Upwork Reviews: Client and Freelancer Examples

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Bruna Vasconcelos
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Upwork Reviews: Client and Freelancer Examples

Table of Contents

We've assembled the ultimate collection of Upwork reviews from freelancers, clients, and employees who have rated their experiences with the platform.
Published on
October 14, 2021
Updated on
October 10, 2023


Currently, freelancers contribute $1.4 trillion to the US economy alone and have a much more significant economic impact globally. The number of freelancers has been increasing steadily, especially with the pandemic confining people to their homes. 


Freelancing platforms facilitate the connection between clients and freelancers, often offering safe payment options, client project managers, and much more. Among all other freelancing websites, Upwork is arguably one of the most widely known sites. 


But how good is Upwork? This article will examine Upwork reviews from freelancers and employers to help see both sides of the coin and determine if the platform is ideal for your requirements. 


What Is Upwork?


Upwork is a freelancing platform that was produced as a result of the merger between oDesk and Elance in 2013. Later, the platform rebranded to form Upwork in 2015 and has grown substantially since then. 


According to Upwork's data, 59 million Americans were freelancing from the platform in 2020, which was forecasted to rise in 2021. Over the years, the freelancing site has become expansive enough to include various categories across different industries, such as tech, legal, writing, software development, mobile app development, design, and more. 


How Does Upwork Work?


Upwork facilitates growing businesses in working with top-rated talent from around the world. As a client, you simply have to sign up, post a job and then review the proposals you get to choose the best offer. 


On the flip side, freelancers also need to create their profiles, upload their portfolios and start bidding on projects. Upwork has many tools to help both clients and freelancers communicate, pay, and collaborate efficiently with each other. 


Upwork for Clients 


Upwork has two options for clients — Enterprise and basic. The basic plan is ideal for beginners who don’t have specified needs and don’t mind taking the added responsibility of finding and interviewing talent. 


On the other hand, the Enterprise plan is suitable for businesses or individuals who need additional help from the platform to manage and hire talent. 


Here are the steps involved in hiring a freelancer through a basic plan: 


  • Sign up for an account on Upwork. 
  • Write a job post. 
  • Specify if you want the project to have a fixed price or be priced hourly. 
  • Review the proposals you receive from freelancers and interview the talent you have selected. 
  • Hire them and get your job done.


Meanwhile, the steps in the Enterprise plan are: 


  • Sign up for an account and get it configured. 
  • Alternatively, you can email a Talent Specialist on the platform and tell them about your project. 
  • You may also post your job directly on the website. 


Since Enterprise users have access to pre-vetted talent, you don’t have to go through the laborious process of interviewing a dozen freelancers who have sent you proposals. 


Upwork for Freelancers 


Freelancers can create their accounts for free on Upwork. The platform allows you to decorate your portfolio with your history, skills, work experience, an introduction video, and much more. 

After that, you just have to start bidding on projects. Some clients might interview you, while others — impressed by the reviews on your profile and your portfolio — may get right to assigning you work. 


Upwork's fixed-priced protection means the client payments are released as soon as you reach a project milestone. You can also choose to get paid for the hour — whatever rows your boat. 


Is Upwork Legit and Safe?


Yes, Upwork is undoubtedly legit and safe. In fact, it has been the bread and butter of many freelancers for years. The platform takes great measures to ensure the safety of both the clients and the freelancers. 


Upwork has Trust and Safety programs that safeguard the interests of both parties involved. Meanwhile, the Hourly Payment Protection feature ensures that the freelancers getting paid by the hour receive their payments in due time. 


As for other threats like malicious emails and phishing, Upwork has complete guides on how to stay safe from them. You can also report any security threats or issues to Upwork by reaching out to the support team. 


Payment Protection


Upwork's Payment Protection allows safe and secure payments, whether they are fixed-rate or by the hour. Therefore, freelancers and clients can collaborate on projects without any monetary concerns. 


Fixed-Price Protection


Upwork has fixed-price protection for both freelancers and clients. 


Clients and freelancers agree on the project deliverables and set milestones. The client then has to deposit an amount, minimum $5 for a milestone, into escrow. The freelancer submits the work for approval, and the payment is only released when the client approves the payment. 

If the work is not satisfactory or requires changes, the client can ask for an escrow refund or request the freelancer to make the necessary changes before approving the payment. 


Since the client’s money is held in escrow, freelancers are guaranteed payment for their satisfactory work. If the client doesn’t request any changes or approve the work in 14 days, the money is automatically released to the freelancer. 


Likewise, if you have submitted a milestone, but the client refuses to approve the project, thereby withholding your payment, you can file a dispute. 


