Once you find a project you want to bid on, you need to make your bid stand out from all the rest. If an employer has 15 bids to choose from, there will need to be something in your proposal that catches their attention besides your price, which may be higher or lower than some others.
The key to making your proposal stand out, is paying close attention to the details mentioned in the project description. You will want to restate some of those details in your proposal to demonstrate to the employer to you clearly understand what you are bidding on. This also provides some protection for you as well. Project descriptions can be misleading at times as to the number of articles that are being requested. If you don’t restate the specifications, as you understand them (don’t just copy and paste from the project), you may be awarded the project and find out that you signed up for more than you bargained for.
Once you have clearly stated what you are providing and for what price (Example: Five 500 word articles on organic gardening), then it is time to sell yourself. Again, pay attention to the details mentioned in the project description. What kind of writer and writing style are they looking for? Are they looking for individual that can give them personal attention? Do they want someone with personal knowledge of the topic? Is creativity important to them or are they more focused on SEO?
Tell them why you would be the perfect person for this project. Have you experimented with organic gardening yourself, or is it a topic of specific interest to you for other reasons? Is it a topic that you have written on before? Do you have a casual writing style that will catch the attention of their readers? Do you have excellent client reviews on your profile? Give them something specific to grab on to.
You should be attaching writing samples to your proposal as well. You may want to mention reasons why you chose these specific samples for them to review. Do they demonstrate your creativity, the style you think they are looking for, or your ability to write on the topic?
If there are aspects of the project that are not stated or are not clear you may want to post a question about these areas before submitting your proposal, if that option is available. If it is not, then mentioning those areas in the proposal would work as well. For instance, if they don’t give a time frame for when the work is due, you may want to mention in your proposal you are able to adjust your work schedule if the work is needed in a short period of time.
The final aspect of a proposal is setting your price. This can be a difficult task if they don’t give you any idea of their expectation beyond the overall budget range. On the Elance site, you are provided with the bid ranges of other bidders, the highest, lowest and average, which can be helpful in knowing where your bid will fit in with others. Don’t let their numbers influence you too greatly. You need to bid the amount that you feel is acceptable for the amount of work you will be providing, and the type of work you are bidding on. Time for research, as well as writing, needs to be taken into consideration. If the quality of the content and the writing are both important to the client, they should be willing to pay you a reasonable rate. However, you need to be able to produce the work in a timeframe comparable with your competitors, as well.
Hopefully, this has been helpful in taking you a step further in the process of successful bidding online. My previous articles will give you additional information on steps 1-3.