10 Strategies & Tips For Building A Successful Freelance Business Through Upwork: How I Got Started

As a freelance writer, finding clients and steady work can be a challenge. After months of looking on LinkedIn and Fiverr, I stumbled upon Upwork, a freelance platform that connects freelancers with clients in a variety of industries. Since then, I have secured several contracts and built a thriving freelance business. In this post, I will share my experience with Upwork and offer tips for anyone looking to start their own freelance business on the platform.

Getting Started on Upwork

To begin, create a profile on Upwork. Make sure to include a professional headshot, a summary of your experience and skills, and a portfolio of your work. Your profile should highlight your unique strengths and showcase your writing abilities.


Once your profile is complete, start searching for jobs. Upwork offers a variety of filters to help you narrow your search, including job category, budget, and client experience level. When browsing jobs, pay close attention to the client's job description and the proposed budget. It's important to only apply for jobs that match your skills and experience level.


When submitting a proposal, be sure to include a personalized message to the client. Explain why you are the best fit for the job and highlight any relevant experience or skills. It's also helpful to provide a writing sample that showcases your ability to write in the client's desired style or tone.

Building a Successful Freelance Business on Upwork

1. Be selective about the jobs you apply for.

While it may be tempting to apply for every job that comes your way, it's important to be selective about the jobs you apply for. Look for jobs that match your skills and experience level, and make sure the proposed budget aligns with your desired pay rate. Applying for jobs that aren't a good fit can waste both your time and the client's time.

2. Communicate clearly and professionally with clients.

Communication is key when working with clients on Upwork. Be sure to respond to messages in a timely manner and keep the client updated on your progress. If there are any issues or delays, be upfront and honest with the client. Professional communication can help build trust and lead to long-term working relationships.

3. Meet deadlines and exceed expectations.

Meeting deadlines is essential when working as a freelancer. Clients rely on you to deliver quality work on time, so it's important to prioritize deadlines and communicate any issues or delays. Additionally, consider going above and beyond to exceed the client's expectations. This can lead to positive feedback and potential future work.

Using Upwork's Tools and Resources

Upwork offers a variety of tools and resources to help freelancers build successful businesses. Some of my favorites include:

1. The Upwork blog.

The Upwork blog offers a wealth of information on freelancing and building a successful business. From tips on improving your profile to advice on negotiating contracts, the blog has something for every freelancer.

2. Upwork's Payment Protection.

Upwork's Payment Protection ensures that freelancers are paid for their work. If a client cancels a contract or disputes a payment, Upwork will step in to resolve the issue and ensure that the freelancer is paid for their work.

3. Upwork's mobile app.

The Upwork mobile app allows you to manage your freelance business on-the-go. You can search for jobs, submit proposals, and communicate with clients from your smartphone or tablet.

More Tips and Strategies

In addition to the tips and strategies mentioned above, there are a few other things you can do to increase your chances of success on Upwork:

1. Consider using Upwork's "Rising Talent" program.

Upwork's "Rising Talent" program is designed to help new freelancers get noticed by clients. If you meet certain criteria, such as a high job success rate and a strong profile, you may be eligible for the program. Benefits of being a "Rising Talent" freelancer include a special badge on your profile, access to exclusive job invites, and priority customer support.

2. Utilize Upwork's analytics tools.

Upwork offers a variety of analytics tools to help you track your progress and improve your performance. For example, the "My Stats" feature allows you to see how many jobs you've applied for, how many proposals you've sent, and how many contracts you've won. By tracking your stats and analyzing your performance, you can identify areas for improvement and adjust your approach accordingly.

3. Be mindful of Upwork's policies and guidelines.

Upwork has a set of policies and guidelines that freelancers must adhere to. These include rules around communication with clients, payment terms, and dispute resolution. By familiarizing yourself with Upwork's policies and guidelines, you can avoid potential issues and ensure that you are working within the platform's rules.

4. Don't be afraid to negotiate.

While it's important to be realistic about your rates and not undercharge for your services, don't be afraid to negotiate with clients if necessary. Sometimes clients may have a lower budget than you would like, but are willing to negotiate on other terms, such as the scope of the project or the timeline. By being open to negotiation, you may be able to find a compromise that works for both you and the client.

In Conclusion

Overall, Upwork can be a valuable resource for freelance writers looking to build a successful business. By creating a strong profile, being selective about the jobs you apply for, communicating clearly with clients, and taking advantage of Upwork's tools and resources, you can set yourself up for success. With persistence, patience, and a commitment to learning and growth, you can achieve your goals and build a thriving freelance business on Upwork.


Upwork can be a valuable resource for freelance writers looking to build a successful business. By creating a strong profile, being selective about the jobs you apply for, communicating clearly with clients, and taking advantage of Upwork's tools and resources, you can set yourself up for success. Good luck and happy freelancing!