Fiverr Community Forum

How are you handling open orders that go dark in the time of COVID-19?

Hey Fiverrians- I hope everyone is doing well in light of the current uncertain situation :heart:

I’ve had an open order with a new buyer for almost 20 days now. They ordered a 5-email campaign without chatting with me first. (I know some of us are fine with that, but for me it strongly affects the quality of work I can do for them.) From their requirements, I wasn’t able to figure out their “goal” for the emails. I wrote back suggesting an outline, and they wrote back suggesting a separate one. Not a problem at all, but it required a lot of additional information and resources from their side that they said they’d provide and that I’ve now requested multiple times. :hourglass_flowing_sand:

Once the clock ticked down the first time without an answer, I sent an extension that they accepted.

The Buyer has checked in once since then (a week ago) to let me know things are busy on their end and they’d send me the info soon. It’s 100% understandable to be busy in this time - but they’ve essentially gone dark while keeping the order open and not responding to my reminders (despite the fact that they’ve been on Fiverr).

I know that this is an average day on Fiverr, believe me. :slight_smile: I have compassion for the chaos they must be encountering and have been very patient, but I’m getting anxious about the lack of response. With 4 days left, I’ve checked in once more to ask whether they want A) to extend further or B) me to complete the order based on the original outline I proposed (which I do have the info for). I didn’t suggest cancellation because why should they be able to hurt my stats when they ordered without really knowing what they wanted?

It would help so much to know I’m not alone and hear other perspectives. Are you guys dealing with this too? How can we balance compassion with realistic expectations here?

4 Likes

Why don’t you try to deliver your campaign like a template based on the outline you proposed?

and deliver them with a note that you can do changes as required in future without any additional cost!

This way you can keep your order and reputation…

Btw I liked your approach that you need to understand a client’s requirements first to meet their goals.

Thank you.

1 Like

I have 2 open orders. Both went dark. Where they were chatty and helpful one moment — now I haven’t heard from both in a while (long orders, one went dark for 14 days so far, the order is due today, the other went from responsive in moments to no response for 6 days when I have relevant questions). These are design orders, in case that makes a difference.

I contacted customer service, and submitted a request for extension on the first order (figuring no matter how busy they are, they told me the time they needed it printed by, and maybe they just need more time). No response. Customer service offered to cancel the order. I did all the work and just had 4 photos left where I needed to know where to place them. I took best guesses (matching names of the file with recipes in the cookbook and placing photos near recipes of the people in the photo). Polished it up, sent a preliminary low-res a few days ago letting them know if I didn’t hear from them I would submit the high-resolution for delivery within 24hrs of the deadline. So I just delivered a short time ago, not having heard from them. In the delivery I let them know that even if the order auto-completes, I will gladly do revisions for them. (I always do anyway, but it’s good to let them know this.) They don’t need to print the file for a couple weeks, so hopefully they come back with an all’s-well and changes.

The other is a little more awkward as I was asking whether to work with or omit recipes in their book that will be difficult to convert to vegan recipes. If I continue not to hear from them I’ll put in the extra effort to convert the recipes (these being philly cheesesteak & mac & cheese lol) in spite of not knowing whether the recipes will work.

At the end of the day I’ve been hired, the Fiverr system isn’t set up for what’s going on right now, and I padded the delivery on orders exactly because of issues like this and gave orders more time in case of long blackouts in communication. And I said as much (that these are uncertain times and the situation is changing daily right now, so I could not guarantee delivery sooner since both ends of the order might require extra time and there might be lags in communication) when we discussed the order. It’s my job to deliver on-time in spite of hurdles and lack of client communication.

In the worst case scenario there’s questionable ethics whether I cancel the order or deliver without hearing from the customer. This is a very difficult situation and none of us have a crystal ball to know what’s the best course of action. It’s a worldwide first in my lifetime (and I’m over 50 years old). I’m erring on the side of keeping to my agreements, and doing my best, with wide-open offers to fix things if I don’t get it right.

What else can we do?

I hope to hear from both clients within a week or two, and no matter how harrowing their story, I will do the right thing and honor the revisions and make everything right afterwards.

Criss

PS - and yes, this is going to be a hard hit on my cashflow since the orders won’t pay out for 2 weeks after auto-completion. :frowning: