Common Mistakes Freelancers Should Avoid to Get Hired on Upwork

Mistakes to Avoid to Get Hired on Upwork

The first time I got hired on Upwork, I was ecstatic. I had spent three days sending proposals to multiple job posts but no one responded. Finally, I decided to take a closer look at what I was doing and why it wasn’t working. After reading a few articles on Upwork and asking for advice from other freelancers, I was able to get hired by my first client.

So what was I doing wrong? Well, that’s what I’ll be sharing with you today. Let’s talk about some of the most common mistakes freelancers make when applying for a job on Upwork, and how you can avoid them.

1. Check for grammatical or spelling mistakes

Before sending your proposal, make sure to read it first and check for any grammatical or spelling mistakes. You would not believe how many freelancers make this simple mistake, I know I did. Always read what you wrote before sending it since you can’t edit it anymore after it’s been sent.

2. Understand why the client is hiring on Upwork

Another common mistake freelancers make is to write too many things about themselves in their proposal. The first thing you should remember when applying for a job on Upwork or any other website is this: always put the client’s needs first. Understand why they’re looking for a freelancer on Upwork and what tasks they need help with. Don’t write too much about yourself and your qualifications. Instead, try to present yourself as a problem solver to their specific needs. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t write about your qualifications. However, try to strike the right balance between that and what the client needs.

3. Not Taking the Upwork Readiness Test

The Upwork Readiness Test is a 10-question test available to all Upwork freelancers. Basically, it’s a test to make sure that a freelancer understands the most important policies of Upwork. Although it’s not going to directly increase your chances of getting hired, I highly recommend that you take it. It’s there to make sure that you’re up-to-date with Upwork’s best practices (i.e. so you won’t commit any violation). Besides, it’s only ten questions.

Another benefit of completing the test is that you’ll be eligible for Upwork’s Rising Talent program. In fact, the test is a requirement, so you know how important it is. In case you don’t know anything about the Rising Talent program, read this article from Upwork.


Getting hired on Upwork is a painstaking but ultimately rewarding process. There would be times when you think you’ve tried everything but still, no one is responding. Take a look at what you’ve been doing and see if you were doing these common mistakes that I talked about. Now that you know what they are, you can easily avoid them and increase your chances of getting hired.

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