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Over the years, I’ve offered my services on a variety of websites. For a long time, I offered writing services on Fiverr. It was good for some time, but then everything started to go downhill with the company. I stepped away from the site completely a few years back, and I don’t regret it.
In fact, I now suggest a lot of people should stay away from Fiverr when starting their business. Why would I do that when I used to offer my services on Fiverr? Am I not being a hypocrite?
Well, no. It’s more like I’ve seen how the company has changed, and in my experience, there was more bad than good in the later years.
Don’t get me wrong; it used to be good. I started on the site in 2011 when it was just growing. I could make a full-time income through it with ease, and the clients I got were super awesome. Then Fiverr got popular, and suddenly there was an influx of rules against sellers. Buyers could get their money back for no reason at all, and sellers were penalized for buyers going rogue or sharing false feedback.
But why did I used to offer gigs at the site? Here’s what it used to be good for and why I don’t recommend it now.
It was a good side pot
There was a time that I could make a full-time income on the site. As my business grew in other ways, I kept Fiverr going as a side pot. I could add in other gigs for people to buy, and put a limit on the amount of orders I would accept each day.
I do encourage business owners to have a side gig, especially if you’re freelance. Don’t rely on just one client. If that client goes, you’re left with nothing and having to start over again. If you have your eggs in multiple baskets, it’s not as much of a panic if one basket breaks.
You will always make more money away from Fiverr. You can set your own rates better, and the buyers don’t come in expecting the world for nothing at all. This was the biggest reason I left the site. It wasn’t worth it financially, especially with the way a lot of buyers would treat me.
If you want to offer your services for a side hustle, I recommend UpWork or People Per Hour instead. I haven’t used either of them in a long time, but I know a lot of trusted freelancers who do.
I enjoyed the projects on Fiverr
There was a time that I would enjoy the work I was doing. I had a few repeat clients who would be in niches that I loved writing about. It could have been lifestyle or fitness or even weddings. If I was happy writing, I was willing to do it for a little less than my normal going rate.
When I stopped enjoying the projects, I stopped offering my services on Fiverr*. I couldn’t do the slog any more. The whole point of running my own business was to do what I would like.
The downside to Fiverr was that if someone placed an order, I had to accept it. If I didn’t, my cancellation rate would go up, and that would affect the ability for my gigs to show up in search results. I hated being penalized for simply saying “this isn’t a good fit for me.” You could ask for people to message before ordering, but a lot of people just placed an order and that was it.
I’d built up my reputation offering services on Fiverr
It took me a while to leave the micro-job site. I’d spent a long time building up my reputation. At one point, I got to the Top Level Seller, which is one where the Fiverr insiders would hand-pick people. I lost it over a cancellation rate when there were projects I simply couldn’t do—and I wouldn’t have taken them on if there was a way to avoid buyers being able to just order instead of having a conversation first.
I didn’t want to let the account die. I was always in that mindset of “what if.” What if I needed to go back to Fiverr at some point? What if all my clients left me at the same time? I didn’t want to have to rebuilt my reputation.
However, the quality of buyers soon made it clear that Fiverr wasn’t for me. I needed off the site so I could focus on higher-paying private clients. I wanted more control, so I wasn’t forced to spend time on projects that were out of my expertise.
Some of my favorite buyers also started to leave the site. Some of them wanted to come to me directly, and that’s what I’ve done since. So, while I’ve lost my reputation on Fiverr, I haven’t lost my reputation with my favorite buyers.
At one time, there was more good than bad
When I first started offering my services on Fiverr, there were some great things about it. It was a good place, especially starting out, back in 2011. Then Fiverr got a little too big for its boots and forgot that without good quality sellers, the site would fail. I’m not even sure if sellers are treated better yet.
For a while, the good experiences outweighed the bad. Then the bad started outweighing the good. Customer Support wasn’t there for sellers, making us work on projects that didn’t suit us or weren’t even connected to the gigs people bought! Yes, really!
My turning point was when someone delivered a one-star review that said my work was so bad that it couldn’t be used at all. That wasn’t the case. That buyer had shared positive feedback with me privately, and they did end up using the work. Customer Support refused to remove the fake review despite my proof that it was false.
It wasn’t the first time something like that happened. For a while, I was getting enough five-star reviews to counter the bad, but I was pulling away from writing at Fiverr. So, the false reviews were bad for me. In the end, there were too many negative experiences.
Do you offer services on Fiverr? Maybe you’re a buyer or a seller. Feel free to share your experiences and your reasons below.
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