Upwork Buyer and Seller Fees Explained (+ Free Upwork Fee Calculator)

Upwork Buyer and Seller Fees Explained

Upwork is a widely recognized online platform connecting freelancers and clients for project-based work. With a diverse range of job categories available, independent professionals can easily find clients seeking their expertise. 

In this article, we will explore Upwork buyer and seller fees, emphasizing the significance of understanding and managing them efficiently. Additionally, we will provide insights on how to optimize your experience on Upwork and highlight the support and resources available to users.

How Much Are Seller Fees on Upwork?


Freelancers, referred to as ‘sellers,’ have the flexibility to set their own rates for the services they offer on Upwork. As a seller, you can set your fees based on the value you provide and the complexity of the projects you take on. Upwork allows you to charge an hourly rate or propose fixed-price contracts for your services.

In order to offer your services on Upwork, you must first create a free seller profile. You can use this as a portfolio to showcase your skills and experience to potential clients. After buyers receive your services, they can rate them, and these ratings will appear on your profile for potential clients to see.

Seller fees on Upwork comprise 10% of the total amount charged. For example, if you charge $100 for a service, then Upwork will take 10%, or $10, of that amount. Therefore, if you want to earn a net amount of $100 for your work, then you should charge a total of $111.11.

How Much Are Buyer Fees on Upwork?

upwork2 1

Clients, or ‘buyers’, who want to hire freelance services through Upwork must pay a Client Marketplace Fee that comprises 5% of the total charge, for both hourly or project-based contracts. 

Buyers are also liable for a one-time contract initiation fee of up to $4.95 USD for each new Marketplace and Project Catalog contract. Upwork also offers a discounted Client Marketplace fee of 3% for eligible clients in the US who pay with a checking account. 

For example, if a project costs a total of $100, then buyers will be charged $105 to initiate a contract. Once the contract has been accepted, then the buyer will be charged an additional contract initiation fee of up to $4.95.

You can use our free online Upwork fee calculator to determine your earning easily and quickly without having to leave your browser.

Managing Costs and Maximizing Value

cost 5

As a freelancer on Upwork, here are some strategies to maximize value and manage costs effectively:

  • Clearly Define Your Services: Clearly define the services you offer and the value that you can provide. Specialize in specific skills or niches to differentiate yourself from competitors and attract clients seeking your expertise.
  • Set Competitive Rates: Research the market rates for similar services and set your rates accordingly. Consider factors such as your experience, expertise, and the value you bring to clients. 
  • Optimize Your Profile: Create a professional and compelling profile that highlights your skills, experience, and portfolio. Showcase your best work samples and request reviews from satisfied clients to build credibility and attract potential clients.
  • Tailor Proposals to Client Needs: Customize your proposals for each client to demonstrate that you understand their specific requirements. Show how your skills and experience align with their project and how you can deliver a unique value to your client.
  • Communicate Clearly and Promptly: Maintain clear and prompt communication with clients. Respond to messages and inquiries in a timely manner, demonstrating professionalism and reliability. 
  • Deliver High-Quality Work: Consistently deliver high-quality work to clients to build a strong reputation. Satisfied clients are more likely to provide positive reviews, refer you to others, and potentially offer repeat business, maximizing your value on the platform.
  • Optimize Client Relationships: Nurture positive long-term relationships with clients to foster lucrative partnerships. Provide excellent customer service, proactively communicate project updates, and go the extra mile to exceed client expectations. Long-term clients can provide a stable source of income and reduce the need for constant marketing efforts.
  • Continuously Improve Your Skills: Invest in professional development to enhance your skills and stay up-to-date with industry trends. This allows you to offer higher-value services and attract clients willing to pay a premium for your expertise.

Support and Resources

cost 6

Upwork offers additional support and resources to freelancers to enhance their experience and success on the platform. Here are some key support and resources available:

  • Upwork Help Center: Upwork provides a comprehensive Help Center with articles, guides, and FAQs covering various topics related to freelancing on the platform. It offers valuable information on getting started, managing contracts, setting up profiles, and more.
  • Upwork Community: The Upwork Community is a platform where freelancers can connect with other users, ask questions, share insights, and participate in discussions. It’s a valuable resource for gaining knowledge, learning from experienced freelancers, and finding solutions to common challenges.
  • Upwork Blog and Webinars: Upwork maintains a blog and hosts webinars to provide freelancers with industry insights, tips for success, and updates on platform features. These resources offer guidance on freelancing best practices, marketing strategies, client management, and more.
  • Upwork Academy: Upwork Academy is an online learning platform that offers courses and training programs to help freelancers enhance their skills and knowledge. These courses cover various topics, including building a successful profile, effective proposal writing, and improving client relationships.
  • Upwork Customer Support: Upwork offers customer support to address any platform-related inquiries or issues. Freelancers can contact Upwork’s customer support team for assistance with account management, disputes, payment-related queries, and more.
  • Freelancer Plus and Upwork Enterprise: Freelancer Plus and Upwork Enterprise are premium membership plans that provide additional support and features for freelancers. Freelancer Plus offers higher visibility, access to a curated selection of projects, priority customer support, and the ability to showcase specialized skills. Upwork Enterprise is designed for larger organizations and offers tailored solutions and dedicated support.


Understanding and managing fees effectively on Upwork is crucial for freelancers and clients to maximize value and manage costs efficiently. Upwork charges a seller fee of 10% of the total amount charged for freelancers, while clients are responsible for a buyer fee of 5% of the total charge. 

By implementing strategies to manage costs and maximize income, as well as by leveraging Upwork’s support and resources, freelancers can maximize their value and effectively manage costs on Upwork.

Feedback / Suggestions

Upwork Buyer and Seller Fees Explained (+ Free Upwork Fee Calculator)

Let us know below if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions for this lesson. We will do our best to improve the material.