BusinessKitBag 11:57 am April 21st, 2017

Freelance Marketplaces

Worldwide talent at your fingertips

About Freelance Marketplaces

Freelance marketplaces are online hiring platforms that give businesses (‘buyers’) instant access to freelance service providers (‘sellers’) across many disciplines, and from around the world. Hiring a freelancer is a straightforward process, and is handled by the freelance marketplace platform.

If you are looking to hire freelance specialists to carry out specialist or even mundane tasks in your business, freelance marketplaces are the ideal place to go. Hiring freelance contractors through online freelance marketplaces enables smaller businesses in particular to access skills quickly and affordably, which would otherwise be out of reach.

This form of outsourcing, or crowdsourcing, has grown exponentially over the last decade, with a good selection of services to access skills which may otherwise be slower and more expensive to access via agencies or individual contractors. 

Freelance marketplaces - freelancer sitting at a computer | BusinessKitbag.com

How do freelance marketplaces work?

Freelance marketplaces vary by the specialisms they cover, although some areas are significantly catered for - such as social media, graphic design, content writing and IT development. As a result, there are very competitive fees offered, but buyers of services should be cautious about ‘bargains’ - you get what you pay for.

Communication with the freelancer is generally via the freelance marketplace's own platform, with instant messaging and sometimes video calls to discuss the work. Payments are handled by the freelance marketplace are usually held in escrow and only released when the commissioning party approves the completed job.

The jobs and payment arrangements vary depending on the freelance marketplace in question, but tend to fall into one or more of four basic models - fixed price tasks, project bidding, hourly rates, and contests.

Fixed price tasks

These are commonly requested tasks that sellers (freelancers) advertise for a set price. These specific services are chosen from a 'menu', and commonly display a low basic price, with paid upgrades for a quicker turnaround or more choices. They are often referred to by catchy names - for example PeoplePerHour has ‘Hourlies’ and Fiverr has ‘Gigs’.

Project bidding

In this model, the buyer writes a project specification, and sellers bid for the work either as a fixed price or an hourly rate. Just like traditional tenders, it is critical that the requirements are very clearly laid out, and caution exercised with low-ball quotes. Buyers can ask for more information in order to choose the best freelance bidder for the job, before making their selection.

Hourly rates

As straightforward as it sounds, freelance sellers simply tally up the time spent on a project and issue an invoice to the buyer based on the agreed hourly rate. This is a common scenario where there is repeat work given to a freelancer, after an initial successful project. The invoicing is either done at the conclusion of a set project, or periodically if the work is ongoing.

Contests

A number of design-focussed services, such as 99Designs and Design Crowd are based on crowd-sourced 'contests', where prizes are offered for the winning designs. These attract entries from a large number of designers, which the contest owner (ie, the buyer) then judges to declare a winner, and sometimes a runner-up.

There are a large selection of freelancer platforms in the market. We have selected a range of freelance marketplaces which are suited to UK-based businesses, are established with a good reputation, and cover a wide variety of skills and disciplines.

PeoplePerHour

(2.6/5 from 769 reviews)

The UK's No 1 freelancing community

PeoplePerHour is a freelancing marketplace connecting small businesses with a vast pool of talented freelancers offering every business service you can imagine from copy writing to logo design, web development to business administration. | View Profile

Pricing Type: Per Hourlie or project     Price Range: From £10/Hourlie

Freelancer

(1.4/5 from 250 reviews)

Hire expert freelancers for your online job

Through the Freelancer marketplace, employers can hire freelancers to do work in areas such as software development, writing, data entry and design right through to engineering, the sciences, sales and marketing, accounting and legal services. | View Profile

Pricing Type: Per contest or task     Price Range: From £7/contest

Fiverr

(1.6/5 from 373 reviews)

What do you need done? Find it on Fiverr.

Fiverr gives you instant access to millions of Gigs from people who love what they do. It’s the easiest way for individuals and businesses to get everything done, at unbeatable value. | View Profile

Pricing Type: Per gig or package     Price Range: From US$5/gig

DesignCrowd

(4.8/5 from 479 reviews)

Get the Perfect Custom Design, Every Time

DesignCrowd is an online marketplace providing logo, website, print and graphic design services by providing access to freelance graphic designers and design studios around the world. | View Profile

Pricing Type: Per Contest | Fixed Price     Price Range: Varies

99designs

(4.7/5 from 1079 reviews)

We connect the world with great graphic designers

We’re 99designs, the world’s largest online graphic design marketplace. We connect more than one million talented freelance designers with creative people, genius entrepreneurs, savvy businesses… anyone who needs great work. | View Profile

Pricing Type: Per contest or task     Price Range: From £39/contest

Upwork

(4.4/5 from 982 reviews)

Get more done with freelancers

Upwork is the world’s largest freelancing website. As an increasingly connected and independent workforce goes online, knowledge work - like software, shopping and content before it - is shifting online as well. | View Profile

Pricing Type: Fixed price or Hourly     Price Range: Per task

Crew

(Not yet rated)

Who said it had to be hard to find a good designer or developer?

Crew is a website that connects people working on projects with handpicked, screened creative professionals in the mobile & web industry. The goal of Crew is to ensure that the right project find the hands of the right professional, every single time. | View Profile

Pricing Type: Per project     Price Range: Varies

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