Toptal vs Upwork


Upwork vs Finding the freelance platform suited for your project

Freelancing has become increasingly popular in recent years, with professionals seeking flexible work options and companies embracing the gig economy. Two well-known freelance platforms, Upwork and Unicorn.Dev, offer opportunities for freelancers and businesses to connect, with each having their unique offerings and catering to various budgetary considerations.

We will compare these two freelance platforms based on distinctive factors, to help you make informed decisions about which freelance platform is better suited to meet your project needs.

1. Distinctive features of the platforms

Upwork offers a wide range of job categories, including writing, design, programming, marketing, and more. The platform provides a robust search and filtering system to help freelancers find suitable projects. Upwork offers a built-in communication and collaboration system, allowing freelancers and clients to interact seamlessly. Payment protection and dispute resolution services are available on Upwork, ensuring a secure transaction process.

Unicorn.Dev specializes in connecting freelancers with projects in the software development and tech industry. The platform focuses on high-quality projects and experienced freelancers, providing a more niche market. Unicorn.Dev offers a curated job board, ensuring that freelancers are exposed to relevant and challenging opportunities. The platform emphasizes community engagement, allowing freelancers to network and learn from each other.

2. User experience

Upwork has a large user base, resulting in a wide range of job postings and opportunities. The platform offers a user-friendly interface, making it easy for freelancers to navigate and submit proposals. Freelancers on Upwork have the option to build their profiles, showcase their skills, and receive client reviews. However, due to its size, competition for projects can be intense, and it may take time for new freelancers to establish themselves.

In contrast, Unicorn.Dev provides a more curated experience, ensuring that freelancers are matched with high-quality projects. The platform focuses on building a tight-knit community of freelancers, fostering collaboration and knowledge sharing. Freelancers on Unicorn.Dev benefit from the platform’s reputation for excellence, attracting reputable clients and projects.

3. Pricing model 

Upwork operates on a freelancing platform where freelancers set their own rates, while clients have the freedom to negotiate and choose the best fit for their budget. This dynamic pricing model allows for flexibility and scalability, as clients can find freelancers that align with their financial constraints. 

On the other hand, follows a fixed pricing model. They provide pre-determined packages with set prices, ensuring transparency and simplicity for clients. While Upwork’s pricing model can lead to a wide range of rates depending on the freelancer’s skills and experience,’s fixed pricing model offers a more straightforward and predictable cost structure for clients. Ultimately, the choice between Upwork and comes down to the client’s preference for either a flexible or fixed pricing model.

4. Freelancer screening

Upwork has a somewhat comprehensive approach to screening freelancers, as they require individuals to submit their profiles, work samples, and complete skill tests before being approved on the platform. This ensures that freelancers have the necessary expertise and experience to perform the tasks they are hired for. 

On the other hand, takes a more selective approach by vetting freelancers based on their skills and portfolio. This allows them to maintain a curated pool of top-tier talent, to deliver guaranteed high quality work to clients. Overall, both platforms have their own advantages and disadvantages when it comes to freelancer screening and vetting, and the choice between them ultimately depends on the specific needs and preferences of the client.

5.0 Upwork reviews

Currently, Upwork is holding a review score of 3.4 out of 5 on Trustpilot, and a score of 4.8 out of 5 on G2

Upwork rating

Upwork rating


Both Upwork and Unicorn.Dev have their unique features and benefits for freelancers and clients. Upwork offers a wide range of job categories and a large user base, while Unicorn.Dev focuses on software development and fosters a strong community. Freelancers should consider their skills, expertise, and preferences when choosing between these platforms to maximize their chances of success in the freelance market. 

The choice between the two platforms of Upwork and ultimately depends on individual needs, priorities and the level of expertise they require.  Thoroughly evaluating the mentioned aspects pertaining to each of these platforms will enable you to select which platform between these two are better suited to your needs, helping you achieve an effective freelance relationship.

The chart below summarises a comparison on Upwork vs.
Project scopeShort and long-term projectsLonger-term, complex projects
Customer support and communicationLimited support with variable response timesPersonalized support to both clients and freelancers
Pricing modelFlexible pricing modelPremium pricing model
Freelancer vettingNo official vettingRigorous vetting process, offering top-tier talent
Project managerLimited availabilityDedicated account manager
Diversity of serviceWider area of serviceSoftware development talent emphasized

Kindly note all information provided in the above chart has been based on general trends, while these could vary based on individual circumstances and particular projects.  Moreover, each of these companies may have any changes to their service, shedding light on the necessity of referring their official websites to get more updated information.

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