Upwork vs Fiverr : Which Freelance Platform Is Right for You?

Upwork vs Fiverr

Freelancing has never been easier thanks to websites like Upwork and Fiverr that connect skilled freelancers with people and businesses in need of their services. As a freelancer myself, I’ve worked on both platforms and learned the pros and cons of each. If you’re looking to dive into the exciting world of freelancing but aren’t sure where to start, I’m here to help determine which platform is the best fit for your needs.

Whether you’re a writer, virtual assistant, graphic designer or offer any of the hundreds of skills in high demand, the good news is there are ample opportunities on both Upwork and Fiverr. The key is finding the right platform for your particular talents and work style. Do you prefer longer-term, higher-paying contracts or quick, simple gigs? Are you looking to build ongoing relationships with clients or do one-off projects? The answers to these questions will help guide you to the freelancing platform destined to be your new home base. Join me as I explore the ins and outs of Upwork vs Fiverr so you can start your freelancing journey off on the right foot!

Overview of Upwork and Fiverr

As a freelancer, choosing the right platform to find work is crucial. Upwork and Fiverr are two of the biggest players, but which one is right for you?

On Upwork, I’ve found higher-paying jobs with major companies. They have a wide range of virtual assistant, writing, programming, and creative gigs. Upwork’s fees are also lower, charging 5% on the first $500 earned and then sliding down to just 2% after $10,000. The large talent pool means lots of competition, however, and it can take time to build up your profile and land bigger contracts.

Fiverr, on the other hand, makes it easy to get started as a freelancer. Their model focuses on affordable “gigs” starting at just $5, like quick graphic design, voiceovers, or short articles. The gigs are easy to complete, but earnings potential is more limited. Fiverr’s fees are higher at 20% per gig. While Fiverr is best for small, simple tasks, Upwork leads to more sustainable, long-term freelancing.

For me, Upwork is the clear winner if you want to make freelancing a career. Their lower fees, higher-paying work, and enterprise clients provide more opportunities for steady income. Fiverr can be great for earning some extra cash in your free time or building up experience as you get started freelancing. In the end, think about your skills, goals, and financial needs. Then dive in and start pitching to land your first freelancing gigs! Success is out there waiting for you.

Pricing and Fees: How Upwork and Fiverr Compare

As a freelancer, the fees and pricing structure of any platform are super important to consider. When it comes to Upwork vs Fiverr, I have to say Upwork comes out on top for me!

Upwork charges freelancers 20% of the first $500 earned from a client, then 10% for lifetime billings with that client. They do cap their fees at $10,000 per year though, which is amazing! This means any money you make beyond $100K per year is yours to keep. How great is that?!

Fiverr, on the other hand, charges freelancers a whopping 20% on all lifetime billings with no cap. So if you end up with a long term, high-paying client, you could end up paying thousands upon thousands in fees to Fiverr with no end in sight. Not ideal if you ask me!

In terms of pricing for clients, Upwork allows freelancers to set their own rates for services, while Fiverr promotes mostly low-cost “gigs” starting at $5. If you’re looking for high-quality, specialized talent, Upwork is really the place to find it. The open marketplace means freelancers can charge what they’re worth.

All in all, while Fiverr definitely has its place for quick, budget-friendly tasks, Upwork is the clear winner for me. The lower fees, ability to set your own pricing, and higher-paying work opportunities make it ideal for any freelancer serious about building a sustainable career. Upwork for the win!

Types of Freelance Services Offered

I absolutely love the variety of freelance services offered on both Upwork and Fiverr! As a freelancer, you have so many options to choose from.

Writing and Translation

If writing or translation is your forte, you’ll find endless opportunities on these platforms. Blog posts, articles, press releases, social media posts, resumes, cover letters, newsletters—the list goes on! For translators, jobs range from technical documents and medical reports to creative works like books and articles. The demand for high-quality writing and translation is huge.

Programming and Tech

Tech savvy freelancers can pick from web development, mobile app development, software engineering, data science, and more. Whether it’s building a website, designing an app, or analyzing data, tech freelancers are in high demand. Upwork, in particular, is a haven for freelance tech jobs.


Graphic designers, video editors, photographers, animators, and illustrators can all find freelance work on Upwork and Fiverr. Logos, photo editing, YouTube videos, eLearning courses, children’s books, marketing materials—if you can design it, someone needs it made! The variety of projects is endless.

Customer Service

For freelancers skilled in customer service, you’ll find opportunities like virtual assistant work, customer service representative roles, and more. Helping businesses manage communications and customer relationships is always in demand.

And Many More!

The list goes on and on. Marketing, consulting, legal services, engineering, education, healthcare, real estate, nonprofit—there are jobs in every industry. No matter your skills or talents, you’ll discover a wide range of freelance opportunities on Upwork and Fiverr. The possibilities are truly endless!

Finding Clients and Projects

When looking for freelance work, the platform you choose can make a huge difference in the jobs and clients you find. As a freelancer myself, I’ve used both Upwork and Fiverr, and I have to say, it depends on the type of work you do and the experience level you have. For beginners, Fiverr may be a great place to start. For more experienced freelancers, Upwork unlocks opportunities for higher-paying, long-term work.

