How to become Top Rated in Upwork

become Top Rated Freelancer in Upwork
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I have been with Upwork for more than three years now, and may I just say; joining its pool of more than 12 million freelancers was life changing for me.  I was recently ranked number 1 in Upwork and the platform is still as strong as ever.

If you would ask me how I think Upwork remains the world’s top work marketplace, I would say that it is because it preserves its reputation of being a professional and secure marketplace that clients, freelancers, and agencies can trust. 

Upwork has a strategy to ensure that only the most credible freelancers are matched with their clients.  In the said system, Upwork identifies and highlights expert talents and agencies. After that, they will assign badges according to the feedback they have received from their former clients.  

These badges, from the lowest rank to the highest, are Rising Talent, Top Rated, Top Rated Plus, and Expert Vetted.  The higher your rank is, the easier you will find great clients.  

Having a higher rank will let your prospective clients know that you have undergone a rigorous screening process with experts in your field.  It will also inform them that you have stellar reviews and are considered proficient in your field. 

That way, you will easily get more jobs because clients trust talent that has successfully delivered great results on Upwork. So whether you’re a new or a veteran freelancer or agency to Upwork, it is a good idea to aim for the said badges.  This is especially true if you want to stand out and win the work you are eyeing. 

In this post, I will share with you why you have to strive to become Top Rated in Upwork and how you can go about earning the badge.

But first, what specifically is a Top Rated rank?

Top Rated rank highlights freelancers and agencies who have built a strong reputation on Upwork by always getting positive feedback from their clients. They represent the top 10% of talent on Upwork.  They work across experience levels and in all categories around the world.

What will you get if you become Top Rated in Upwork?

As a Top Rated freelancer or agency, you’ll have a dedicated badge on your freelancer, agency, or agency member’s profile and proposals.  That badge will be visible to all clients. Aside from that, you’ll also get the following benefits:  

  • Your fees will be reduced (starting at 10%) on Featured Jobs

  • You will have more control over your Job Success Score

  • Talent Specialists will match you with very good clients.  You will be invited to submit proposals to jobs assisted by Talent Specialists.

  • Also, because the badge is a sort of verification of your freelancing skills (how good you are with clients who consistently give 5-star reviews) you will get a lot of direct invitations too.

  • Our Job Digest email to make it easier for you to find jobs that are a great match

  • You will experience faster payments on hourly contracts

  • You will be entitled to premium customer support, including phone and chat.

  • You will be more efficient in getting projects started.  If your niche is right, you can reduce the number of proposals you send. This is probably the biggest practical benefit you will get.

Note: If your agency members have enough history to have a Job Success Score, their badge will display as a Top Rated badge. However, if they do not yet have enough history, it will be a Rising Talent badge as long as their profiles are at least 60% complete.

How can you become Top Rated in Upwork?

You can earn a Top Rated badge by cultivating an extraordinary reputation on Upwork. To do that, you must have a history of successful transactions with multiple clients.  You must meet your clients’ expectations and contribute to a safe and vibrant marketplace.  

Also, do not forget to track your Job Success Score and 12-month earnings which you can find on your My Stats page.

Here are the criteria to become Top Rated in Upwork:

A. For Freelancers

  • A current Job Success Score of 90% or higher

  • The first hire on Upwork was more than 90 days ago

  • Maintained Rising Talent status or a Job Success Score of at least 90% for at least 13 of the last 16 weeks

  • A 100% complete profile  (90% for those who brought their profiles over from Elance)

  • 12-month earnings of at least $1,000

  • Up-to-date availability (if unavailable now, set a date estimate)

  • An account in good standing with no recent account holds

  • Activity on the platform (proposal, accepted invitation, or earnings) in the past 90 days

B. For Agencies (2+ team members)

  • An agency Job Success Score of 90% or higher

  • An agency owner Job Success Score of 90% or higher (or none earned yet)

  • Maintained agency Rising Talent status or an agency Job Success Score of at least 90% for at least 13 of the last 16 weeks

  • A 100% complete agency owner profile with photo

  • An agency profile with a logo, overview, and services offered

  • Each agency member’s profile is at least 60% complete on average (50% for those who brought their profiles over from Elance)

  • 12-month agency earnings of at least $10,000

  • Up-to-date availability (if unavailable now, set a date estimate)

  • An account in good standing with no recent account holds (including yourself, your agency, and all agency members including agency owners)

  • Activity on the platform (proposal, accepted invitation, or earnings) in the past 90 days

Note: The freelancers’ and the agencies’ eligibility assessments are conducted every two weeks so that Upwork can recognize the most current outstanding members of the marketplace.

Indeed, having a Top Rated status will help outstanding freelancers and agencies such as yourself grow your businesses and become even more successful in the Upwork marketplace.

I hope that the information I shared with you will be a great help in your journey to becoming Top Rated in Upwork.  If you will just put in the effort and dedication needed to produce top-notch outputs each time, you will have no difficulty rising to the top.

Do you want to go higher and earn the expert-vetted rank?  Click the link and find out how. 

Good luck with your climb up the ranks!

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Ross Jenkins

Ross Jenkins

Ross Jenkins is the founder of DigitalME and is an ActiveCampaign Certified Consultant. He is ranked #1 on UpWork for his proficiency in digital marketing. DigitalME offers targeted digital solutions and is perfect for anyone who wants to increase leads, sales, and productivity through automation.