I don't need to tell you about the good clients; they are amazing people, and you will be amazed when you get in touch with them.
I am a freelancer and mostly work for clients from different marketplaces.
From my experience, I know scammers are all around, so we need to be aware of both bad clients and spammers to stay safe in the game by adhering to marketplace terms. Some clients are bad on purpose -I call them spammers, while others are bad by nature.
Both could inevitably be harmful (both financially & reputation-wise) if you encounter them. Here are few signs of bad clients and how I usually deal with them.
I will start sharing my experience as a Fiverr seller. I do offer an unlimited revision for all my services. As long as it’s my fault, or if the revision will provide a better experience to my clients, then I happily do it even if it costs me a little fortune sometimes – which is perfectly fine with me.
However, after delivering an order, if someone comes back with a revision request that we never discussed and/or my gig does not promise, in general, then I call it a new scope of work, which means a new work request.
In this situation, I politely ask them to buy an additional gig and offer them gig extras with a “crystal clear” explanation of why they should buy the extras.
If they dump my offer without any discussion, then I call them “bad clients.”
They’re the type of client who thinks they bought my “head” (not my gig), and I’m bound to do whatever they want. However, in reality, I sell them a gig that may offer a couple of hour’s effort of my skills and expertise. And, most importantly I have the right to say “NO” to anyone!
immediately cancel that order without a second thought, especially if they’re ignoring me.
However, canceling an order is not easy sometimes, especially when a client does not accept your cancellation request.
In that case, don't argue with them – arguing with a client (or anyone online) is a complete waste of time. Step back, relax, take a little time, and get in touch with customer support explaining everything in detail. Eventually, they will cancel the order without destroying your reputation in the process. It was the easiest case, right?
Now, the BIG question is, how do you know who might be a bad client if you never work with them? Furthermore, how do you deal with them without breaching the Fiverr terms and conditions?
Fortunately, with my last 6 years of experience at all major freelancing marketplaces (Elance, oDesk, Upwork and last 2 years on Fiverr), I can easily identify the bad clients because they provide a very strong signal (of being bad customers) during their communications and messages.
You May Also Like To Read: How to Avoid 20% + 2.75% Upwork fees?
They will ask you to communicate outside of Fiverr with their first message; perhaps they will ask you to contact on Skype or email address or sometimes leave you a number to call them. If someone does this, then this is the first sign of being a bad client. Most marketplaces don’t allow or encourage personal contact, but they simply don’t care about these rules. If someone doesn't respect the Fiverr policies, then how will they respect you or your work?
Also, sending them your contact (email address or Skype) is = put axe on your own foot. Fiverr will disable your account without any mercy. This is the number #1 reason why Fiverr terminates seller accounts on their platforms.
See the images, how I avoid them! Simple!
When an order is cancelled, I take some time to find the reason why the order was cancelled? Who is responsible for this cancellation? Because cancelling order negatively hurts both profile and gig ranking on Fiverr. So, I try to keep the cancellation rate less than 1% all the time.
Now, you will find a client who has canceled an order with you in the past. After a few days, if that client comes back and asks you to do another job but my findings say that the client was responsible for that particular cancellation.
Then I say “NO” immediately. It’s a waste of time to read their messages.
There are some clients who might have a time crush on their end. They order a gig and will continue to push you to keep their deadline but never buy the extra fast option available on the gig. I call them more a “bad manager” than a bad client, but they are both. Every time I have faced this type of client, it ended up with a bad review, unfortunately.
Every time, I felt like they left all their stress, failure, and aggression through the review they left me, and I clearly don't deserve it, being barely responsible for their failure.
I thus try to avoid them if possible.
You will see a few clients who will ask you to start their job "right away" or "right now". They don't care how many orders you have in the queue or never ask if you are available. I call them an "emergency client" rather a bad client.
I believe they have something in mind and want to test you for $5, seeing if you deliver their results. For some reason, if the result does not come out as per their expectation, they will leave you a bad review in most cases, if not 100% of the time. Usually, these types of clients and projects are worthless. A worthy project essentially needs good planning, a schedule, and a reliable person to handle it. They simply don't need a random freelancer who can start right away.
I do not want to be a guinea pig for their immature idea or test. Avoid them.
In the conclusion, I’m not claiming that anyone who asks to contact you outside of Fiverr or pushes you to keep a deadline is a bad client; they might be the amazing client too. I am trying to say that if you find a client with one or more signs above, then there is a pretty high of percentage chance that they’re bad clients.
Now, my question to the community expert is, does anyone think any of the above actions may violate Fiverr’s terms? If so, which ones and why?
Also, have you ever faced a bad client before? If so, how did you deal with that situation? Please write your answer in the comment sections below.
You May Also Like To Read: How to Avoid 20% + 2.75% Upwork fees?
Does PPH is like Fiverr?
At Fiverr, Freelancers offer gig and at PPH they sell Hourly. In general, Both gig and Hourly are the same things with two different names. So they seem to be same marketplaces, right?
But they are NOT same – they have a clearly distinguishable difference in terms of features and functionalities – we are going to explore them with this article.
When someone enters into the freelance industry he always looks for an easy entry and Fiverr is the first choice that case. But that is merely a level one for the freelancers.
Fiverr is a popular site for the initiation. On the other hand, practically or theoretically PPH or hourly can make you more money.
Let’s see what defines them as unique marketplace in the industry:
Unique features of PeoplePerHour (PPH):
Personal Experience of Working in PPH: I’m new in PPH but that didn’t disrupt my learning flow. In my first month on PPH, I had 2000$ income. You can check my article where I disclosed how I made 2000$ just after first month on PPH.
