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Reviews and expert opinionFreelancer.com

Max AndersonMax AndersonFreelance Jobs Expert

With over 25 million registered users and 12 million completed projects, Freelancer.com is a giant of the freelance world. However, there have been recent issues with spam, fake profiles, and low-quality work. If you’re looking for a freelancer, I recommend you head over to Fiverr, where you can hire someone for as little as $5.

Overview

freelancer-overview

Bigger Definitely Doesn’t Mean Better

Freelancer is definitely one of the biggest freelance websites out there, with millions of members joining the site over the years.

Along with the large user-base comes an even larger problem that has been at the forefront of Freelancer’s dip in popularity. I am of course talking about the extent of spam posts and spam applicants that the platform seems to attract without having the ability to control it at all.

If you don’t want to waste your time wading through all that spam, you’ll be glad to know there’s a great alternative in town. We recommend Fiverr as it is home to a wide variety of freelancers who can get practically any job done. And the best part is that the prices are unbelievably low – you can hire a professional on Fiverr for as little as $5.

Templates

3.0
freelancer-templates

When Quantity Takes Over Quality

Freelancer claims to have a database of more than 7 million users, which is a staggering figure to say the least. While this used to be a big positive point, over the years the lack of control Freelancer has over spam applicants and posts has made it a serious issue for the company. The old say of ‘quality over quantity’ certainly rings true here as you can get lost in a minefield of low quality posts, and tons of low-quality applicants bidding on your jobs. If you are happy to receive hundreds of applicants and shockingly low-prices, then you won’t be fussed by Freelancer, but for those looking for a clearer outlook, Freelancer certainly proves to be an issue.

You can find freelancers and employers from all over the globe, but the current Asian invasion on the freelance market has flooded Freelancer the most. The major part of the active subscribers of the site are from India, China and Philippines, alongside with way more qualified and reliable specialists from Eastern Europe, which also agree to work for wages below the minimal survival level.

The other 10% of the applicants would be the scarce highly skilled professionals from the Old World and the USA who had been working through Freelancer since its very first days and who are not willing to leave the sinking ship. They have the highest level premium account and all the possible badges available on Freelancer, but in most of the cases employers prefer to hire a cheaper workers with less experience. Scams and frauds became another plague of Freelancer these days. Should you hire a reasonably good freelancer, make sure you have a senior developer or an editor who’d be able to make almost inevitable improvements.Explore Freelancer.com Templates

Features

3.0
freelancer-features

They Invented These Features

One may agree or disagree with the feature set and policies available through Freelancer, but it’s hard to shrug off the fact that Freelancer is the web-freelance resource that actually invented the ways most similar platforms work. Despite the tons of spam and inadequate bidders, Freelancer keeps blooming and engrossing the less business-savvy rivals.

Various badges, levels and complicated XP system used for ranking is something of their own unique invention, which other freelance websites have adopted and improved to eventually surpass Frelancer.com.See full list of features

Ease of use

3.0
freelancer-ease-of-use

A Maze of Buttons and Features

Freelancer’s navigation might seem a bit complicated for a first-time user, but in fact everything is highly intuitive and – let’s face it – with so many features Freelancer has to provide to its clients, there could hardly have been less menus and buttons. The registration process is simple, and you may even skip it in favor of logging in through your Facebook account. You can register as a freelancer looking for work, a customer seeking for contractors, or get an account enabling you to perform both of these functions.

Once you’re in you’ll be prompted to complete your profile and add a portfolio as well as perform a lot of other tasks that will make your profile rank higher and seem more legit and attractive to potential clients.

