Elance Blog

Advice From An Elancer (Volume 19)

Welcome to Advice From An Elancer – a place to ask your Elance questions (through Elance’s LinkedIn page) and get them answered as thoroughly and personally as possible. My name is Dorothy D. and I have worked with Elance as a freelancer since April 2009. I have always tried to help other Elancers understand how things work and how to accomplish more. In Advice From An Elancer I will address as many questions as I can each week. In some cases, questions have been edited for clarity.

Question #1:

In your proposal, do you refer prospective clients to your Elance profile/portfolio or upload samples, or both?

Advice from an Elancer:

Samples are an important part of any proposal. They give the client a “taste” of your abilities. I refer to my portfolio and Elance profile, but always upload samples. This saves those in a rush that extra step of wading through jobs that may not be relevant to the type of work they seek. I always ensure that my samples are related in some way to the job I am bidding for. If they want to know more, then they can go ahead and dig deeper.

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Question #2:

What should I include in my portfolio?

Advice from an Elancer:

I have to admit, I have looked at several portfolios lately. Some are fantastic; some shouldn’t have been posted. Only post your best work. Just because you did it, doesn’t mean it’s your best. I’ve seen graphics with spelling errors – this reflects poorly on the freelancer. To protect yourself, only post items that have already been published online with your name attached to them. This way they cannot easily be plagiarized. If you have nothing online to show, you post a statement in your portfolio that samples will be submitted on an individual basis, based on the job at hand.

You don’t need 30 samples. Clients don’t want to wade through tons of material. Post only your best; post those that show your range of abilities.

Always use tags that are relevant and describe accurately what is in each sample. This helps the client save time. They can view only content that shows skills related to their current needs.

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Question #3:

What kind of questions should we need to prepare for writing exams in Elance for AJAX, Joomla!, RSS 2.0, and JSON?

Advice from an Elancer:

For any Elance skills test, whether it is in IT & Programming, Writing & Translation, or any area, there is no study guide or preparation. These tests are specifically testing the skills you know now. It is important to remember that you are taking these to show what you know, not what you can prepare for with a study guide. You can take the tests and then decide which to show on your profile.

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That’s enough for today. If you have questions or want to follow the conversation of other Elancers, visit the Discussion page of our LinkedIn page.

Comments

I gain lots of valuable knowledge. It will help me.

I'm new to Elance and working on my profile. My question is about the portfolios, it seems most all of the examples are of IT and design. I'm in the admin support sector, hopefully landing jobs as a virtual assistant, one-time data entry job, or other jobs of these types, what type of examples should I include in my portfolio? Maybe a spreadsheet, a mail-merge doc? I'm just not sure, I've sent a couple of proposals without but after reading this post I feel I should have something I'm just not sure what. Thank you

Elance has changed my life! I have been here for only 3 months and have a Global client base and have an income of someone with a Master's Degree! I have only my GED and have educated myself and produce amazing results for my clients. I could not dream of working any other way ever again! Thank you to Elance and all my clients I am able to spread my SEO/SEM and marketing experience World Wide!

I am new in Elance and surely these advice will help me growing in Elance.
Thank you.

I have completed everything that I can currently on my Freelancer site. I have bidded on about 20 jobs with no results yet. However, I only started bidding On March 1, 2014. Maybe I am just being impatient. Do people find it hard getting a start when you are a new freelancer? I have a portfolio with sample work on it, and will attach samples to my bids. I use verbage on each bid that pertains to that bid only (no "paste-in for everyone" words). I will need to upgrade my site but will have to make a little money before I can do that. Any advice on this? I just hope I'm not doing anything wrong on my bids that I have overlooked.

Please Tell me : ID Verifications Need
I am new freelancer , so help me.