Freelancing and remote work are on the rise across the globe, yet finding the right gig can still be a challenge for online workers.

If you are just starting out as a remote employee, figuring out your point of entry can be a disgruntling task. While online working sites offer great opportunities, a number of platforms are simply not reliable. They either have unfavorable conditions for remote workers—or outright deceive them.

The catch here?Being able to tell which websites are legitimate and worth your time can be a real difficulty. Click To TweetFrom decent payment to terms and conditions and protection for your work, many online job aggregators don’t deliver. But equipped with the knowledge on what to look for in a job platform, you’ll be better suited to avoid the pitfalls. To help you out in your online gig search, we’ve compiled some top tips to keep in mind when selecting websites—and a compilation of 10 proven platforms that you can start using today.

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How to identify a legitimate online working site

Before you start working on a project that you’ve discovered on an online platform, it’s wise to check a number of factors that can give you an idea whether the website is legitimate. In the sea of options out there, it can be easy to get misled by flashy slogans. To avoid that, pay attention to the following aspects.

Read the terms and conditions

The first step to judge the legitimacy of an online job site is to get acquainted with the rules that it applies to job seekers. Click To Tweet Always leave some time to go through the conditions, because this can give you a thorough understanding of what you can expect from the platform.

Look for well-defined payment rates and deadlines

The next factor that you should be looking out for is how your payments will be made and what deadlines the site imposes. Click To Tweet Naturally, you want to choose a platform that does not keep a huge commission for itself. It’s also better to use sites where you can set your own rates and payment expectations. As for deadlines, make sure they are negotiated directly with your clients, or that there are no impossible time requirements that you have to meet.

Check out what other people are saying about the website

Doing a quick search about the website you’re planning to use won’t take a long time and can be useful. Check out freelancing and remote work forums and discussion boards and see what others say about the platform. Get to know how it compares with other similar websites so you can make an informed choice.

Ask your freelancing peers for an opinion

The best way to judge if an online working site is reliable is to get the first-hand opinion of a peer who has already used it. Consult with other remote workers, or go to a few industry events and keep your ears open. That’s how you can get the full picture about the conditions that a job platform offers and whether they will suit you.

#1. Hubstaff Talent

hubstaff talent

Hubstaff Talent is a fully legitimate option for finding online work, with the added bonus that its services are completely free for both job seekers and employers. You can create a profile where you can present your portfolio and experience, plus note your availability and rates. You won’t need to waste time on bidding for projects, as employers interested in your skills can contact you directly or you can apply for available positions posted on the site.

#2. We Work Remotely

we work remotely

Another solid option for finding good online gigs is We Work Remotely. The platform was founded by the authors of the book Remote, Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, and they sure know what they’re talking about. Job seekers don’t need to create profiles to be a part of the board. They can just check in regularly to see the new job offerings, which are split into different sections such as Programming, Marketing, and others.

#3. FlexJobs


FlexJobs is a proven player on the scene. The website has been around since 2007 and has helped a ton of people find the flexible job they need. Job seekers have to pay a monthly fee to get access, but the website guarantees diverse options and a legitimate service. It also offers in-depth research and employee reviews on the companies that post jobs, so you can be sure you’re signing up for a good deal.

#4. Smashing Jobs

smashing jobs

Guess what! Smashing Magazine has its own job board. Smashing Jobs doesn’t offer a ton of job ads, but they’re all very well selected. Creative professionals can choose from design and programming ads, and they can be either full-time or freelance. Only employers need to pay to post a job listing, so it’s free for you.

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#5. Authentic Jobs

authentic jobs

As the name suggests, Authentic Jobs is truly one of the reliable online working sites around. It’s been approved by The New York Times, after all. The job board does not require your registration, so you can just pop in and browse through the listings from top companies around the globe. From programming and design to management and sales, there’s a job offer for every creative soul.

#6. Genuine Jobs

genuine jobs

Genuine Jobs is a job board that offers opportunities beyond the tech and startup scene, but still boasts plenty of marketing and programming jobs. The service is free for job seekers. The site even urges people to report job offers that have an application fee.

#7. Freelance Writing Gigs

freelance writing gigs

If you’re a copywriter or content marketing writer, Freelance Writing Gigs is the website for you. Besides the job board where you can find a long list of different writing gigs, the platform hosts a blog with a ton of useful information and a resource center on the topic. You don’t need to sign up or pay, so you can jump straight to the job offers and see what’s in there for you.

#8. DesignCrowd

design crowd

The next legit website in our list is DesignCrowd. Its services are free for freelance designers. You can browse the posted jobs and immediately see the pay rates and deadlines. There are plenty of logo design projects, but you can also find web design jobs and other types of visual projects.

#9. Topcoder


For developers and web designers, Topcoder is a solid opportunity for finding gigs. The website is branded as a crowd-sourcing platform, so employers entrust their development projects to online teams. To start using the website, you need to register for free to start exploring the available projects.

#10. Taskr


Taskr is an Indian freelance platform that allows job seekers to post the tasks that they can perform together with their payment requirements. From graphic design to programming, all types of freelancers use the website to post their services and expertise.

Choose your online working sites wisely

Finding a legitimate online working site doesn’t need to be difficult. You just need to get a basic understanding of what to look for in a job platform, so that you’re able to judge its quality and reliability. Plus, you can try one of the 10 websites that we’ve selected, which are guaranteed to help you in your job search.

This post is part of Hubstaff’s freelancing month 2017, where we feature insights by experienced freelancers about how they get clients, manage their workload, and more. Be sure to check out the rest of our freelancing month posts when you’re done with this one!

What’s your experience with online working sites? Share your useful insights in the comments below.

Category: Remote