Hourly Protection


Upwork has Hourly Protection for clients and freelancers. Here’s how this feature protects clients: 


  • Clients can monitor the freelancer's ongoing work in the Work Diary. The diary shows snapshots of work in progress, allowing the client to confirm that they are being invoiced for their work. 
  • If the freelancer logs any hours unrelated to the client's work, they can file a dispute. Upwork refunds the clients for hours not qualifying for Hourly Protection. 
  • Bear in mind that Hourly Protection does not cover manual time, fixed-price projects, or bonuses. 


As for the freelancers, they’re protected by this feature too: 


  • Freelancers log in their daily hours in the Upwork Desktop App for hourly contracts. 
  • If they meet the criteria of Hourly Protection, they will get paid for the time they invoice. 
  • Again, the feature does not apply to fixed-price projects, manual time, or bonuses. 


Can You Get Scammed on Upwork?


Although Upwork goes to great lengths to maintain security on the platform for both clients and freelancers, there are still instances where you can get scammed. 


Upwork has detailed guidelines on practicing safety measures to prevent circumvention, account fraud, phishing, check-cashing fraud, shipping scams, and more.


Here are some pro tips to keep yourself safe from scams on Upwork: 


  • Don’t accept payment or pay someone outside Upwork. You increase your risk of fraud and scams this way. Also, Upwork's Payment Protection does not apply to payments taken or given externally. 
  • Don’t allow anyone else to use your account. Identity theft has become a huge issue these days, and you should be cautious to prevent fraud. 
  • Remember that an actual client will not ask you to work for free or give them money to begin working for them. Therefore, if someone asks you to do this, you should immediately report it as suspicious behavior to Upwork. 


Upwork Pros & Cons in 2022


Since Upwork has ample opportunities for freelancers and gives clients access to top talent, it’s an attractive platform for both parties. However, before you start working or hiring on this platform — or any for that matter — you need to weigh the pros and cons. 


Pros


  • Plenty of Work: Upwork is a goldmine for freelancers who have marketable skills that they want to capitalize on. 
  • Payment Protection: Upwork's payment protection features give both freelancers and clients peace of mind, allowing them to focus more on work rather than money. 
  • Messaging: You can stay in touch with your client or freelancer through all Upwork fronts, including mobile, browser, and desktop. 
  • Periodic Screenshots: Upwork takes screenshots of a freelancer's work every 10 minutes for hourly rate projects. Thus, the client can monitor the work in progress and make sure they are being charged for the hours spent on their project. 
  • Filtering Ability: Upwork lets you filter freelancers by geographical location, which is particularly helpful if you’re looking for someone in the same time zone as you. 


Cons


  • High Fees: Upwork charges both clients and freelancers. The bigger the project, the higher the fees. 
  • Increased Competition: Landing your first job as a freelancer on Upwork is quite expensive since the platform is highly competitive. Freelancers from outside the US, who have lower costs of living in their countries, often bag projects by bidding low rates. That can leave more qualified and professional freelancers with little to no jobs. 
  • Lengthy Process: Hiring freelancers on Upwork can be a lengthy process since you have to interview several applicants. Upwork reports that it takes three days on average to hire a freelancer. 
  • Poor Customer Support: Many users have complained about Upwork's poor customer support. Their support team is unable to solve complex issues and is too slow to respond. 
  • Lenient Selection Process: Upwork's freelancer selection process is a bit lenient as there are no skill tests involved to vet the applicants. 


Genuine Upwork Reviews From Customers


Who could possibly know better about a platform than the people who use it? That’s why we have compiled reviews from all over the Internet, answering all your questions about the site. 

Since Upwork caters to both freelancers and clients, we’ll show you reviews from both parties. 


Upwork Feedbacks and Reviews for Freelancers


Despite the complaints that freelancers have raised against Upwork, they seem to be predominantly satisfied.

Positive Reviews for Freelancers


An Escape From the Pandemic Job Crisis 

Upwork Feedbacks and Reviews for Freelancers


When the pandemic struck, many companies started laying off their workers without any prior notice. As a result, a vast number of people had no means to sustain themselves. Many users joined Upwork during this time and found online work to sustain their homes. 


A Global Connection

Upwork positive Feedbacks and Reviews for Freelancers


Many people have a life-long dream of working in different countries around the world. However, lack of funds and pandemic-based restrictions have put this dream on hold. But Upwork allows people to work for anyone regardless of geographical limitations and barriers. 


Payment Safety 

Upwork positive Reviews


Part of the reason many people are reluctant to work online is that they are worried they may not be paid for their work. However, as this review confirms, you definitely get paid on Upwork since the platform has strict payment guidelines in place. 


Flexibility of Work

Upwork review screenshot of five stars titled "Flexible work opportunity"


This review tackles something most individuals experience. They want to keep doing their nine-to-five jobs, but they also want to start a side hustle with flexible timing. Upwork allows you to do this by deciding the number of hours you want to work and the projects you want to take. 