Unique features of Fiverr:
Personal Experience of Working in Fiverr: I mostly use Fiverr to buy services like SEO, backlinks, Blog articles – they seems good for the price I paid for. Nevertheless, Fiverr is easier to navigate and much more user-friendly than PPH.
But the fact is, Fiverr is a marketplace where you can sell anything that you are good at. Even you can put your forecasting ability in job list for $5.
PeoplePerHour vs. Fiverr
Fiver or PPH? Could Be Best for The Business?
I found PPH a new revolutionary marketplace where anything can possible. I saw the determination there. ‘You get what you pay for.’ It gave me a professional impression because they required legal documents and references to ensure your quality. It is the place where higher payment job is available, alternatively curated highly skilled freelancer available for your project for the buyer. Which attract the western buyers who want quality services.
On the other hand, Fiverr is a special one. They made a great feature of $5 per work but it also creates obstacles. People post everything on Fiverr. There is a higher probability of finding garbage on Fiverr. You have to have experience about Fiverr to shine in Fiverr. They do not require documents or legalization for the individuals.
That’s why it is so common that people will fake their identity. Fiverr’s customer support is great, for a more open marketplace, people are trustworthy.
In this rival, some of the features like Logo ideas, article writing, and quality back linking, copywriting and translation you can roughly rely on Fiverr. But except for this, PPH is more reliable than Fiverr. It is a trustworthy and more professional marketplace where experienced and quality work matters.
For freelancers, marketplace matters – in fact, it matters a lot! No one can deny this fact.
By joining a marketplace and making a handsome amount of money within a very short time is not an easy task. A lot of tasks ahead – Creating a brandable profile, bidding for the jobs, building a reputation, networking with the client, making trusted and satisfy your clients – these all are necessary things do to earn a handsome amount of money.
But if I say NO! It’s NOT that hard as it sounds! Making money on Marketplace is relatively easy. Maybe it will take some longer time for some cases but it is way more possible if you just follow my formulas.
In this article, I’ll show you how I made over 2000$ just after the first month on PeoplePerHour (PPH).
From July 2013 – May 2016, until Elance.com was shut down, I was one of the top rated freelancers on Elance of my categories – Admin support, Sales & Marketing.
After Elance merged with oDesk and formed a new company Upwork Global Inc, I was frustrated, hopeless and I felt like I lost my freelancing career. Because on Elance, I was able to earn 5k-8k (USD) every month. However, I have barely touched 2k landmark on Upwork till today.
On Elance, I had worked with more than 350 projects with 200 clients from all over the world. Below is the screenshot of my Elance profile.
Click the link if you want to see my full Elance profile. Unfortunately, It’s still live but not accessible as they redirect all the hit to Upwork platform.
Basically, I hate Upwork as much as I loved Elance. So, I was desperately looking for alternative income sources and thanks, God I found PPH.
Let’s make this long story short, a few months ago in a freelancer community MeetUp program held in Dhaka, Bangladesh – I heard about PPH and its advantages. After the MeetUp when I back home that day, I was trying to do some research about PPH. After a short research, I found PPH have a great EU based client community, both Hourly & Fixed price working plan exist exactly as it was on Elance.
Also, I was extremely convinced when found the freelancer “ability to send invoice” anytime to the client which is not available at Upwork till today. But it was available on Elance. And if you lead a team or run a freelancing agency – you must know how convenient this features for the agency.
So, I jumped over PPH and crafted a professional looks profile by copying my Upwork and Elance profile data. And it all took me less than 15 minutes to complete my profile.
I started bidding on the job shortly after completing my profile. And within a very short time, I got my first hourly client which was beyond my expectation.
1. Earned 2000$ Landmark: Yes, it’s fact and I made over 2000$ on PPH within my first month of joining. Here is the screenshot of my invoices from my PPH Dashboard.
The majority of the income, almost 60%, came from my old Elance clients, 20% Upwork client, 10% PPH client and 10% Referral program.
As I had worked with more than 200 clients on Elance – I personally contacted them to join PPH under Zero Service fee promotional offer.
If you are wondering how clients from Elance came here on PPH or don’t know what is zero promotional offer them I recommend you to read this article – How to Avoid 20% + 2.75% Upwork fees?
Here is the breakdown of my income:
2. Acquired CERT-5, Ranked 3922: PPH recently introduced the ranking algorithm – which is awesome. If you are not familiar with the CERT, it is to reward the higher quality and relevant talent up in the rank. Before this, their selection of seller was based on the bill that worked through the site and the buyer rating and feedbacks. It limits the quality workers and the factor is ranking always gives us an impression about the good, bad or ugly.
So this is the first thing you have to focus. Make your CERT level high. If you want to see my CERT level crossed level five and ranked me as 3922nd.
Please be noted, this CERT level is not a permanent data and its change every day based on the different parameter. If you want to learn more about PPH CERT algorithm – I recommend you to read PPH new ranking algorithm.
And now see my invoice with the amount I earned in last month. Some of the payment is yet to collect but total 2270.90$ is my first month’s earning in the PPH. Is Sound crazy, right? See for yourself:
3. Completed 5 Projects, Almost all 5 stars: I have completed 5 projects till today, and received 5 stars rating for all the jobs. One thing I must tell you here – the client I met on PPH are truly awesome. They leave a 5-star review without being melodramatic compared to the client I met on Upwork.
4. 95% Completion rate: My job success rate is 96% till today.
5. 90$ Referral Commission: Also, I received 90$ referral commission. This is an another awesome program on PPH. You can earn some extra bucks if someone joins on PPH with your referral link. If you wish to join at PPH with my PPH referral link click here.
Check out the things that is known as basic principals in PPH for the new freelancers.
