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To Get Freelance Work You Need A Winning Profile

Before you start putting yourself forward for freelance work, you need to take the time to make yourself look like an attractive prospect for a business. Often, your profile page on freelance websites such as People Per Hour, Elance and Freelancer is the only chance you have to give potential customers the crucial background information they need to make an intelligent decision for their business. It’s incredibly important, then, that you complete your profile in detail.

Here’s a useful guide to completing your profile on I’ve just used Freelancer because it is probably the largest global freelance marketplace offering an incredible number of jobs. However, you can apply the same steps to writing your profile on People Per Hour and Elance. Whist there is a great deal of work on Freelancer, the quality of these leads can vary and so you do need to do some research before bidding for work. You can learn more about in this earlier article Is Another Site To Find Freelance Work.

With hundreds of jobs to choose from, it’s easy to register and begin writing bids for potential clients. Here’s a useful visual guide to completing your profile in just three quick steps!

1. Fill Out Your Basic Information

To start, your profile is a blank page. It is only once you have added some information about yourself that clients will be able to discover you through the search function, and find out why you’re right for the job.

To get started, log in and use the navigation bar along the top of your page to visit your profile.

Profile Button You’ll then be able to see your profile in ‘edit’ mode:


2-profile_editOn this screen, it’s easy to start editing information. You should add a friendly display name, a photo, and some descriptions of what it is you do.

This is the easy stuff – if you’re a graphic designer, write “I’m a graphic designer”. There’s no need to be clever, just give the people that view your profile the information they need.

3-edit_buttonsEverything that you can edit on this main page features a grey button with a ‘+’ icon, or a blue text link. Just hit the button and follow the on-screen instructions to get your basic information online.

Next, it’s time to think about your skills.

2. Add Your Skills

Now your visitors know who you are and the kind of thing that you do, it’s time to be a little more precise! What are the things you are really good at? Which skills set you apart from your competitors?

On the left hand side of your profile page, you will see a menu with multiple options. One of these is ‘Exams & Skills’.

5-skills_exams Freelancer.comOnce you select the ‘Exams & Skills’ button, you will be presented with a long list of different categories. Each category includes many different skills, with boxes that you can tick if they apply to you.

6-skill_options Freelancer.comMake sure you read through the many skills available to you and pick the ones most appropriate to the kind of work you want to win. Remember, you only have a limited number of skills to choose from – on the free plan, you can:

  • Pick up to 16 skills initially
  • Make five changes each month if necessary

If you have a diverse range of skills, it is better to group them and create more than one profile, otherwise your profile can look like ‘a Jack of all trades and an expert in none’. Once you have settled on the skills you think you have, hit the ‘Save Changes’ button.

Your profile will now tell your visitors that you think you have these skills. Next, it’s time to prove it!

3. Add Items To Your Portfolio

If you are just starting to work from home as a freelancer, your portfolio may be fairly sparse! It’s your job to fill it, and fast.

The one thing that every potential customer cares about is the quality of your work. You need to show examples of completed projects that are similar to the ones you are offering to take on.

If you are still trying to find your first paid job, why not spend a few hours creating items for your portfolio anyway? If you’re a writer, write. If you’re a designer, design.

Once you have some images, text, web development code or other media to add to your portfolio, here’s how.

First, use the menu on the left of your screen to select the ‘Portfolio’ option.

7-portfolio Freelancer.comYou will then see options to add a featured image (which remains on your profile at all times, and is given extra visibility) or add individual portfolio items.

When you add a portfolio item, you’ll be able to enter some text and upload a file. In the image below, you can get an idea of what you should include:

8-add_portfolio_item Freelancer.comYou can also add a list of the skills involved in this particular piece of work.

Next Steps To Improve Your Profile

So you’ve filled out your basic information, listed your skills and uploaded a few portfolio items. What next? can tell you.

9-progress FreelancerAt the top of every screen related to your profile, you can see a handy progress bar along with the next steps you should take to complete your profile.

If you are at anything less than 100%, keep going!

And, of course, once you hit 100%, you should always be updating and improving. Here are a few great resources to give you some more ideas:

If you found this article useful, don’t forget to rate it and share it with your colleagues.

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