As a client, how seriously should I take the rates that talent lists on their profile?
The short answer is - it depends.
We allow people to post whatever rates they want. In some cases, individuals will be very accurate about the rates that they post (i.e. if the low end of their range is $70k, that is the rock bottom minimum they are interested in).
But in other cases, people can be optimistic - and put a range like $70k to $100k when in reality they are open to considering offers at $50k.
We will usually attempt to match within a margin of error as we've found that both sides are usually willing to negotiate within a % margin if it's a great fit in terms skills/communication.