The Best Freelancing Websites to Kick-Start Your Online Career

Becoming a freelancer is an exciting endeavor. With about 4.7 million jobs today, you sure are spoilt for choice. The best thing is you can choose the clients you want to work with. Some jobs even give you the flexibility to choose your own hours. Also, you can work from anywhere – in the comfort of your own home or in a safe place somewhere.

Below are some of the best freelancing websites today. These work from home sites will kick-start your freelancing career. To those who have already started, feel free to browse through more sites you can utilize to win more jobs.

Upwork

One of the best freelancing websites and with over 4 million clients, Upwork is by far the largest platform for freelancers today. It has over 80 job categories you can choose from including web content writing, web development, translation, marketing, legal, IT, etc. Each user can select up to 10 categories and you have the option to change these. You are given 60 available Connects that you can use for applying to Available Jobs in your feed.

You can apply for either short-term or long-term jobs and you can work by project or by the hour. To succeed with Upwork, complete your profile including a detailed description of your work experiences. When applying, ensure to highlight relevant experiences to increase chances of acceptance.

Upwork pays its freelancers through Paypal, Payoneer, wire transfer and direct to banks.

Pros:

  • Can apply to jobs for free (at least 30)
  • Thousands of available jobs for freelancers
  • User-friendly
  • A good place for a beginner
  • You can set your own rates
  • Loads of clients requiring different experiences (from beginner, intermediate, advanced)

Cons:

  • You get a 20% cut in your earnings
  • You could get suspended if you never get hired (and it’s difficult to contact Customer Support for suspended accounts)
  • Not all freelancers are approved

People Per Hour

PPH is a UK-based freelancing website. It’s not as huge as Upwork but they do have thousands of jobs available for freelancers. They have work available for marketers, engineers, designers, SEO specialists, writers and more. Most jobs are offered for a fixed price but hourly jobs are also available.

Each user is given 15 credits for applying to jobs. Additional 5 credits are for $9. Like most freelancing websites, you will need to bid for jobs. PPH offers remote and on-site work for its users.

Pros:

  • Signing up is free
  • You can offer a specific service to clients for a fixed price
  • Payment is safe as they have an Escrow to hold payment until work is completed
  • You can have both a buyer and seller account

Cons:

  • You need to get hired once 2 months after signing up. Otherwise, you will lose the free credits.
  • High platform fees
  • You will need to submit credentials such as a Diploma or you may not get approved
  • You will be competing with a lot of freelancers

Freelancer

Freelancer has been in the market for several years and is one of the oldest. Similar to Upwork and People Per Hour, users need to complete their profile by adding relevant experiences to attract more clients. To get more work, you can prove your skills by taking their online exams.

Apart from applying to jobs, you can also join contests to earn more. If you’re good with design, a variety of contests are available for you. They also offer non-remote jobs such as pick-up and delivery, grocery shopping, handing out of flyers and flower delivery.

Freelancer isn’t free. The Intro plan is for $0.99 which will give you 15 bids per month. They have a Basic Plan, Plus, Professional and Premier which gives you monthly bids of 50, 100, 300 and 1500 respectively. If you want to try your luck with Freelancer, consider their free trial for a month which gives you 100 bids. Click here to see a list of all their plan features.

Pros:

  • Can apply to both Clients and Recruiters
  • Offers contests for more earnings
  • Local jobs are available

Cons:

  • A membership fee of at least $0.99 to get started
  • Competition is tough
  • $99 payment to get fully verified

Guru

It can be pretty overwhelming browsing through thousands of job openings on a freelancing platform. If you prefer a not so crowded platform, consider trying your luck with Guru. Like Freelancer, they have 5 plans available but Guru offers a free basic plan with 120 bids per year.

Most job openings are on Programming and Development. Hundreds of jobs are also available for writing, design, administrative and sales. While you can apply to jobs with a basic account, some jobs (especially when an employer has a verified payment method) would require you to have a paid membership.

Pros:

  • Membership is free
  • The site is very easy to navigate
  • They only take 9% of your earnings – definitely lower than Upwork and even lower for paid subscriptions
  • Uses an Escrow system to hold client payments

Cons:

  • Not a lot of jobs for beginners
  • Some jobs offer very low rates
  • Paid subscriptions are higher than other freelance sites

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a social media for professionals. Almost all of the established companies globally are also on LinkedIn. If you still do not have a profile, now’s the time to create one. And it’s free.

Utilize LinkedIn’s job postings to search for jobs either remotely or on-site. You can apply to it directly or through a 3rd party site. If you upgrade to Pro, you can also send out an InMail directly to the client or the recruiter.

To get hired on LinkedIn, complete your profile and ask for more recommendations from previous employers and coworkers. Do take advantage of keywords and make sure they are on your profile to make it easier for clients to find you.

Pros:

  • Sign up is free
  • Very established
  • Home to big corporations globally
  • Great networking opportunities
  • You can establish personal credibility through recommendations and testimonials from clients

Cons:

  • Upgrades are expensive
  • It may take time as you need to build your connections and connect with clients

Start Your Freelancing Career Today

The internet has a lot of useful (and not so useful) resources for freelancers today. You will come across guides, how-to articles and even ebooks on how to get started with freelancing. We can save you hundreds of hours and painful lessons through our School for Freelancers. We’ll walk you through the entire process of becoming a freelancer and how to sustain your career. Get in touch with us today!