Upwork Just Removed Free Bids on Projects

In a bid to provide a more competitive environment for freelancers and better services for buyers, the online marketplace for freelancers – Upwork has updated its policies regarding free Connects. No more freebies for every Tom, Dick, and Harry as freelancers will now have to pay for each bid proposal.

For reference, Connects are virtual tokens which can be used to submit proposals on different job offers.

The new update will come into effect between May and June and the users will have to pay $0.15 for each Connect and the number of Connects needed to apply for a job will be between 1-6.

If a client invites you to bid for a project, no Connects will be charged as before.

In an email sent to the freelancers, Upwork attributed the change to highlighting ‘high-quality talent’ as fewer freelancers will place their bids following the update. Earlier, anyone could submit their proposals for jobs, depending on the client’s requirements, however, the latest change will promote professional freelancers, helping them win more jobs.

According to Upwork, the freelancers will be spending $5 or less on average on Connects. Regarding unused tokens, Upwork informed the freelancers that they can keep up to 140 unused Connects in their accounts with this change.

We understand this is a big change but feel this is the best way to create more opportunities for you through Upwork in the long term.

The news has shocked the Pakistani freelancers – the truly professional ones are happy – as it will significantly impact how the freelancers work on such platforms.

What are your thoughts on the change? Let us know in the comments section.

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Feature Writer

  • well I’m a freelancer and here’s the scoop.

    When there were odesk and elance two separate companies, things were good. cheaper and a-hole clients were spread across odesk and elance had more sophisticated and high paying clients. then elance had 8.75% (i think) cut per project and odesk had 10%. But things went downhill when these two companies merged together and become so called upwork.

    When two companies merged, monopoly was formed and they started being a little Biach about it. increasing rates and being unfair with both clients and freelancers… Premium clients slowly left the platform and now dirt cheap clients roam it with lesser rates hence lesser revenue. But freelancers had no choice but to work for such dirt cheap clients as there is no alternative (there is freelancer.com but their business model is much cheaper than upwork and upwork is heading towards that direction) So what should Upwork do, start ripping off freelancers which they did by setting higher cuts upto 20% per job.

    Now a new competitor has risen in recent years named fiverr. their main theme is do quick work and get paid min of 5$ (after cut 4$). And now premium work is happening there as well. Due to this punch line they got recognition in media and now both premium clients and high quality freelancers are working there either on part time or fulltime basis, now upwork is sitting in dirt. Even though their name is fiverr, people are even getting paid 1000$ per job there as well, which is crazy.

    After getting stale profits, now upwork has introduced this new scheme to rip freelancers even further off.. Which is a cheap move on their behalf. I’ve been their supporter for a very long time but it’s true for every firm and every person, what goes up, must come down… By doing this, they’re throwing away their premium freelancers who will either leave platform and start their own independent online business or even shift to Fiverr… For the regular clients from upwork I do work on regular basis but for last 3 months I haven’t placed a single bid on Upwork as fiverr is more fun platform for me as upwork is more of a headache for a couple of time for now.

    This is just nonsense statements that they want to decrease competition and stuff like that, but yeah for huge corporations and well-developed freelancers, this is not huge problem, not even for me as I’m currently top rated freelancer there. But for newcomers this is a real turn-off mode for now…

    My only wish that 3-4 more freelancing marketplaces should arise and then Upwork team might get their head straight, as currently they’re simply being foolish…

  • Hey Sajawal Rehman,

    I would appreciate if you can provide a source link or website for reference.


  • Hi,
    I am the founder of Truelancer a Global Freelancing Marketplace.
    Upwork recently became a public company and this is an important step they have to take to increase revenue.
    It is Good or Bad? This is subjective. But overall it is good for the freelancing community. Nothing is Free, for opportunities everyone has to invest both time and money.

    I wish all freelancers all the best. Freelancers looking for an extra source of new projects should try How Truelancer is helping freelancers in Pakistan.

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