1. Build your profile to the extent that buyers can find you easily for the job. Fill your profile with the achievement of your freelancing career. Make your clients comfortable in your profile to offer you a job.
2. At the beginning do not hesitate for a job. Take the job does not matter what amount they pay.
3. Bid for the job within your expertise. If you are accountant, bid for accounting related stuff does not bid for the job that requires a skill you do not have. Negative feedback is bad for business.
4. Look at the other successful profile. Follow them roughly.
5. PPH allows the sellers to send the direct proposal to the buyers on the listed job. Search for the relevant job list every day and you only have 15 chance to submit your proposal so do not waste it to the irrelevant job list.
6. Hourly is a unique feature in PPH. This is the quickest way to earn money. Try to be sufficient in Hourly services. It will help you a lot that you can barely imagine.
7. Work for the fair price. Competitors are so much skilled in this marketplace. At the initial, do not think you have demanded to the clients. Work for them in cheap price to make relationship and reputation through your quality work.
8. Meet every one of your client’s expectations. Let them know you believe in quality staffs and can deliver the way they want to be delivered. Try to get a 5-star feedback.
9. Finish the job, get paid, and make your profile more improved and professional.
Things got to change when oDesk and Elance created a joint venture company named Upwork. That time oDesk and Elance was two top competitors in the marketplace but they thought that merge would be a great opportunity for them to seize the market. But in some extent, they settled all the detail and decided that they need to make the whole brand differently. But they kind of messed it up. Their slow network (that they publicly admitted that they couldn’t fix the problem), their system outage every day makes it difficult nowadays to work efficiently in Upwork. Also, their new service charge structure that barely make sense to the freelancers.
That’s why after one year of bitter try I had to move on to the different marketplace to seek something more comfortable for working condition. I tried freelancer.com, Guru, PeoplePerHour for some time and gathered knowledge about the marketplace.
It is your turn now; I’ve just shown you the evidence that you can make enough money within a short time in PPH. Why’s not giving it a try where you even have an opportunity of getting a 0% service charge. Take a challenge and run for it. Happy freelancing.
I’m in a freelancing industry for last four years (as of July 2016) and had the opportunity to work at all major leading marketplaces such as PeoplePerHour, Upwork, Freelancer and Guru as a freelancer and client.
If you are thinking about taking freelancing as a career OR if you are planning to hire someone to contribute to your business – this article will give you a comprehensive idea about the leading marketplaces, For both employer and contractor.
As we know, comparison among the various marketplace becomes an obvious choice for the concerning parties as they are dealing with more and more contractors nowadays. Many freelancing sites are available now in the market. Buyers and sellers are increasing gradually. Hundreds of thousand job are getting posted in the freelancing websites every day. You just have to find out the best working site for you. Let’s follow the lead:
Before going for an ultimate comparison I want to share my personal opinion regarding three leading marketplaces namely PPH vs. Upwork vs. Freelancer.
PeoplePerHour: I’m working in PPH for one year. What I love about PPH are their quality leads. We know, it is a growing marketplace and the employers, media, recruiters are willing to provide high charges because they always want quality results. I found two unique benefits from PPH which is its ‘Hourly’ schedule and their pitfall of making contact online option. And another big plus point is their payment for all contacts will be held in Escrow.
Upwork: If you are looking for something big, this is Upwork for you. As we know this company is a merger of oDesk and Elane that’s why that two popular marketplaces from the past are now just bulking from the Upwork’s shelter. But strategically Upwork is not as same standard as oDesk or Elance. Every day without cause they have system outages. They block the access and messaging for the clients and freelancers. Recently they made an imaginary decision about service charge. In there, bill charge below $500 has to pay 20% for their service charge and for the employers it is 2.75% for each transaction. There is a saying in the industry that, ‘the bigger the company get, the further from the reality it gets. That is what happening with the Upwork right now. I started my freelancing career with Upwork. But now I just log in there for my old clients.
Freelancer: Freelancer.com is one of the rising freelancing websites nowadays. This is not like Upwork that just born big. They started with a small competition and now possessing a big market in the industry. I’ve experience working in a Freelancer for almost 8 months. And it seems that they are running toward the right direction.
Technically, this three top marketplace have big differences in several aspects. Their operational process, execution, public relation, HR, R&D, services all these things are different from each other. I’ve just sorted it down with several criteria. Look at the table below, it is providing necessary information that you need to know to decide which media you should choose for your freelancing activities.
99Designs: (Approximately 500K contractors.)
All the experienced designers are working together in the 99Designs. If you want to work in graphic designing platform then nothing can be better placed than 99Designs. But the main difficulty is for those hard working designers who submitted template and thought their hard work will draw some value. For the designers, competition is high in there. They pay $659 for logo design and 40% fee taken as a commission from the contractor. Means 60% is to be left for the freelancers.
CrowdSPRING (Approximately 250K contractors.)
CrowdSPRING provides the cheapest price at least for the logos. As for now, they have creative superior talent and actually pay heed to the clients. It’s a user-friendly site for the new users. Profile making is easy and the content criteria and the bidding process is relatively easy. CrowdSPRING is charged as a listing free if the price includes a $174 fee. And contractors and employers set the price for their own services or jobs. They take $819 for web design and $399 for the logo design.
Hiretheworld (Approximately 5K contractors.)
It’s some kind of crowdsourced design marketplace. For my graphic design project, I used this for quite sometimes. I recruited some of the designers for the book cover project and the logo designing. You will be perplexed after watching their graphic ideas. Even the charged price for design is less than the market leader 99designs. The price includes a $40 fee that Hiretheworld counts as a free listing.
Elance (Approximately 3million contractors.)