As a customer, you will get tons of applications per each and every job posting, but bear it in mind that a major part of those applications are automated and generated by scripts. This is done by freelance slave-driver agencies, posting as individual contractors who’ll promise to do the work insanely cheaply. They will even do it – but the resulting work created by severely underpaid workers will be poor.See if Freelancer.com is Right for You

Support

3.0
freelancer-support

The Support Is On-Line, But Not Exactly

Freelancer has a 24/7 live-chat support, but it’s not actually an instant means of troubleshooting, as the operator assigned to you may easily turn out to be “away” in the chat. However, you can always resort to the FAQs, extensive troubleshooting section, write an e-mail or submit a ticket.

  • Email support
  • Limited live-chat support
  • Extensive FAQs
  • No phone support

Pricing

3.0

Fifty Dollars for What?!

Freelancer – with its extreme money-sucking policies – is not making money on the monetary transactions between the employers and the freelancers after a job well done. Freelancer.com is totally indifferent – if not to say “oblivious” – towards your activity on the site, as long as you are feeding it with your cash for acquiring new levels and ranking higher in the freelance lists. However, unlike iFreelance, which takes your monthly fee and leaves you the hell alone, Freelancer.com does not forget to get its cut of your money. The only thing that justifies this and the extremely high premium account fees is that you can save a lot of money hiring cheap workforce through Freelancer.

Initially, you start out with a totally free account, but you have to pay to unlock more options and lower the transaction fees. The tests available for freelancers are all priced $5 and above. You can pay to make your job posting or bid show #1 in the list of similar offers.

There are various ways to pay and withdraw money from Freelancer. You can use your verified credit card, PayPal, Skrill or Moneybookers account to deposit or withdraw funds.

The payment protection mechanism allows freelancers to ask for an upfront payment, and for the customer to demand complete satisfaction in return. There is a whole section on the site, dedicated to resolving disputes between freelancers and customers.

The 1 month free trial allows both freelancers and customers to try it out without for paying services fees, but of course, that doesn’t mean you get free work done. You would still need to pay the freelancers you hire.

Comparison

How does Freelancer.com match up to the competition?

FiverrCompare4.7Compare
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SkillDostiCompare2.5Compare

User reviews

Based on 137 reviews in 12 languages
1.6
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Sue Smyth
USA
April 21, 2021
THIS COMPANY IS A SCAM - BEWARE

why are zero stars not an option??? I am an expert in my field and thought, from all of the positive ads, that Freelancer.com would be a way to make some good side income. I was bullied into paying for a membership (by the way, none of their memberships are free, though advertised as such), and I was never given better exposure to real jobs. I sent "bids" on jobs and never received responses, and the only responses I got from "employers" were scams - individuals with absolutely NOTHING VERIFIED except their email (how is this allowed on a job website????) and constantly asking for communication outside of Freelancer.com. I reported every suspicious message with ABSOLUTELY NO RESPONSE OR ACTION TAKEN BY FREELANCER. This company is a complete joke and a scam itself.

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1
Why not
Cambodia
March 21, 2021
website scammer avoid it if you don't want to waste time & money

From all the freelance website I ve been using as a video editor, freelancer.com remind the worst. I hardly recommend NOT TO USE IT. They are scammer (the website itself) I am not talking about people hiring for jobs on this platform. Impossible to get my money transfer after a work I made for an Indian guy even if the employer paid me. the money is actually on my freelancer account but impossible to get it. Freelance.com answer approximately to my e-mail or even ignore them sometimes. basically, they kept my money for them. avoid it ;)

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1
Kap
Greece
March 18, 2021
No way to work with them again

No transparency about fees, they charge your card whatever they want, they pay your freelancer 1/3 of the money that you agree on. They want a copy of your ID before even you can talk to customer service but first, they take your money. The moment you register, you are lost, you can not even delete your account w/o giving them a copy of your ID and access to your bank card.

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1
Aaron
Great Britain
March 15, 2021
Don't waste your time

This must be the worst freelancer platform I've ever used. The projects I received were nothing to do with my request. Customer support is non existent. Refunds are not given easily. Take your money elsewhere!! I've spent a lot of time trying to contact them but they seemed to reply with scripted messages that had nothing to do with my questions and issues. The website is translated poorly into other languages.

