Below is a list of articles in our instructional series about Fiverr. Please let us know if there are any particular topics you would like covered in future articles!
This is part of a series of instructional articles about Fiverr.
Fiverr is a fantastic platform to help sell your skills in the online gig market. This post from Fiverr Best Seller mariokempes explains some of the basics of Fiverr and gives a few pointers for anyone looking to get started on the site.
People have been saying for many years that you can make money online via many different platforms such as blogging, affiliate networks, and online shops. The problem with all those platforms is that it takes quite a while until you actually see a flow of income into your bank account, and this is where Fiverr comes in.
Unlike other online ventures, Fiverr is an almost instant way to make money without the hassles of creating a website, spending money on domain and hosting services, making hundreds of posts on blogs, or even signing up for the rights to display advertisements. Fiverr is a workplace for freelancers from all around the world who offer a great variety of services; from typical items such as writing blog posts, recording review videos, analyzing website performance, setting up WordPress sites and so on, to some slightly bizarre services like pranks and stunts. For beginners, the first thing to understand is that Fiverr is now a huge marketplace for online services so you have a lot of competition – not only in terms of quality but also price.
Although Fiverr has already set the basic price for one service (or Gig), there is a workaround to set your own basic fee. Let’s say you’re a blog post writer on Fiverr, and the basic price for one Gig is around $5; the good thing is that Fiverr does not limit the word count required to constitute ‘one article’. This means you can set the word count yourself – for example, you can set 250 words as your basic unit, or you could set it at 500 words to attract more potential buyers. Once you sign-up and explore the options, Fiverr also allows you to make more customizations to your service. In general, Fiverr makes an excellent representative for the Gig Economy.
It all sounds very simple indeed, but as you dive down into the real Fiverr atmosphere, the sheer number of freelancers and various specific demands from the buyers can be overwhelming. That being said, Fiverr gives all the options to make your Gig stand out from the crowd and improve your chances of having a steady flow of income. Here are some simple suggestions to get started.
You need to create a concise summary for your profile. It should include your skillset, level of expertise, and any information catchy enough for potential buyers to notice. The most important thing is that you are honest about the profile; there is no need to brag about your competence or certification on certain skills if you cannot prove it in your works later. For example, if you claimed to be able to create quality video animation in 24 hours, you must understand that buyers expect you to deliver exactly as promised. Remember that there is always the possibility of having multiple orders at a time, so the best approach is to under promise yet over deliver. You can also use video for your Gig and feature it on the front page to get better exposure.
Getting Your First Orders
You can only start working on Fiverr once a buyer places an order for your Gig; this is where many sellers seem to get easily frustrated. It does take a lot of patience while you are waiting for the order to come in. After your profile and Gigs are set up, there isn’t really much to do but wait. Thankfully, Fiverr has a helpful section of the website called Buyer Requests. This is the place where buyers can send various requests attached with a set of specific requirements. Instead of looking for sellers who offer a particular service, the buyers choose to list their requests and let the sellers send offers. You don’t always get your offers accepted in Buyer Request section, but at least you have the chance to promote your Gigs more easily.
If needs be, you can send an offer for much lower than the standard price. If your standard Gig offers $5 for one piece of work, for example, you can try to send offer for two pieces of works at the price of one. It does involve more effort, but you can stop offering the discount once you feel comfortable without it.
Note: sometimes the requests have different parameters or requirements from the Gigs you actually have. As long as you can adjust for the difference, send your offers with a sample of your works if possible.
As I mentioned before, there is no need to lie about your profile. The entire success of your Fiverr venture is based on performance and buyers’ reviews. Getting 100% completed orders along with 100% of customer satisfaction rating is difficult, but at least you can try to get close to that. Especially for beginners, with presumably lower number of orders, getting the perfect rating is actually possible. When you are just starting, perhaps you only have two to three active orders; assuming you get all the jobs done and those buyers are all pleased, you have perfect scores for job completion and satisfaction level. This is your chance to capitalize on the achievement; share your profile on social media accounts to get more exposure.
Remember that there is always the possibility of having multiple orders at a time, so the best approach is to under promise yet over deliver.
Another good thing about Fiverr is that you have the option to allow buyers to complain about your works after the works have been delivered. This may not sound terrific at first, but it opens the door to keep the customers happy even when you did not manage to meet their expectations the first time. It applies to all Gigs. You can revise the completed works and get better reviews – in the end, buyers’ testimonies play major role to your success. Keep your customers happy!
Let’s face it – the labour market is competitive. Really competitive.
No matter what you do, there are probably thousands of other people out there who are doing (or willing to do) essentially the same thing. This is true whether you’re a writer, a designer, a salesperson or a driver.
If you want to be truly successful in your field then you need a selling point. Something that sets you apart from the crowd. A reason for clients or customers to choose you instead of anybody else.
Are you doing it better? Faster? Bigger? Cheaper?
Is your range of products the widest? Do you have your own niche area of focus? Is it easier book a job through you? Do you accept more payment methods? Are you more flexible and willing to go the extra mile?