Freelancers show mixed respond working in Elance. But it is still a good platform for the freelancers to work on. Entry fee is zero. No charges. Some of the good characteristics are that, for the employers, they will let you submit the exact job requirement. Most importantly, you can hire the candidates by interviewing them. Also, they have a conflict resolution process. It solves the problems if you hire someone inElance community. Their employer’s commission is 8.75% and the contractors earning is 91.25% which is a pretty good percentage.
GURU (Approximately 1million contractors.)
GURU declared themselves as a number one market virtual marketplace online. Though it is yet to be tested, GURU is running just very good. Their freelancers or GURU’s are well trained and they believe in quality. My brother is working in GURU for seven years. It gave him a good perception regarding freelancing. It has a process called GURU Recommend which is designed to make hiring process fast and easy. Their pricing system is through historic average. They charge 11.95% as a commission from the employer and 9% as a commission from the contractors.
Freelance Direct (Approximately 250K contractors.)
The actual design is for the enterprise, individual and small business users. Their services are software development, software development, networking and information technology, design, multimedia and customer service for sales and marketing. Their pricing system is bit different. They do not use fixed payment method but use the historic average. But their service charge is more than the regular marketplaces. They take 25% as a commission from the freelancers.
Task Rabbit for Business (Approximately 20K contractors.)
It’s a best task based freelancing company out there. It is more a local company for the virtual tasks. Actually, it is not only a site for the virtual task, it is a place where people do what’s need to be done. It can be moving help, deliveries, handyman service, house cleaning and local pick-up service. Same as other outsourcing sites, they bid on the job but this Boston-based site work more in a locality. For business, Task Rabbit charge 20% as a commission from the contractor. Means contractors’ earnings will remain to be 80%
TaskArmy (Approximately 5K contractors.)
It is also a task oriented freelancing marketplace. Their operations are more like Fiverr. Their freelances post the work they want to do with the price they offered for you and by category, you can range it through highest to lowest. You cannot post the job that you want them to do for you, instead, you have to find the post with the task offering your demand. They do this intentionally to stop bidding the price that employers try to manipulate. TaskArmy charges 20% as a commission from the contractors. 80% is left for them.
Amazon Mechanical Turk (Approximately 1million contractors.)
Nothing can be a perfect platform for the small and repetitive tasks that can’t be done automatically otherwise. Their task is known as Human Intelligence Task (HIT). Hundreds of thousand HIT are being posted every day and it’s not only for virtual service but you can recruit an army willing to do your any kind of work for dollars. And interestingly, HIT’s ranging is started from $0.01. Amazon takes 10% fee from each HIT transaction. And still, this charge is below most of the marketplaces.
Not a Soft Decision:
Ultimately you have to take a good decision for your gateway. As per I can see, Upwork becomes the new freelancer’s doorway, yes, most of the newcomers start their freelancing career in Upwork (previously oDesk and Elance). But after dancing there for some time, they shift elsewhere. As you can see, the list of online marketplace sites that have been given is not all that you need. When you are in the industry, you must observe and explore the new opportunities.
But PeoplePerHour is the best thing going on in the market right now. Most importantly, working here is just free. And free means totally free, no condition. And clients post thousands of job every day. The best thing is their hourly basis work schedule. It gives freelancers good chance for earning money in the field where they are good at.
PPH came up with a cool and sound concept. They have a potential for the good clients, and freelancers, as they are getting free membership and payment system is based on the client’s satisfaction it will not bring any harm for giving it a try. You just have to be careful with whom you are dealing with.
Most of the expert freelancers maintain a portfolio of work. Do not just attempt in a single site. Try to diversify your range in severing marketplaces. That is why finding out the best one for work is a crucial one to go on for execution.
I do have the opportunity to see the both side of Upwork, both as a freelancer and client. I was using oDesk solely as freelancer until 2014 and was very happy with oDesk until it acquired elance and re-branded their name as Upwork Global Inc on July 2015, but I don’t like it at all from the very beginning. From my experience, it was good (at least useable interface and service fees) before switching to Upwork. I’m writing this article to share my experience with the freelancing community so that if they ever read my article and take step to fixing the issues on some day in the near future!
Recently Upwork increased their service fee from 10% to 22.75%. As you are landed here – I presume as like many others you also hate to pay 20% from freelancer + 2.75% from client thus 22.75% as Upwork service fee. Not only this, Upwork became slow and hard to work type. Freelancers are facing lots of complication to maintain their active profile. I’ve even noticed some social media pages where they discuss about the problems of working in Upwork. Now thinking to find an alternative option that works for both you and your freelancer. If this is the case, keep reading – I got something awesome for you!
On August 27, 2015, I had opened a support ticket on Upwork , where I humbly asked them about the team features on Upwork platforms for the agencies like Us – It was as simple as that they must add team features for agencies exactly what now Elance had. Needless to say, I was on Elance from 2013 and was happily working with my team and was able to earn on average $8k/per month.
Please have a look on the ticket below:-
Agency/team features like Elance?
I am an agency owner and I lead a team of 19 people on Elance marketplace. I was good at Elance with my agency but as Elance is moving to Upwork, now I am focusing on Upwork to build my client base again.
Last month, I upgraded my agency membership to “agency plus” from basic. Unfortunately, I found Upwork functionality is different than elance. Where on elance, I can bring any of my team members to the client project [both fixed price/hourly] and they can track the time while working for the client (was very helpful features). But here on Upwork this feature was/is not available yet.
At Upwork, a client needs to hire my team member separately which requires an overwhelming effort to manage a client to do so. I found most of the clients don’t have time to do so.
So I have a couple of question:
1) Do you have any plan to implement these features like Elance?
2) If you have a plan, by when we can expect this features will be publicly available for the agency like us.
