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Tip for New Sellers: Ask the right questions


katakatica

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If you're a new seller, perhaps you've wondered why your posts might go ignored or why you're getting the same canned advice from most people

Maybe you feel like not everything that you're being told is helping, but you're willing to try. If that's the case, I might know why! 

The answer is simple: you're asking the wrong questions! 'How to sell stuff' is way to vague in most cases and will only provide you with generic advice. Things like 'how to rank my gig' and 'how to Fiverr' are the same. If you're genuinely keen on learning, you need to be precise and know what to ask. 

It's hard when you're just joining the platform, but it definitely helps. 

Why?

If you think about it simply, not every strategy will work for, well, everyone. As a writer, I might not be able to help you. if you know how to seek out people from your niche, you will likely get better advice more suited to what you do.

What should you expect from other sellers, anyway?

Advice, not lessons. We will not edit your gigs or tell you exactly what is wrong (though some people might be kind enough to do that.) You need to learn how to solve your own issues based on the advice you gather - and how to think outside of the box. Freelancing isn't easy because it's not a 'regular' job. Thinking that others will solve your issues for you won't work here. 

Sympathy, yes, but also disagreements: not everyone agrees about certain things. Learning to accept other people's opinions (and not jumping at them if they say they think you are wrong) is important online. 

There' 's more to it, of course, but as you grow, you will come to understand everything. However, again, everything starts with knowing how to ask the right questions (and when to do your own research. Because, trust me, if you work online, that is very important, too.)

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Great post, great advice. 

Unfortunately most of 'how to Fiverr' and 'how to increase impressions' kinda lot don't even implement any advice/suggestions they receive on this forum. A major chunk of them wants us to do their work for them or just be generous and purchase from them without a reason. 

Cheers! 

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I had a hard time finding someone who genuinely wanted to learn from the forum. Most of the people crawling on this thread just want to be spoonfed. Finding your right question, trying and - sometimes - failing is a long path. 

Your advice is great, hope someone will understand it! 

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On 10/4/2023 at 2:07 PM, alphagev said:

failing is a long path. 

I think failing is very important, and a lot of people don't know/comprehend that. I understand in a way, I mean... When you're given false info that promises easy money, it's easy to think that's the only truth, right? 

I think some people might feel like we're gatekeeping tricks but there are no tricks. You try, you fail, you get up or walk away OR you succeed. It's just how it works. 

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1 minute ago, katakatica said:

I think failing is very important, and a lot of people don't know/comprehend that. I understand in a way, I mean... When you're given false info that promises easy money, it's easy to think that's the only truth, right? 

I think some people might feel like we're gatekeeping tricks but there are no tricks. You try, you fail, you get up or walk away OR you succeed. It's just how it works. 

 

People who cannot succeed based on talent, always accuse the people who do succeed of using "tricks."  That's because the idea of quality never enters their mind. 

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2 hours ago, alphagev said:

I had a hard time finding someone who genuinely wanted to learn from the forum. Most of the people crawling on this thread just want to be spoonfed. Finding your right question, trying and - sometimes - failing is a long path. 

Your advice is great, hope someone will understand it!

"Failure is an event, not a person." - You Can Have Hope.

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7 minutes ago, katakatica said:

When you're given false info that promises easy money, it's easy to think that's the only truth, right? 

It is surely more comfortable to believe in magic tricks and instant success than trying your best - and fail. And then get up on your feet...and fail again, learning the lesson the hard way. 

The thought that reality is more complex than "do X and you will get Y" is appalling for people who are just trying to find shortcuts. But it's all about the journey - that's my personal motto more or less

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On 10/4/2023 at 4:44 PM, katakatica said:

I understand in a way, I mean... When you're given false info that promises easy money, it's easy to think that's the only truth, right? 

THISSS ,,, thank you for saying this @katakatica 🙌

This encapsulates everything. ⬆️😇 

Humans invariably fall for and believe in fairytales, misinformation or quick rich schemes very easily, instead of building themselves in terms of mindset and skillset. 

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Excellent post.

I think every seller has to start with (or quickly accept) knowing that freelancing is building a business and a brand. Marketing isn't 'share on social media' or 'post in the forum.' Customer services isn't saying 'sir' (ugh) and having a one-hour response time.

