Is Survival of a Startup possible on Freelancing through websites?


We are a team of four (and great friends) and have a good product in mind and initial RnD shows great potential (Server based application).
But the problem is that we need to spend around 1 and a half year to develop it. Funding is naturally important so we thought of freelancing to keep ourselves well off.

If we keep ourselves to Websites such as ODesk or freelancer or elance, can we create ourselves a decent earning ? and we specialize in Desktop Applications.

If not or if yes please advise us as well.

Startup Costs Project Management Money

asked Oct 27 '11 at 00:40
Basit Anwer
103 points

1 Answer


Your mileage will vary. You will be competing with very low cost labor from developing countries, including heavy hitters from the Ukraine with very impressive portfolios.

Programmers and designers on those sites are a dime a dozen.

You are also starting on there with no Odesk reputation (many of the offshore consultants have agencies with many ratings).

You can try applying to some jobs there and see where it goes, probably having a very extensive portfolio and lower prices will help. People who go to those outsourcing sites have a very low cost mindset, of course there are exceptions.

Now, that being said, if you can create an agency and leverage the work of others - you may have some chance of making good money there.

answered Oct 27 '11 at 00:57
376 points
  • hmm, good portfolio and lower prices. – Basit Anwer 12 years ago
  • but wont lowering prices make us go over to quantity vs Quality scenario and we definitely want to keep our quality + will it be a good idea to use the same name of our company or use another one register two ie ? – Basit Anwer 12 years ago
  • Unless your startup is going to be web design why would it matter what you do on Odesk? Maybe I'm missing the question. – Len 12 years ago
  • OK umm both answers combine to give the correct answer. which one do i select as correct ? :s – Basit Anwer 12 years ago
  • On top you get low yield projects. Low payment for small sites. Noone will outsource a 100.000 USD project on odesk. Rather form a business and start normal contracting.... for enterprises. Now, here is the bad news: Web develoeprs are dime a dozen, low pay everywhere. Database specialsits get more money... but not "ok, I know mysql" type, but "ok I know oracle and exadat in and out and know how to build a large sql server application". – Net Tecture 12 years ago

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Startup Costs Project Management Money