8 of the Best Freelance Websites for Beginners

by | Dec 12, 2022 | Freelancing, Make Money Online for Beginners, Side Hustle, Work Online | 0 comments

freelance websites for beginners


So you’re new to the freelance world, hey? Once you’ve gotten over the initial excitement of being your own boss (trust me, it’s worth it), one of the key things you need to know is which are the best freelance websites for beginners. 

While there are a ton of different freelancing platforms out there, not all of them are created equal—and as a beginner, you want to make sure you’re putting your best foot forward.

You obviously don’t want to join them all and having to check them for jobs every day would be very unproductive—and who has time for that? And although they all seem to offer the same thing, I can tell you some freelance websites are better suited to beginners than others.

That’s why I’ve compiled this list of the best freelance websites for beginners. These platforms are all easy to use, have a ton of features and resources to help you get started, and most importantly, they’re where the good-paying gigs are.

So without further ado, here are 8 of the best freelance websites for beginners. 


How do freelance websites work?

If you’re not familiar with freelancing, it’s basically when you work for yourself instead of for a company. You can be a freelance writer, web developer, graphic designer, or pretty much anything else.

People usually become freelancers because they want more freedom and flexibility in their work life. Rather than being tied down to a 9-to-5 job, freelancers can set their own hours and work from wherever they want.

Freelancers work independently for a variety of different clients, as opposed to being employed by a single company. And a lot find their work through these freelance websites as it’s a super easy way to connect them with clients who need their skills and services.

Typically, clients will post a job listing on the site, and freelancers can then apply for the job. Once the job has been assigned to a freelancer, they’ll usually communicate through the website to discuss the project details and agree on a price. The freelancer is responsible for completing the work by the agreed deadline and submitting it to the client.

Once the project is completed, the client will pay the freelancer through the website. Payment is usually made through the freelance website, and both the client and freelancer can leave ratings and reviews for one another.

The best freelance websites are always changing, but some of the current top contenders include Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer.com. Each of these platforms has its own unique features and benefits, so it’s worth taking some time to explore them all before deciding which one is right for you.


TLDR: How do these freelance websites for beginners work?


The short version:

  1. Clients post what they need to be done on the freelance site
  2. Freelancers can browse job listings and apply to do the work
  3. The client chooses a freelancer and then communicates through the website to discuss the project details and price
  4. Freelancer completes and submits work
  5. When work is complete, clients pay the freelancer through the website
  6. DONE!



Why should I use freelance websites as a beginner?

Freelance websites are great for beginners because they offer an easy way to get started and build a portfolio in the freelancing world. Plus, there’s no need to cold-call potential clients or network like crazy (although those things can also be helpful).

Not only do they provide a platform for you to showcase your skills, but they also allow you to connect with clients from all over the world. Plus, most freelancing websites have built-in tools that make it easy to track your progress, manage your workflow and protect your payments.

All you need to do is create a profile, start bidding on jobs, and land some clients. So if you’re looking for an easy way to get started in freelancing, consider using freelance websites whilst you’re still a beginner.

I used a lot of these freelancing websites when I first got started in the freelance world. My very first working online job was content writing, which I found through Upwork.

And although it didn’t pay much, I loved the freedom that came with freelancing. I was travelling at the time and house-sitting to live rent-free, so working online as a freelancer fitted perfectly with my lifestyle. I could move anywhere and take my online work with me.

This first role was used as experience when I applied for the next online job and then used both of these previous roles to pitch for a direct writing job as a freelancer.

Even if you don’t already have any specific experience working online as a freelancer, apply for some low-skilled jobs and eventually, you’ll score your first freelance job. Even for the more experienced freelancer, it’s a smart idea to look for clients or leads on freelancing websites.

Most freelancing websites are free to join and easy to sign up to. A completed profile and some examples of your work are all you need in most cases to start applying for jobs.