Enhances Creativity 

Upwork review screenshot of five stars and titled "Consistency is Key"


Upwork gives you access to clients from a variety of niches and different countries. As such, there’s always a project to challenge you, giving you the push you need to explore your creative potential. 


Financial Independence for At-Home Workers

Upwork review screens shot titled "Upwork make me independent"


Not everyone is a fan of dressing up for work every day only to take an hour-long commute before actually starting their workday. Upwork is ideal for homemakers or anyone who wants to work from the comfort of their homes in selected hours. 


And yes, it’s possible for you to earn more from Upwork at home than you would in a formal workplace. 


Ideal for Freelancers in Smaller Countries 

Upwork review screenshot titled "Be your own boss and work with freedom"


Upwork provides opportunities for people from smaller countries who may not be able to find on-site work in their areas. Also, freelancers can be their own bosses and work in their own scheduled time. 


Suitable for Unemployed Individuals 

Upwork review screenshot of 5 star review

For some people, the geopolitical and economic conditions in their countries make it difficult for them to get jobs. But as this reviewer states, Upwork provides many work opportunities, allowing them to work for clients across the globe while residing in their own country. 


Negative Reviews and feedbacks examples (freelancers)


Although Upwork may be a safe and easy-to-use platform for freelancers, they have certain complaints as was mentioned. 


The Client Comes First 

Negative Upwork freelancer review


One of the major complaints about Upwork is that the platform is more inclined towards the client. If you file a dispute, Upwork will mostly side with the client — freelancers won’t be favored even in situations where they should. 


Also, many clients on the website run micro-businesses. This means they don’t have the money for your high-end services even though they’ll advertise their bid as otherwise. 


Poor Customer Support

Upwork negative review screenshot - poor customer support


Another alarming thing about Upwork is how a platform of such huge following and caliber has an incompetent support team. Like this reviewer, many users have complained about not getting a response from the customer support team. Some freelancers have stated that the platform sided with the client and denied them payment, even when they were in the right. 


Low Rates for Professionals 

Upwork negative review screenshot - low rates for professionals


Some freelancers, such as this reviewer on Upwork, are unhappy with the low rates offered by clients. While these rates may be higher than usual for freelancers from smaller countries, they’re not sufficient for sustaining the cost of living for workers in nations like the U.S. 


Thus, Upwork may be great for beginners, but professionals cannot expect to get astoundingly high rates on the site. 


No Protection for Freelancers

Upwork negative review screenshot - no protection for freelancers


Upwork is notorious for not protecting the freelancers' interest as much as the clients'. The dashboard often shows jobs from fake accounts that intend to scam freelancers. Even if you report it as a suspicious activity to the platform, they don’t really do much about it, which is ironic considering they encourage freelancers and job posters to report such activities. 


No Solution for Agencies 

Upwork negative reviews - no solutions for agencies


Agencies that want to change their accounts to Independent freelancers have no choice but to delete their existing accounts and register for a new one. Like Ashok, many other agencies also don’t want to simply erase the hundreds of positive reviews they’ve received from clients over the years. 


Unfortunately, Upwork doesn’t offer an alternative way out for these users.

 

High Fees

Upwork negative review screenshot - high fees


Upwork charges a lot to both freelancers and clients. On the one hand, the platform takes 20% of what freelancers earn. On the other hand, it also takes 20% of what the clients pay. So, essentially, they are taking 40% in commissions, which often leaves freelancers with little. 


Few Free Connects 

Upwork negative review screenshot - too few free connects


When you sign up on Upwork, the platform gives you 50 free Connects. However, these aren’t always enough for newbies to get started since they need to bid on several projects before landing their first job. In many cases, freelancers have to buy a ton of Connects before they get hired. 


Account Suspensions for No Reason 

Upwork negative review for account suspension screenshot


Roma is not the only freelancer whose account was suspended by Upwork without any reason or prior notice. Many other freelancers have also complained about the same issue. However, none of them seem to have gotten any helpful response from the support team. 


Too Many Scams 

Upwork negative review of too many scams screenshot


One other reviewer described Upwork as a 'scam magnet' since many freelancers have been victims of fraud. The sad news in this regard is that the platform somehow lets the clients continue while freelancers are denied payments and are sometimes even barred from the website. 


Upwork Reviews for Clients


Clients also have mixed experiences with Upwork. While some find it to be a goldmine for finding freelancers, others struggle with the platform's confusing payment structure and other features. 


Positive Feedbacks and Reviews for Clients


Wide Range of Freelancers

Upwork reviews for clients - wide range of freelancers - 3.5 stars


Clients can get pretty much any task done by freelancers on Upwork. The platform has people working in a comprehensive range of fields, so there will always be someone who can complete your task to perfection. 


