Why circumvention is a bad thing on Upwork and Why you should NEVER do it.
I often hear from different freelancers that they use Upwork as a way to find clients, but then their goal is to wrangle them off the site so they can save the fees from Upwork.
Here’s why that is a bad thing.
It’s against the policies and Upwork will boot you.
Circumvention is a major thing that Upwork is not playing. They’ll suspend you the first time they catch wind of it. After that, you’re probably done. Not to mention, if they do that, they freeze all of your money in your account so you can’t deposit it into the bank. This can be up to $15,000 in some cases. Definitely not worth potentially losing that money just to save a couple of dollars.
You’re missing out on the Upwork scores.
These help you get pushed to the top for potential clients. Higher scores and being consistent allows Upwork to confidently push your profile to any new jobs being created. Not to mention, Upwork’s own people will start to hit you up on a regular basis because a lot of clients ask Upwork’s staff to look for solid consultants and freelancers.
The Time Tracker is the shit.
Being able to simply click on a client and bill them is an amazing thing. Having insurance on all the time you work is priceless. Even if a client’s card bounces or their PayPal doesn’t work with Upwork, Upwork will STILL pay you. That’s right. You literally never have to worry about being paid when you work. All you simply need to do is keep a memo of what you’re working on and make sure your screenshots add up to what you’re working on. Simple.
Accumulate your hours worked.
Part of the reason so many clients seek me out is because I’m consistent. They see that I’ve worked over 2,000 hours so they know this isn’t some bullshit endeavor I decided to take on in the past 4 minutes. One of the biggest fears clients have is wasting time with someone stupid and then having them disappear. This happens more than you can possibly imagine.
Last but certainly not least is the reviews you miss out on. These things are worth their weight in solid fucking gold. I rarely have to ever tell anyone who I have worked with or what I do because my reviews speak for themselves. This social proof will help you more than any other area.
The change in fee – The fees change DRASTICALLY in Upwork.
Yes – 20% is a lot for a project, but almost never do my contracts stay in this range. After $500, the fees are cut in half. When you get huge projects ($10k+), they are almost an inconsequential 5%. More than fair for the fact that they insuring tens of thousands of dollars for you. Not to mention, baking in your fees to your cost should be happening. Let clients making the deal with you pay for the fees that are taken out. 9 times out of 10, the client is far more interested in working with a good person vs. a couple dollars extra per hour for them.
Keep track of the work you’re doing.
One of the worst things I find out about client work is creating redundant daily reports or sending status messages about what you’re working on. This isn’t necessary now. With Upwork’s time tracker, all my work is being recorded, documented, and sent to the client in real time. This means that everytime the client asks what you were working on, or how many hours you worked, you can kindly let them know that this area exists. I absolutely love the fact that it’s on the client to review the work, rather than forcing free time from clients.
Want a car loan or mortgage? Good luck not showing any real proof of income from a 3rd party business. When you do your work through Upwork, they will guarantee and sign an Income Certificate that you can present to a bank or real estate agent. This has literally helped me from anything from bank loans, car loans, and insurance.
Increasing your rate.
One of the primary ways I’m able to charge as much as I can is because clients are seeing how much OTHER people are charging for your time. If I didn’t have proof that people were doing this all the time, I’m sure they would have a tough time knowing I’m worth what I claim to be worth. This also gives me the ability to keep raising my rates. As I gain knowledge and run out of time, the only thing I can do is raise my rates. I can’t exactly make more time throughout the week, so most times, this is understood why I’m charging these rates. More importantly, it can create scarcity with the client. If they know I’m $200 now, and possibly $250 next month, chances are they’re going to want to get the deal going now vs. later. I have a whole article talking about rates and where you should be at.
Manage multiple projects – To me, this is the most important.
I can have 10 clients under contract at a time and I can bounce between them all with relative ease. This means client A calls me and discusses a project for 35 minutes. Then Client B immediately calls for another 35 minutes. Being able to juggle between them fast means I actually just billed for an hour and 10 minutes between the two of them, and I don’t have to worry about ANY invoices. This keeps my head in the game and constantly making money. The Upwork Time Tracker has been a dream and I can’t wait to continue using it for all of my future work.
If you have ANY questions, don’t hesitate to ask.
Always looking to help you succeed in making money on Upwork.