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Another golden goose quitting Fiverr. Is this a trend?


smashradio

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Another one of the "golden sellers" on Fiverr are leaving.

She'll remain nameless, but she did post a rather interesting Youtube video about why.  It seems she’s had her fill and is ditching Fiverr for many of the same reasons echoed by other sellers here on the forum, including yours truly. 

For the record, I’m not quitting Fiverr. Despite its flaws, I believe it still has a lot to offer me as a freelancer. 

However, Fiverr’s struggle to retain real pro's is becoming glaringly obvious, when multiple million-dollar sellers are leaving.

A sticking point for many is their 20% commission. Personally, I just factor this into my rates, but others argue that it’s steep compared to fees on other platforms.

In her YouTube video, she also spoke on how Fiverr penalizes sellers for taking breaks. Although Fiverr claims to have adressed this, the reality is that sellers often see a drop in their business, even after taking just a weekend off.

Speaking of which, the platform’s gamified tyranny is pretty much a slap in the face during times when the conversation around freelancer wellness is louder than ever.

She also speaks on having experienced burnout, a common issue among Fiverr sellers, whether it's due to demanding buyers, incessant work, the pressure to always be on-call, or Fiverr’s relentless gamification of everything. Like sharks, if we take a break and stop swimming, we die. 

Many are buckling under these strains, and Fiverr is exacerbating the problem. No, the solution is not to regurgitate AI-generated nonsense about caring, or arranging a low rent webinar about dealing with the stress you caused. 

“I think of Fiverr as training wheels for a freelancer,” was a quote from her video that got stuck with me. 

Is that all it is, or can established pro's genuinely thrive and expand a business on Fiverr? Is the stress worth it?

And what could Fiverr do to alleviate this pressure and support its established freelancers?

Because their current strategy of doubling down on undisclosed AI-generated garbage, feigning transparency, and putting established professionals through a grinder that can kill your business on a whim, is not it. 

 

Edited by smashradio
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1 hour ago, smashradio said:

However, Fiverr’s struggle to retain real pro's is becoming glaringly obvious, when multiple million-dollar sellers are leaving.

 

I am curious who you are talking about, I am wondering if that person is in the writing field and a Pro seller, because if it is, I saw a video from someone that fits the criteria yesterday.

Regardless of who it is, aside from personal conviction, having other (better) income avenues and a lack of time for any Fiverr work, I don't see why anyone would quit the platform. I understand Levi's point of view and respect it. But for many others, it's just a side hustle, so I don't see the reason why you would close your account. Yes, if you solely rely on Fiverr, it's very difficult these days because next month's income is a gamble, whereas it was relatively stable or constantly on the rise for some sellers. But if it's just side income (and if we are talking about the same Fiverr seller/YouTuber, it is), I don't see why you would close it. My opinion, of course. If you just get some extra money and it's not your main source of income, it doesn't hurt to have it open, and realistically at that point you don't care about algorithms or random reviews. 

Also, some people might just be tired of working here and they want higher-paying clients than they find here, and to do less work every day. To each their own, I respect that seller's decision to leave the platform, although again, if it is who I think it is, that person's entire brand was made by Fiverr who promoted the seller like crazy for a long time. 

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Just now, donnovan86 said:

I am curious who you are talking about, I am wondering if that person is in the writing field and a Pro seller, because if it is, I saw a video from someone that fits the criteria yesterday.

Regardless of who it is, aside from personal conviction, having other (better) income avenues and a lack of time for any Fiverr work, I don't see why anyone would quit the platform. I understand Levi's point of view and respect it. But for many others, it's just a side hustle, so I don't see the reason why you would close your account. Yes, if you solely rely on Fiverr, it's very difficult these days because next month's income is a gamble, whereas it was relatively stable or constantly on the rise for some sellers. But if it's just side income (and if we are talking about the same Fiverr seller/YouTuber, it is), I don't see why you would close it. My opinion, of course. If you just get some extra money and it's not your main source of income, it doesn't hurt to have it open, and realistically at that point you don't care about algorithms or random reviews. 

Also, some people might just be tired of working here and they want higher-paying clients than they find here, and to do less work every day. To each their own, I respect that seller's decision to leave the platform, although again, if it is who I think it is, that person's entire brand was made by Fiverr who promoted the seller like crazy for a long time. 

I guess it boils down to how much time, focus, and effort you're pouring into that side hustle.

I used to handle proofreading jobs on Fiverr. But I had to deal with so many bad buyers — those who expected me to completely overhaul their grammar soup — that I eventually shut it down, even though it was earning me a decent monthly income. It just became too much of a headache.

Even if Fiverr has repeatedly promoted someone and helped boost their career, we don't owe a giant corporation that doesn't give a hoot about us anything in return. I'm grateful to Fiverr for much of my development as a freelancer, but the minute it starts causing more problems than it's worth, I'm out.