Access to Creative Workers 

Upwork reviews for clients - access to creative workers - 5 stars


Clients have access to talented people from all over the world. As a result, they can build their own remote teams and keep adding new people as they see fit. 


Impressive Structure 

Upwork reviews for clients - provides sructure for freelancers - 5 stars


As highlighted by this reviewer, Upwork is a well-structured platform. Clients can navigate their way through the site pretty quickly. Since freelancers can share everything from proposals and past projects with clients, it becomes easier for employers to choose the right freelancer for the job. 


Access to Overseas Talent 

Upwork reviews for clients - Access to Overseas talent - 5 stars


Clients can easily get in touch with overseas talent and hire them, regardless of their geographical locations. The main benefit for clients here is that they’re in a better position to get a good deal — freelancers from smaller countries have comparatively reasonable rates.


Also, with the Enterprise plan, clients don’t have to do much. They just give project details to Upwork, and the platform handles the employment details itself. 


Negative Reviews for Clients


Many Upwork reviews for clients are negative, especially concerning confusing payment methods and poor customer support. 


Ineffective Payment Model 

Negative Upwork reviews for clients - Ineffective payment model - 1 star


Upwork's payment model is not feasible for clients from all industries. For instance, this reviewer hires freelancers for programming, and the projects take weeks to months to reach completion. However, since clients must pay weekly for hourly-based projects, the model is not convenient for clients with long-term work. 


No Vetting 

Negative Upwork reviews for clients - Billed and Harrassed, no vetting - 1 star


Many clients complain that Upwork does not vet freelancers before allowing them to work on the platform. As a result, clients have to suffer at the hands of unprofessional and unqualified freelancers. Since Upwork only gets paid when the freelancer does, they often side with the freelancers. 


Shady Freelancers

Negative Upwork reviews for clients - do not hire from here - 1 star


Some clients have been scammed by freelancers who are running fake accounts, are not sufficiently qualified, or lack the skills needed for the projects they bid on. This reviewer was lucky to get their money back as many other clients were left with nothing. 


Hiding Negative Reviews

Negative Upwork reviews for clients - Do not trust Upwork - 1 star


Some clients reported that they couldn’t see negative reviews of the freelancers who have bid on their proposals. Instead, they can only see positive reviews and are often misled into choosing the wrong person for the job. As this reviewer mentioned, Upwork is misleading clients by doing this. 


Upwork Reviews on Social Media


You can also find several Upwork reviews on social media channels, such as Quora, Twitter, YouTube, and Reddit. 


Reddit Reviews


Freelancers on Reddit don’t seem to have any luck on Upwork as most of them have some sort of complaint about the website. Here are some good and bad Upwork reviews on Reddit. 


Good for Freelancers With Realistic Expectations 

Reddit feedback screenshot of Upwork - good for freelancers with realistic expectations


We find this review to be very well-balanced. On the one hand, the reviewer admits that Upwork is problematic since many projects go to freelancers who bid low rates. However, if you know your worth and have realistic expectations, you’ll have better luck on the platform. 


Hard to Find Work 

Reddit feedback screenshot on Upwork - Hard to find work


Like freelancers on other websites, Reditters also complain about the tough competition on Upwork and how this makes finding work a challenge. Freelancers have to be okay with many low-paying and awful jobs in order to get better ones. Beginners can rarely bag high-paying jobs. 


Good for Top Rated Freelancers

Reddit feedback screenshot of Upwork - good for top rated freelancers


If you manage to become a top-rated freelancer, things can get easier for you. However, the journey to becoming a top-rated freelancer is quite challenging. Once you get there, it is worthwhile, though. 


Low Rates 

Reddit feedback screenshot of Upwork - low wages and rates for professionals


This is quite alarming! A data scientist earning only $3.5 an hour is cruel. But that’s the kind of grind you might have to go through if you want to make it on Upwork. 


Most Jobs Are Specific for US Talent

Reddit feedback screenshot of Upwork - jobs are or US talent


Many clients set restrictions on who can apply for the gig. While some clients only want to hire native freelancers, others prefer freelancers from smaller countries since they charge less. In both cases, it’s unjust to other qualified freelancers who have to wait for months to get their first project. 


Bidding System Is Inefficient 

Reddit feedback screenshot of Upwork - bidding system is insufficient


The new bidding system allows everyone to bid for the job, even those who might not fit the requirements. For instance, if the client specifically needs someone from the U.S., even non-American freelancers can also bid. 


As a result, clients end up with dozens of bids in just an hour or two of posting a job. That makes the freelancer selection process very lengthy and tedious. 


Twitter Reviews


Scammer Alert 

Tweet to Upwork on Twitter asking how to report a scam from freelancers on their platform


Even on Twitter, people are complaining about getting scammed on Upwork. Sadly, it goes both ways. Clients scam freelancers and freelancers scam clients — it’s a vicious cycle. 