Most importantly, do me a favor, please. Don’t answer me with a generic template. I have very bad experience with Upwork support team and it’s my feelings that you guys just wasted my time most of the cases in the past.
Appreciate your insightful answer. Thank you.
Here was the reply from customer support:-
Thank you for contacting Upwork!
I’ve reviewed your concern and I will be happy to assist you with that today!
Muhammad, I’d like to let you know that I appreciate your feedback and please do remember always that we value the business you bring in this platform. Yes, I understand that Elance and Upwork have a lot of differences, but we have similar goals in connecting, collaborating and helping people succeed.
In Upwork, the clients cannot hire the entire agency as each freelancer must be hired to an individual contract. There must be an individual contract for each person. If it’s an hourly contract, each freelancer needs to track time, so the client must hire every freelancer on a contract. But, if it is a fixed-price contract, and you intend to add more freelancers who’ll work on a contract, you can always reach out to the client to let him know that you’ll have another person/s work on the contract.
What I can do now is to forward your feedback to our Product Development team. Also, you may want to check our feedback forum via this link:http://community.Upwork.com. This way, the whole community can see and discuss it.
I’d also like to share that your feedback will still be reviewed. That’s why, I can’t say any exact date or time frame as to when this feature will be publicly available in Upwork. But, please be assured that we’ve heard your opinion and we’ll always find a way to give our users the best online experience.
Hope this helps! If you have any other concerns, just let me know and I’ll be happy to help. Have an awesome day ahead!
High Value Support | Upwork.com (formerly oDesk.com)
Click here to see the reply from their customer support:-
Overall, it was not a bad reply but this was just to make me happy by using their highest level of customer service pitch but sadly no specific answer for my valuable questions!!
Again, I follow up for my ticket on September 26, 2015.
Hi, I wanted to follow up if there is any update on the issue I raised on Request # 4815920.
I can’t move to Upwork until the team features are not available. Can you provide me an update?
And there I received a cheap replay again: Please have a look below:-
Thank you for contacting Upwork Support!
I’ve reviewed your concern and I will be happy to assist you with that today!
As per checking, that ticket has already been closed, but the representative who handled that request has forwarded your comments to the Product team. Here in Upwork, only the person hired is allowed to do the work. The person doing the work must be hired so they can log their time appropriately, unless it’s fixed price contract. If fixed price contract, the Staffing Manager can assign it to other agency freelancer and then the Staffing Manager can deliver the work once complete and the client can pay if satisfied.
Please let us know if we can be of additional assistance. I will be glad to help.
High-Value Support | Upwork.com (formerly oDesk.com)
What agency features require to run agency businesses successfully at Upwork?
Honestly speaking, I was very happy with my agency on Elance.com. My agency earning was on average $2000 per week thus $6000 – $8000 per month. As the merging process started, my income level started to go downward day by day. And unfortunately, its became $3000- $4000 per month at this moment.
Below are the issues which Upwork must accommodate before invite agencies to Upwork: Team functionality should be exactly functional like Elance. What I mean exactly like Elance are:
Limited Agency Features:
Agency Owner/Account manager should be able to bring his team member to execute client projects where agency team member can track timer and send bills to the client for hourly or fixed price job. (Currently they don’t have this features even at agency plus membership). Last month, to test this features I upgraded my membership to “agency plus” and just lost membership fee 25$ without any benefit. I immediately canceled my subscription when I discovered the fact though. 🙂
Problem with Manual time:
There should be no restriction on adding manual time. Currently at Upwork, you can’t add manual hours if its overlap with your tracking hours, which is truly disgusting. Today, I try to add 25h for a client and after trying 3 or 4 times, I just give up – every time it was showing you can’t add time as its overlap with some hours. I believe there should not be any restriction on adding overlap hours since client knows they hire agencies and willing to pay manual time. Most importantly, there was no restriction on Elance to do so, but why Upwork is preventing us from adding overlap hours? It should not be, right?
Non-user friendly Reporting:
Also, the time sheet overview should look like elance – I hate the current Upwork overview. It’s really disgusting when you spend hours to add manual time to find the untracked time slot.
No Option for Misc. Invoice:
There is no option to send misc. invoice to the client (till today as I am updating the article as on 23 Nov, 2015). So even your client agree to pay you additional amount for extra work you need to request client to send it as a bonus and wait for his time to pay you as a bonus. This Bonus payment system is still fine as I found client pay as bonus if you follow up with them BUT what if you forgot to ask client when you have to deal with 20/30 clients every week?
No option to adjust billed hours:
Let’s imagine a scenario like you work for 30 hours in a week for a client but client want to pay for 25 hours for some budgetary issue or you simply want to give him a discount. You are unable to adjust the hours on Upwork but it’s still on Elance.
Poor Customer support:
Upwork must improve user experience score on their customer support. From my experience it was very bad and most of the time, I just felt they are wasted my time as they came back with a pre-made template answer which actually does not answer my question/concern. Sometimes such situation happen, when I strongly refused their reply then a senior staff replied me with an apology.
Whereas, I was very happy with the Elance customer support team. Over 95% of the cases, I found, they dig down to the issue and come back with a solid answer.
Upwork removed the ‘5-star rating’ from the freelancer’s profile for their new feature so called ‘Job success score’.
Regarding profile duplicate issue:
Recently, I got an invitation to join Upwork but what I actually discovered is they are not offering you a profile merge option. What they actually offering is to keep your strongest profile and close you’re another profile (if you are already on Upwork). For my case, my both profile is strong and I don’t want to lose any reputation. Freelancers/Agencies who are already on Upwork, they must provide an option to merge their Elance reputation with their existing Upwork profile. I don’t mind if they offer this current option to freelancers/agencies to those whose Upwork profile is poor – they must be happy to down their existing profile. But why should I completely lose one of my hard earned reputation which took me many years hard work to build?
