Blog > How I split-tested my Upwork cover letters when bidding

How I split-tested my Upwork cover letters when bidding

Vadym Ovcharenko

Split-testing Upwork cover letters can lead to better bidding results, with shorter, direct cover letters receiving higher response rates. However, the opening line of a longer, more argumentative cover letter may be stronger, leading to a higher view rate.

Why you should split-test your Upwork cover letters?

Let's talk about how you can make your Upwork cover letters rock and roll?


Two weeks ago I demoed a strategy on how to discover and hyper-target a specific niche on Upwork using a simple 3-step method (you can still find the recording inside our free GigRadar Community if you look for it)

We actually ran out of seats for this event .. And the feedback was impressive too 🥰


Always A/B test your cover letters

The thing is, like with everything in marketing — one size doesn’t fit all — different audiences require different content. What works for one, doesn’t work for others. (There are, though, some best practices that we share in our blog)

During the last community huddle, I demoed a setup for GigRadar with an A/B test for different cover letters - and now it’s time to go back and check the outcomes.

Just a reminder - we are using a Scanner that searches for clients who want "Upwork Bidder".


Variant A - Short, Direct and Straight-forward

[Write a personal greeting using the client's name (if available)]

How about you stop wasting time hiring humans in the era of AI? [Argument why automated proposal sending on Upwork is better than manual bidding in 1 sentence referring to the original job description].

I have a solution that will bid for you automatically, 24/7 without holidays, days off, weekends or sick days.

HMU and let's discuss.

Variant B - Longer and argumented

[Write a personal greeting using the client's name or company name (if any is provided), in the local language of their country, using the client's time of the day!]

[Identify the client's biggest business pain that provoked them to post this job, hook into it with a provocative question first, and then explain how the automated Upwork bidding system can help them to address their pain in 1-2 sentences. Think deeper. For example - if he's looking for leads - argue how Upwork can be a good cost-effective source instead]

I have an automated 24/7 bidding system that sends personalized GPT-powered proposals (like this one) within the first 5-10 minutes after a job is posted. The cost is under $1 per proposal.

LMK if this is something you want to try. Hit that Message button and we can chat.


  • Note that I am using GigRadar's Sardor Ai ai [instructions] here to assist with personalization.

The 2-week A/B test results



We placed some bets in the huddle, and I promised that the shorter version will win 😁 It looks like I wasn't wrong!

  • Variant A has a lower Proposal View Rate but a higher response rate
  • Variant B has a higher View Rate - which may mean that the opening line is stronger thanks to our advanced prompt that requests to use the client's time of the day at the time of sending.

The data isn’t large enough to say confidently which scanner performs better, so let’s check back in another week to compare which cover letter template performs best. But I think I already have an idea of how to use these insights to make a new version of my "Upwork Bidder" scanner.

Conclusion: shorter cover letters win!

How to create an AB test for my scanners? (the link only available to GR users)


Why your profile shouldn’t suck

What I can say for sure is that my profile that I used for these tests sucks! In contrast, I have another profile bidding for the same jobs - but with a stronger work history and optimized content. You can compare the outcomes:




It shows 30% stronger results in both view rates and hire rates.

Conclusion: keep working on building your reputation on the platform, even if it means lowering your costs.


Conclusion

Split-testing Upwork cover letters can lead to better results, with shorter, direct cover letters receiving higher response rates. However, the opening line of a longer, more argumentative cover letter may be stronger, leading to a higher view rate. Additionally, having a strong profile with a robust work history and optimized content can significantly improve view and hire rates.

Ready for your Upwork success story? Book a demo with GigRadar below!

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