There is a lot more that goes into creating a viable business than any tips and tricks can ever teach someone. There is no easy way. That's not how freelancing works.

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1 hour ago, melanielm said:

Excellent post.

I think every seller has to start with (or quickly accept) knowing that freelancing is building a business and a brand. Marketing isn't 'share on social media' or 'post in the forum.' Customer services isn't saying 'sir' (ugh) and having a one-hour response time.

There is a lot more that goes into creating a viable business than any tips and tricks can ever teach someone. There is no easy way. That's not how freelancing works.

+💯 So much yes to this... 

Wish the platform could somehow convey this louder📢 to the people who walk in through the door every day expecting instant orders, page 1 rankings, tips n tricks and everything else!! ⬆️

May be some sort of induction video or introductory course to teach them do's and don'ts before allowing them to create gigs or post indiscriminately on the forum. 

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15 hours ago, priyank_mod said:

May be some sort of induction video or introductory course to teach them do's and don'ts before allowing them to create gigs or post indiscriminately on the forum. 

I've mentioned this before I think, (not sure when, maybe on a call with Fiverr about something), targeted learning material in more languages, but I think that would easily get ignored as well. The one way to REALLY filter people out would probably be a paywall (@newsmike, even I might agree now....) or an actual 'in-person' (or video, etc.) test that could NOT be cheated. 

In all genuine honesty, I don't mind people trying new things. Heck, it's wonderful - but when half the marketplace is full of people who have no idea what they are doing, things get messy. 

I do always wonder if people with (close to 0) skills KNOW that what they are doing isn't really, say, graphic design, writing, etc.) or if they genuinely believe that they are doing the 'right' thing. 

17 hours ago, melanielm said:

There is no easy way. That's not how freelancing works.

People still don't understand that freelancing isn't a 'regular' job. It's not like turning up at the coffee shop every day as a barista (or even teaching, etc.) You are in control of your business, which is great - but it comes with risks people don't seem to get. 

I wonder if this will ever change... 

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1 hour ago, katakatica said:

I do always wonder if people with (close to 0) skills KNOW that what they are doing isn't really, say, graphic design, writing, etc.) or if they genuinely believe that they are doing the 'right' thing. 

I wonder that, too. I believe that some of them are truly delusional. For example, there are even some writers with hundreds (even thousands) of reviews that... well, let's just say that they would have to pay ME money to read their stuff (based on their samples and gallery). One of them posted on the forum recently, crying about how Fiverr is unfair and blah blah blah—you know, the usual stuff. His gigs weren't exactly cheap, and his samples were hilariously bad. I got curious and looked him up and saw that he described himself in a very arrogant way on a different site for writers—like he truly believes he's the best writer in his country and that he's just "underappreciated" because people don't understand his "unique" writing. 

The problem is that some buyers aren't native English speakers or even fluent, so they won't be able to judge whether writing sounds unnatural, which means that sometimes people like that do end up getting sales.

However, I very much think that many of them know that they're scamming people—especially the ones with no or very few reviews. The ones usually asking for advice on this forum. They might not admit it to themselves, instead coming up with all sorts of excuses to explain their behavior, but I think deep down, a majority of them know. 

Edited by vibronx
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Thanks for another great post @katakatica!

I was hoping more newbie sellers would read this thread! I think they might have if this post was only labeled "Tips for New Sellers." But the second part might have scared them away because "asking the right questions" requires work.

It requires you to think. It requires you to have the mindset that you could be wrong. ⬅️ Honestly, this mindset is probably what allowed me to grow as fast as I did on the platform. From my first day on the platform, I have been peeling away all of the misconceptions and beliefs that I had when I first joined.

I thought I knew what I was doing. I didn't.

I thought it was going to be easy. It wasn't.

I thought I wouldn't have to work hard. I've never worked harder in my life.

I thought I would make it "big" with proofreading and data entry (*ahem* converting PDFs to Word). 😅 I had no idea it would be resume writing and technical writing that would launch my business forward.

I've experienced imposter syndrome because I joined the platform thinking "zero skills" were required to make money (which is why it took me 2.5 years to post my first gig ... I had to think of a skill to sell). So I surprised myself there - I thought I didn't have skills, but then I realized I did.

