Are you a freelancer on Upwork and get frustrated when you see a job that you feel qualified to do but then realize that 30 other people have already submitted proposals that kick you out of the running?.
The main reason why this happens is that you have spotted the job too late. The key to Upwork is getting your proposal in as soon as possible after it goes live. The client will most probably look at the first dozen proposals then hire one of those freelancers in order to get things moving.
If you only check Upwork two times a day, then you are missing out on some good opportunities. The trick is to get notified quickly and maximize your chance of landing the job.
In this post, we are going to look at a few ways of delivering notifications using the Upwork RSS feed. Two using an RSS feed reader and the other IFTTT.
Getting a Targeted RSS Feed
In order to make this work you first need a targeted RSS feed based on a particular search term. That may be “WordPress” or “CSS” or whatever your specialty is as a freelancer. To do this head over to Upwork and search for your keywords.
Once you see a list of relevant results, look to the left of the page on desktop and you will see a small RSS icon. Click on this and the feed will be displayed. Copy the URL of this feed. If “CSS HTML” was entered then only CSS and HTML jobs will be displayed.
Feedly RSS Reader
Feedly is a news aggregator that runs in different web browsers and mobile devices. If you are working on your desktop computer then the Feedly Notifier Google chrome extension is a good choice. You can also get apps for Android and iOS that do exactly the same thing.
It is very beneficial to get notifications on a mobile phone as it goes where you go. This is a screen for the Feedly Android app:
To get things working paste the RSS feed URL from Upwork into the application. You may want to give your feeds specific names to identify them with your query. Once this is done you will see a list of the most recent jobs coming from Upwork. The only caveat to the free version of Feedly is that the feeds are updated periodically every couple of hours and not as every job is released. Never-the-less this keeps running 24/7 and keeps you posted which will be enough for many people. The paid version updates more often, as do all premium RSS readers which then brings this method up another level.
Inoreader is very similar to Feedly and also has chrome and mobile apps. The notable difference the free version of Inoreader has over Feedly is that it fetches feeds more often. Usually around every 30 mins. It is very easy to add feeds with the use of the chrome Inoreader companion app.
Once you click on one of the job links, such as “Upwork CSS Worldwide” it will take you to the Inoreader desktop app where you can view the jobs more clearly.
When using the Inoreader mobile app, the feed outputs as a simple text list for easy scanning, which then links to Upwork to view the original job posting.
IFTTT stands for “If This Then That”. It uses applets to automate tasks with what they call “Recipes”. Recipes run many tasks that could be looked upon as repetitive for a human to do manually.
For this task, we are going to use an IFTTT recipe called “RSS Feed to Email“. This is extremely easy to set up. All that is needed is to set up a free IFTTT account and click connect. Paste in the Upwork RSS feed URL when asked and any new jobs that go live on Upwork will get emailed to you. This may be a more preferable notification method depending on the individual.
IFTTT is also fast as like Inoreader, as it checks, feeds every 30 minutes and then sends out an email of any jobs that have gone live during that interval. You can change the titles of your emails to suit your needs from within the IFTTT app dashboard.
In this post, we learned how to use the Upwork RSS feed to get real-time job notifications. The first methods looked at was the Feedly RSS news reader and Inoreader. There are many other RSS readers out there. another one to mention is RSS Feed Reader which is also very good. These readers have great companion apps and are well supported. Because of the faster RSS fetch speed, Inoreader is the winner here.
We then looked at IFTTT which uses recipes to run tasks. IFTTT has been around for a number of years now and can do many different things. It links up well with Google applications like calendar and docs. For this task, a simple applet was being run to send new jobs added to the Upwork feed to email. This is very useful as email is often the thing people check most throughout the day.
Whichever method you choose, you will now be in a better position when it comes to getting your proposal in earlier rather than later.