Unvetted Freelancers 

Tweet to Upwork on Twitter describing bad hiring experience through Upwork


Since Upwork does not appropriately vet freelancers, clients are often stuck with people who don’t have the knowledge required for the project they are bidding on. On top of that, when clients report these freelancers, they end up getting in more trouble. 


Suspended Accounts

Tweet to Upwork on Twitter asking why Upwork suspended account and how to get help


It’s almost a bit too common how many people get their accounts suspended by Upwork. To make matters worse, Upwork hardly ever gives a reason for suspending users' accounts. Their support team doesn’t respond in time, leaving the complainants hanging. 


Quora Reviews


Ideal for Hardworking Freelancers

Quora cooment on Upwork - Upwork has opportunities


While it’s true that finding your initial gigs on Upwork can take time, once you start getting clients, your earnings increase substantially. Many freelancers from smaller countries state that they earn more from Upwork than they were getting from their nine-to-five jobs. 


Hard To Win Recurrent Clients 

Quora comment on Upwork - competition makes it hard to have returning clients


Like many other sites, freelancers on Quora have also complained about the tough competition on Upwork. Getting projects is quite difficult, especially if you’re looking for long-term tasks or clients that keep coming back with more work. 


Allows Everyone To Bid

Quora comment on Upwork - market is saturated for new talent now


Many clients are concerned about the new bidding and freelancer selection process on Upwork. Previously, the platform only allowed freelancers to join if the category wasn’t saturated enough. However, they currently allow pretty much everyone to enter the platform and bid on every project. 


On the one hand, this has led to a saturated market. On the other hand, it makes the selection process laborious and difficult for clients — they have to go through a lot of useless and irrelevant bids before finding the right person for their task. 


Account Suspensions 

Quora comment on Upwork - another issue with accounts getting suspended


It seems as if Upwork suspends the users' accounts for trivial reasons. That means your payment isn’t always safe. Therefore, many users recommend getting your payment out of Upwork as soon as possible and to make sure you don’t deviate even slightly from the platform's rules and guidelines. 


Use Your Sixth Sense 

Quora comment on Upwork - be aware of shady jobs on there


The only way to beware of scams on Upwork is to use your intuition. It’s easy to spot suspicious activity, such as someone asking you to do free work or demanding payment for assigning you to work. 


However, the trouble here is that Upwork's support team doesn’t respond to these issues as is required. This is why they have persisted for so long. 


Fake Reviews

Quora comment on Upwork - fake information and reviews


Many clients complain that some freelancers have fake reviews that they have bought from somewhere or have asked their friends and family to post. As a result, it becomes difficult to filter capable freelancers from unreliable ones. 


At the moment, Upwork doesn’t have a system in place to fix this problem. So, your best bet is to be careful about who you work with. 


YouTube Reviews


Common Beginner Mistakes 

YouTube video reviews screenshot titled Avoid Upwork - Freelancers Beware: Upwork Reviewr


The reviewer talks about how many freelancers sign up on Upwork expecting to land a project the very first day. But since the platform is very competitive, it can sometimes take freelancers months to get their first project. Plus, Upwork has a client-first approach, which can often put freelancers at a disadvantage. 


Both Good and Bad 

YouTube video reviews screenshot titled Upwork Review from a Top-Rated Freelancer


Upwork may have its flaws, but it has allowed many people to earn thousands of dollars sitting at home. You just have to decide if the pros are worth bearing the cons. 


Opportunity for Income 

YouTube video reviews screenshot titled Upwork Review: How I Made Over $600000 in 4 Years


If you put in your heart and effort, you can make Upwork work for you. However, bear in mind that the process will be rocky, and you might have to wait for weeks — sometimes even months — just to get your first reply from a client. 


Upwork's Assessment on Consumer Review Sites


Now that you’ve read specific reviews from users on different sites, let’s assess the overall sentiment towards Upwork on popular consumer review sites. 


BestCompany Reviews


Upwork has a rating of 1.5 on BestCompany, receiving negative reviews from many users who claim the platform doesn’t provide value, quality, or service. However, there are also some positive reviews from freelancers and clients who have found their matches on the platform.

BestCompany Review screenshot - Landed a job in one week - 4 stars

 


Clients are also satisfied with the Enterprise plan since it allows them to sit back and relax while a project manager takes charge of everything.

BestCompany Review screenshot - very easy to post any job - 5 stars


BBB Reviews


Upwork isn’t accredited by Better Business Bureau, and it has a terrible rating of 1.1 on the platform. Upwork has only closed 46 complaints in the past year and 150 in the past three years. 