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1
Jimbo Higgins
USA
March 11, 2021
Freelancer.com Great for Design, horrible for functionality

I used Freelancer.com in 2018 to hire a company to create a site that has been done before with a few modifications. The site and both apps have plenty of simple enough frameworks out there, and I wanted to test the functionality. I have purchased and used other products in the past with a little bit of headache, but the sites WORKED. With Freelancer I got 250 replies with an average bid of $3k. What a PAIN it was to sift through complete jibberish replies that somehow had "good" reviews. In the end, I settled on a company with excellent customer service upfront (of course). They had the app drawn out, and it seemed like a "go". I paid the first two installments as they met the design and flow of features which, since it was similar to other items (and they said they had designed similar sites), we went ahead. They are great at design flow and getting a general sense of what the app will do, but that is something the high school kid down the street can do. It has now been three years of going back and forth... "No sir, we cannot make the app change the booking automatically on day and time". Imagine that you cannot book a flight except generally up to a given day. Well, they cannot make the app do this. It's buggy all over the place, and at this point I am abandoning the project after hundreds of my own hours trying to get basic features to work. When I asked for their MySQL tables I could tell they had some basic framework from another developer, but any features that I had added were complete jibberish with PHP code that doesn't translate to what I'm used to seeing. I will go through and hand code the rest myself as the pandemic has given me some free time. Good luck, and beware the bait and switch (they also reduced it to two apps without a website... "oh, we didn't know you wanted that too" -- it was clearly written in the description. In the end, you are paying for a bunch of slides for an app that don't actually do anything useful. Customer service is nonexistent, and they now have an agreement that Freelancer.com is not a party to any lawsuit or refund. That's right. They'll take your money, but good luck getting anything back once you realize you have a senior high school app building project on your hands.

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2
anonymus
Great Britain
March 10, 2021
Poor

Customer service that outright ignores you. Two separate incidents, 2 separate times I've been completely ignored. They have for easy incidents responded, but for a dispute and refund request, you just get ignored. Their freelancers also bid without reading the project description. Over 50% of the work I have put on there has required more time and effort micromanaging it because the freelancers will not read the briefs. Some even try to extort/leverage more money out of you when they finally do read the brief you prepare and they were supposed to read before bidding. Freelancer will charge you a fee and not refund it even if the freelancer you accept to do the work cancels the project. Freelancers also have all the power when it comes to disputes, not people spending money on the website which is strange. I've used the website over 20 times and found 3 very good freelancers, 6 shocking ones and the rest were mediocre (poor grasp of English, over-claimed their skillset, and/or needed significant time to drag through the process). Recommendation: for anything beyond photoshop background removal, find someone local to you, well-reviewed and use them. It's what I ended up doing and I won't be changing that approach anytime soon.

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Bottom line on Freelancer.com

Freelancer was and still is a giant in the web freelancing market. The site itself is excellent, but a bit too greedy when it comes to giving you anything for free or promoting your profile. The hype and shameless promotion played a nasty trick on Freelancer: it is the most popular and populated site, but this is precisely what has lowered its actual value for customers. However, as long as there are people willing to resort to the cheapest labor possible to have good-looking profiles, Freelancer will still be one of the key freelance websites out there. If you are looking for a freelancer, we recommend Fiverr – there are loads of freelancers and the fees are inexpensive.

PRO’S

  • Great number of qualified and cheap freelancers
  • Works with different payment systems
  • Has reliable tech support

CON’S

  • Too many unskilled newbie freelancers
  • Tons of spam postings and bids
  • Charges money for every step you take
  • You may need to hire a senior developer or an editor to look over the work submitted to you
Max AndersonMax Anderson
Max is a Product Architect and Data Scientist. He teaches HTML, CSS, and JS to young web developers, and he wrote a few of the first guides to mobile app developments for Android and iOS.

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