As businesses grow increasingly competitive, the only way for companies to survive is to be more cost-effective by outsourcing their work to freelancers.
When it comes to outsourcing, Upwork is the preferred choice for both freelancers and businesses.
But everyone may not find Upwork suitable for their requirements, which is why this blog shares some Upwork alternatives that freelancers and business owners can consider.
But before we dig into the world of Upwork alternatives, let's take a deeper look at the need for outsourcing and hiring virtual assistants. Disclaimer: This content contains some affiliate links for which we will earn a commission (at no additional cost to you). This is to ensure that we can keep creating free content for you.
How We Choose the Best Upwork Alternatives
- Talent Pool: It’s important to evaluate the size, diversity, and quality of the talent pool available on the alternative platform. We’ve looked at Upwork alternatives that offer a diverse range of skilled freelancers relevant to different industries and specific project requirements.
- Platform Usability: The user interface and overall usability of Upwork alternatives is another key consideration. Our top picks have an intuitive interface that allows you to navigate and search for freelancers easily. These alternatives provide robust filtering capabilities, such as filters for experience level, portfolio, reviews, and specialized skills.
- Availability and Responsiveness: We have checked if the alternative platform offers reliable customer support and dedicated account management. Prompt support can be crucial when you need assistance or have questions regarding the hiring process or any concerns during a project.
- Additional Services and Features: The right Upwork alternatives are those that offer additional services or features that can enhance your hiring experience. This could include tools for managing contracts, tracking work progress, collaboration features, or integration with other software or project management tools.
- Transaction Fees: In addition to the pricing structures and fee systems of different alternatives, we have looked at factors, such as service fees, transaction fees, and any additional costs involved in hiring freelancers. The best Upwork alternatives are transparent with their pricing structure and offer flexible payment methods.
- Reputation: We have considered the reputation and reviews of both the alternative platform and the freelancers it hosts. Our preference is for Upwork alternatives that have a good track record of delivering quality freelancers and a process for vetting freelancers to deliver positive client experiences.
Why is There a Need for Upwork Alternatives?
Cutting costs is the best way to boost profitability for a business, which is why they need to consider different ways to reduce them.
However, this is easier said than done, given the various cost overheads businesses need to manage.
In such a scenario, businesses need to adopt an innovative approach and consider how they can reduce costs. Outsourcing work to freelancers and virtual assistants is one probable solution that businesses often choose.
It helps business owners be more productive but also assists them in hiring the best freelance talent at substantially lower costs.
Remote working and hiring freelancers or virtual assistants seem to be the norm nowadays for businesses looking at cutting costs and being more competitive in the marketplace.
Businesses are transitioning towards this mode of working due to the following benefits:
- Lower overhead costs. i.e., rent, utility bills, etc.
- No equipment or office supply costs.
- Flexibility in scaling and downsizing team members based on market conditions.
- No recruitment costs.
- No additional costs toward medical benefits or taxes.
- Hiring is not limited to local talent. Can now select from a global pool of talent based on project requirements.
- Multi-talented professionals are available at a fraction of the cost compared to on-site employees.
Given these immense benefits, it makes sense for businesses to work with qualified freelancers or virtual assistants.
When outsourcing tasks and hiring freelancers, one of the sites that immediately come to mind is Upwork, which has gained prominence in this field.
However, all businesses might not find Upwork feasible due to varied reasons such as costs, availability of talent, etc.
The need of the hour is to look for more viable Upwork alternatives that help you save costs while also helping you source the best talent.
Interested? Let’s learn a bit more about these Upwork alternatives.
Top Upwork Alternatives You Can Try in 2023
Here are some of the best Upwork alternatives you should consider using in 2023.
Upwork Alternative #1: Wishup
Image via Wishup
While hiring freelancers for specific tasks is a great option, sometimes you may need someone who is multi-talented, dedicated, and available for a long-term collaboration with your business.
Here’s what makes Wishup one of the best Upwork alternatives in almost all aspects.
- Wishup is a pioneer in the virtual assistant space and offers virtual assistants who can practically manage all your tasks efficiently and per your business needs.
