a freelancer to apply for.

New users will get 40 Connects when they register for an account, and an additional 40 Connects after completing the Upwork Readiness Test. In addition, you will also get 10 Connects every month, and every time you get invited to interview for a job.

If you still need additional Connects, you can purchase them for $0.15 each.

Commission Fees

The platform also charges a commission fee on all your earnings. Commission fees start from 20%, which may be high at the start. However, the more you earn with a particular client, the lower the commission fees are. Thus, it can be beneficial for you to work regularly with the same client.

Earnings with a ClientCommission Rate
Less than $50020%
Between $500 to $10,00010%
More than $10,0005%

Membership Fees

Basic membership on Upwork is free, and a basic account provides you with access to all of the platform’s core features. However, you can also upgrade to a Plus membership for a monthly fee of $14.99 to enjoy additional benefits and features.

Some of the additional features of Upwork plus include:

  • 80 Connects per month
  • Keep your earnings confidential
  • View competitor bids for any job
  • Customize your profile URL
  • Extended reports and functionality, including grouping and sorting

Upwork Payout Terms and Options


Upwork provides several options for users to withdraw their earnings. The platform charges a transaction fee when you withdraw your earnings from Upwork. This transaction fee will vary depending on the withdrawal method you choose to use.

Withdrawal MethodTransaction Fee
Direct depositFree
PayPal$2 per transaction
Payoneer$1 per transaction
Wire transfer to a bank account$30 per transfer

If you are working on an hourly project, your client will be billed weekly. After your client reviews your work, your earnings from that cycle will be available for withdrawal ten days later. If your project is a fixed-price project, you will receive your earnings five days after a client approves a milestone.

Upwork Reviews: is Upwork Legit?


Review WebsiteUpwork Review
Trustpilot4.5 out of 5 stars
Indeed3.8 out of 5 stars
Sitejabber3.97 out of 5 stars

Yes, Upwork is a legitimate freelance platform that ensures that its freelancers receive timely payments from clients. The platform has received mainly positive reviews from freelancers and clients alike.

Many reviewers have praised the platform for the regular job opportunities available on Upwork. Users are satisfied with the wide range of jobs available, and the different ways to earn an income.

Some users have complained about the platform, although these complaints are usually about fraudulent clients who do not pay. Overall, the platform remains the best online freelancing site available for you to earn money.

What Are the Upwork Pros & Cons?


Upwork Pros

  • Get up to 80 free Connects to apply for jobs
  • Work remotely or from home
  • Earn up to $34 per hour or more as a freelancer
  • The time tracker app ensures that you receive payment for all the work you do

Upwork Cons

  • Relatively high commission fees of 20%, although this decreases as you do more work with a client
  • Holding time of 5 to 10 days before you can withdraw your earnings

Upwork Review Verdict: is Upwork Worth it?


Upwork is a popular freelance platform that enables users to look for flexible, remote jobs that they can do to earn money. Freelancers on Upwork can complete gigs to earn some side income or turn it into full-time jobs once they get enough clients.

It may take some time for you to find clients and work as a new freelancer. Nonetheless, as you slowly build your reputation on the platform, you may find that it becomes easier for you to find new clients and gigs.

Additionally, the platform also rewards users who work regularly with clients by reducing the commission fees you have to pay as your earnings with your clients start to increase.

How to Start Freelancing With Upwork?


Step 1: Set Up Your Professional Profile

To start freelancing on Upwork, you will need to sign up for an account and create your profile.

A good profile can help you increase the chances of getting your first clients, especially before you gain reviews and build your reputation.

In addition, you can also provide samples of your past work on your Upwork profile so that potential clients can review your work before hiring you.

Step 2: Connect with Clients

After setting up your profile, you can start connecting with clients to look for work. You can find work on the platform by applying to relevant jobs or creating projects that clients can purchase.

Apply to relevant jobs

When you log onto your Upwork account, you will see a job feed that features the relevant to your skills and experience. You can also search for relevant jobs using the Upwork search feature.

As you gain experience and build a track record on Upwork, you will also receive invites from clients to apply to their jobs. Clients usually invite freelancers to apply to their jobs whom they think might be the best candidate for their projects. The types of jobs you can apply for include fixed-priced jobs and hourly contracts.

Job TypeFeatures
Fixed-Price JobsGet paid when you complete certain milestones in a project
Hourly ContractsGet paid for the time you spend on each project The time tracker app ensures that you are paid fairly

Create your projects

Upwork also has a project marketplace feature that enables freelancers to list the services you provide as projects. Clients who are interested in your services can purchase projects directly from you.

For example, if you are a graphic designer, you could list a logo design project on the marketplace. Clients who need a logo for their business can then purchase your logo designing service directly from you if they require it.

