Upwork is a great resource for anyone trying to build a second income or find an alternative for their full-time job. However, the first step requires you to get hired. Upwork clients go through your profile and consider several factors when deciding which applicant to hire. Undoubtedly, the topmost factor remains “The Proposal”, also known as the cover letter. As a result, you must know the best way to write a proposal sample for Upwork.
What is a Proposal for Upwork?
A proposal for Upwork is often the first interaction between a freelancer and a client. It works as an opportunity for freelancers to introduce themselves, highlight their expertise, and show the client why they’re the best candidate for the project.
Before you send a proposal, you must find a project that interests you. Next, use your connects balance to submit a proposal.
The Importance of Upwork Proposals
To write a winning proposal sample for Upwork, you must understand why you need a proposal. A lot of freelancers believe that having a well-written and explanatory professional overview is enough to attract the job posters’ attention. However, that is not true.
An Upwork proposal initiates the conversation between you and a potential client. Moreover, it is the best means to get work without experience. If you’re a fresher, there isn’t much that you can highlight in your profile. Nonetheless, the proposal lets you cover all the relevant details and create an impression in the minds of the client.
An Upwork proposal lets the client know that you’re interested and available for their job. It also conveys that you have read the job post and claim to have the skills required to complete the project.
In specific words, an Upwork proposal helps you to:
- Built trust
- Quickly stand out from the pack
- Establish a one-on-one connection with the clients, compelling them to respond
Things to avoid in your Proposal for Upwork
When time becomes an issue for Upwork freelancers, they start using a template. While a template helps to save many hours that are otherwise spent in creating customized proposals, they are not a great idea. First, if you don’t craft your Upwork proposal as per the job post, chances that you will get the job are low. Period!
Second, if you have a template, you tend to miss out on reading the job description. You are in a hurry to apply and the process becomes robotic. To win jobs and get hired, you need to carefully read the project description and requirements. You must ensure that everything mentioned is as per your skills. Moreover, there may be some parts that you are not interested in, making the job a misfit for you.
That being said, applying to jobs you are not confident about is not recommended. While getting the job is the first step, completing it successfully to achieve results and establish a positive rating on your profile is of immense importance.
If you are unable to complete a job you were hired for, you will not get paid. The client will end the contract leaving negative feedback on your profile. This feedback will appear on your Upwork profile, regardless of how many good projects you complete in the future.
Tips to create a good proposal sample for Upwork?
It is easy to write a proposal sample for Upwork if you know what it requires. Here are some important things to keep in mind to make a proposal that stands out:
1) Focus on the start
The first sentence of your proposal must reflect the fact that you’ve read the job posting. This is extremely vital, even more than your name.
Many freelancers start a proposal with “Hi, my name is Rahul. I am a _____.” However, your name is already visible on your profile, and sharing this information is boring.
A better way to start your proposal is by writing, “Hi, I just read your job posting and you require a candidate with the skills to ______.”
Even though a minor change, such a proposal can get you more responses and job interviews. Highlighting your understanding of their requirement before talking about yourself is an effective way of communication. This is because it shows that you have read the job posting and are aware of the client’s requirements.
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2) Keep it short
Initially, freelancers write long and detailed proposals. They try to include everything possible. The truth of the matter is that long proposals don’t convince anyone. No one has the time to read everything and big blocks of text are immediately ignored.
Therefore, make sure your Upwork proposal is short and crisp. It must cover all the essential information in crisp sentences or bullet points, instead of having your life’s history.
3) Attract the client’s attention
You need to capture the job posters’ attention and you don’t have a lot of time for that. Clients scan through proposals and if you want a job interview, you have to set your impression in the first few lines. Try to be witty at the beginning.
An interesting trick to try is to scroll through the client’s feedback on their profile. There are chances that other freelancers will mention their first name in the feedback. Start your application with the client’s name.
When a client sees their name on the proposal, they wonder how you know it. They go through your profile to understand if you are an old acquaintance or if you have ever worked with them in the past. Starting the application with the client’s name also shows your interest in the job and your intent to collaborate. Lastly, it adds a personal touch to the proposal.
4) Include your samples at the beginning
Clients are highly interested in seeing your work samples. If your samples show quality, you are at an advantage. So, include your samples at the beginning of the cover letter, maybe right after the introduction. This ensures greater visibility and more relevant information to be seen first.
This will increase your chances of getting the gig if your work speaks for you. Choose the samples that are relevant to the type of work you are applying for.
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5) Answer the question – ‘Why should I work with you?’
Each client wants to understand what makes you the preferred choice. Your profile must focus on the same. This does not mean that you start with: “I am the right hire for you because…”.
Share the advantages of associating with you, along with your qualities. Honestly highlighting real facts instead of bragging should be your go-to. Some of the important factors that you can present include:
- Your experience (i.e. the number of years you have worked for)
- Positive feedback (any that you have received from past clients)
- The number of projects you have completed (both on and outside of Upwork)
- Your education, especially if it is relevant for the job
Make sure you point out specifics that make your profile look good.
Every proposal sample for Upwork should be professional and friendly. It must showcase your professional skills, yet remain warm and friendly. For instance, starting with “Dear Michael” is always better than “Hi Michael”. Moreover, a friendly closing like “Kind Wishes” or “Best Regards” adds a professional element to your proposal. You can also conclude by saying, “Thank you for taking the time to read my application”.
The success of an Upwork proposal also depends on the industry you operate in. If you are an engineer, your proposal must include your work background and other relevant details. On the other hand, if you are a content writer or a graphic designer, you can try to highlight your creative skills through the proposal.
Try out different styles to know what works for you. The starting few months are challenging for a freelancer and you should be ready for some failures. Be patient and persevere until you see results and achieve a better hiring percentage.
Still, looking for more ideas? Take a look here –