- The virtual assistants are trained in more than 200+ skillsets, making them ideal for all businesses, big or small.
- Wishup also offers virtual assistants for specific roles, such as bookkeeping, administrative assistance, project management, software testing, and development.
- The versatility of the talent that Wishup offers business owners gives it a competitive edge.
- The costs of hiring a virtual assistant from Wishup are comparatively lower than other hiring options, such as hiring employees, freelancers, etc.
- It helps organizations save a substantial amount of money in just staffing costs.
- The tasks you can outsource to their virtual assistants include managing inboxes, scheduling meetings, making minutes of meetings, tracking expenses, managing payments, researching competitors, preparing presentations, etc.
- It has a no-questions-asked refund policy if you are not satisfied with the virtual assistant hired by you.
- Offers a free 7-day trial to businesses looking at hiring virtual assistants but not sure whether it is the right decision for them.
Image via Wishup
- You can easily hire virtual assistants for long-duration projects
- No hiring fees/credits are required, just pay for the hours for which you need a virtual assistant
- Extensive support and training to all virtual assistants on the latest industry practices and tools
- A no-questions-asked refund/replacement policy
- Not a platform for freelancers
- Cannot hire people for just one-off gigs or tasks
- $9 onwards per hour for virtual assistants
Employers can sign up for Wishup’s free consultation to find the best talents for their business.
Isn’t that great? Now let's take a look at some of the other Upwork alternatives.
Upwork Alternative #2: Fiverr
Image via Fiverr
A small gig platform that both companies and freelancers love, Fiverr is a formidable competitor to Upwork and other Upwork alternatives.
Fiverr initially started with the concept of helping small businesses outsource their creative and programming requirements to freelancers for as little as $5 per hour.
It is preferred by freelancers to showcase their talents and get some experience before they move on to the next big thing.
Here’s what makes Fiverr a great Upwork alternative.
- Companies prefer Fiverr due to the sheer versatility of the talent they can discover on it. From content writers to YouTube thumbnail specialists, Fiverr offers it all.
- Fiverr is a global marketplace where professionals can showcase their talent and offer professional services through packages catering to small businesses and large corporations alike.
- It offers freelancers the flexibility to prepare and customize their prices.
- Business owners must complete the payment formalities only once they are 100% satisfied with the work they receive.
- Fiverr is very popular among small businesses and entrepreneurs due to the extremely cheap rates charged by freelancers on the site.
Image via Fiverr
- Fiverr enjoys a distinct advantage over other Upwork alternatives due to the sheer amount of talent and gigs offered on the platform.
- Businesses dealing with freelancers on this platform are assured of quality services and can rate freelancers on various parameters.
- Fiverr offers a more informal, casual approach for businesses and freelancers than Upwork.
- A flat commission structure makes it easier for freelancers to gauge their earning potential.
- It’s more of a marketplace model wherein companies can select the best candidates for their projects quite easily.
- Freelancers do not have to bid for projects by sending cover letters.
- Pricing for some gigs starts at $5 but gets expensive when additional services are requested.
- 14 days wait time for freelancers to get their payments.
Upwork Alternative #3: Freelancer
Image via Freelancer
Positioned as the world’s largest freelance marketplace, Freelancer has millions of freelancers on its platform.
As a result, business owners dealing with freelancers on this platform are assured of the highest quality of work along with numerous freelancer options.
- Freelancer offers business owners two options to search for the best candidates for their projects.
- They can either look up the profiles of freelancers available with Freelancer.com and hire one based on the skillsets they need or post jobs and project details and wait for the freelancers to apply.
- Freelancers can see competitive bids and plan their bids accordingly. This facility is available on Upwork only for its premium members.
- It has a simple sign-up process, and you can get up and running within a few minutes of logging on to the platform.
- It offers a simple-to-use interface wherein one can easily search for freelancers/jobs for any industry/service.
- It’s not restricted to hiring people just for online jobs.
- You can also look up offline gigs/services in your locality, which is an excellent offering for those who need these services.
Image via Freelancer
- Business owners need to make payments only when they are 100% satisfied with the work, which is quite reassuring for people who are apprehensive about working with freelancers.
