) Why I decided to say Goodbye to Fiverr to promote my Gigs
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Saying GoodBye To Fiverr

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Silke Jager

I strive to publish useful and engaging articles that are beneficial to you and will help grow your business.♥ Silke
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In the past five months I have spent a considerable amount of my time on Fiverr, creating gigs and interacting with potential customers.

Today I decided it was time to call it quits and move on. Goodbye Fiverr! 

Before I get into my reasons for leaving, let me tell you what Fiverr is all about,  in case you don’t know. Fiverr is a website that offers tasks and services from around the world, starting at only $5 per job. The site is mostly used by freelancers that offer a variety of different services called ‘Gigs’.

Some of the gigs you can purchase on Fiverr could be helpful to small business owners like book or business reviews, logo design, proofreading, web design help, editing services, consultations and content creation, to name just a few. Then there are the not so professional gigs like a person holding a sign aptly named ‘Human Billboards’ or the gal offering ‘I will pretend to be your girlfriend on FB for a week for $5’. Really?

saying goodbye to fiverr

Goodbye Fiverr!

Anyway, I was pretty excited when I first came across this global online marketplace. It reminded me a lot of Etsy, which is a similar site for craft makers, unfortunately it has some of the same limitations and drawbacks as well. More on that a little later though, let me tell you what happened to me.

This is the second time now that one of my top selling Fiverr gigs has been denied for no apparent reason!

Here is the email I received this morning: “We are sorry, but your Gig: ‘write a positive, verified Kindle eBook Review’ did not pass our content editors’ review. This Gig was removed following a third party complaint claiming your Gig is infringing upon their intellectual property rights and/or violating their terms of use and/or misleading consumers and has been removed as per our Terms of Service. As a member of the Fiverr community, we ask you to respect the broader Internet community and refrain from such violations in your Gig offerings.

I am not a spring chicken when it comes to online marketing and infringement rights so I know for a fact that nothing in my gig violated intellectual property rights, their terms of use or was misleading. I offered to download free eBooks or purchase eBooks (up to $.99) and after reading them I would give my honest review. Yes, you can spin almost everything in a positive light, but honestly the books I received for review luckily ranged from pretty good to excellent.

All of my customers provided me with 5* ratings so that wasn’t an issue either. I came to the conclusion that someone on Fiverr didn’t like my apparent success and flagged the ad. I tell you what… my first reaction was to go on Fiverr and start dissing a few sellers myself, but after another drink of coffee I luckily refrained myself and decided to stop being a Fiverr seller instead.

Reason for leaving Fiverr

A few more reasons why I decided to leave Fiverr:

  • Lack of transparency  – I think I was one of the only members on Fiverr to actually use my real name.

All of the user names I have seen on the site, received messages from or filled orders for have user names like ‘yayyay5’, ‘luckybu’ or ‘buldozme’. What is that all about? You don’t know who these people are, that their background is or how much experience they have. No outside links allowed so you can’t even do any research on them.

Do you really want your business logo designed by someone, somewhere in the world, named ‘bozo17’? I don’t and you shouldn’t either!

  • Stringent limitations – When on Fiverr you cannot use certain words or phrases in your gigs or email messages.

For instance, you can’t type the word ‘money’ or ‘payment’. You will get the following message “Reminder: Never accept or ask for direct payments. Doing so may get your account restricted.” It is also verboten to ask for or give your direct email address. I suppose this makes sense since they would loose their piece of the pie if you started getting in contact with buyers outside of their platform. That might not sound like a big deal when you’re dealing with $5 gigs, but you might reconsider if you want to make big money.

  • Following requirements – This can be very frustrating to newbies.

You have to follow Fiverr requirements as they dictate how to do your business. It starts with your profile which has to be in English and has to be 150 – 300 characters long. Your gig photos have to be a certain size and the video (which they urge you to create) can only be 1 minute long. There is a timer that starts as soon as someone places an order and as far as I know (this is from another former Fiverr user since this never came up for me) you can’t fight it if someone disputes your work.

  • Loss of Income – You will leave a lot of money behind.

For every $5 gig Fiverr pockets $1! That is a whooping 20% commission, plus they started charging the buyer a small fee as well. $1 fee for every $5 gig, $2 fee for every $10 gig, etc.

