How to Become a Top Rated Upwork Freelancer?

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Morning guys,

Day 20, a nice number to have kept consistent with for almost three weeks now.

The time isssss:


I started 67 minutes later today (getting out of bed at 5.37am) so that accounts for the time now. I’ll be going out tonight as well but as punishment, I’m going to aim to get up no matter what happens.

If you’re joining this blog for the first time – I blog daily.

You can read day 1 here

This morning I’ve actually discovered a quick cool hack.

I go to the local Hotel Ibis and every morning at around 6-6.10am as people start coming down for their breakfast they turn the volume up on the television and it always disturbs me.

So there are two things I’ve now done – 

I bought some noise isolating headphones:


Here is me rocking them now:


They aren’t 100% bulletproof, however.

By 6.30am it’d get too annoying for me, so I’d leave the hotel.

But NOW I’ve also remembered this:

White noise is king for focus – it blocks out all other noises and the consistency of the noise means it doesn’t disturb you:


So now I’ve currently got this playing – any other noise is effectively gone woop woop.

Minus that interlude, I now come to today’s work:

How Upwork has changed my business (and continues to):


I promised the guys I would write this content – so I’ll go through a couple of strategies that have worked very effectively for me (and briefly explain what Upwork is).

Upwork is a freelancing/agency platform you can use to grow your business.

I’ve used it to generate 50k on the platform as well as generate 100k off the platform and I’ll walk you through how.

Let’s talk about my profile initially:


I’ll run through some obvious things –

I’m smiling, I have a title that demonstrates what I do and the result you will get. I then have long(ish) form a narrative that builds a personal dialogue with the reader. Furthermore, I use emojis to make the content stand out.

As we continue I subtly include my expertise (7+ years), my education ($12,848 spent on SEO training).

I’ve got a video there also so people can watch it:


This is the popout – pretty powerful (and on-brand with Pearl Lemon again)


Here’s me in the video with a professional background and introducing myself w/some light background music and the Upwork logo top right (I can’t remember if that’s something they put up or we do)

I think I did it actually as it’s on the Pearl Lemon channel – but it feels like an Upwork endorsed video.

Furthermore, if you know me, you’ll know I work out of a café mostly or hotels, so I got myself into an office for this video.

As you’ll notice I have a 100% job success rate (It’s never gone below 90%) – so I’m going to assume you’re damn good at what you do.


Furthermore having a top rating means that you a favoured by the Upwork algo, appear more in searches and consequently end up often being contacted independently as well:

This was yesterday – I approach Oliver on Upwork – he approached me on Facebook!


Sometimes people approach me without me ever sending an application on Upwork at all.

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As we expand to read more of my profile I always make sure to include some top-line professional credentials but also some personal ones that make me as an individual impressive:


I’ve also got Upwork approved qualifications:


As well as some cool ‘other experiences’:

And most importantly of course – my work history is good:


Collectively all of this means my profile is very strong – thus allowing me to often:


But before we get to that let me add some other elements:

  • As an Indian SEO, you get negatively stereotyped because of the abundance of spammers
  • As an Indian SEO, you get negatively stereotyped because people assume you can’t write English natively
  • My actual SEO delivery team is in India, so I need to manage various objections; you charge too much, English will be poor, you’re outsourcing etc.

So it’s important you – 

  1. Learn/know how to sell (take sales training?)
  2. Prepare for all objections
  3. Have good, legitimate responses (e.g my content team is in the US)

Right – to wrap things up I’ve just recorded a 6-minute video showing you live how I copy and paste proposals.


It’s a process I developed over the course of a year to scale applications whilst making them still feel personalised.


Here’s the video:


If you have any questions please leave a comment below in the comments sections.

If you’d like me to put together an Upwork specific programme let me know as well.

Upwork has definitely been a ‘go-to’ ‘fall-back’ for me at different times of my business growth.

I’m using it now less than I’ve ever used it because I have 4-people in my sales team aiming to bring in sales.

Furthermore, my network has grown significantly enough through referrals and old clients that I get maybe 5-8 leads per month that are good through this process –


Right now though I’ve just seen my third client cancel because of the damn Corona Virus and my daily inbound bookings have fell out of the sky so I’m back smashing Upwork in my 6-minute per day routine haha.

The frustrating part, of course, is that I often need to get onto the sales call – and it’s obvious I don’t want to be on them so I try and defer to my team as often as I can.


I guess I’d like to offer some final thoughts on Upwork and generating business overall:

My Upwork profile does appear for branded search:


But I also DO have a good brand overall online – I took a real effort to ‘practice what I preach’ and build out the ‘Deepak Shukla’ and ‘Pearl Lemon’ brand online – 

I knew that as an Indian SEO I’d get discriminated somewhat trying to sell in Europe, the UK and North America by some people.

So I made sure to make my brand SO MUCH obviously better.

So with this in mind – here are my final thoughts:

  • Be SO MUCH obviously better than your competition
  • Anticipate objections – practice answers to them
  • Take sales training – it’s made a 6-figure difference in my business

Finally, comment below – I’d LOVE to hear your thoughts 🙂

Thank you!

P.S I wrote AND added all images and produced and uploaded the video with 55 minutes.

I’m getting quicker again 🙂


There are now three more people involved in the process – Kaushal my designer, Melanie my content editor and Lydia who adds bold text and bits and pieces.

Right – catch you tomorrow.

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