- Offers a time-tracking tool for businesses, making it easy for them to track the time freelancers spend on their projects.
- Offers multiple options for freelancers and business owners to connect, including video calls.
- Offers flexible and multiple payment options, making it easy for business owners to pay freelancers.
- Has a simple interface and freelancers can register on the site within minutes.
- Business owners need to pay extra for specific features, such as marking an offer as urgent or private, etc.
- Freelancers need to get a premium plan if they want to bid for more than eight projects in a month. This can be quite restrictive for freelancers who are just starting out.
- Posting jobs is completely free.
- Basic plan for freelancers is $4.95
- Professional Plan for freelancers is $29.95
- Premier Plan for freelancers is $59.95
Image via PeoplePerHour
An excellent platform for freelancers and small businesses, it offers 24 x 7 customer support and a unique money-back guarantee with fraud protection.
While PeoplePerHour is based in the UK, businesses and freelancers worldwide can easily connect on this platform.
- It offers a global talent pool for businesses to select freelancers.
- Geographical restrictions do not limit hiring; you can work with people from different time zones.
- For freelancers, it has more than 1 million businesses registered, making it the ideal platform for them to get work consistently.
- Some of the categories for which you can hire freelancers on this website are Technology & Programming, Writing & Translation, Web Design, Digital Marketing, Video, Photo & Image, Business, Music & Audio, Marketing, Branding, Sales, and Social Media.
- It also has freelancers specializing in SEO and logo design which is quite helpful for small businesses and start-ups.
- As an Upwork alternative, it offers freelancers the flexibility to bid for projects or post customized packages that clients can buy based on their requirements.
- Once a project is complete and the client is satisfied, the freelancer can raise an invoice through the PeoplePerHour freelance platform and get their payment.
Image via PeoplePerHour
- Clients can easily share their feedback on freelancers and rate their performance. That helps freelancers improve their services and skillsets, to better meet the needs of clients.
- The most significant advantage it offers freelancers is payment security, as it requires clients/buyers to deposit a fee equivalent to the project fee they are outsourcing.
- Suitable for freelancers looking for a long-term, hourly-fee based freelance job as a consistent source of income.
- Fees charged from freelancers are relatively high, without any substantial benefits
- Freelancers pay a fee ranging from 7.5% to 20% based on the project value
- Business owners can post job listings for free.
Upwork Alternative #5: Guru
Image via Guru
A sleek-looking website is what greets you when you visit the Guru website. If that is any indication of the quality of talent available on this Upwork alternative, then it’s definitely worth a try.
The Guru website states that it has 800,000 employers worldwide, with over $250 million paid to freelancers, which is quite an achievement considering it is a platform that brings freelancers and clients together.
- This Upwork alternative seems to focus more on technical talent in the field of programming & development and enjoys a 99% customer satisfaction rate.
- It offers the lowest transaction fees, making it highly viable for clients and freelancers.
- The platform offers different membership packages for freelancers that they can use to showcase their portfolios & skills.
- Freelancers can boost their website ranking by upgrading their packages.
- Businesses looking at hiring talented freelancers through this platform will be pleased with the wide range of talent it offers.
- Most of the services offered by this Upwork alternative are suitable for both small and big businesses, with varied cost options based on the skillsets offered by the freelancers.
- Guru also has four unique models for hiring skilled freelancers—Fixed Price, Hourly, Task-based and Recurring Payment.
- Using the Fixed Price model, clients can set different milestones, with the date and amount to be paid on achieving each milestone.
Image via Guru
- Higher credibility than many other freelancing sites. All the freelancers working on this Upwork alternative are vetted using their feedback scores and all-time transaction data.
- Multiple payment options and security using their in-house developed SafePay system.
- Lowest fees in the industry compared to other Upwork alternatives.
- Not a freelancer-friendly platform as they can bid only for limited projects using the free plan.
- Charges employers a fee equivalent to 2.9% of the invoice value of the project.
- For freelancers, it offers a free plan that has basic features and a limit of 10 bids per month.
- Freelancers can also upgrade to premium plans starting from $11.95 per month.
Image via Guru
Which is the Best Upwork Alternative for You to Find Freelance Talent?
