Bidding for Jobs at Freelancer.com: Is It Worthwhile for Freelance Writers?

bidding for jobs at Freelancer.com
Could you make money bidding for jobs at Freelancer.com?
Image: Freelancer

Freelancer.com is a large platform, offering “employers” the ability to set up projects for freelancers to bid on. Article writing, blog post writing and rewriting jobs are just some of the most common requests on the site for freelance writers.

I spent about a year on the site, before finally deciding to leave it all behind. But does that mean bidding for jobs at Freelance.com isn’t worthwhile for freelance writers?

It really depends what you want to do with your skills.

A Race to the Bottom

There is an element of a race to the bottom. “Employers” as they are called on the site post a project and then writers share their bids and reasons for someone to pick them. It’s like a reverse auction site, though. There is an element of the employer picking the person who bids the lowest for the job, regardless of quality.

That is not always the case, though. I do still have contacts with people I met bidding for jobs at Freelancer.com. As long as good quality writers are within the employer’s budget, they are likely to be picked. After all, there is now the big focus on high quality content.

Low Paying Jobs on Offer

The major downside is that the jobs are low paying. I’ve not found one that pays more than $5 for 500 words of content, so it’s really not worthwhile for me as a freelance writer.

Of course, this depends on what you want. It can depend on location and the amount of money your family needs; and the time you’re willing to spend for that money. I know of freelance writers who really do believe that bidding for jobs at Freelance.com is worthwhile for them. And I don’t judge them for that.

Everyone is in a different position financially.

I used it as a way to start out. It was the first place I heard about for getting clients, and I used it to build up a portfolio of work. I made sure agreements with clients ensured that I had the right to use the work as samples, and was able to use them when searching for private clients. That led to higher paying markets.

We all have to start from somewhere, and I chose this way.

But Do the Employers Pay?

It’s a scary prospect for freelance writers. You do all this work, and then there’s a risk that the person hiring

bidding for jobs on Freelancer.com
There’s no point working for no money.
Image: Pixabay

you isn’t going to pay.

That was the one thing that really made me leave the site. The lack of pay from some people made bidding for jobs at Freelance.com the least worthwhile thing in the world!

Freelancer.com says that it just creates the platform for people to post jobs and freelancers to bid. It won’t get involved in payment problems, unless there are milestones set through the system. Most employers refuse to do that, though. They know that they would end up being forced to make a payment.

Some like to take the payments off site. I understand this because there are fees involves when creating projects and bidding on Freelancer.com. One thing that annoyed me from the beginning was being hit with the fees as soon as I’d been accepted for the project. I was already in a negative, and hadn’t been paid for the work I was doing.

Surely it should be the other way around.

By taking the payments of site, there are certainly lower fees. But there is also higher risk.

Out of all the people I worked with on the site, I had three people who didn’t pay. As soon as the payment didn’t happen and I received no reply about it, I used the content elsewhere. After all, it was mine until I received payment. I had one person get back in touch once he realized the content had been used by me. He paid for it to be removed, so he (or maybe his client) could use it.

The others haven’t bothered but I’ve made more money from the content than I would have done from the employers; so I’m not that bothered.

Is it worth bidding for jobs at Freelance.com? I’m not convinced anymore. There are other similar sites out there, and they offer more protection for freelancers. Put it this way; I’m not on the site anymore but I believe searching for my own clients is more profitable and a better use of my time.

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19 thoughts on “Bidding for Jobs at Freelancer.com: Is It Worthwhile for Freelance Writers?

    1. You’re welcome, Kristen. If I can help one person out when it comes to choosing places to find writing jobs, then my negative experience is worthwhile. 🙂

    1. My sentiments exactly, Victoria. I think they’re okay for those just starting out and needing samples or for people who have a lower cost of living.

  1. I am really glad I came across this post. I signed up for Freelancer 2 nights ago and was heavily disappointed. I thought I was seeing things or my math was off. Charging an experienced writer 10 cents per word or 100 dollars for 10 of their 500 words articles is ridiculous. I haven’t been back on their but I may need to log back on today just to delete my account as well. Good to know that I am not alone in my observations.

    1. I’ve never seen anything more than a cent per word on that site. 10 cents per word isn’t actually that bad. It’s $50 for a 500 word article, and a reasonable amount. But there are a lot of poor paying jobs on the site.

  2. I generally don’t go to places like Freelancer.com to hire out my writing projects because you just never know the experience level of the person doing the bidding.

    I would hire someone from the Article Writing Challenge group before I hired through Freelancer, but that’s just me. 🙂

    Better safer than sorrier later on! Thanks for the informative post!

    1. I’ve never even considered hiring people through the site. I went in as a writer looking for work, but you do bring up a great point. If I was hiring, I’d be getting people to write original samples (paid, of course) and then run everything through copyscape just in case.

  3. I really don’t like Freelancer. It never worked for me and everyone bids for absolute lowest price. Most of my clients used to come from Warrior Forum but now that they partnered with Freelancer I’m sure it’ll be much more difficult to find clients. Doesn’t matter. I’ll still be fine. Just will have to focus on finding clients elsewhere.

    1. I never considered using the Warrior Forum to find clients. I never really liked the set up of that forum for some reason, and it doesn’t sound great that they’ve partnered together. I prefer contacting clients directly.

  4. That is shocking! I’m happy you derived some benefits from being on the site though. There’s nothing worse than wasting your time on projects that leave you in the negative at the end. Thank you for sharing your experience so transparently so that others can learn from it!

    1. Thanks, Emma. I just hope that my experience helps others. If it does, it will mean my negative experience was all worth it.

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