Step 3: Deliver Excellent Projects

Once you get a contract, you will need to follow the client’s requirements and submit the project deliverables before the deadline.

Providing excellent quality work can help you build a good reputation for your Upwork account. This can increase your chances of getting more jobs in the future.

Step 4: Get Paid

Once you complete a milestone in a fixed-price project, the client will release the payment for it. This payment will be held for 5 days before being released to your account.

For hourly projects, clients are billed every Monday. Payment for hourly projects is held for 10 days. After payment has been released to your account, you will then be able to withdraw it via any of the platform’s withdrawal options.

Step 5: Ask for Reviews

If you have completed all the necessary work for a client, you can ask them to end the project so you can exchange feedback with them.

Clients typically look at the reviews that a freelancer has received when deciding whether or not to hire them, so having more positive reviews can help you get more clients in the future.

Sites Like Upwork


ComparisonUpworkJobGetFlexJobsZipRecruiter
Number of JobsOver 140,000 active clients1000+More than 30,000More than 9 million
Number of Categories129More than 50More than 80
Best ForNew freelancersLocal jobs100% legitimate jobsFast applications

Upwork vs. JobGet


JobGet Summary

  • Simple 1 click job application process
  • 4 different job filters available
  • Jobs in over 5 sectors available
  • Sign up for an account in just 5 minutes

JobGet is an online recruitment platform that makes it easy for job seekers to find jobs, apply for them, and ultimately land jobs. Compared to Upwork, JobGet has a one-click application process which makes it easier to apply for jobs on JobGet.

JobGet is free to sign up for an account on and apply for jobs. Thus, this makes it a good alternative to Upwork if you are looking for work.

Upwork vs. FlexJobs


FlexJobs Summary

  • Jobs in over 50 categories available
  • Members get exclusive deals and discounts
  • All jobs are guaranteed to be legit
  • Get access to 4 job search resources

FlexJobs is a subscription-based job board that provides a wide range of different job opportunities.

The types of jobs you can get on FlexJobs include:

  • Data entry
  • Writing
  • Transcription
  • Sales
  • And many more

While there are some freelance positions on the site, it’s primarily aimed at people looking for more traditional jobs. In addition, FlexJobs also works on a subscription-based model, with monthly fees starting from just $14.95. This means that it also does not take a commission on any earnings you get from your job.

Upwork vs. ZipRecruiter


ZipRecruiter Summary

  • Top-rated app and job search engine
  • Simple, 1-tap job application process
  • Over 30 different job categories
  • More than 7.5 million jobs posted each day

ZipRecruiter is one of the top most popular online job boards that you can use to find freelance work online. Like Upwork, ZipRecruiter offers a variety of different job types.

The types of jobs you can get on ZipRecruiter include:

  • Work-from-home
  • Entry-level
  • Part-time
  • Remote
  • And many more

Applying for jobs on Upwork is also more complicated than ZipRecruiter, as you will need to provide a cover letter and any other information that a client requests. In contrast, ZipRecruiter provides a one-tap job application process that enables members to apply for jobs using a pre-filled application form.

It is also free to apply for jobs on ZipRecruiter, making it a great alternative to Upwork.

Upwork Freelance Platform FAQs


What is Upwork?

Upwork is the best freelance site in the world. The platform connects businesses with freelancers who provide various online services for a fee.

Upwork’s mission is to create economic opportunities for people to build better lives for themselves. The platform provides tools to help clients and freelancers achieve their business goals.

Thousands of new jobs are posted on the platform each day, making Upwork one of the best sites for freelancers to find work.

To date, there are over 18 million freelancers and over 5 million clients registered on the Upwork platform.

Does Upwork pay well?

Your earnings on Upwork will depend mainly on how much clients are willing to pay. Nonetheless, the platform generally has many high-paying jobs you can apply for, and your earnings will also increase over time as you gain more positive reviews.

Can you get scammed on Upwork?

Upwork takes many steps to protect its freelancers, and if you use the platform properly, it is unlikely that you will get scammed.

To avoid getting scammed, you need to ensure that you keep all your communications within the platform’s chat features. Moreover, do not start working on a project until the client has made you an offer and funded the project.

In addition, avoid any clients that require you to pay money to get a job, as these are likely to be scams.

Does Upwork charge a fee?

Upwork charges several fees, although these are all clearly stated on the company’s website. Thus, you can visit the Upwork website if you have any questions about the platform’s fees.

You can rest assured that you will not experience any hidden fees or charges when freelancing on Upwork.

Is Upwork free?

Upwork is completely free to sign up and apply for freelance jobs with. While there are some paid features, these are not compulsory and you can still use Upwork to earn a living even without these features.

The platform also does not require you to pay any upfront fees. Instead, it deducts commission and transaction fees directly from your earnings.

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