Top Tips for Searching on Freelance Websites


Searching for freelance work can be a bit daunting, especially for beginners. So, if you’re brand new to freelancing, here are a few helpful tips for searching on freelance websites:

  • Take some time to figure out what you want to do: What are your skills and interests? It helps to have a clear idea of the type of work you’re looking for. That way, you can search for specific keywords and narrow down your options. Once you know what you want to do, you can start searching for freelancing websites that specialise in that area.
  • Read the reviews: When you find a freelancing website that looks promising, take some time to read the reviews. Other freelancers will be able to give you an idea of what the site is like to use, and whether or not they’ve had success finding work through it.
  • Stay alert: As a newbie, be careful not to accept jobs that only pay you in ‘exposure’ because you’re new. Everyone’s time is valuable and accepting a slightly lower rate when you’re looking to build up experience is all good, but working for free is not cool — so don’t stand for it.
  • Create a profile: Create a freelance profile that highlights your specific skills and experience. Be sure to include examples of your work, if possible. Mention or upload anything that is relevant that shows you know what you’re doing, even if it’s unpaid work, your own website or personal projects.
  • Start applying: Start bidding on projects. Don’t bite off more than you can chew at first — focus on winning a few small projects so that you can build up your portfolio and reputation. And don’t be afraid to apply for jobs that are outside of your industry; you never know what you might end up being really awesome at.


TLDR: Tips for Searching Jobs on Freelance Websites


The short version:

  • Search jobs in your niche — stick to your strengths to start off as a beginner
  • Read reviews freelancers will let you know when a freelance site just isn’t worth it
  • Know your worth — don’t work for free or for ‘exposure’ – trust your gut                                 
  • Create an amazing profile and have a portfolio of work examples ready
  • Bid on jobs and do them well to build up your portfolio of experience the more awesome jobs will come in time


So, here’s our list of the best freelance websites for beginners.



1. Upwork

One of the most popular freelance websites out there and with good reason is Upwork. It’s great for finding long-term projects since many clients use Upwork to post jobs that they need help with on an ongoing basis. 

One thing that sets Upwork apart from other freelance websites is that it screens both clients and freelancers before allowing them to use the platform. This screening process ensures that only high-quality clients and freelancers are using Upwork, which in turn helps to reduce the amount of competition you’ll face when bidding on jobs.

Upwork also offers a great search feature that allows you to filter jobs by skill set, location, and more—making it easier to find gigs that are a good fit for you. 

To join Upwork, the application process can be a bit selective—you’ll need to create a strong profile and complete certain tests before you can start applying for jobs—but once you’re in, it’s a great site for finding well-paying work. Another bonus? Upwork takes a smaller commission fee than some other sites (just 10-20% compared to Fiverr’s 20%).

It’s great for beginners because it gives you a chance to see what kinds of projects are out there and also get an idea of what other freelancers are charging for similar work. Just be sure to read the project descriptions carefully and only bid on ones that you’re confident you can complete successfully.


freelance websites for beginners



2. PeoplePerHour

Another great freelance website for beginners is PeoplePerHour. People Per Hour is a bit different from the other websites on this list in that it focuses exclusively on hourly jobs. 

As the name suggests, PeoplePerHour allows people in need of services (known as ‘posters’) to post hourly ‘jobs’ that service providers (aka ‘freelancers’) can then bid on. Once both parties agree on the price and scope of work, they can get started!

A downside of PeoplePerHour is that because anyone can sign up and post services, there isn’t much quality control—so make sure to thoroughly vet any potential employers before agreeing to work with them (a simple Google search should do the trick). 

One thing that makes PeoplePerHour stand out, though, is that they have internal systems in place to help ensure that both businesses and freelancers are happy with the work being done. That’s always a good thing.

So if you’re looking for a gig that pays by the hour instead of by the project, People Per Hour is worth checking out. The website also offers a convenient “search by country” feature so you can filter jobs by location—a handy tool if you’re looking to work with international clients. 



3. Toptal

Toptal is definitely geared more towards experienced professionals than beginners, but I wanted to include it on this list because it’s such a great platform.

Toptal is an exclusive network of freelance talents—think of it as the VIP section of the freelance world. To join Toptal, you first have to pass a rigorous screening process; only about 3% of applicants are accepted into the network. But if you do make it in, you’ll have access to some of the highest-paying gigs around—as well as personalized career coaching from Toptal staff members.

If you think you have what it takes to make it onto Toptal (and can meet their pretty high standards), definitely give it a shot—you might just be surprised at how much success you have. And you never know until you try.