Many users have reported getting their accounts suspended and being victims of scams. The trends seem to be similar across all consumer review sites. Here are some user reviews on BBB: 

BBB review on Upwork screenshot - Upwork commits fraud - 1 star
BBB review on Upwork screenshot - person was scammed right away after joining - 1 star review
BBB review on Upwork screenshot - put money in an escrow for a spreadsheet - never done and couldn't log in - 1 star
BBB review on Upwork screenshot - had worker ask for money upfront, didn't do the work, money was stolen - 1 star


Capterra Reviews


Upwork has 82 reviews on Capterra with a solid 4.5 rating. Most users have highly rated the ease of use and overall efficiency of the platform. However, customer support has the lowest rating of all metrics, just like all other consumer review sites. 


This review sums up the overall sentiment of Upwork users on Capterra: 

Caperra review on Upwork - overall sentiment of reviews is positive for both client and contractor sides..


ConsumerAffairs Reviews


Upwork has a rating of 4.0 on ConsumerAffairs. Although most users seem happy with the service Upwork provides, the same complaints of scamming and accounts getting suspended plague ConsumerAffairs. More importantly, the inefficiency of the support team has been highlighted by many freelancers and clients. 

ConsumerAffairs review of Upwork - freelancer disappeared, didn't finish project after funding - 1 star
ConsumerAffairs review of Upwork - do not protect the clients after payment clears - 1 star


G2 Reviews


Upwork has a rating of 4.6 on G2, and many users have mentioned ease of use, availability of global talent, and payment protection to be some of the pros of the platform. 

G2 review of Upwork - titled Upwork is awesome - 5 stars


Some users were dissatisfied with the new bidding system, but other than that, they are happy with Upwork's services. 

G2 review of Upwork - Upwork is a great platform to increase your reach and get new clients - 5 stars



Gartner Reviews


Upwork has a rating of 4.2 on Gartner. While most users are happy with the variety of talent and work opportunities available on the website, some have complained about getting scammed by unvetted freelancers or clients who never wanted to pay in the first place. 

Gartner review of Upwork - Anything and Everything, Upwork has it - 5 stars


The trend of users being inconvenienced by the support team's late response is consistent across all consumer review sites. 

Gartner review of Upwork - I was scammed thousands on Upwork by a freelancer with Upworks full support - 1 star


Pissed Consumer Reviews


Upwork has a rating of 2.1 on Pissed Consumers, which is apt considering the platform's name. Some reviewers have expressly advised others to “run far away.” 

Pissed Consumer review of Upwork - Cannot Email customer Service - 3 stars


Meanwhile, some clients have mentioned "dishonest freelancers" to be a con of the platform. Clients are charged for certain hours even when freelancers aren’t working, and the support team is too slow or unresponsive to resolve these issues. 

Pissed Consumer review of Upwork - issue with billing



Review.io Reviews


Upwork only has five reviews on Review.io, with an overall rating of 2. Some freelancers said they had a good experience on the platform. 

Review.io review of Upwork - It was a good experience - 5 stars


Meanwhile, one client mentioned how they had been scammed for $27,000, and the customer support did nothing to help them get out of this problem. 

Review.io review of Upwork - Will never work with Upwork again - 1 star


Again, there was a complaint of a user whose account was suspended for no reason. Users were also appalled by the 20% commission fee. 

Review.io review of Upwork - Account was suspended, for no reason, and no help - 2 star



Sitejabber Reviews


With 2,618 reviews, Upwork has a rating of 4.37 on Sitejabber, indicating the satisfaction of most users with the platform. The satisfied users mention the website's variety of job opportunities and income potential for people from smaller countries. 

Sitejabber review of Upwork - Amazing site for new freelancers like myself- 5 stars


Clients are also happy with the talent they hire from the platform. 

Sitejabber review of Upwork - New norma of doing business - 5 stars


Meanwhile, most freelancers believe Upwork is an excellent platform since it offers a safe place to find work. Moreover, you can choose how you want to be paid, which is a popular feature among reviewers on this website. 

Sitejabber review of Upwork - A great place to work - 5 stars


Trustpilot Reviews


Upwork has a rating of 4.5 on Trustpilot, where most reviewers are happy with the way Upwork offers its services and guarantees payment to freelancers. The common complaints mentioned in negative reviews were scams, unnecessary account suspensions, and unvetted freelancers. 

Trustpilot reviews of Upwork - Upwork is not a job but a lifestyle- 5 stars


TrustRadius Reviews


Upwork has a rating of 8.7 out of 10 on TrustRadius. Clients are satisfied with Upwork's Work Diary that lets them monitor any ongoing project the freelancer is working on. On the other hand, the common problems discussed by reviewers revolve around the difficulty in filtering people to find the best freelancers for the job. 

TrustRadius reviews of Upwork - we use for virtual assistance for our company


Yelp Reviews


Upwork has a 1-star rating on Yelp. While freelancers say that there are many job opportunities on the website, most complain about Upwork favoring the clients more than freelancers and the extreme competitiveness that makes it challenging to score jobs. 