The most dangerous thing is you have to close all you’re running Upwork contracts to perform this merging process. I have more than 15 open contacts with Upwork clients now, so how can I close my entire contract to bring my Elance reputation here? Disgusting!!
I’m going to update this article over the next few weeks. Meantime you can have a look on another articles : How to Avoid 20% + 2.75% Upwork fees?
Please share your thought and suggestion on the comment section below.
Freelancers or Outsourcing firms of Bangladesh often face hard time to receive payment from their global clients. This is because of the over regulated money laundering law from the government. But, No worries, yet there are so many secure ways to receive payment from your global clients.
With this article, I am going to discuss how you can receive your freelance earning through the Western Union?
Recently in the oDesk Bangladesh Facebook group (the largest freelancing community in Bangladesh with over 55k active members), I saw my native freelancers were asking a common question such as:
These are the burning questions of the age, as most of the Upwork freelancers are worried about paying 20% Upwork fees, alternatively, clients are also fade up of paying a fixed monthly fees to maintain their Upwork account – both parties are looking for alternative solutions and here the Western Union could play a vital roles to serve the community needs – We, the freelance community just need to take this advantages.
If you are a freelancer or a client, want to send money to your freelancer or receive money from your client then this article will answer you all the questions. You can follow the exact same steps if you are not even from Bangladesh.
How does the Western Union Money Transfer system work for Freelancer?
Transferring money through the Western Union is easy and have low or no risk at all. Because once the payment is approved from sender end, the receiver (freelancer) should get the money instantly!
If you are dealing with foreign clients directly (without marketplace), then the most usual and popular payment service in Bangladesh is Western Union Money Transfer. Not only because their low-cost service but also a high range of accessibility to the rural people. You can find Western Union branch almost anywhere in the country. A simple google search with “the Western Union + Your area name” will pop up all the nearest western union branches. In Bangladesh, almost all the banks have an affiliation with the western union so seek for the nearest western union affiliate bank. Nevertheless, the big supermarkets, mailbox centers, and post office also work as western union outlets. Please be noted that you can receive money from any western union outlets – there are no branch restrictions.
Here are the easy 3 steps you need to follow to receive money via the Western Union:
Step1: Send your personal and contact details to your client
At first, you need to send personal detail to your client. Personal detail means your name, address, and phone number. I’d suggest you to send a copy of your National identity or passport copy along with your phone number so that there is no scope of spelling error while filling the receiver information from sender end.
This information required verifying you are the authorized person. You can tell your client to send money declaring as “freelancing service fee” it will help you to stay out of any future tax-related hassle in our country as the freelancing amount is tax-free. BUT sometimes, a client can’t pay money as a freelancing service fee as they have the same tax issue, so you can tell him to send money as you are his relatives and he is sending money to support you.
Step2: Collect MTCN # from client
When client sent you the money, the client will give you MTCN # (Money transaction control number/transaction number) and the amount of money he sent.
MTCN # is a ten-digit code with a format like XXX-YYY-ZZZZ. Once you have the MTCN # number you are ready to pick your money from any of your nearest western union outlets. Remember, you can pick your money from any western union outlets – there are no branch restrictions.
Step3: Collect Money from nearest the Western Union Outlet
Before heading to your nearest Western Union outlet to pick money, please make sure you have 3 things with you.
1) MTCN# (collect from your client)
2) Your NID/Passport
3) Your Mobile phone.
You need to provide a photocopy of your NID/Passport to the bank concerned person. As per Bangladesh government guideline, they will keep a hard copy of your identity documents along with other transaction documents for the future references.
When you go to Western Union payment service and find the person who manages Western Union payment issue. The responsible person will ask you for the MTCN number and a copy of your passport/NID? If everything okay then he will process your money within few minutes.
While receiving the payment, you don’t need to pay anything. But your client must pay the Western Union service fee for the transaction.
Also, you can track your money online. Go to https://www.westernunion.com/au/en/track-transfer.html and enter the MTCN number. Transfer amount and receivers country. Or if you don’t want to go online or other problem whatever you can call at the Western Union customer service.
What are the fees involve?
Western Union service fee varies based on the amount and the sender/receiver country location. For instance, if your client sends you any amount but less than 5000$ from the USA then the service fee is $30 approximately. Much cheaper, right?
You can have a look on the Western Union FEES & PAYMENTS page.
How the Conversion Rate Works?
Before we go for the steps of receiving payment I want to discuss the conversion rate and way it works. This is so common that currency value changes every day. Today’s $1 will not carry the same value as tomorrow’s $1. This is how world economy spins.
And these changes are as regular as we eat, sleep and repeat. So you should keep track on this thing. There are many currency converter websites you can find in online where you can keep track on money conversion. Use this:
For example, As of July 1, 2016, and news is saying that the selling price for the $1 is BDT 77.33 and the buying price is BDT 77.58. So if you are a freelancer you have to receive money from selling price means for $100 bill you will receive BDT 7733 and if you are a client you’ll have to send money at buying price that is BDT 77.58 and for $100 bill you have to spend BDT 7758. And the spread between is the income of the payment service organization.
That’s all you need to do to get payment using the Western Union. It’s basically very easy. So do not afraid of asking your clients to send you payment directly. You can save a lot of money if you just can manage your client to pay you directly via the Western Union. If you can make your clients happy with your quality work, there is 100% chance that they will pay you the full amount. If you have any question about this post, just leave a comment below.
You may Also Like to Read>> How to Avoid 20% + 2.75% Upwork fees?
