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Client Taking Advantage Of My Good Nature

Okay, I need to rant. I’m typically a good-natured person and I can let some things go. However, this time I just couldn’t!

I have a client, who I’ve had to break ties with because he honestly thinks that giving me work every day is good enough to not order accordingly. I’ve sent a cancellation notice with his third order, after he made this remark:

"I see, article is about 700 words, but i think this is okey because i send you every day articles and some articles are about 300-400 words, and i think is fair to rewrite this article. What do you think about this?"

Actually no… its not. The word count of his third article is actually 725 words… and my gig says UP TO 500 words per $5. If his other articles HAD been 200 or even 250 words, I may have let it go. As such, they were not… They were 460 words and 517 words, respectively.

Sure, he does order right away after I send him an article but my workload is piling up again, and as I told him, it’s not fair to my other clients to give him special treatment when they do order right and he doesn’t… just because he orders every day (or whenever I send the work). And, he doesn’t even order the extra fast option. The only reason he got the previous articles done quicker was because I had little work in my queue. (I’m not really ranting about the extra fast situation; just a side rant). I’m more about the word count issue.

Maybe I am being slightly harsh; but, to me, it feels as if he’s taking advantage of that good nature. On top of that, I do offer discounts on BULK orders. He’s not ordering bulk… just single orders. How am I supposed to know he’s going to order an article that has 300 words to satisfy that 725 word article? I don’t. I have to go on past behavior… and past behavior dictates his articles are going to run 450+ words.

Am I being overly sensitive? Yes, I know I’m a TRS and I should already “know this” but sometimes, it’s good to hear other opinions.

Thanks ya’ll!


I really think you probably have it figured out! You need to work with people you like to work with. That’s what’s great about being self employed. Your boss didn’t make you work with them. Just word your gig description in a way that gives you an out so you can send a message simply saying, "Thank you for your order, I am not going to be able to provide what you need. Thanks for considering me."

I occasionally get the message that seems to suggest that I am starving and will jump through any hoops for the opportunity to get $5.00. The "If you do awesome on this one for $5.00, “I will have 5-10 of these a week” I will hate the first one. Why would I want 5-10 a week?

You mention discounts on bulk? I use to feel this way, but I realized that bulk usually requires more work in regard to consistency and sometimes hashing out repetitive material in fresh ways. Length is also more time consuming per word the longer it gets. All my clients get a bulk rate. I am hoping to get 100 orders this month. I set a price for each of the 100 items and I’m letting people join the discount group. :slight_smile:

Just be kind, gracious, but firm. They will see your confidence.

I am kind hearted too and you just need someone to say, “It’s OK.”

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I don’t think he’s taking advantage of you. If you have prices and people do not order accordingly, all you have to do is cancel the order, I don’t see what the problem is. If I go to mc donalds and want a burger for 50 cents and it cost $3.00, They will look at me like I’m crazy, and I’ll proceed to not get it. Your rates are already low, if they get any lower you will be working for free. Don’t work with cheap and unprofessional buyers period.

Madmoo is bang on the money. The more you give them, the more they expect.

I’ve had a few customers like your one. The demands start to slowly creep up. It starts as a 700 word rewrite, then they’re asking you to rewrite an article that’s over a thousand words long. And honestly, they’re not always that grateful for you doing so.

I only do favours now if somebody was at least willing to pay. That shows they respect my time. A lot of people come to me wondering how much I charge to include a Facebook post or a meta description with their article. These aren’t hard to write, so I include them for free.

I would do the same. If it were a client that I had been working with for months and they usually expected the right amount of words, I think a little extra isn’t a big deal. But after 2 orders? That’s not nearly enough of a commitment to give free work out.

Often new buyers will come to me and say “How much for X amount of words” - I nearly always tack on another 500 words to what they say (for proofreading) because 9 times out of 10, they always underestimate. If I end up overcharging slightly I know I can always knock off a fiver for them discreetly, but I also know I deliver excellent service so they’d be getting more than what they pay for anyhow.

Some buyers try it on with freebies, but you can’t knock them for trying!

After accepting the cancellation early that morning, the client contacted me again the next day, asking me why I had cancelled on him (and yes, folks, I did explain why). He said he’d be willing to pay the $10 to cover the word count. However, after I wrote back to him about how his order would NOT be done right away, I haven’t heard from him since. I’ve got many orders due this weekend, and my goal is to give them the service they paid for.

We’ll see if he actually responds…

With your work I see how they can take advantage and you were right to let him know you need to be paid according to what he is getting. So many clients have no problem with paying extra so why do extra work without being paid for it?

On Star Trek, Scotty used to tell Kirk it couldn’t be done so that he would appear as a miracle worker when he did something. If you offer 500 words for $5 which is less than a penny a word, they’ll expect 600. It’s better to offer only 300-400 and if you give them 500 tell them when you deliver, “I gave you 500 because you’re a good client and I had extra time.”