Tag Archives: elance

How to find the right Elance job

Elance is a popular platform for freelancers. It brings together clients and contractors in different categories. While my specialty is writing, you can also find design, marketing, programming, admin support and other categories.

How can you find the best job for your skills with so many available? Here are some tips.

Stick to one or two categories

If you’re an individual contractor, you don’t want to spread yourself too thin with too many categories to manage. For example, I bid in the Writing and Admin support categories, but mostly in Writing.

Use tags and keywords

Some clients tag their jobs and use keywords in them. They are often skills or specific knowledge, so identify those that apply to you and bid for these jobs. You have a much better chance of getting a job for which you are qualified.

Don’t undersell yourself

Don’t fall into the trap of bidding low on interesting jobs. It might seem attractive at first, but in the end you’ll feel frustrated about working hard for little pay. Set up a minimum wage for yourself and stick to it.

One problem on Elance is the general lowering of pay; don’t contribute by bidding on jobs that are considerably underpaid. This will eventually force clients to raise their budgets to get qualified workers.

If you follow these tips, you have excellent chances of getting good Elance jobs that will help pay the bills. Read my post about how to write a great Elance bid for more Elance success tips.

Do you have any insights into the Elance system?


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Filed under Professional issues

How to write a great Elance bid proposal

It’s through Elance that I started working as a freelance writer. It’s an easy way to connect to potential clients and eventually develop long-term relationships with people and organizations. They’re not the best-paying jobs, but they can quickly become so.

One of the features of Elance is that you have to bid for the jobs you want to get. The bid proposal is key to getting the writing jobs you want. Here are some tips on writing great Elance proposals that will get you the job.

Keep it short

Especially in writing jobs where the topics tend to be chosen by the client, you don’t have much explanations to give outside of your own skills. My bids are never more than 3 or 4 paragraphs. Here’s my personal breakdown:

  • 1st paragraph: Name the job, your time frame and your price. It shows you’ve read the job description. Mine goes this way: “I will (write x articles) in (x days, weeks) for (price).
  • 2nd paragraph: Describe, in short, your experience and your skills. Focus on what the client is looking for and show how your experience and skills relate to the job.
  • 3rd paragraph: Invite a visit to your profile for more information and thank your client for considering your bid.

Don’t be humble

There’s nothing wrong with having written hundreds of articles. Mention it if it’s relevant. Don’t boast or exaggerate, but use anything that can give you an edge over your competitors.

Choose a fair price

If your client has a low budget, try and bid a little higher, close to your usual fees. Once, a client contacted me saying my bid was a bit too high but that they were still interested in my services. It’s up to you if you want to lower your price to get the client, or move on to another job. Never be afraid to overbid a little, but never, never underbid. It hurts your Elance rank and it helps keep the prices low (2$ for a 1000-word article? I don’t think so!). I usually don’t worry about all the very cheap bids coming from providers in India and the Middle East; their English is often poor and the jobs usually go to Western providers.

Always attach a sample

If you have a sample in the area your potential client is requesting, go ahead and attach it. Use a PDF with a watermark or “read-only” if you want to make sure that the client won’t use it without your permission. A sample is a great way to show your skills in a work-related context.

Reread, revise, proof-read

I always find a few mistakes after the fact–but don’t worry, you can go and edit your proposal. Take the time to reread and edit your proposal. Mistakes in your proposal won’t help you find writing jobs. Do the same for your profile; clients often check these out before they award a job.

Elance has its own proposal guide, but writing jobs are particular in that they don’t use technical skills like web development or programming. Learn a formula that works for you and use it.

Do you have any Elance tips to share?


Filed under Tips