Writing an Upwork proposal for SEO jobs based on my time tested template will help you fetch your first SEO clients on Upwork sooner than later.
As an SEO Expert, if you are not writing your proposal on Upwork based on a pre-configured template, you are sure to miss out on critical details. Moreover, to circumvent those crucial details, you end up adding unwanted details which in-turn in most cases is the root cause of the difference between being hired and fired.
- Are you writing a lot of proposals for SEO work on Upwork without any response from clients?
- Do you feel clients aren’t interested in hiring freshers when it comes to SEO?
If the answer to any of the above question is YES, you are not alone.
Many of my blog readers have had the same issue. When I interacted with them, I found it is not the problem from the client end to hire SEO freshers. It is the cover letter or the proposal you are writing for an SEO job.
SEO Skills to List on Upwork profile?
SEO is a vast area. It can include many skills like
- Local SEO
- On-Page SEO
- eCommerce SEO
- Link Building
- Content Writing
So on and so forth.
So if you have an Upwork profile with SEO Expertise, it can mean you are focusing a very vast niche. You have to narrow down on the niche.
So the question is what SEO skills should you list on your Upwork profile?
The answer lies in the fact what you are best at in SEO.
First, write down all of them. Rate each expertise from 1 to 10. 10 being the best, sort in descending order of rating and choose four to five of the top of your list.
Now, let us move on to writing the Upwork proposal for SEO clients using a template.
What is an Upwork Proposal Template?
Upwork proposal template is a shell to help experts craft a custom proposal for each client based on their requirement and yet copy-paste some part of the proposal.
Moreover, the template makes sure you don’t miss on any critical details and craft the proposal quick.
Why I Prefer a Proposal Template on Upwork?
I always prefer writing the proposal using a template, and there is a reason for it. On Upwork, initiating a communication first can help in conversion. So writing a proposal quick can help get started communicating with clients as soon as humanly possible.
So to speed up the process, people keep the proposal ready and copy-paste it.
I like to copy-paste the template and then use details in between to help craft a unique proposal for the client.
It takes the best of both – Speed and custom proposal.
Moreover, I also believe clients deserve a custom proposal. They took the pain to write what they want. So if you respect that, you should also take the pain to craft a proposal for them.
Again, writing the whole proposal may not be needed. You can copy and paste your relevant experience. You only need to answer clients questions in the bid to make it custom and spark the conversation.
How to Write a Proposal for Upwork client using a Template?
Let me share with you the exact template I am using now and for a decade to grab hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of client’s work from Upwork.
So let’s begin with the template.
1. Start with a gratitude
My proposals will always start with gratitude.
Thanks for sharing your on page SEO requirement here at Upwork. I am more than happy to help you. Let me share my expertise with SEO and Content Marketing.
As a general rule, I always like to address clients with his name. So if I can get his or her name from the job details, I will add it like Hi John. If they have not shared their name in job details, I just keep it as Hi.
The first paragraph of my proposal is always a thank note. If I get an invite from a client, I usually change the wording slightly
Thanks for inviting me to your SEO requirement here at Upwork. I am more than happy to help you. Let me share my expertise with SEO and Content Marketing.
But the basic structure remains the same, salutation and a thank you note.
I have been doing the same and always recommend it.
2. Trust Building
In the SEO industry, the results are not instant. What I mean is, when clients hire a designer, they have an idea about what they will end up with – a design.
For SEO, the results aren’t instant. Moreover, some SEO projects span over a few months. From the client’s point of view, the SEO expert may be charging the money, and all they get is a report that doesn’t make sense to them.
So the most important aspect for SEO experts is to build trust. The toughest part is, one has to do it in a few lines of the proposal.
So my next para in the proposal is to build trust and show my expertise.
I am the owner of IMTips.co for more than a decade now. Have been sharing lot of SEO articles on my blog like SEO for WordPress or WooCommerce SEO. Apart from SEO related content on my blog, I have clients like ABC, DEF and GHI where I have been an SEO consultant recently. Needless to mention but you can view my Upwork profile for feedback on SEO jobs.
Note, we neither shared keywords and ranking for the articles nor the clients ABC, DEF, and GHI. The primary reason being, the proposal template we are crafting is for those who are new in the SEO industry.
Most of the new SEO experts make the mistake of sharing a very long-tail keyword just to impress the clients.
But, if you share a very long tail keyword that has close to no competition as a sample, you have lost the client from that point onwards.
It is better not to share than to share something like:
We rank in the first position in Google for the keywords “best SEO and web development company in YOURLOCATION”
But, if you rank well for a competitive keyword, do include them in the proposal.
Again, don’t overdo it. With 10+ years of experience as a freelancer, I can include many samples. Still, I prefer a maximum of three.
3. Offer Suggestions and Show Your SEO Expertise
The proposal should take a customized solution from this point onwards.
Visit the client’s site and see what the on-page HTML errors that need work are.
Run the site through W3C Validators and share the results with clients. Let them know what errors are critical and needs fixing.
If you are using SEMRush or any other SEO tool, hint them of what work needs to be done.
Let the client know the steps ahead. Help them judge your expertise.
Moreover, even in 2019, you will still find clients looking for directory submissions for SEO. Google has stopped crawling directories for almost five years now. There is no point in making directory submissions.
But, I don’t blame the clients. They aren’t SEO experts and may not keep themselves updated with SEO changes.
You are an SEO expert. So you have to let them understand how the SEO industry is changing.
Similarly, there will be a lot of things that the client may have omitted. Offer them what more needs to be done.
Remember, no copy-pasting.
4. Offer Solutions with Timeline
Once you are through to showing clients what needs to be done, you have to share with them how you can deal with each point.
If there are on-page fixes, what will be the timeline for you to fix along with the budget? Let the client know they can also get those done from the developer they have got the design done as well.
How will you address the speed issues what will be the cost for it?
If there are some points to defer due to budget, let the clients know the same.
Now you probably know what needs to be done to kick start the SEO for your website. So let me propose a timeline with budget for each step.
- Sitewide W3C Validation – Costs $123 with a timeline of 2 weeks.
- Google Site Speed from Red to Green – Costs $456 and can be completed in 1 week.
- SEMRush Suggestion Implementation – Costs $789 can can be completed in 2 weeks.
So on and so forth.
In short, the section of the proposal should address the financial aspect of the project along with the tentative timeline.
5. The Closure
I conclude my proposal with detail on when can I start with any critical information that can impact the project schedule or delivery like gaining access to the site’s backend etc.
But, typically it is
I can start your project immediately and let me know if you like to discuss anything further with me.
I can start your project immediately. Looking forward to working with you.
If I can’t start immediately, I share a tentative date like next week or from 15th of this month.
Make sure you don’t sound too desperate or amateur. Avoid phrases like “I will wait for your response,” or “I want to work with you/ your project.”
One more vital point to note here is, I always end the proposal with my name. It is because I have seen clients Google my name and visit my blog before clicking the hire button for me on Upwork.
Finally, Avoid Stringent SEO Clients
For SEO, there will be some clients who are stringent and share the requirements like rank me for XXX keyword in the top 3 positions of Google, and then only I pay.
SEO is not a one time job like design or development. It is an ever-evolving continuous task.
So, it is always better to avoid such clients.
There is a reason why client have become so stringent. They have burnt their fingers in the past and want to be double sure they pay when things work out.
The problem is, the real expert tends to avoid such projects, and the client again ends up with a rookie newbie who knows very little about how SEO works.
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