Finding Work on Fiverr

If you’re just getting into freelancing, Fiverr is an easy place to find small, short-term gigs. The jobs on Fiverr, called “gigs”, typically pay $5 to $50 and can be completed in a few hours. I started on Fiverr doing quick writing and graphic design jobs to build up my reviews and experience. The gigs are easy to land, the pay adds up over time, and you can explore different types of work to find what you enjoy. Many of the clients on Fiverr are individuals and small businesses looking for simple, budget-friendly help.

Landing Bigger Jobs on Upwork

Once you have experience under your belt, Upwork provides opportunities for more substantial, long-term work. The jobs on Upwork, called “contracts”, can pay between $50 to $500 or more, and many are for ongoing part-time or even full-time work. The clients on Upwork tend to be larger businesses looking for freelancers with specific skills. I’ve found web design and content writing contracts on Upwork that lasted over 6-12 months. The competition is steeper, but the pay and job security make it worth the effort.

Overall, both Fiverr and Upwork have been instrumental in helping me build my freelance business. Fiverr gave me a place to start as a beginner, while Upwork has allowed me to land higher-paying work as I’ve gained more experience. If you’re looking to become a freelancer, I highly recommend giving both platforms a try. With time and patience, you’ll find the gigs and contracts that are the perfect fit for your skills and needs. Happy freelancing!

Communication and Collaboration Features

When it comes to communication and collaboration, both Upwork and Fiverr offer useful features, but Upwork has some key advantages.

Built-in Messaging

On Upwork, you can message clients directly through the platform. There’s no need to exchange personal contact information, so your privacy is protected. The messaging system allows you to discuss project details, share files, and keep all communication in one place. This makes it easy to stay on the same page and have a written record of your conversations.

Video Chat

If you want to have a video call with a client, Upwork offers that functionality. Speaking face to face, even virtually, can help build rapport and clarity. Video calls are a great way to walk through complex projects, get on the same page about expectations, or simply put a face to the name!

Milestone Payments

On Upwork, you can set up milestone payments for larger, long-term projects. This means you get paid incrementally as you complete parts of the work. Milestones give you cash flow and motivation along the way, rather than waiting until the very end to get paid in full. Your client will fund each milestone before you begin that phase of the work.

Overall, Upwork provides more options for effective communication and collaboration. The built-in messaging, video chat features, and milestone payments make it easier to connect with clients, stay on the same page throughout a project, and get paid for the work you do. While Fiverr also allows basic messaging, Upwork simply offers more tools for freelancers and clients to work together smoothly.

In summary, if building relationships and collaborating with clients in a transparent way is important to you, Upwork has significant advantages over Fiverr. The choice is clear: sign up for an Upwork account today and start connecting with exciting new clients!

Screening and Hiring Process on Each Platform

When it comes to finding freelance work, the hiring process can make or break your experience. Both Upwork and Fiverr have streamlined systems to connect freelancers and clients, but they do operate a bit differently. As an enthusiastic freelancer myself, I’ve worked on both platforms and here’s what I’ve found:

On Upwork, the screening process is quite rigorous. You have to submit an application with details about your skills, experience, portfolio samples, and availability before you’re accepted onto the platform. Once approved, clients can browse your profile and invite you to interview for projects that match your talents. I like this approach because it weeds out unqualified freelancers and makes me feel like I’m part of an exclusive club! The downside is the application process can take a week or more to complete.

Fiverr’s hiring process is much more open. Anyone can sign up and start offering their services (known as “gigs”) right away. Clients simply search the huge catalog of gigs, find what they need, and place an order. While the openness means more opportunities, it also means more competition from freelancers of all skill levels. I’ve found that high-quality clients tend to prefer the curated feel of Upwork. On the other hand, if you just want to pick up some quick side work, Fiverr’s model is appealing.

In the end, the platform that’s right for you comes down to your priorities and work style. If professionalism, prestige and steady, long-term clients are most important, Upwork is probably your best bet. If you’re looking for a more casual way to earn extra money in your free time, give Fiverr a try. Why limit yourself to just one? You can always sign up for both and see which leads to the most success and satisfaction. The world of freelancing has lots of opportunities—go get ‘em!

Payment Processing and Protection

When it comes to getting paid, Upwork and Fiverr handle things a bit differently. Personally, I prefer Upwork’s payment process since it offers more protection and flexibility for freelancers.

Upwork Escrow System

Upwork holds payment in escrow for the first $500 earned with each client. This means the money is deposited by the client but held by Upwork until I’ve delivered the work and the client approves the payment release. After $500, clients can choose between escrow and direct payment to my bank account or PayPal. The escrow system gives me peace of mind that I’ll get paid for all hours logged and work completed. It also allows me to build trust with new clients since their money is protected in escrow at first.

Payment Methods

Upwork offers several ways for clients to pay me and for me to withdraw earnings. I can get paid via direct deposit, PayPal, wire transfer, or Payoneer prepaid debit card. The options make it easy to get my money how and when I want. Fiverr, on the other hand, uses PayPal almost exclusively, with limited additional payment methods available.

