Fiverr Forum

How not to allow Buyers to pick your brain for free


Sometimes we need to answer Buyer questions in order to close the sale, but sometimes they’re getting services they should be paying another Seller for.

For instance, a Buyer asks, “Could you proofread my sales letter too?”, but proofing sales letters is outside the realm of your gig. Sure you could proof it, but you have no way to charge for that. If you do that for free, then you’ve cheated Fiverr and another Seller out of revenue… and that would be foolish. If you don’t do it, you fear you might lose the sale.

Here’s what you need to do…

Understand that Buyers are on the offensive and they sometimes overstep a boundary and other times they just don’t recognize our value. As a Seller you need to regain control of the sale and reestablish your value. The best way to do this is to ignore their question, but instead start closing the sale. Reply with things like, “When can I expect your order so I can schedule you in”? or “Don’t forget to add my very popular gig extras when you order”. Just be clever and remember to reply with control and value in mind.


I used to just respond with a message mentioning i can provide such a service followed by a custom offer.


I wish that would work for my category!

Only if we deliver a video will our orders be marked as complete, even for custom offers.


Ah didn’t remember that custom offers couldn’t be independent from a gig anymore. This changed just before i had to take an insanely long break.
Some general gig for such custom offers perhaps.


I disagree with ignoring their question. You don’t have to ‘find a way’ to charge for it - just include it in your custom offer description and add an amount that makes sense to you.

You have two options here:

  1. even though you don’t offer this as a gig you can do it and don’t mind doing it so you include it in your custom offer price for the whole job.
  2. you politely tell the buyer that this isn’t something you can do for them - not part of your core business/skillset.

Ignoring the question might lead to mixed expectations. The buyer may even think that you’re implicitly agreeing to do this for them by not explicitly stating that you’re not.


Here is a good article with other techniques for addressing the problem of “free brain picking” and it leads to many more useful tips.


I´d say the ‘danger’ is real.


I totally agree with @capitalquality on this one. Silence can be easily misinterpreted and misunderstood. So, keep a buyer silent at your peril. Don’t know how that works for you, but sure don’t think is something I am willing to try.

Clear the air…keep buyers happy