Fiverr Forum

Buyer can get a refund days after marking complete and leaving a five-star review...for no reason


#1

I don’t participate much on the forums. (It’s really an issue of time. I don’t have any.) So let this be my quick introduction. I’ve been a seller and buy on Fiverr for almost 2 years. I’m happy with it, and I earn enough on Fiverr to completely support myself.



Sure, there are problems. There are issues that arise and there are things I don’t agree with, but you’ll find that anywhere you go. But something just came up that bothers me.



I completed an order for a customer, they marked it complete and left a glowing five-star review. Now, days later, the order was “cancelled by Fiverr customer service” and the funds returned to the buyer. No explanation was given, no contact information to find out why. The only thing I could find was a message from the customer from a couple of days ago that I hadn’t seen because it was lost in Fiverr’s not-so-great message system (one of my major complaints.) I’m sorry, but I get dozens of messages a day and hundreds of emails. With this system, things get lost.



The message that I’d missed was a question that had already been answered many times. In fact, the only reason someone would ask the question is if they didn’t understand what they were buying in the first place. I do my absolute best to explain everything before, during, and after the process. I find it completely unacceptable that I can have money taken away from me AFTER I’ve spent my precious time fulfilling the order and earning a five star review, all because a customer says "I got what I ordered, but I still don’t understand what I bought, so give me my money back."



My time is too valuable for this to be an option, especially since there’s no arbitrage system in place where I’m able to defend myself against such a request.



Fiver, you’ve made thousands of dollars off of me in the last couple of months. Millions off of people -like- me. Please don’t be stupid and treat our source of income so lightly.


  • J. Paul Roe



#2

Upon further investigation, the buyer told them that I wasn’t responding to their messages days after the order was complete. The messages weren’t on the order thread…they were on the regular message thread. They were asking questions that I’d already answered many times and, as I suspected, weren’t even completely related to the service that they’d paid for.



So I guess there’s an additional warning Fiverr should post up:

If you don’t answer every question a customer sends you AFTER you’ve completed their order - even if those questions are repeats of previous questions that could be answered by looking back at the order thread - and even if those questions aren’t related 100% to the order that you already fulfilled, they can get their money back.



I find that to be a little ridiculous. If you want to take money out of my pocket, at least contact me first and let me explain why the request for refund is absurd. You should NOT be able to issue a refund based on the fact that I was busy after the order was completed and didn’t have time to answer questions AGAIN.


#3
onemindstudios said: You should NOT be able to issue a refund based on the fact that I was busy after the order was completed and didn't have time to answer questions AGAIN.
It's frustrating, but that's how freelancing in general works. Off of Fiverr here is nothing to stop a client from never sending a check, cancelling it; filing a PayPal dispute, doing a chargeback on their credit card. And there is no time limit on when anyone can post praise or dissatisfaction online.

I'm sorry for your aggravation, but if you don't have enough time to keep check on the Fiverr system, perhaps you should adjust your workflow to compensate.

#4

I agree that Fiverr should have a better system for determining when they should/shouldn’t cancel an order that has already been completed (and especially one that’s been reviewed).



If the buyer already left a review, doesn’t that indicate that the order is closed, done, finito? Any questions they wanted to ask about that specific order should have been asked before they posted the review, right? If this is the case, why would support cancel an order that’s been reviewed–especially positively reviewed? Why would they assume that those were questions relating to that order (it sort of sounds like this is what they assumed)?



Anyway, in cases when a buyer goes to support and asks for them to cancel an order, I don’t understand why support doesn’t A) tell buyers what they usually tell sellers: “Work it out among yourselves,” or B) contact the seller to at least ask their side of the story?


#5

Wow, I just have to chime in and share my disgust for the actions of Fiverr here. I have found that Fiverr favors on the side of the buyer 100 percent of the time, often resulting in a long-term, negative effect on some seller’s business. Hang in there onemindstudios, you have my support.


#6

UPDATE:



Fiverr just cancelled another one of my orders in the same fashion. $40 disappeared out of my account with no reason given…29 days after the order was marked complete.



I’ve been in constant contact with this customer and no negative comments have come across. There are only two reasons why I can think this would have happened:



A) The buyer intended to rip me off the whole time.

B) The buyer didn’t get the results they wanted from the marketing they bought from me.



This is nonsense. I clearly state that marketing results can’t be guaranteed…that’s the nature of marketing. I deliver based on what I’ve done, not what the marketing -might- do. There’s no point in even selling on Fiverr if the customer can say "oh, I didn’t get a million hits on my website, so I want my money back."



The worst thing about all of this is that, once again, I was never contacted. Not once. No chance to give my side of the story. No chance to explain that I used a portion of that money to pay for the customer’s Facebook ads, so that means I lost more than the gig was paying me at this point.



Fiverr, you really need to change this. I’m starting to lose faith in your service because I’m going to have to worry for months after the fact that someone can just take money out of my pocket. That’s not good for the sellers…you know, the people who allow you to get a paycheck.


#7

Reply to @itsyourthing: I agree with your statement, but it’s not exactly hitting the point. I do follow up with customers. I do answer my messages.



But I don’t have time - nor should I be required - to answer the same question eight different times. At that point, I’d made the decision that I didn’t want to work with that person in the future because they were too high-maintenance. That’s my prerogative. It shouldn’t allow them to take back money that I already earned.


#8

Reply to @itsyourthing: I think it isn’t as much the nature of freelancing as it is the nature of freelancing through platforms where you can’t dictate policy or process.



Chargebacks and Paypal disputes happening left and right out of the blue isn’t as much of an issue when you’re in charge dealing with clients directly in your own space rather than letting a third party handle your business for you. It creates a different dynamic.



As far as reviews go, people care about the ones they find on the web but generally take them with a grain of salt because they’re anonymous or could be fake and it’s expected that there will be bad ones mixed in with the good.



Having reviews/rankings on the very page on which you do business verified as written by someone you did in fact work with on a platform where not having a perfect rating isn’t seen as okay is a totally different animal.



Buyers seem to trust the reviews here more often than not and unlike random reviews on Yelp or Yahoo, the reviews and rankings you get here directly affect your ability to do business by being tied to the features and levels available to you.



Even when taking the way things are elsewhere into consideration, Fiverr has room for improvement. Hopefully those changes will come down the road.


#9

In all honesty, if you have been a seller here for 2 years and you never had an order cancelled after it was delivered, consider yourself lucky. There are actually many scammers that intent to get free work and do this purposely, so it does happen once in awhile.



But this is like any other business or if you worked for yourself, in any business, once in a blue moon you will have a client you cannot collect payment from, or someone bounces a check to you. If it happens once, you simply write it off as a loss on taxes at he end of the year. So assuming you are supporting yourself and doing this as your taxable income, then just write off the loss. If it starts happening often, then you need to look at your process and other factors.



The other thing is if you have a buyer that is bugging you and asking the same thing over and over, just mutually cancel the gig before you really even get started.


#10

Reply to @onemindstudios: regarind this specific comment…yes, it can be either one of those. There are scammers here on Fiverr, it happens. And two, you can say up to the moon and back that marketing results are not gauranteed, but that does not mean that eery buyer is a saavy business person that understands marketing.



Have you only had 2 cancellations like this in all of 2 years?