While Upwork is one of the best freelancer platforms online, if you are looking for talented professionals skilled in multiple disciplines, the Upwork alternatives are equally good, if not better.
Here’s a summary of the best Upwork alternatives for different needs and types of customers.
Multi-Tasking Professionals: It doesn’t make sense to invest in a professional to manage just one role nowadays. Your business can be more cost-effective by hiring multi-talented professionals experienced in diverse skill sets.
To hire a multi-tasking professional, you can consider Wishup, which offers virtual assistants trained in different roles and tasks such as bookkeeping, inbox management, administrative assistance, project management, and travel assistance.
Creative People: Your business needs to stand out from the competition if it wants to remain competitive and grow its market share. Professionals with creative skills can quickly help you achieve this.
One can easily hire the best writers, graphic designers, web development professionals, and even video editors through these Upwork competitors.
Fiverr is the best Upwork alternative if you are looking for freelancers with creative skills in graphic design, writing, editing, creating social media posts, etc.
Specialized Roles: Freelancers tend to specialize in specific roles and tasks, depending on their experience and expertise.
If you are looking for professionals with diverse skill sets, you may be better off planning your hiring from 2-3 different Upwork alternatives based on your business needs.
For example, if you are looking for software testers or developers, you can consider hiring them from Wishup. Similarly, if you need someone for short-term gigs and specific projects only, then Freelancer and PeoplePerHour are good Upwork alternatives.
Small Budgets: As your business grows, you may have a limited budget for hiring freelancers and other resources. Luckily sites like Fiverr and Guru offer you multiple options within your budget.
Most freelancers on Fiverr offer different packages based on the deliverables, with multiple pricing options. This makes it easier for you to select just what you need and not pay extra for any unwanted stuff.
Q1. How do freelancing platforms work?
A. Freelancing platforms work on the basic principle of bringing business owners and talented individuals together in one marketplace.
On freelancing platforms or sites like Upwork, freelancers can pitch for projects based on their skill sets, while business owners can hire talent based on their project/business requirements.
Q2. Are Upwork alternatives expensive to work with?
A. No. On the contrary, Upwork alternative freelancing platforms offer talented professionals at substantially lower costs than hiring a full-time, on-site employee.
Q3. Can businesses hire professionals for long-term commitments on Upwork alternative platforms?
A. Freelancers are usually available for specific gigs, or short-term projects only, as they work with multiple clients and have other commitments.
However, one can alternatively consider virtual assistance services like Wishup, which offers virtual assistants for as long as you require based on your business needs.
Q4. How do I pay the freelancers on Upwork alternative platforms?
A. Most Upwork alternatives offer project-based payments, wherein you can send the payment to the freelancer once the project has been completed and you are completely satisfied with the output.
Q5. What do the freelancer's ratings signify?
A. All the freelancers available on the Upwork alternatives are rated by both the platform and clients on different parameters such as work quality, meeting delivery commitments, communication skills, expertise, etc.
This is to help clients select the best freelancers for their projects.
Q6. Why should I hire a freelancer?
A. Freelancers are a viable option to manage your one-time tasks without hiring full-time employees or delegating someone from your team for the same, which is an expensive resource.
Moreover, freelancers are more accountable and directly responsible for the project outcomes and must maintain the highest quality if they want to get paid for the task.
Which of These Upwork Alternatives Will You Use to Find Qualified Freelancers?
No matter what skill set you require, a freelancer is available just for you. All you need to do is check out the Upwork alternatives mentioned above and check the different profiles, and you are good to go.
While working with freelancers is a good option, it is best to hire them only from trusted Upwork alternatives so that you are assured of the quality and timely delivery of your projects.
Make sure you check the reviews of the freelancers you are considering and ask them to send a few samples from their portfolios for your consideration.
By following these tips and trying out the Upwork alternatives mentioned above, we are sure you will easily meet both your short-term and long-term staffing requirements.
If we have missed out on other great Upwork alternative platforms, feel free to share their details in the comments below. We are sure it will significantly help our readers.
Disclaimer: This content contains some affiliate links for which we will earn a commission (at no additional cost to you). This is to ensure that we can keep creating free content for you.