Update as on Dec 31, 2016: For this blog post, Upwork permanently terminated my freelancer account and send me a legal notice (“Upwork Demand Letter”) received today. In the legal notice, they stated that this blog post contains some misleading information which defaming Upwork’s reputation. Currently, I’m reviewing their Demand letter and I’m trying understand their claim. After my study done with the legal notice, I have a plan to make the necessary correction within a week or two. Of course, I don’t want to provide any misleading information to my blog audience.
Are you a freelancer on Upwork?
Then you must hate to pay 20% Upwork fee from your hard-earned cash, right?
If you find yourself shouting “yes” to these questions then you are probably looking for an Upwork alternative solution to avoid the Upwork’s greedy fee structure.
As with many freelancers, and clients, you are in the same boat, looking for an alternative of Upwork. However, you also want to make sure someone should Guarantee your payment for your Hourly or Fixed price job, right?
Not a freelancer, but you landed on this article from Google search result? Then I presume, you probably a client on Upwork and you are also worrying about paying a 2.75% extra fees or 25$ monthly membership fee to Upwork. So, looking for a Upwork alternative without compromising the quality of the work you need for your projects, right?
Well, with this article, I’m going to show you how to avoid 20% + 2.75% Upwork fees by using an Upwork alternative platform which is exactly same functional like Upwork. Regardless, you are the client or the freelancer, both of you can save your money.
Let’s have a look what’s new Upwork Payment System, fees and changes:
Upwork recently made changes in their payment system; declared by their CEO Stephane Kasriel just a few months ago. Even if they stated it as small change but maybe it is not. Previously they were charging 10% fee on every project on freelancers.
In the new payment system, they made it more complex and controversial. It mainly talks for the high-end freelancers who regularly bills five figure amounts. Let’s take a look at the attributes of the new payment system.
1) For Employers or Clients
2) For Freelancers:
Now, if a freelancer work for a project for a total project $600 value, the client has to pay $616.5 where $600 for freelancer + $16.5 Upwork fee. And the freelancer has to pay, 20% for the first $500, which is $100 and 10% for remaining $100 which is $10, thus Upwork keeps 110$ from freelancer plus $16.5 from the client, effectively Upwork keeps 126.5$ and freelancer get $490 for a 600$ project. Which is completely INSANE in my opinion!
Then tell you what, really? That doesn’t make sense because by calculation the effective rate is approximately 25%! In this case, 78% of the freelancers are who bills ranging from $100 to $1000.
So ultimately the Service fees chart looks like:
A brief history of Elance-oDesk merged and fees changes
In 2013, two big players in online marketplace oDesk and Elance declared a merger and started their operation in separate platforms. They said publicly that it will bring unprecedented freedom for those looking to find work online. A year later, a new company was announced with the name Upwork Global Inc and attributed the best innovations of both oDesk and Elance with the promise of many.
A year later, a new company was announced with the name Upwork Global Inc and attributed the best innovations of both oDesk and Elance with the promise of many new features. But according to the marketers this is merely a relaunch. There, oDesk is disappeared and formed with the name Upwork.
The new features Upwork already offers in this platform is a new group collaboration fracture fee anybody an use. Matching algoridom that improves the site’s ability to make connections. At the beginning, Upwork charge 10% on each billing as same percentage as oDesk charged previously. Until the new payment method came effective from 21 Jun 2016.
The new features Upwork already offers in this platform is a new group collaboration fracture fee anybody an use. Matching algoridom that improves the site’s ability to make connections. At the beginning, Upwork charge 10% on each billing as same percentage as oDesk charged previously. Until the new payment method came effective from 21 Jun 2016.
When you stop and talk to fellow freelancers they agree that this new system, is not a well liked system, and when the issue was addressed with those at Upwork they claimed that their new policies and fees had been put in place to help the freelancer. This is supposed to help them in the long run. Unfortunately
Unfortunately, their math is a little skewed. It’s not understandable why clients should pay constant amount of money for the transactions they made. According to the CEO of the company it will help them in a long run to get more bill payment if they can make it to $500.01 to $10,000 which is likely to be real hard for most of the freelancers.
Because 80% of the freelancers are working as a part-timer and their transaction is quite small. For a $100 logo why a graphic designer should pay $20 to the company? Do not seem legitimate. According to the statistics 78% of the freelances get payment less than $500. So maybe its time they go back to the drawing board?
Now let me introduce you an Awesome platform PeoplePerHour?
As it seems it’s time to think about alternatives. There are a number of competitors you can find in the market as an alternative of the Upwork. Such as Freelancer, Guru, PeoplePerHour, Fiverr and much more. But when it comes to the efficiency and advantage at the work, I personally like to working in PeoplePerHour (PPH).
PPH is NOT only a marketplace BUT also a community of curated freelance talent which can be compared as Upwork private talent cloud.
It allows you to work with buyers around the world and find the job and be able to structure everything on an hourly or Fixed price basis. PeoplePerHour always offers the satisfaction guarantee and you do not have to pay any service charge whatsoever whereas with, Upwork is charging 20% these days. Apart from the service fee, Freelancers also get to use Escrow and invoicing system for free.
Same as freelancers, the buyers also get the benefit of 0% service fee forever. Where Upwork is charging 2.75% each time or 25$ monthly fee in their new payment plan. As a buyer, you can get the service as Upwork. You can get freelancers on hourly and fixed price model and in renewable approach.
Like other marketers, PPH gives you the advantage of contacting with the freelancers directly or choosing them by seeing their profile, portfolio or by their reputations. By sorting out based on price, experience, and reputation, clients can get to choose their required skill holder very easily.
