Freelancers, womenpreneurship the harsh reality

The Harsh Reality: Why Freelancing Websites Like Upwork,,, and Are Worthless for New Beginners

Freelancing has become an increasingly popular way to earn a living, offering the promise of independence and flexibility. Many aspiring freelancers turn to online platforms like Upwork,,, and in search of opportunities. However, the reality for new beginners can often be quite harsh. Despite the allure of these platforms, countless freelancers struggle to find work and make a sustainable income. In this article, we’ll explore some of the reasons why freelancing websites can be perceived as worthless for newcomers.

  1. Fierce Competition

One of the biggest challenges facing beginners on freelancing websites is the fierce competition. These platforms attract millions of freelancers from around the world, many of whom have established reputations and extensive portfolios. Newcomers often find themselves competing against seasoned professionals, making it extremely difficult to stand out and win projects.

  1. Lack of Experience and Reviews

Clients on freelancing websites frequently rely on a freelancer’s track record and reviews to make hiring decisions. Newcomers, by definition, lack this crucial history. Without a history of successful projects and positive feedback, it can be challenging to convince clients to take a chance on an unproven freelancer.

  1. Low Rates and Underbidding

In a bid to secure their first projects and build a reputation, many newcomers to freelancing platforms often undercut their rates. This race to the bottom can lead to a situation where clients expect high-quality work at rock-bottom prices, making it unsustainable for beginners to earn a decent income.

  1. Oversaturated Niches

Certain niches on freelancing websites are oversaturated with freelancers, making it even more challenging for beginners to find work. Popular categories like writing, graphic design, and web development are particularly competitive, with countless freelancers vying for the same projects.

  1. Complex Algorithms

Freelancing platforms often use complex algorithms to match clients with freelancers. These algorithms can be challenging for newcomers to understand and navigate effectively. Without a clear understanding of how these systems work, beginners may struggle to get their profiles noticed by potential clients.

  1. Difficulty in Building a Reputation

Building a strong reputation as a freelancer takes time and consistent effort. Newcomers often face the catch-22 situation of needing work to build a reputation while lacking a reputation to secure work. Breaking this cycle can be incredibly tough.

  1. Lack of Support and Guidance

Freelancing platforms provide limited support and guidance to newcomers. While they may offer resources and tutorials, these often fall short of providing practical advice on how to succeed in a competitive marketplace.


While freelancing websites like Upwork,,, and have undoubtedly provided opportunities for countless professionals to build successful careers, they can be a challenging terrain for new beginners. The intense competition, lack of experience and reviews, low rates, oversaturated niches, complex algorithms, difficulty in building a reputation, and the lack of adequate support can make these platforms feel worthless to those just starting.

That said, it’s essential to remember that freelancing is not a quick path to success. It requires dedication, resilience, and the ability to adapt to changing circumstances. While freelancing websites can be a tough place to start, they are not necessarily worthless. With persistence, a commitment to honing your skills, and a proactive approach to self-promotion, new beginners can gradually break through the barriers and find success in the world of freelancing.

Alternative freelancing platforms :

While platforms like Upwork,,, and are well-known, there are many alternative freelancing platforms that cater to a variety of skills and industries. Here are some alternatives one can explore:

  1. Toptal: Toptal is a platform for top freelancers and clients. It’s known for its rigorous screening process, ensuring that only the top 3% of applicants are accepted. If you’re highly skilled and experienced, Toptal can be a great place to find high-paying projects.

  2. PeoplePerHour: This platform is popular among freelancers for its focus on web development, design, writing, and digital marketing. It offers both hourly and fixed-price projects and allows you to set your rates.

  3. Freelance Writing Platforms: If you’re a writer, consider platforms like Contently, ClearVoice, or ProBlogger. These platforms specialize in connecting freelance writers with clients looking for content creation services.

  4. 99designs: This platform is dedicated to graphic designers. Clients post design contests, and freelancers submit their designs to compete for the project. It’s an excellent option if you’re in the field of graphic design.

  5. Upwork Alternatives: There are smaller freelancing platforms that focus on specific niches, such as Upstack for software developers, Credo for marketing professionals, and Coding Ninjas for programmers.

  6. FlexJobs: While not a traditional freelancing platform, FlexJobs lists remote and flexible job opportunities. It’s a great resource for finding remote work, including freelance and part-time positions.

  7. Remote Job Boards: Websites like We Work Remotely, Remote OK, and Remotive list remote job opportunities, including freelance gigs, across various industries.

  8. Behance: If you’re a creative professional, Adobe’s Behance is a platform to showcase your portfolio. While it doesn’t directly offer job listings, it can attract clients interested in your work.

  9. Local Freelancing: Consider checking local job boards or websites dedicated to freelancers in your region. Sometimes, local connections can lead to valuable freelance opportunities.

  10. Industry-Specific Websites: Depending on your niche, there may be specialized platforms catering to your industry. For instance, if you’re a translator, platforms like ProZ are worth exploring.

  11. LinkedIn: While not a freelancing platform in the traditional sense, LinkedIn can be a powerful tool for networking and finding freelance opportunities, especially if you have a well-optimized profile and connect with relevant professionals.

When exploring alternative freelancing platforms, remember to thoroughly research each one, read reviews, and consider the specific needs of your freelancing business. Different platforms may be better suited to your skills and goals, so don’t hesitate to try multiple platforms to see which one works best for you.