Yelp reviews of Upwork - Avoid at all costs - 1 star


One reviewer also rightfully said that Upwork exploits the workforce by charging them money for Connects to bid on projects. The platform is already taking 20% in commission fees, so there should be no room for additional burden on the freelancers. 

Yelp reviews of Upwork - horrified it costs money for freelancers to bid for jobs now - 1 star


And again, to no one's surprise, there were mentions of scams. 

Yelp reviews of Upwork - Not a safe platform, lots of scammers - 1 star



Upwork Employee Reviews


Up to here, we’ve only looked at the reviews of clients and freelancers about Upwork. Let’s take a look at Upwork employee reviews now. 


AmbitionBox Reviews


Upwork has a rating of 4.3 on AmbitionBox, and most employees state they are happy with the work culture, job security, career growth, skill development, benefits, and salary. 

AmbitionBox reviews of Upwork - 4.3 star overall rating


Blind Reviews


There are 22 Upwork employee reviews on Blind, and the site has a 3.3 rating. Although employees are happy with what they are being paid, the company culture has been called toxic by many workers. 

Blind reviews of Upwork - runaway - 2 stars


Many employees also seem to be reminiscing about what the company used to be as it has apparently fallen into the hands of the wrong leadership now. 

Blind reviews of Upwork - not what it used to be - 1 star


Comparably Reviews


With 62 Upwork employee reviews, the platform has a rating of 4.1 stars on Comparably. Again, most employees are happy with the salary and benefits but believe the team leadership could be better. 

Comparably reviews of Upwork - 71% of Upwork Employees felt positive vs 29% that felt negatively about Upwork


Glassdoor Reviews


With 74 Upwork employee reviews, the platform has a 4.2 rating. 74% of the reviewers will recommend the organization to their friends, while 87% of them approve of the CEO, Hayden Brown. 

Glassdoor reviews of Upwork - Great Promise, but Questionable Leaderhip - 5 stars


Most reviewers say that the company has a lot of intelligent people who are a delight to work with. Plus, the salary and benefits are decent. However, the leadership lacks people suited for success, which is why the platform has lost its charm. 


Indeed Reviews


Upwork has a rating of 4.0 on Indeed, with the highest rating being for the metric "work-life balance." Although employees are satisfied with job security, advancement, and salary, there are some concerns about company culture and management. 


Indeed reviews of Upwork - 4.1 stars for work-life balance, 3.6 stars Pay & benefits


Upwork Myths: Fact-Checking Common Beliefs


Let’s debunk some Upwork myths that might be making newbies reluctant to join. 


Only Cheap Projects Are Available


Not true. Upwork has a lot of high-paying projects, mainly in the following fields: 


  • Objective-C $66
  • Golang $64
  • Windows PowerShell $62
  • Excel VBA $60
  • Kotlin $60
  • VB.NET $59
  • Ruby $59
  • Java $58
  • Swift $56
  • C# $56


The prices next to each gig represent the hourly rate. 


It's Too Competitive To Find Work


While that’s somewhat true, you shouldn’t let it discourage you from getting started on the website. You will soon get your first job if you write stellar proposals and bid on the right projects. 


Freelancers Can Only Make So Much


As a beginner, you shouldn’t expect Upwork to make you six figures in your first month. However, there are many freelancers on Upwork who earn a lot from their online jobs. 

An example is Danny Marguiles, who is a copywriter charging $250 an hour.


Freelancers Should Take Any Job Starting Out


Not necessarily. Although the common trend is beginners charging low rates to get their proposals accepted, you don’t have to do this if you believe you deserve to earn more. Know your worth and explain to the client in your proposal why you are charging what you are. 


Is Upwork Good for Freelancers?


It depends on how much hard work you are willing to put in. Since Upwork is very competitive, you need to give it your best. 


The Positives


  • Higher paying projects as compared to other freelancing sites 
  • Two options of getting paid 
  • Facilitates working from anywhere in the world 
  • Access to clients from renowned companies 


The Negatives


  • A recent increase in scams 
  • Unexplained account suspensions 
  • Fierce competition makes it difficult to land jobs 


How To Get Hired on Upwork?


If you want to get hired on Upwork, you need to send in proposals every single day. Don’t copy and paste proposals from the Internet. Instead, make sure you read the client's needs and explain how you can fulfill them. 


Upwork Connects Explained


Connects are sort of like tokens that you need to submit proposals and bid on jobs. You get 60 free Connects every month and can buy more in bundles if you need. Depending on the payment a client is offering, you need 1 to 6 Connects to apply for a job. 


Skill Certifications


Upwork skill certifications indicate that you are proficient in the skills listed in your Upwork profile. However, these certifications are only available for creative fields and mobile or web software development. 