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What's interesting about the video is that she doesn't cite any personal reasons for leaving. It's all fairly generic complaints we've all made many times over the years. I think something else has caused them to leave, possibly related to some of the -ahem- scandals they has been involved in off-platform. She was also pushing a lot of newbs to use AI and mentored the $2M "writer".

 

 

Right, but she also has almost 100k followers. A quick look at the comments showed that most were feeling the same way. No new complaints again. I don't think tens of thousands of people are going to follow her off-platform (and if they did, consider me boggled), but 2 sellers who have collectively made $3m for the platform walking off in such quick succession?

It's something Fiverr should be concerned about.

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1 hour ago, smashradio said:

A sticking point for many is their 20% commission. Personally, I just factor this into my rates, but others argue that it’s steep compared to fees on other platforms.

You can't look at it like this, because the counter argument is obvious - hire me directly, outside the platform, and get your project done for 20% cheaper. When we're talking about $10 projects, it doesn't matter. When we're talking about $10k projects, it does.

The more expensive you are, the harder it is to justify your rate being 20% higher than it could be (and is) when dealing directly.

To put it in simpler terms, it's like VAT. It's always the end consumer paying for it - and there's a limit to how much the end consumer will take. It's not the seller paying 20%, it's the buyer. So you can't say "as a seller, I don't care about the 20%", because it's not your problem. It's the buyer's problem. And the buyer does care about the 20%, specially when that means literally thousands of extra dollars paid for nothing.

Edited by visualstudios
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That's where the "training wheels for a freelancer" comes in. They almost certainly weren't invited to Enterprise, but even now, a month or so after those who were invited to E don't know if we pay fees on there or not.

Believe me, I emailed the E team about it and they never got back to me. It was a fairly easy question - I just wanted to clarify because everyone wanted to know!

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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, visualstudios said:

You can't look at it like this, because the counter argument is obvious - hire me directly, outside the platform, and get your project done for 20% cheaper. When we're talking about $10 projects, it doesn't matter. When we're talking about $10k projects, it does.

The more expensive you are, the harder it is to justify your rate being 20% higher than it could be (and is) when dealing directly.

I can and will because the argument must take into consideration that your leads from outside the platform costs you more or the same in terms of marketing, funnels, upkeap of CRMs, invoicing software and so on. You don't have to do that on Fiverr. So instead of offering your projects for 20% less outside of Fiverr, charge the same, and pocket what's left (or use it for marketing).

Edited by smashradio
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Just now, smashradio said:

I can and will because the argument must take into consideration that your leads from outside the platform costs you more or the same in terms of marketing, funnels, upkeap of CRMs, invoicing software and so on. You don't have to do that on Fiverr. So instead of offering your projects for 20% less outside of Fiverr, charge the same, and pocket what's left.

This is not true though. I deal with multiple clients outside the platform and it costs me zero. I don't need to pay for ANY of that. 

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Just now, visualstudios said:

This is not true though. I deal with multiple clients outside the platform and it costs me zero. I don't need to pay for ANY of that. 

Really? You don't use an invoice system? You don't have a website? E-mail? Cloud services? A CRM? You don't spend anything on marketing? 

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I don't see any need for a CRM. I do not use an invoice system, no. I do have a website and e-mail, but that's next to nothing, honestly. Cloud services? I use filemail for transfers, but I need to use it for fiverr anyway, because their file handling system is atrocious, so I'm paying either way. Ah, and I spend zero on marketing, yeah.

Edited by visualstudios
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Just now, visualstudios said:

I don't see any need for a CRM. I do not use an invoice system, no. I do have a website and e-mail, but that's next to nothing, honestly. Cloud services? I use filemail for transfers, but I need to use it for fiverr anyway, because their file handling system is atrocious, so I'm paying either way.

How do you invoice your clients? Manually? I tried that and the mess nearly killed me. 

I guess when you're low volume, you can get by without a CRM. But if you start dealing with hundreds of clients or multiple ongoing projects, you end up crazy without one, in my experience. What about marketing? Do you spend on ads, outreach, social media etc.?

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Just now, smashradio said:

How do you invoice your clients? Manually? I tried that and the mess nearly killed me. 

Yes. It's alright, nothing beats free. Low volume, high price, not a big deal.

If I'm dealing with hundreds of clients, I'll be rich anyway. I'll hire someone to take care of that for me lol.

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Just now, visualstudios said:

Yes. It's alright, nothing beats free. Low volume, high price, not a big deal.

If I'm dealing with hundreds of clients, I'll be rich anyway. I'll hire someone to take care of that for me lol.

Tell that to my accountant. When I messed up my invoicing numbers, she nearly had a heart attack and gave me one as well. Spaniards...

But yea, if you send two invoices per month or something, I guess that would work. Personally, I like offering my clients a way to pay by card directly through the invoice, to get reminders of due ones, and keep track of all my clients without using spreadsheets. 