28 minutes ago, katakatica said:

half the marketplace is full of people who have no idea what they are doing

I think I'm a great example of someone who had no idea what they were doing and thought they were doing the right thing. However, I was able to pivot whenever I found out that I was going in the wrong direction. Pivoting is hard (it took me a year to finally agree to do Zoom calls), but it can be done.

28 minutes ago, katakatica said:

I do always wonder if people with (close to 0) skills KNOW that what they are doing isn't really, say, graphic design, writing, etc.) or if they genuinely believe that they are doing the 'right' thing. 

This has been a concern of mine, too. There are so many sellers on the platform who don't even know what they are doing ...so it's easy for them to believe that they are doing the right thing (based on what the "no skills required" YT gurus are saying). It makes me sad that there are so many sellers who are unwilling to challenge these beliefs, consider that they might be wrong, and make the changes needed to start moving in the right direction.

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On 10/6/2023 at 11:33 AM, vibronx said:

well, let's just say that they would have to pay ME money to read their stuff (based on their samples and gallery). One of them posted on the forum recently, crying about how Fiverr is unfair and blah blah blah—you know, the usual stuff. His gigs weren't exactly cheap, and his samples were hilariously bad. I got curious and looked him up and saw that he described himself in a very arrogant way on a different site for writers—like he truly believes he's the best writer in his country and that he's just "underappreciated" because people don't understand his "unique" writing. 

I think it's easy to feel on top of the world when you get a bit of praise. Not everyone has the same standards for art/writing/etc, so what I consider AWESOME art, for example, might not be... so good. When the client doesn't have the same skill (which is, honestly pretty normal since I wouldn't get art if I was awesome at it), they might not be as good a judge, I guess?

(I'm kinda curious but... no naming and sharing. I think I missed that post, but I've seen many similar ones. People just... don't know what they are doing, many times. )

I do think I've heard that to sell yourself; confidence is key - so I feel like that might also be a part of it (or at least, according to - some - people. Being honest about not being an 'expert', etc., could cause them to lose the few sales they might get... 

Another thing that just occurred to me is that when you are good at something, you're generally passionate about it. Especially with art and everything creative that might make you critical (when it comes to your own work.) For people who only say, write, because they are told that blogs sell fast and for a high price, there are honestly no stakes at play. 

Edited by katakatica
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15 hours ago, katakatica said:

I do think I've heard that to sell yourself; confidence is key - so I feel like that might also be a part of it (or at least, according to - some - people. Being honest about not being an 'expert', etc., could cause them to lose the few sales they might get... 

Another thing that just occurred to me is that when you are good at something, you're generally passionate about it. Especially with art and everything creative that might make you critical (when it comes to your own work.) For people who only say, write, because they are told that blogs sell fast and for a high price, there are honestly no stakes at play. 

It's strange about the confidence thing. I'm good enough that people have paid me to write for 20+ years... enough to take care of my family on one income. Yet, I lack the 'confidence' that some others display dramatically. (I'm not pointing that out egotistically, it's just data.) I think too much confidence is in direct opposition to your second paragraph. People think they're great, so they stop learning. (Exactly @imagination7413's post above!)

You simply can't do that as a freelancer in any field. You stop growing and adapting, you fail. If you're in that place of non-growth and over-confidence in the beginning, you won't even get started.

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I learned the hard way by not asking enough or the right questions.  It is important to understand what your buyer really wants.  I spent too much time creating and recreating work because I jumped right in and didn't really understand what the buyer wanted.  Now I ask several questions - one is, "Are you a new buyer on Fiverr?"  This helps me understand where they are in the process.  They may not understand that when a project starts, the clock starts as well.  Timely communication is key to a successful project.  Or that it's important to share exactly what they want and need as we sellers are not mind readers.  Sometimes this occurs through multiple conversations with the buyer. 

I try to be friendly, and communicative and let them know I am here to guide them through this process of our contract.  This usually works. 

But I do have those that answer n/a to required questions; in that instance, I have to go back and explain that the information is required so that I have a clear vision of what they want for a finished product.  Again, clear, friendly dialog is a must for communicating with your buyers and getting that 5-star review.

I don't always get it 100% but I do try my hardest.  I keep growing and learning here on Fiverr.

😀

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