On the flip side, when you try to get the money from Fiverr into your own pocket you have two choices. You can either transfer the money via Paypal and pay them their 3.5% transaction fee or get it on a Fiverr Revenue card. Sounds cool, doesn’t it? But wait, there’s a $5 activation fee, a loading fee, a monthly card account maintenance fee, an inactivity fee, a $3.15 withdrawal or disbursement fee (*surcharge may also be applied by your ATM/POS service provider), aso. Well, you do the math.

I transferred money using Paypal after the first 10 sales cleared (took about 3 month):

10 sales @ 5.00 = $50, minus $10 Fiverr fee ($1 per sale), minus $1.80 Paypal fee = $39.20 income

That’s a loss of $10.80, now add a couple of zeros to that for a power seller. Ouch!

  • Lack of customer support – I tried getting in contact with them more than once to no avail.

After my first gig was denied I tried finding out the exact reason why. After sending several messages and wasting a bunch of time in the Fiverr forum I finally gave up after a few days. I ended up wasting even more time creating a couple of new ads. The thing is, in order to get your gig to show up higher in searches you need customer reviews. When your old gig gets deleted then you have to basically start from scratch to get the new listing to show up.

  • Damn the Spam – There are not just spam gigs from all over the world, but you will get spam messages as well.

This is the first ever Fiverr message I received back in October, “I see that you are also into the Make Money Online business and just wanted to reach out to you. I’m very passionate about living a “boss-free” lifestyle and I want to mastermind and connect with like minded people to see how mutually thrive and make more money. So, I just started a cool new project and am looking for a partner who wants to make an extra $750 this month.. If you’re interested check out my free system.” No, thank you! I get enough of that in my regular inbox.

In Conclusion: Goodbye Fiverr – Hello Future Customers!

Fiverr is a great place for any freelancer to get started, it’s a huge platform with a ton of daily traffic. It’s also a wonderful source for acquiring various creative and professional services for five bucks, as long as you  know how to weed out the bad from the good.  It’s just not for me.

If you want me to review your Amazon eBook, your business on Yelp or an online product or service on your own website or blog please don’t hesitate to contact me. I offer 5 awesome Gigs to help you grow your online reach!

Go To My Gigs Page To Learn More.

I still offer my ‘Basic Gig’ for only $5.00, straight from your Paypal account to mine. 🙂

Have you used Fiverr or a similar global marketplace? What was your experience? Please leave me a comment below. 

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18 Responses to Saying GoodBye To Fiverr

  • Sorry but I was a little put off by the whole Fiverr scene from the start. As a professional graphic designer, it was an insult to see these services offered for next to nothing. After reading your article and seeing how the fees get ‘broken down’ it’s amazing anyone would want to pimp themselves out for so little.
    Too bad more of those folks don’t feel the way you do and walk away with some dignity still intact.

    • Hi Jack,

      Thank you for sharing your comment. I felt the same way at first, thinking ‘Who in their right mind would want to create a website or write a business plan for $5?’. Once you look a little closer though you realize that the basic gig is usually just a way to get people to click on your ad, once you have sold a few gigs you can start up-selling. That’s where the real money comes in, for the seller and of course for Fiverr.

      I hear of more and more people jumping off the Fiverr bandwagon and trying to sell their services from their own sites. It’s always hard to get started, no matter what it is you do.

      • We gave Fiverr a shot awhile back to help create our business logo. It took forever but then we always kept in mind that you get what you pay for. When it finally arrived I was actually suprised at the quality. Like you mentioned it is hard starting out for someone even if your talented.

        • Hi Amy,

          You must be referring to the red and blue Splash logo in your header. That is a nicely designed logo, especially for the price, too bad it’s a little cut off on the bottom. It’s not a big deal but you or your web designer might want to fix it (should be pretty easy). Anyway, did it take longer than the allotted amount of time indicated in the seller’s ad? I always wondered what happens if a seller goes over the time frame and did you still give him or her a 5* review?

          There are so many web and graphic designers and the schools are still churning them out like there’s no tomorrow, promising glowing careers and what not. It’s sad and a little disheartening.

          Thank you for your comment and I’m sorry to bombard you with a bunch of questions. I’m just curious.

          • Thanks for the compliment on the logo. We liked it the minute we saw it.
            They ran over the time but it wasn’t anything that we were too upset about. We did give them a 5 star review because it turned out really well. The over all experience was very rewarding and given the price that we paid for it, I personally felt it was a steal.