As with other marketers, PPH gives the clients to manage the project in their own hand. They can share contents, documents, can make payments without leaving the platform. And the satisfaction guarantees. You will not pay unless you are 100% satisfied. They will not waste your time by giving false service. There is always fair chance to find good freelancer along with a good team.
A comparison table with PeoplePerHour, Upwork and Freelancer features and fees structures differences.
After the merger between oDesk and Elance, Upwork became the leader of the online marketing and freelancing industry. But in recent years PeoplePerHour and Freelancers’ are now doing really good comparing to the Upwork.
So let’s see some of the ingredients that show that PeoplePerHour is the best online marketplace out there.
Why You Should Join People Per Hour?
Well, you already might be thinking to bring your Upwork long term client (already passed 24m with him on Upwork) or you may have an old Elance client to bring on PPH platform in order to enjoy 0% service fee for Lifetime. Before you move let’s see what is the benefit for sellers and buyers on PPH:
The Seller Benefits:
The Buyer Benefits:
PPH launches some new features that will help ANYONE to take benefit from freelancing and it’s so easy to absorb. Most importantly, freelancers can conduct their operation with clients outside of PPH through their market without any service charge.
How to bring a client to PeoplePerHour?
You need to follow the two steps process to bring your client to PPH.
Step 1 – You need to join first at PeoplePerHour as a freelancer and complete your profile. Creating profile on PPH is very easy and fun. You can do it within 5 minutes by copying your other marketplace profile.
I know some guys are struggling to create freelancer profile on Upwork but trust me – Creating your profile on PPH will take only a few minutes.
Step 2 – Invite your client join at PPH under zero service fee promotional offer. Once you client join on PPH, you both will enjoy 0% service fee for LIFETIME! You just need to know your client email address and full name to send him an invitation to join PPH.
Here is the screenshot of the client invitation form below.
In the “Personal Message” field of the invitation form, you need to write everything clearly and to the point. Don’t mess it with unnecessary blaming of other marketplace charges – Clearly specify the advantages you both will receive on PPH.
For your advantage, here I’m presenting a couple of “Personal Message” which I sent to my client and both joined me on PPH.
Dear [Name of Client],
Elance is literally shut down from 30th May 2016 and I am unable to send you an invoice for XXXX project through Elance anymore. I hate to invite you to join on Upwork as their greedy grab fee – 20% from freelancer + 2.5% for client.
However, I got an Upwork alternative which is Awesome and it’s called People Per Hour (PPH). PPH is An UK based freelance Marketplace operating business from 2013. PPH will not charge you/me anything for the Lifetime if you just join there with my referral link. I will send you the details how you can join there on the following email. Once we set up a new contract on PPH, I’ll be able to send you all the invoice for the current projects.
Let me know if you have any questions.
I hate to pay 20% from my hardcore earnings and I know you are also paying 2.5% every time whenever you make a payment, that sucks a lot!
The reason why I am writing you this email? Yes, I got an Upwork alternative and it’s called people per hour (PPH) – An UK based freelance Marketplace. PPH will NEVER charge you/me anything for the Lifetime if you just join there with my referral link. I will send you the details how you can join there on the following email. Once we set up a new contract on PPH, I’ll be able to send you the invoice for the ongoing projects.
Let me know if you have any questions.
As a freelancer, your job is not done just after sending an invitation to your client. You need to follow up with him and make sure your client complete the following steps so that you both eligible to enjoy zero service fee for Lifetime:
How much can you save if you bring your existing client to PPH?
Recently I invited a client to PPH who was my long term client on Elance. I’m receiving 240$ each week from him. That means I’m saving almost 50$ per week from one client if compared with Upwork 20% fee!
Now, For the sake of calculation, Let’s assume a situation where you are receiving a payment 8k$ from a client through Upwork. If this payment lies in between 5k$ to 10k$ slab (very much possible, if you are running an agency).
Then how much you need to pay Upwork fee? It’s 10% of 8k is 800$. Who wan’t to loose 800$, when you can save it for free if you use PPH.
Your Turn: There should not be any Logic of paying 100$ as a fee for a total 500$ project. Also, Upwork charges another 2.75% processing fee from your client when a client pays you.
Who wan’t to pay 20% + 2.75% when you can do it free? No one, right?
After study Upwork Demand Letter today, I must clarify that, As per Upwork user agreement, you must use their platform and process all the payment with a client at least for 24 months which they call “Non-Circumvention Period”. Meaning, you can’t leave or a client can’t leave Upwork before 24 months if you do so, you have to pay compensation as per their policy.
Bonus: Recently, we opened a “PPH Bangladesh | পিপল পার আওয়ার বাংলাদেশ” Facebook Group, where we will help each other and build a strong PPH community. I cordially invite you to join the group. International PPHer’s are also welcome to the group.
Pro Tips: “Bring your existing long term clients to PPH and enjoy 0% charge for Lifetime – both you and your clients” this is the essence of my full writing. No other marketplace in the earth is offering you this same advantages at this moment.Here are few pro tips to take the advantages:
If you have any comments or questions feel free to leave them below. Thanks!
Frequently Asked Questions and Answers:
Well, to be honest, I just hate Upwork’s interface, features, and functionalities – they are simply awful.
Secondly, I was in love with Elance, my elance profile was awesome and I was able to earn 5-8k/month from elance. Upwork’s greedy business plan just killed my Elance career and reputation without any compensation. Today, when I am updating this post, It’s clearly proved that, Elance-oDesk merger and taking new name Upwork is nothing but an execution of this greedy fee structure.
Thirdly, I have used an affiliate link to join on PPH, so if you join PPH by following my PPH referral link then I’ll get a referral commission and you will get a 5% discount voucher– it’s a win-win! Sounds a great deal, right?