Fiverr is a great platform. However there are a lot of problems with it and often feels like it’s a war between Buyers and Sellers. All of this of course is written from the Sellers perspective on the platform and what makes it less fun than you’d think if you’re a Freelancer looking to make an account. Let me get into the five things that I don’t like about the Fiverr Platform.
1. Metrics are incredibly skewed to the Buyer
What I mean by this is that everything seems to be skewed in favor of the Buyer, and there is little way that the Seller themselves can protect themselves from Buyers who are either ignorant of Fiverrs system, or even malicious in intent. Here’s an example that’s pretty prevalent. Say that you already have a heavy work load to do, and you’re trying to finish all of your commissions.
Suddenly, someone dumps about 30 hours of additional work on top of what you already have to do and they purchase your fast delivery option. All of a sudden you have an additional 30 hours of work to do in less than 24 hours. Of course, you can cut corners to get it done, but it’s not up to the standard that you typically have.
So you go to the client to mention this, and they insist that if you can’t do it then they’ll cancel the order. So they do, and they get instantly refunded. What happens to you? You get penalized with uncompleted work and a mark against your delivery time.
All of which you need to keep above 90% to maintain your trusted level with the platform. This just goes to show that in the Buyer/Seller dynamic of Fiverr, Buyers have more power to control Sellers when it’s Sellers that drive the income of the platform.
2. Two weeks waiting period for Payment
This one is pretty obvious on why it’s hated. There is almost little reason why the money needs to be held in escrow for two weeks for Sellers who finish and complete work. It’s understandable if it was within a reasonable time frame – say two or three business days – but the way that Fiverr does it is unacceptable for the platforms size.
Early on in the platform’s history it made sense. It pulled money from PayPal and it wanted to be sure that Buyers wouldn’t scam Fiverr by doing a chargeback on their account and leave Fiverr holding the bag when it paid out to Sellers.
However, now that Fiverr is considered a thriving business with all sorts of protections as a business there seems to be little reason WHY it doesn’t pay out within a short amount of time directly from the Buyer, and penalize any chargebacks to the Buyers account if they attempt to scam Fiverr.
Two weeks for a lot of people who either do this as a side hustle, or even as a full time Freelancing job, need access to that money far quicker.
3. Fiverr’s auto detection tools need a lot of work
It’s understandable why Fiverr wouldn’t want Buyers and Sellers to collaborate outside of the platform. If they did, what reason would you have to use Fiverr since they take a 20% cut off of every transaction ($1 per every $5 earned). If you could directly go to a client and get work that way and save yourself 20% of your earnings, you wouldn’t NEED Fiverr.
However what Fiverr excels at is the ease of congregating Buyers on the platform so you don’t have to have a rolodex of people and keep track of people yourself. You advertise what you have, the clients that you work with in the past get saved to a list, and you can contact them again if you want to. So that 20% is what you’re paying for essentially.
But because Fiverr is paranoid that people will communicate outside of the platform they’ve instigated an auto detection system in their communications program to detect certain words or phrases being used. Words such as “Pay” “Contact” “Payment” and other things connected to things like that.
Works in theory to keep people from gaming the system, but in reality you get penalized for using any of those words and you cannot send another message to that client for a full 24 hours after Fiverr reviews the message themselves. This means a phrase as simple as “Let me know when you can pay and I’ll send the order!” will get you penalized, and it counts towards your response rate to the client itself. Meaning if you had 5 hours left to contact that client, you now missed that deadline and your response rate is now lowered.
Speaking of which
4. Response rate needs a lot of work
The response rate mechanic on your account needs to be completely redone. The way it works is that if you have a Buyer contact you with details, you have 24 hours and a window of time to respond. If you respond within five hours, your average reply time goes down significantly.
Wait till the last minute to reply? Then it goes up significantly and turns red signifying to potential Buyers that they’re in for a wait when it comes to getting a reply. This is a mechanic that seriously harms Sellers because it makes them constantly leashed to Fiverrs system. Sometimes – especially those who use the platform as a side gig-have other things going on in their lives.
Sometimes they need to be away for a day or two at a time, and cannot use the “out of office” feature since it’s tucked away on a separate page from their dashboard. Not only that, but if you sleep, and several messages are immediately dumped on you, then you’re penalized for not being able to respond immediately and your average response time worsens.
5. Fiverr just needs to work better for the Seller overall
That’s honestly the biggest take away here. Using Fiverr as a Buyer is great according to guys from IMHO Reviews. There are so many talented people on the platform you can communicate with, and you know immediately what you’re getting out of it.
As a Seller though it’s a hassle because it’s a constant uphill battle to make sure that you keep your ratings up, and it is hugely detrimental to the creative, work process. And honestly, Fiverr IS great, but it’s not the best or most fun to use.