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Ukrainian Freelance Exchanges — A Review of Services, Advantages, and Disadvantages of Working on a Freelance Exchange

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08.11.2023
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For digital professionals who work independently, there are numerous ways to find clients. One of the best ways for novice freelancers to establish themselves in the industry is through freelance exchanges. They help individuals secure their first orders, gain experience, work safely with clients, and build their reputation. Even experienced professionals often remain on these exchanges, as they provide a steady stream of clients.

In the past, many Ukrainian freelancers worked on Russian exchanges because there were plenty of clients there. However, after the start of a full-scale invasion, most decided to discontinue their collaboration with Russians and began exploring other work formats. For those who are proficient in English or choose not to work on Western platforms for various reasons, there are convenient options - Ukrainian freelance exchanges. There are only a few of them, but they exist and successfully connect clients and freelancers.

Usually, we review the best services, but in this case, we will discuss all the services available on the Ukrainian market - which amount to just four. Let's get acquainted with them, but first, let's talk about why it's worth working on a freelance exchange.

Read also: Overview of foreign freelance exchanges: Upwork, Freelancer, Fiverr

Advantages of Freelance Exchanges

Freelance exchanges are ideal for those who are just starting their journey in the niche. Newcomers typically do not have a large number of projects. Therefore, platforms that offer a wide range of opportunities at different skill levels are excellent for gaining a foothold in the freelance industry. On such platforms, you can:

  • Find your first clients.

  • Create a portfolio.

  • Collect reviews.

  • Gradually learn how to stand out among others.

  • Earn your first income.

On freelance exchanges, freelancers see job listings, and clients see responses from specialists. This allows both parties to choose each other, negotiate cooperation, and receive payment for the work performed. In other words, all work processes are organized for maximum convenience.

Exchanges are suitable not only for novice freelancers but also for professionals at different levels. They allow you to study the market, demand, and pricing for various projects. You can also view the work of other specialists, those you aspire to emulate, for example.

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Another advantage of exchanges is secure payment, which protects both the client and the freelancer. Payment for a project is often frozen as soon as the client selects a specific specialist for its execution. This means that the client cannot avoid paying for the work for unjustified reasons.

Exchanges also track and block scammers, minimizing the risk of dealing with dishonest clients.

Now, let's move on to the review of Ukrainian freelance exchanges and discuss the main features and advantages of each service.

Weblancer.net Exchange

Ukrainian freelance exchanges Weblancer.net

The Weblancer platform is one of the oldest in Ukraine, operating since 2003, and its user base spans over 60 countries worldwide. Here, you can find projects related to web programming, web design, SEO, website administration, architecture and engineering, printing, branding, SMM, copywriting, tutoring, and more.

Advantages of Weblancer.net:

  1. Convenient portfolio.

  2. A smooth start for beginners: 50 free bids upon registration, project selection, promotion on the main page.

  3. A well-thought-out rating system.

  4. Professional customer support.

  5. Arbitration.

Once a novice exhausts their initial 50 bids, they can purchase additional ones at a nominal cost or subscribe to a category of orders. Subscribed bids are free and unlimited in quantity for a month.

The freelance exchange offers a partnership program that allows users to generate passive, consistent income.

Safe payment for orders is available, involving a 5% commission. Simultaneously, it provides guarantees:

  • Clients' funds will remain secure if the specialist performs the project poorly.

  • Freelancers will receive full payment for their work.

Additionally, there is an arbitration service that addresses issues if they arise, and it is free of charge.

Freelancers can withdraw funds to:

  • A Ukrainian bank card.

  • A cryptocurrency USDT wallet (TRC20, BEP20, Polygon).

Freelancehunt.com Exchange

freelance exchanges Freelancehunt.com

One of the best Ukrainian freelance exchanges is Freelancehunt.com. It offers projects across various domains, including programming, design, architecture, audio and video work, SMM, SEO promotion, layout, website development, voiceovers, copywriting, and more.

Advantages:

  1. A large client base and diverse job offers.

  2. A user-friendly and straightforward platform.

  3. The ability to communicate with the client before work approval.

  4. Secure payment.

  5. The opportunity to collaborate with different companies.

  6. Bonus programs and promotions.

Accounts that successfully complete orders receive reviews, ratings, and recommendations, which help boost their profiles.

There are also competitions among freelancers in the "Contests" section. Winning brings a freelancer good compensation for their work, reviews, and new additions to their portfolio. Competitions work as follows: clients provide task descriptions and specifications, and freelancers, after reviewing the task, submit their completed work – bids. The client evaluates the works and selects a winner.

You can subscribe to a Plus account for 199 UAH per month or 999 UAH for six months, which offers the following benefits:

  • Adds 5% to the freelancer's rating.

  • Allows specifying four specializations for work.

  • For competitions, this account type has a special format for bids that stand out among competitors. Examples of successful projects and portfolio work can be attached to the bids.

  • There is no withdrawal fee for funds.

Payment for orders on this exchange is made after the project is completed. For basic accounts, there is a 5% commission on withdrawals. Plus accounts do not incur any withdrawal fees.

Read also: TOP-11 interesting Ukrainian sites and blogs about the IT industry

Freelance.ua Exchange

freelance exchanges in Ukraine Freelance.ua

This exchange is suitable for freelancers engaged in web programming, website design, layout, logos, contextual advertising, SEO, SMM, copywriting, video editing, and more.

Advantages of Freelance.ua:

  • Secure payment transactions.

  • Multiple job search sections: one-time tasks, permanent work, and office jobs.

  • The ability to separate project work from ongoing work.

  • Availability of mid-range job pricing.