    • You’re right. The Indians, Bengali, Sri Lankan and Nepali. These 4 as*holes are offering the cheapest services. I even saw many gigs stating “I will remove backgrounds from 50 images for $5”. that’s horrible man. It really hurts.

  • I found Fiverr to be useful in helping build my portfolio. No, I didn’t make a lot of money doing it but it was an excellent platform for me to build upon for moving forward with my career.
    Former Starving Artist

    • Hi Dachante,

      That’s great to hear! Thank you so much for taking the time to leave your comment.

      As I mentioned in the article, it is a great starting point for freelancers and anyone just trying to get their feet wet. Are you still selling on Fiverr now or have you moved on to your own site? If so, please share the link to your website or blog so we can take a look. 🙂

      • Silke,
        Wow! quick response. I am happy to report that I got picked up a few months ago for a small advertising firm. For the interview I did show them portfolio pieces from my Fiverr gigs!

  • Silke, Do you still offer your services and where can you be contacted?

    • Hi Chris,

      Thank you so much for asking 🙂
      Yes, I still offer my services and created a Gigs page for that purpose – http://www.jagerwebdesign.com/gigs/

      I have 5 different gigs and tried to make it as simple as possible. Simply fill out the short form on the page and I will send you an invoice and welcome email. 🙂

      Please let me know if you have other questions.

  • So to play devil’s advocate, I’ve been on Fiverr for some time and although I surely haven’t gotten rich off the site, I’ve received a very very modest income (as in $5 or $10 here or there). I would recommend to anyone ANYONE that if you are offering services on the site, to offer a service that takes you a half hour or less. Really. I offer promotional services, in terms of tweeting things out for people (thanks to a good following, I feel comfortable offering this) and (although no bites yet) book cover promotions and things like that. I DID have a Facebook service to like people’s posts, but Facebook started cracking down on these types of things so that service got removed.

    Overall, if you are designing websites or writing out novels for people, if you have the chops to do those things, for all that is holy, don’t sell it for $5.00 unless you just need to build a list of people who can give you a good review for future, better paying offers. And if you DO those things, don’t do it for long otherwise you will HATE this site. This site is great for promotional things or quick and easy services (like designing a small logo or something, maybe?). But anything that takes an hour, don’t offer it here. For those reasons, I stopped visiting sites like odesk (write a 500 word post 8 times a day for $2.00 a post? No thanks)

    Also, I think your service got removed because Amazon started cracking down on people offering positive reviews in exchange for money (like you said, you can do a positive spin on ANYTHING but they have started getting strict about that and tracking down services that offer it).

    • Thank you so much for your comment Nicole! I totally agree with your take on Fiverr and you did a great job explaining it.
      In my defense, I actually do read the books I purchase or downloaded for free and I get compensated for my time, but you are probably right about the reason why my service got removed from Fiverr. On the other hand, I don’t have a huge number of reviews in my Amazon account and I also give my honest review for various other products that I have purchased for my own personal use.

      I think the whole review process has become a bit of a scam since so many companies now send out free products or gift codes just to get reviews. Even though Amazon doesn’t allow paid or compensated reviews, I don’t think there is a whole lot they can do about it at this point besides flagging or closing accounts with a ton of 5 star reviews. It will be interesting to see what happens with the whole review process in the future.

  • Silke,
    Would you be interested in doing some work for my business? I’ve checked out the Fiverr platform as a cost effective way to go but all the red flags that you pointed out became evident. One of the designers, Snojob, would have done what I wanted but it was really sketchy has to what kind of time frame and how we would even communicate with each other.

  • indeed im facing same problem with fiverr and the customer service is not a kind person.. ive been flagged with a blank reason and be accused for what i didn’t do.. otherwise many people doing worst looks ok.. their gigs still online without any warning and their customer keep flowing..

    the fiverr customer service and forum admin is rude people.. they don’t care about you and the seller they cut everything they like.. and threaten “if you keep complaining they will use force and ban permanently..”

    i don’t know fiverr admin maybe from “sparta training” or something.. and they keep targeting wrong person.. and leave other with worst gigs without any penalties in there..

    and they always leave the case with no explanation.. they just warn – shoot – and boom you got suspend.. and if u insist detail explanation they will threaten you with “ban” or other penalties..

    truly i really feel uncomfortable and being discriminate

  • Same things happen to me… after 200 orders they just denied my gig and every time i asked they give different reason… fiverr sucks!!!

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