It's always fun to catch a rising star on the way up. If the star happens to be the stock of a successful company, you're also looking at a profitable experience over time.

That's what I see in freelance services wrangler Fiverr International (FVRR 1.17%) and process automation expert UiPath (PATH -0.83%) these days. Both stocks have soared recently. UiPath investors have pocketed a 21% return so far in 2023 while Fiverr shareholders enjoyed a 32% gain. But that's just the start of two long-term growth stories, as the companies have lots of room to grow. Early buyers should see generous returns on the UiPath and Fiverr investments they make at these modest prices.

UiPath: automation in the digital age

Did you ever wish you could automate some repetitive, time-consuming, uninspiring task? As long as the process involves computers, UiPath should be able to help. More automation is always a good idea, and I'm downright excited about UiPath's slick solutions.

The company automates a wide variety of computer-related tasks such as data entry, data extraction, report generation, form completion, and more. Its automation software can run on an on-site desktop or in the cloud, using machine learning and artificial intelligence tools to identify and automate your workflow.

Here's how UiPath sees its place in the business world: "We make software robots, so people don't have to be robots."

Now, UiPath is far from the only game in town. Rivals range from business software giants Microsoft  and SAP to privately held workflow automation specialists such as Cyclone Robotics or Nintex. But UiPath arguably does it better than the rest. Business analytics veteran Gartner places the company in the most desirable corner of its Magic Quadrant report for robotic process automation, with a more complete vision and better ability to execute that vision than anyone else.

This top-quality product portfolio is generating incredible financial growth. UiPath's customer list grew 10.5% year over year in the recently reported third quarter. In addition, 16% of its clients are larger customers with contracts worth at least $100,000 per year -- up from 14% in the year-ago period. As a result, annual recurring revenue (ARR) is skyrocketing:

Bar chart showing UiPath's revenues rising by a compound annual growth rate of 51%.

Source: UiPath's third-quarter earnings call slides.

Investors are taking notice of UiPath, as seen in the recent share price gains. Growth investing expert Cathie Wood bought more UiPath stock at least four times in February. And it's not at all too late to get in on that action. This company has a long runway of potential growth at its feet, supported by a powerful and popular suite of automation tools. UiPath shares should trend upward for years to come.

Fiverr and the gig economy

The Fiverr marketplace is a really cool platform that connects businesses and freelancers from all over the world. It's like a one-stop shop for all kinds of creative and digital services, from graphic design to writing and everything in between.

But what's really interesting about Fiverr is that it's a leader and trendsetter in the flourishing gig economy. More and more businesses and freelancers are using platforms like Fiverr to get their work done, which means the company is set up for future success. Fiverr is changing the way people think about work and careers, and that kind of ambition is nearly unstoppable.

In fact, a recent study by Fiverr rival Upwork showed that 60 million Americans got paid for freelance services last year, up from 53 million in 2021 and 50 million in 2020. That's a lot of growth potential right there, and the gig economy is just getting started.

The road ahead may be bumpy and full of potholes, but Fiverr brings a robust balance sheet and an ever-expanding list of services to this long-haul race. For example, the company launched a project management assistance program for very large clients last week, aiming to build a partnership with its top-shelf customers.

Overall, Fiverr's impressive financials, growing popularity, and expanding list of services make it an attractive investment opportunity for those interested in the gig economy.