Payment Protection

Most importantly, Upwork provides payment protection for freelancers. If a client refuses to pay or ghosts without approving the final payment, Upwork steps in to ensure I receive the full amount owed. They guarantee payment for all hours accurately logged and work submitted through the platform. Fiverr, while still relatively safe, offers less comprehensive payment protection. There is more opportunity for non-payment or clients disappearing without paying the full amount.

Between the escrow system, multiple payment methods, and payment protection, Upwork gives me confidence I’ll always get paid fairly for my freelance work. The security and flexibility they offer are well worth their service fees in my experience. If getting paid reliably is a top concern, Upwork is likely the better choice over Fiverr for freelancing.

Reputation and Reviews

When I started freelancing, choosing between Upwork and Fiverr was a big decision. Both are popular freelance marketplaces, but they operate quite differently. After trying both, Upwork came out on top for me. Here’s why:

Reputation and Reviews

On Upwork, your reputation is everything. Clients can see your profile, ratings, reviews, and work history before deciding to hire you. I’ve worked hard to build a stellar reputation on Upwork, and now I get far more invitations and job offers than I can take on. The review system allows clients to give public feedback on your work, communication, responsiveness and more. Positive reviews attract more clients and help justify higher rates.

In contrast, Fiverr focuses more on individual gigs or services. Buyers can rate and review the gig, but your overall reputation as a seller isn’t as prominent. I found it harder to build a loyal customer base and charge premium rates on Fiverr. The anonymity made me feel like just another interchangeable seller.

Upwork’s emphasis on long-term relationships and reputation better fits my goal of finding ongoing freelance work with reputable clients. I’m able to charge three or four times higher rates on Upwork compared to Fiverr, thanks to the trust I’ve built up through reviews and repeat clients. The open communication and feedback loop help me improve my service and client satisfaction.

If quick, cheap gigs are your goal, Fiverr may work fine. But for those of us focused on building a legitimate freelance business, Upwork’s reputation system is invaluable. Their payment protection, support, and focus on long-term success help give freelancers and clients alike the confidence to work together. Overall, Upwork has been the key to scaling and sustaining my freelance work. I highly recommend it!

Upwork vs Fiverr FAQ: Answering Common Questions

I’ve been freelancing for years and have used both Upwork and Fiverr, so I get asked a lot of questions about how they compare. Here are the most common FAQs I receive:

Do I have to pay to use Upwork or Fiverr?

Nope, both platforms are free for freelancers to use! They make money by charging service fees to clients. On Upwork, clients pay a 5-20% service fee. On Fiverr, the fee is $2 for jobs under $50 and 5% for higher-priced gigs.

Which site has more jobs?

Upwork definitely has a larger selection of jobs in more categories. They have over 5 million clients and 12 million registered freelancers. Fiverr focuses primarily on lower-cost “gigs” under $100. Upwork is better for finding long-term clients and bigger, higher-paying projects.

How much can I earn on each platform?

Earning potential is higher on Upwork. Freelancers charge an average of $28/hour, and the top freelancers make $100K+ per year. On Fiverr, most gigs pay $5 to $50. While you can earn more, especially for premium gigs, the focus is on quick, low-cost services.

Which site has a better reputation?

Upwork is generally seen as the more reputable, professional platform. They have stricter quality standards and verification processes for freelancers. Fiverr started as a place to buy $5 gigs, so some see it as less “serious.” However, Fiverr has been working to attract higher-quality, higher-priced talent. Both sites have pros and cons, so choose what aligns with your goals.

Can I use both Upwork and Fiverr?

Absolutely! Many freelancers use multiple platforms to find clients. Starting out, I’d recommend focusing on one site to build up your profile, reviews, and job history. Once you have a solid foundation, you can create a profile on other sites and cross-promote to increase your visibility. Using a mix of platforms is a great way to diversify your client base.

In the end, both Upwork and Fiverr can be great for freelancers. Evaluate your priorities, skills, and earning goals to determine which—or both!—is the best fit for you. With hard work and persistence, you can build a thriving freelance business on either platform.

Upwork Vs Fiverr


So there you have it, my experiences and insights into two of the top freelance platforms. Both Upwork and Fiverr have a lot to offer for freelancers looking to find clients and build their business. The choice ultimately comes down to your specific needs, skills, and work preferences. If you’re looking for high-paying, long-term clients and projects, Upwork is probably your best bet. If you want to offer quick, simple services to a wide range of clients, Fiverr is a great option.

Personally, I’ve had success with both platforms and continue to use them to find new opportunities. The key is simply putting in the time to build a strong profile, provide high quality work, and deliver great service to your clients. Do that, and you’ll be well on your way to a thriving freelance business, no matter which platform you choose! The possibilities are endless, so take a chance and get started. You have nothing to lose and a whole new career as an independent freelancer to gain. I wish you all the best of luck in your freelancing adventures! Now go out there, work hard, have fun, and make it happen. You’ve got this!

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