Yes, but if you hire someone, you still need to pay for them, and they'll quit if you make them invoice hundreds of clients using Google Dogs and Excel. 🤣

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I would see this becoming a problem when you have a project worth $10k or more than that, and Fiverr is pocketing at least $2000 from it. Then again, it costs a lot of money to find those high-paying clients. On Fiverr you have a platform where people can see your track record, reviews (both good and bad), and as a business client I would trust it more than a personal website where everyone would just curate reviews.

Then again, how much money does Fiverr need to spend on advertising in order to bring those clients to you? I am sure it will take a lot of time, branding investments and so on for people to trust the platform, enter the Pro section and hire someone that asks $10k+ for their work. 

I guess they could have a smaller fee than the 20% if you are bringing a certain amount of money on the platform annually. But if they do that, it's unfair towards solo sellers since a lot of these accounts that earn a lot of money either work as a team, outsource, etc, so it's an unfair comparison. I don't see them changing the fee anytime soon (Unless they increase it .. based on the last 1-2 years and their track record), but if they would, setting fees based on the income you bring and lowering the fee if you earn over a certain amount a year would be fair, in my eyes.

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Just now, smashradio said:

you still need to pay for them, and they'll quit if you make them invoice hundreds of clients using Google Dogs and Excel.

Why would they quit for that? If they're paid by the hour, they should love it lol.

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1 minute ago, donnovan86 said:

Unless they increase it .. based on the last 1-2 years and their track record)

They're doing that by stealth with SPP "price alignments" and PGs. Not to mention the various loan shark things. I don't think there's a whole lot of room to go above 20% commissions tbh. But who knows, the decisionmaking lately has been absolutely awful so why not?

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Just now, donnovan86 said:

I would see this becoming a problem when you have a project worth $10k or more than that, and Fiverr is pocketing at least $2000 from it. Then again, it costs a lot of money to find those high-paying clients. On Fiverr you have a platform where people can see your track record, reviews (both good and bad), and as a business client I would trust it more than a personal website where everyone would just curate reviews.

Then again, how much money does Fiverr need to spend on advertising in order to bring those clients to you? I am sure it will take a lot of time, branding investments and so on for people to trust the platform, enter the Pro section and hire someone that asks $10k+ for their work. 

I guess they could have a smaller fee than the 20% if you are bringing a certain amount of money on the platform annually. But if they do that, it's unfair towards solo sellers since a lot of these accounts that earn a lot of money either work as a team, outsource, etc, so it's an unfair comparison. I don't see them changing the fee anytime soon (Unless they increase it .. based on the last 1-2 years and their track record), but if they would, setting fees based on the income you bring and lowering the fee if you earn over a certain amount a year would be fair, in my eyes.

If you know Fiverr is taking $2000, you just adjust your rates to cover that cost. It’s like any store owner who knows what they pay the manufacturer for a product and what they need to charge to make a profit and cover their expenses. It’s just basic business.

While I agree it would be great to pay less to Fiverr I view the 20% fee as the cost of doing business here, kind of like paying rent. And like you mentioned, Fiverr spends money on marketing, developers, and all that other business stuff to bring those clients to you. And thanks to that, I don't have to do all that work. I simply pay 20% to get Fiverr to do it for me. 

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Just now, smashradio said:

kind of like paying rent.

Rent is fixed cost. I would never rent anything that charged a % of anything. That's my issue with taxes as well, btw. It's total bs, should be a bill like any other. My electrical and water bill do not depend on how much I make - they depend on how much I spend.

Edited by visualstudios
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3 minutes ago, visualstudios said:

Why would they quit for that? If they're paid by the hour, they should love it lol.

Lol I'd hate being your employee. 🤣

 

3 minutes ago, visualstudios said:

But anyway, "too many clients to invoice" sounds like an amazing problem to have. Give me problems like that all day long, please.

My problem is always not making enough, never the other way around.

It is, when you have a great invoicing system. But that costs money. Money I have to factor into my rates. 

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Well, I guess the good news is that the double posting issue definietly seems to have been fixed. I know that's not relelvant to this post, but it's not like anyone is reading them, so I can pretty much say whatever I want.

It is nearly bedtime for me though. This deathly dull 20% argument is sending me to sleep.

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Just now, visualstudios said:

Rent is fixed cost. I would never rent anything that charged a % of anything. 

It's very common in the business world. Just look at any franchise. Besides, you do already. You're renting space on Fiverr to showcase your gigs, for 20% of whatever you earn. 🤑

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Just now, smashradio said:

Besides, you do already. You're renting space on Fiverr to showcase your gigs, for 20% of whatever you earn. 🤑

I know, and I disagree with it. Unfortunately, it's either that or nothing, so it will have to be that. But I'd much rather pay a flat fee.

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Posted (edited)
1 minute ago, visualstudios said:

I know, and I disagree with it. Unfortunately, it's either that or nothing, so it will have to be that. But I'd much rather pay a flat fee.

But how would you calculate that? Should a seller making $2M pay the same as a seller making $200? You know I love the idea of a paywall, but that alone won't cover the operating costs of Fiverr. 

Verrückt Verrückte GIF - Verrückt Verrückte GIFs

Edited by smashradio
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