Freelancing is really a biggest marketplace and platform for online work, which is used for global project outsourcing. Freelancing is rapidly growing marketplace, because most of people loves freelancing life. Freelancers feels freedom here of managers, senior developers and bosses, and most of limitless of time. According to survey, freelancers are unable to give time to family, friends and personal life.

There are a few leading freelancing platforms are elance , oDesk, Guru, Freelancer and 99designs. Each of them provides 2 distinct services either hire or to be employer. 99designs focused on design only rather than online work, where as rest encompass of type of online work.

All platforms support to fixed price and hourly payment projects, but each of them has some different business terms. The platforms earn by their payment services like project fee, membership and some other attractive business plans.

Elance is biggest platform, established in 1999. Elance is oldest and wisest platform from all others. It has powerful dispute resolution system and payment escrow process. It tracks each of user’s activities between client and employer. For fresher’s or beginners, it could be tougher to get a job.

oDesk is another great platform for online work, established in 2003. It is good because of hourly payment services for freelancers. Now days it is renamed to Upwork with millions of experienced freelancer. It is too a challenging part to get a job, until anyone has a good rating or reviews.

Guru is simple, easy and growing platforms. It is good for freelancer and beginners because it provides phone call support on dashboard. Whereas we can’t find direct support at any other platform. It has a SafePay payment escrow system for both client and employers.

Freelancer is fast growing marketplace, which is established in 2004. It is very hard platform for both client and employers. It offers only chat and email support for freelancers. It has an awesome feature is public review, employer and clients both can leave on profiles. It works similar to elance in dispute resolution system.

99designs is easy platform, established in 2008. It doesn’t focus on online work, only focus on designs. It has fewer users than other platforms.

So, what is the deal? Which is the best online platform oDesk, elance or freelancer?

  1. If we are talking about active users, Freelancer is the King and holds the throne. It has around 7millions users and with a 739 million roughly earnings estimates. But there is great disadvantage with this platform, which are upfront project fees [ non-refundable ]. Most of users are scamming here either freelancer [developers ] or employers. There is no security for developers. For eg, if an employer posts a project worth $3000USD and developer accepts task. In case, freelancer takes 10% [ $300 USD ] from developers. Now if employer cancelled the project at mean-time than it seems like a big loss for developer. And freelancer doesn’t help in such case. So Freelancer deducts a non-existent amount from your account, whether employer pays or not. You have to pay to freelancer all amount and only you would be in loss. Freelancer should not take project fee before completion of project.
  1. oDesk is on second place, if we are talking about active users around 3.4 millions. It charged 10% from freelancers at time of receiving funds, but now days it increased fee according to project cost. Mainly it focuses on hourly projects rather than fixed price. It provides flexibility to get a mock-up of work before assigning job to anyone. But it has a disadvantage, that dispute can be filled on only hourly projects and freelancer’s hands are tied to complete work.  Funds are held by site, employer can release it based on work and satisfaction whether work is done. Another is it is very tough to get a job for beginners.
  1. Elance is really oldest and wise platform, which has best dispute resolution system. It has poor graphics, but it has a simple and straight forward price structure for freelancers. It offers support via quick chat, emails and phone calls. Elance held the fund for both fixed price and hourly projects, until employer wants to release. It records the freelancer’s screen, that he is spending time on assigned task. It doesn’t force anyone to use business model. It leads 8.75% fees from freelancers, when employer releases funds. You can’t violet any elance terms and it’s verification process. It can be very tough here for newcomers to get a job.

If you have something to add to this blog? Kindly share it in the comments. Thank you for reading this.

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Namstey bloggers, I'm Vikram Soni, founder of blogdairy and belongs to Rajasthan. By Education I'm a Software Engineer and having an extensive knowledge in Computer Application, Programming and Information Technology. I started my blogging journey from June 2016 and mostly contents are about blogging and SEO.