  • The option to specify your workload status – available, busy, inactive, or absent.

  • The ability to add details to the main technical task.

Additionally, this exchange features an online chat and offers video calls for freelancers and clients. However, the commission here is higher, ranging from 7% to 12% of the task amount, depending on the category.

Payment for completed tasks is credited to the exchange wallet, and you can withdraw funds to a regular bank card at any time. Payments are processed through the Wayforpay service.

For Pro accounts, there are the following possibilities:

  • Unlimited access to responses for projects, while the free accounts only allow 10 responses per week.

  • Eight specializations, compared to just one for free accounts.

  • The ability to respond to projects with budgets exceeding 400 UAH.

In other words, if a freelancer wants to access the full functionality offered by the platform, it's advisable to subscribe to a Pro account from the start. The cost is 200 UAH per month or 1500 UAH per year.

Read also: Non-obvious Features in Google Docs: A User's Guide

Kabanchik Exchange

Ukrainian freelance exchange Kabanchik

While the above-mentioned exchanges share a similar working principle and task categories, Kabanchik Exchange is notably different. Launched in September 2012 by businessmen Roman Kirigetov and Alexander Yuryev, this service was acquired by Prom.ua in 2015. Its localization extends to most cities in Ukraine, allowing users to find specialists from specific cities or towns. Other distinctions include:

  • Besides digital projects, there are orders for various other specialists, including assemblers, couriers, repairmen, tutors, and more. The range of service providers is extensive, ranging from specialists who will fine-tune an unfinished website and help you choose hosting to a plumber who can provide video consultation on how to correctly replace a faucet. Here, you can find any service and assistance. However, the IT sector is also well-represented, so we decided to include this platform in the selection.

  • The working principle differs: not all clients can independently select service providers; the platform does this for them.

To become a freelancer on the Kabanchik platform, besides registration, verification through a passport is required. An application with a photo of the passport held open is attached. Every profile is carefully reviewed by managers, which takes up to 5 days.

After approval by the moderator, a freelancer receives the "Verified Performer" status and can then start working.

Also, newly registered clients on the platform cannot choose task performers on their own; the platform selects them automatically. This is done for the convenience of companies that lack the time or resources to vet all applications and for the safety of the freelancers. However, if a client successfully closes five tasks, the platform allows them to select freelancers independently.

Advantages of the platform:

  1. The service determines the average price for a specific service.

  2. User verification is in place.

  3. Numerous specialist categories.

  4. No Pro account.

  5. The freelancer's rating is determined quite seriously. Clients can leave feedback and rate work based on three parameters: quality of work, politeness, and punctuality. The maximum rating is 5 out of 5. A review is considered positive if the service provider scores 5 out of 5.

Kabanchik offers secure payment for tasks, but the platform charges a commission ranging from 5% to 20% of the project's cost after its successful completion.

On this platform, you can take on jobs within your city or throughout Ukraine. The number of tasks depends on the season and location. In major cities, there are significantly more orders than in small towns.

Disadvantages of Ukrainian Freelance Exchanges

Despite the advantages, freelance exchanges (not only Ukrainian ones) have several significant drawbacks.

  1. Average project payments are low. For example, copywriters are often paid less than 100 UAH for 1000 characters.

  2. There is high competition on these exchanges, and there aren't as many high-paying projects available. Consequently, burnout can happen quickly, as freelancers take on uninteresting projects while earning little.

  3. Beginners face the most challenges, as they lack ratings and reviews, causing clients to overlook them. To secure their first orders, newcomers often need to set very low rates.

Other drawbacks include:

  • Income instability.

  • Limited control over projects.

  • Diverse client expectations, requiring freelancers to constantly adapt to different working styles.

  • Numerous fraudulent practices by clients.

A Few Tips on How to Work on Exchanges

If you follow the advice listed below, you will have a much better chance of quickly getting the hang of things and avoiding pitfalls on exchanges:

  1. If you're unsure which exchange to choose, start by analyzing the current projects. Determine whether there are tasks that interest you and whether the payment is satisfactory. This information is available on Ukrainian exchanges even before registration.

  2. Register on two exchanges and complete projects on both. For instance, on Weblancer Exchange, there is a rating for active newcomers, which makes them more visible, potentially leading to faster advancement in rankings.

  3. Before accepting a task, review the client's rating and feedback.

  4. Thoroughly discuss all the task's conditions: the technical task (TZ), the client's vision, and the deadline.

  5. Use payment through the exchanges, which guarantees the receipt of funds and reduces the risk of unjustified refusals from clients.

  6. Work on improving your skills, not only those directly related to your job but also in various other areas. For example, if you're a copywriter, study a wide range of topics, from technology to agriculture. This will give you more project options.

  7. If you like a particular client, and they like you, try to establish a regular working relationship, possibly even outside the exchange.

  8. Don't rely solely on freelance exchanges for your income. Look for projects on other platforms, through social networks, etc.

Considering the pros and cons listed above, the characteristics of the exchanges, and their differences, you can already evaluate whether this work format suits you.

Working through freelance exchanges is an excellent way to earn money because there are always a variety of projects available. However, the payment for these projects can often be unreasonably low, and intense competition may be present.

In any case, exchanges serve specific goals and opportunities. They are particularly useful for gaining specific experience and building a portfolio. Freelance exchanges can also be a good option for supplementary income.

The recommendations and rules listed in the article will help make your work more efficient, profitable, and secure.


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Author: Bohdana Haivoronska

Journalist (since 2003), IT copywriter (since 2013), content marketer at Cityhost.ua. Specializes in articles about technology, creation and promotion of sites.