4. Fiverr

Fiverr is a little different from other freelance websites in that it focuses on what’s known as “micro-jobs” or “gigs”. These are small tasks or services that can be completed quickly and usually only for a small price. As the name suggests, most gigs offered on Fiverr start at just $5—although some may cost more depending on the scope of work involved.

Fiverr is a great place to start if you’re not quite sure what kinds of freelance services you want to offer yet since it gives you a chance to try out a bunch of different things without too much risk. And who knows? You might just find your niche. With Fiverr, you can search for gigs by category or keyword, and then simply send a proposal to the poster once you find something that interests you.

One downside of Fiverr is that because many gigs are so cheap, they don’t tend to be very high-quality—so keep that in mind before you start applying for jobs.

But if you’re looking for an easy way to get your foot in the door and start building up a client base, Fiverr is a great option. Plus, once you start completing jobs on Fiverr and getting positive reviews, you’ll be able to start charging more for your services. 




5. Freelancer.com

Freelancer.com is another great option for beginner freelancers. Like Fiverr, it offers a variety of gigs at different price points. However, what sets Freelancer.com apart is that it also offers more long-term projects than Fiverr does. So if you’re looking for something that will take more time to complete but also pay more money, Freelancer.com is worth checking out.

Just keep in mind that because these projects tend to be larger in scope, they can also be more competitive—so don’t get discouraged if you don’t land one right away.



6. FreeeUp

The next freelance website is FreeeUp, which is another great option for those who are just starting out in the freelance world.

Something that sets FreeeUp apart from other sites is that they have a team of “vetted recruiters” who hand-pick each and every freelancer who joins their platform—so you know that if you do get accepted, it’s because they believe in your skills.

Plus, once you’re on FreeeUp, you’ll have access to tons of quality leads from some big-name clients—which is always great.



7. FlexJobs  

FlexJobs is a great option for those looking for freelance jobs that offer flexible hours or remote working arrangements. The website curates high-quality remote and freelance job opportunities from companies all over the world—including big names like Apple, Amazon, and Google—and makes them easy to find with its straightforward search feature.

With the work culture evolving and ever-changing, remote and hybrid jobs are becoming the new normal. Now, “the office” is often a home office, a hot desk, or wherever you want to work. So, FlexJobs is an excellent freelance website to find the best remote or freelance jobs.

And since Flex Jobs personally screens all of the companies listed on its site, you can rest assured that any gig you do find will be legitimate and high-paying—no scams here! 

Whether you’re a beginner or a more experienced freelancer, this website is definitely worth checking out for freelance jobs—although be aware that FlexJobs charges a small subscription fee to access the jobs on its platform. 

But it’s totally worth it if you’re someone who doesn’t want to wade through all the excess crap and scam jobs on freelance websites before you find the good stuff. And this added peace of mind you get makes Flexjobs a really good option for beginners.




8. 99designs 

99designs is a bit different from other freelancing websites since it’s geared specifically towards designers and other creative professionals. If you’re in need of a new logo or some fresh web design concepts, this is definitely the place to go.

With 99designs, businesses or individuals post design ‘contests’ that designers can then enter by submitting their best work. The ‘poster’ then chooses their favourite design and awards the prize money (usually around $500) to the winning designer. 

While this system may not be ideal for everyone, it’s definitely worth checking out if you’re in the creative field—and who knows, maybe your design will be chosen as the winner. Someone has to win it, right?



Final Thoughts on the Best Freelance Websites for Beginners


In conclusion, there’s no shortage of options when it comes to choosing a freelancing platform—but as a beginner, you want to make sure you’re picking one that will set you up for success. Each one of these platforms has its own unique advantages, but they all share one important trait: they’re where it’s easier to find good-paying gigs.

So if you’re just getting started in the freelance world, be sure to check out one (or all) of these websites. And follow our tips which should help you get started on freelancing websites and give you a better chance of success.

And if all this sounds like too much work for you right now, take a look at our post on how to make money online for complete beginners and start off by doing something much simpler and easier.


Until next time.

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Written by TheWorkOnlineSlayer

Everything you need to know about working online, freelance life, remote work, working from home jobs or digital nomad life. Fuelled by coffee and sass.

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