If you don’t have a selling point then stop what you’re doing and get one. Look at your competitors – what are they doing differently? What is everybody else doing? More importantly – what is nobody doing that there could be a market for?
You may think that spreading your net widest will net the greatest returns. This is true in some cases, however, more often than not specialising is the best strategy. Limiting your scope allows you to focus your efforts on a narrower area and make sure you’re the best in that area. People like experts so make this very clear. Even if other people are doing what you’re doing plus more, you will attract interest by highlighting that you focus solely on one thing. Obviously you don’t want to make your ‘one thing’ so narrow that you exclude too much of the market – sometime the only way to work this out is trial and error.
Make people want you. Instead of begging for work you should be offering your services and making it clear why you’re the best person for the job. Establish your selling point. Take control.
For most people, the hardest part about succeeding in the Gig Economy is getting started.
This is normal.
Society and the media continue selling the idea of a single, stable job as the real-world possibilities for this evaporate. To reach your full potential you need to embrace the opportunities that the Gig Economy offers. Get yourself out there. Find your niche. Make yourself known. Success, satisfaction and money will follow.
Clearly, the Gig Economy is less predictable than a ‘career’ has traditionally been – at least less predictable than a career was 50 years ago. When getting started, don’t forget your basic needs. You still need somewhere to live, something to eat and people to share your life with. Success is hollow without human connection.
How you approach this will depend on your current situation, your assets (both personal and financial) and your skills.
If you have the privilege of being able to live cheaply with family or friends – use it. Everyone needs help to get established. It is a sign of strength to understand when you need help and to accept it with humility. Don’t see it as a step back or an imposition. Taking temporary measures to minimise your cost of living will let you focus more time and energy on building a sustainable independent income.
If you have money saved away for a rainy day then consider how stormy your situation really is. While it can cost money to money, especially in the early stages, consider the risks and rewards. Spending a portion of your savings on a new camera, programming courses or art supplies may be necessary to start up your project – but also take time to find alternative avenues. Perhaps you can borrow a camera once a week? Perhaps you can learn what you need to online for free? Perhaps you can use a computer at the library instead of buying your own?
It is a sign of strength to understand when you need help and to accept it with humility.
It may seem obvious, but how you get started is likely to be determined by the skills you already possess. If you’re already able to do something that people will pay for then it makes sense to start by monetising this – even if it isn’t your ultimate goal. Embracing the Gig Economy doesn’t necessarily mean only pursuing your passion. You can start by shifting to greater independence and control in your current field then use this a stepping stone to an alternative path. If you’re working in graphic design but keen to branch out then picking up some freelance graphic design work is a logical starting point. From there, you can work on building your personal brand, portfolio and online presence to move into other areas of interest.
While you may not feel like you have any skills that can be traded, consider the vast arena of (relatively) unskilled gigs. These are gigs that don’t require any specific training or experience to get started, such as online trading or completing surveys. Your personal qualities can still influence how well you perform in these roles, so it’s worth looking over your options and working out which best suit you.
Building Your Gig Portfolio
The immense range of potential avenues can initially be overwhelming. Don’t fear – we’ve all been there.
You may already have a good idea of where you want to focus your efforts. If you’ve always wanted to turn your hobby into a full-time pursuit then this step may be simple (though it probably won’t be easy). It’s important to consider your options seriously regardless. I’ve met many people who found tying their passion to money drained it of enjoyment and led them to regret the move.
If you’re not sure how you want to make money – take a look at The Gig Shortlist for inspiration. Think about what will most likely provide an adequate income but also think about what you will enjoy, what you will find fulfilling and how much time or effort each would require. You may be able to start something immediately if you have readily marketable skills (e.g. graphic design) or resources (e.g. an empty room just waiting to be listed or a car that’s ready for ridesharing). You may also need to invest some time and/or money to get things off the ground (e.g. craft supplies and production or a typing course).
One of the key advantages of the Gig Economy is the ability to diversify your work. By dividing your time between multiple avenues of income you can keep your work interesting, have greater control over how and when you work, and protect yourself against market fluctuations. Many gigs will see fluctuations over time – demand for Airbnb properties, for example, is often seasonal and will change with local events and the overall economy. Unless you have the rare fortune to find a niche of high demand and reliable returns, it would be wise to avoid putting all of your eggs in one basket. For most people, this means a mix of income streams including some that are interesting and enjoyable with others that are purely to keep money coming in. Interest and enjoyment won’t pay your rent or put food on your table.
By dividing your time between multiple avenues of income you can keep your work interesting, have greater control over how and when you work, and protect yourself against market fluctuations.
Where to next?
Making a living in the Gig Economy is hard work. If all of this is confusing or intimidating then take a step back and breathe. It’s scary to take the power and responsibility for your livelihood into your own hands – especially when you’ve grown up being sold the ‘dream’ of working a steady 9 to 5 job for life. You aren’t the first person to feel this way and you certainly won’t be the last. Subscribe for ongoing advice and inspiration for surviving in the Gig Economy. We’re here to help.