With the high number of registrations on Upwork, it has become harder for some people to get profile approval within the first request. The reason is that the freelance market grows every day, and Upwork is more selective with who can register and apply for jobs.
Besides the fact that they do not approve profiles that are already present in vast amounts on Upwork (like data entry or similar), there are some things that you can do to have a higher chance of profile acceptance.
Service category and experience level
First, you need to enter email and password and confirm your email address to enter other info. After that, you need to choose the primary service you want to offer to clients. Research your skills in detail to select a category and the other four skills. The thing is that many people are choosing data entry, web development, customer support, and they do not get approval because those fields already have a vast amount of freelancers. For example, if you are good with data entry and have excellent research skills, you can try Sales & Marketing and then choose Market Research or even Lead Generation. Try to go in deep to figure out your skills and how you can implement it. After that, add skills that represent programs that you worked in that related to your work experience.
What is your experience level? Be realistic with this part because if you get accepted, clients can later evaluate your expertise level. That especially relates to language levels because some freelancers marked their English level is fluent, and later Upwork removes that false info after verification. So, be aware when you have your first job that the clients can also evaluate your level of expertise and language knowledge. Those feedbacks are apart from public feedbacks that you get after finished work. You can change your experience level anytime.
Basic profile information
Make sure to add a professional photo because that is the first thing that the potential client will see when he checks your Upwork profile. For those of you who are on LinkedIn, get the picture from there. And as Upwork writes: “Freelancers with a friendly, professional-looking portrait are hired five times more often than those without a photo.”
After adding a photo, write a professional title that, in short, presents your expertise and stands out from the other freelancers within the same field. Try to research the most common titles that people write, and make time to figure out which one works best for you.
Write a professional overview.. This part is also essential because that is the next thing that a potential client will see after your professional photo. Write briefly about your work experience, highlight your top skills, how you manage specific tasks, accomplishments, and professional interests. In case you are a college graduate, and you did not have a job yet, write about your studies, projects on which you worked during your studies, portfolio of your seminar essays, and your plans related to your work field. Please do not put any link because Upwork rules forbid it. The professional overview should be at least 500 letters in length. In part – Education– do not just write your formal education, but also courses you listen to.
In part for Employment History, add your work experiences so clients can take a look at your practical level of expertise. Again, if you have a detailed LinkedIn profile, copy data from there. Briefly describe jobs only related to your current Upwork profile. Also, if you have a work portfolio add it but only in case, it would benefit you to get the first job.
As for adding English level knowledge, add the one that is related to your knowledge because in the future you may be asked to confirm your level of English through video chat.
Before you add hourly rate, try to research freelancers profile which are in your experience fields. After that, you need to choose how much you can spend on work. That information will be available publicly, so think if you have time working 30 or more hours per week, or just part-time. Choose also if you are available for long-term projects which are longer than 3 months or just short-term projects. But do not worry because that info does not affect how and when your profile is displayed to a potential client.
Add address that is real because you may be asked in the future to verify your address with document. As for the telephone number, add the existing one so you can easily restore access to your account in an unexpected situation.
After clicking – Review Application & Submit – you will wait to get email confirmation that your account is approved. It usually takes 24 hours to get answer from Upwork. If your account is approved you can apply for the jobs, and add other details related to your account.
If your account is not approved they will send you an automatic message that you are declined. That means that you do not have enough info for acceptance or the category that you choose already has many similar freelancers. You need to resubmit your account for approval. The next thing that you can try is to review your profile by reading tips again, send certificates and diplomas that verify skills that you wrote or change the category that you apply for.
In the end, the best tip is to treat your profile like a resume, and make time for writing a professional overview of your skills.