How Many Proposals To Get Your First Upwork Job (As a Freelancer)

How Many Proposals Do You Need to Send?

How many proposals do you need to send to get sales on Upwork? How many proposals to get your first job on Upwork as a freelancer or agency owner? Well, these are perfectly reasonable questions, and in this video, I'm going to show you my exact process, what we do to generate sales with brand new accounts on Upwork from scratch. This is so you can set up your own process so you can get and keep getting consistent leads and sales, whether you want to start freelancing or transition from freelancing to running an agency. 

If you've been watching my channel for a while, you know I'm a really big fan of Upwork as an easy to start with funnel because leads are warm and easy to close. I've actually made a whole playlist with Upwork tutorials. I highly recommend you check it out here and at the end of this article.

Proposals Aren’t Everything

I also want to point out that sending proposals on Upwork is part of a good Upwork strategy. However, it's not everything. There's also the way you run your entire business, which is your business model. Who do you sell to? How do you sell to them? How do you deliver, retain and get quality case studies and portfolio items? All of these things are important. And all of these things play into how well you do as a freelancer or agency owner. This and sending proposals would really get your business up and running. 

So now let's get into how many proposals you need to get your first job and Upwork. By the way, before we move on, please hit the “Like” button in the video above to help this video in the algorithm. You can also click here to subscribe to my youtube channel (and then click on the bell notification icon to receive future video updates). 

First of all, I have a range I'd like to share with you, which is the recommended daily amount of proposals sent within your niche on Upwork. The range is between 10 and 20 proposals per day. Yes, this means you need to find that amount of leads in your niche on Upwork on a daily basis. And yes, they need to be new leads who posted a job within the last 24 hours.

7 Responses = 3,4 Calls = 1 Sales

At 10 proposals per day that gives you an opportunity to get about a 10% response rate from the proposals sent. That's about 7 responses per week. 7 responses should convert to about 3 to 4 booked calls. 3 to 4 booked calls should convert to about 1 sale per week. This allows you to double down on a single industry and a single service as soon as possible. That way your business becomes and stays scalable, and, you know, you'll be able to automate it. 

What you really want to do is create simplicity in your business. An easy lead generation process that allows for consistent weekly leads coming in. So you can learn how to perform on calls, convert consistent leads into clients and build out your delivery process. 

More Sales = More Work

What is normal is when you get those sales going, you get that overload of work as a freelancer and the natural thing to do is to start hiring, so you're not doing all the work yourself. In other words, automation. 

Fix This by Sending More Proposals

Early on, it's also normal that some people need more than 4 sales calls to get their first sale. The number is between 4 and 8 for many people. This means the amount of proposals sent to get your first sale can be between 70 and 140. This sounds like a lot but keep in mind you can send 10 proposals in about 2 hours if you're quite slow. I've seen people do it in minutes as well, just 30 minutes or so. It depends on how good your process is.

Don’t Compete on Price Like Everyone Else

You have to pay attention to your expenses when doing this. Proposals cost money on Upwork. However, a decent close rate easily generates a return on investment ratio of 10 to 1, as long as you know how to charge for your service. Meaning, if you don't want to lose out, you need to charge real money. Not play the race to the bottom game so many freelancers play on Upwork

I highly recommend not to participate with the reverse auction system on Upwork for this reason. Meaning, you don't have to bid lower than your competition to get a job. Keep in mind you can discuss pricing on the call. You did not have to tell the lead before to call since you probably don't understand the requirements until you speak to the prospect anyway, right? So you need to talk to them to figure out what they actually need. 

So what to do next? Figure out by going to Upwork and by looking within your industry if you can send enough proposals. Are there enough leads? Do this by using all the keywords related to your field and counting potentially good job posts that show up within the last 24 hours. I wouldn't look at their budgets since clients have no idea what to write in that field when filling out a job post. Then you need to send proposals daily. Make sure you get that 10% response rate and enough booked calls. 

Check Out The Playlist Below This Article

Next up, let's discuss how the algorithm works on Upwork to get higher response rates and more inbound leads. And afterward, how to get Top-Rated status on the platform to achieve the same results. Check out the playlist for these videos in the description below. And we're going to continue with how to get to $10,000 and above on Upwork following this process.

What To Watch Next:

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Aleksander Vitkin

Aleksander Vitkin has helped over 700 people with a sincere interest in entrepreneurship and contribution, to start profitable businesses and quit their jobs.