By taking a certificate, you become a Talent Specialist, and Upwork gives priority invitations to specialists for submitting proposals. 


Resume Review


After you have created your account, you need to ensure your profile is at 100% completion. Add your past works and other details that are important for the clients to know. Your resume should have everything from reviews from previous clients to your samples. 


Proposals That Work


According to Upwork, your proposal is bound to get accepted or at least viewed by the client if:

 

  • It is straightforward and addresses the client's core problem or need. 
  • It has a clear statement telling the client how you can solve their problem. 
  • It is a short pitch, comprising two to three sentences. 


You should also add attachments, such as your sample work or links to your portfolio. 


Upwork Hourly Rate


Your minimum hourly rate on Upwork should be more than $3 since the platform doesn’t accept anything below that. You can choose your hourly rate after viewing the profiles of other professionals in your niche. 


Upwork Fees


Upwork charges hefty fees to both clients and freelancers, especially those working on smaller projects.


Fees for Clients


Clients have to pay a 3% fee on all payments. 


Fees for Freelancers


The Upwork fees for freelancers are the same for all types of contracts: 


  • $0-$500: 20%
  • $500.01-$10,000: 10%
  • $10,000.01 or more: 5%


It’s understandable why Upwork reviews for freelancers mention high fees. 


Upwork Time Tracker


Upwork's Desktop App lets you log in the number of hours you’ve worked as per an hourly-based contract. Here’s how you can log your time: 


  • Open the app and log in to your account.
  • Select the contract you are working on. 
  • Turn the Off toggle to On. 
  • If you want to add an activity label or memo, write it in the "what are you working on" box. 


How To Get Upwork Reviews


Let’s cut to the chase — the best way to get Upwork reviews is to actually work on the platform and satisfy your clients. Every other way will land you in trouble or get your account suspended. 


Feedback Example


On Upwork, both clients and freelancers write reviews for each other. Here’s an example: 

Upwork Feedback example


Buying Fake Reviews: Resist the Temptation


Finally, and most importantly, don’t buy fake reviews. That will get your account suspended. Plus, most clients are smart enough to see through the shady reviews and might flag your account. Instead, work hard and earn good reviews by working as per your clients' expectations. 


Best Upwork Alternatives in 2021


Let’s bring everything to a close by briefly discussing some Upwork alternatives that you can try in 2021. 


Fiverr


Here is a comparison table showing the merits and demerits of both platforms: 


Flexjobs


FlexJobs is also expertly curated and comprised of vetted freelancers. This means that you don’t have to worry about scams. As opposed to Upwork, the platform is subscription-based, and you can cancel your subscription if you aren’t happy with the service. 


Freelancers also have access to resume review and career coaching for a one-time fee, which increases their chances of landing a job. 


Guru


Guru offers no-cost job posting for clients and has additional features like E-Check support, messaging, time tracker, and wire transfer support. Compared to Upwork, Guru can get quite expensive for freelancers since the subscription plans can be as high as $49.95. It’s important to note, though, that both platforms have scamming concerns.


Thumbtack


Although Thumbtack is similar to Upwork in many regards, it’s superior because job posters do not have to pay anything. Also, there are over 2000 services on the platform. The drawback is that it’s exclusive to the US, whereas Upwork is available worldwide. Thumbtack is better for labor-intensive local jobs, while Upwork should be your pick for remote jobs. 


Freelancer


Freelancer and Upwork have a lot in common, although in a negative way. Both platforms are infamous for scams and account suspensions. However, if you want access to more jobs and better rates, Upwork should be your pick. On the other hand, Freelancer's interface can be helpful for beginners who are just entering the gig economy. 


Gigster


Gigster is ideal for freelancers or clients working in software and mobile development niches. Unlike Upwork, where you have to do most of the work yourself unless you have an Enterprise account, Gigster assigns a project manager to make sure your projects are going as planned. 

Gigster also gives you periodic reports on your project's progress — on Upwork, you have to do this yourself. But then again, Gigster is focused on development projects while Upwork has a wide range of categories. 


99designs


Both 99designs and Upwork allow clients to find freelancers in two ways. Upwork lets you find a freelancer or post jobs, while 99designs lets you find a freelancer or host a contest. 

Both platforms have high-paying projects. Whereas 99designs is specifically for design-related tasks, Upwork is ideal for freelancers with varying backgrounds. 



Final Words 


With that, we’ve come to the end of this article about Upwork reviews. We mentioned Upwork reviews for freelancers to determine the desirability of working through the site. 


We’ve also compiled Upwork reviews for clients from different consumer review sites and social media to alert job posters of the hiccups they may face on the platform. 


All things considered, this comprehensive guide should have prepared you for your freelancing or hiring journey on Upwork. 

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