If you are a beginner with just a gig or two in the online arena, you will be pretty excited when a buyer contacts you for the very first time. It immediately boosts your confidence just knowing that a potential prospect has reached out to you for one of his projects based on what you have uploaded in the portal as your portfolio.
When you realize it is not company branding, someone’s recommendation or any sales pitch that has got you this first connect it does give you a high as it sinks in your mind - that it just all about you and nothing else here – that worked in your favor so fare. It is purely you and your online credentials that encouraged the buyer to contact you and take this forward.
Now in your excitement, do not forget to evaluate who you are working with. Here are a few clues to assess your buyer before you proceed.
It is important to note what kind of reviews the buyer has gained for himself. If you read of a few of them, you can use your discretion to rate the buyer as per your mental map and decide, if you would like to work with that buyer.
What kind of badge does he carry? Some portals recognize a few of their buyers as top buyers based on their payment track, dispute record and interaction with sellers through different orders.
Some portals provide amount earned by sellers and amount spent buy buyers on different projects. I somehow do not bid for buyers who have not spent a dollar yet. I am not sure, if this is the right approach. I am too busy to deep dive in to their background to check whether they are new, do they just initiate projects and not award it to any one and assess past records.
However if the project is interesting, well described that hints at the earnestness of the buyer, it is green signal for me, regardless of whether the buyer is new or yet to spend
No of Bids
For a simple project if there are too many bids already, it is better to let it pass. Either the buyer will award it to the first good resource he finds, without checking the rest of the profiles or he may delay awarding for an indefinite period (Read considerably long time) as he will evaluate each and every profile. The buyer may actually be efficient, organized and in one word great however, you cannot keep yourself available for this project till the time he decides.
If you notice the buyer is likely to take a call three months later about the project it is a huge signal that he is either under-prepared for the project or he must have uploaded his need/ project in multiple forums and he is aware this hiring will be a long time process.
When you read a project, you can easily assess the effort taken by the project owner to communicate the dynamics of the project to the target audience and articulate their current need. That is a huge hint about the genuineness of the need and you can be sure to get adequate support from buyer in execution if you bid and win the project
Some buyers tend to ask a lot of questions in their projects along with the bids/ proposals – You can read the questions before you bid. If those are experience related, then probably they are using them to filter appropriate profiles. If they are new, or being cautious or had bad experience the questions will be mostly trust related and you got to answer them accordingly.
Above all respect your intuition. You can ignore all that is stated above and proceed with a project, be happy about your bid and submission if that is what your inner voices asks you to do.
Keep three things in your radar when you bid – How will this buyer make you rich?
· Add to your learning
· Improve your portfolio experience and exposure wise
It is not always about the revenue. It is about how it adds value to your existing profile for better opportunities in future. How you decide who to work with and the qualifiers you use to filter them is the foundation for your success.