Fiverr Community Forum

I'm Completely Burned Out By My Inbox

For the next two weeks, anyone who messages me will just be getting a generic "sorry, I can’t help message."

As it is, I am at the point where whenever I receive a new message notification, I physically wince.


"I want to hire you"

"the project has started, we just need professional help"

"what is the cost?"

Every time I receive messages like this, I just want to scream "WHAT BLOOMING PROJECT??? GROW A BRAIN AND SPEAK FOR GOD SAKE!!!"

I did temporarily find relief from inbox zombies by sending them questionnaires. However, this is no longer working. Most people now just provide answers which leave more questions needing to be answered.

I do try to seek further clarification, but 3 or 4 messages in, buyers either drop off when it is clear they are not going to get a discount, or THEY get impatient with me wasting their time.

In the vast majority of these cases, it also turns out that all a person messaging needed to say initially was something like:


We are a homemade ice cream parlor in CapeTown, could you help us with copy for our website?"

But for some reason, people are cognitively incapable of consolidating their briefs. When asked for clarification, some even take this to mean that they need to send me 500-1,000 outlines of how to write an SEO article.

The really annoying thing at present, though, is that while I waste time on messages like this, I get orders coming in from buyers who need no long rambling inbox conversations. They just place a blooming order.

So that’s it. I’m just not replying to messages anymore. Sayonara time wasters!


What about your response rate? You have to send a funky, creative, generic response.

You can’t disappoint me! I am looking forward to what you can come up with. Let those buyers know why, for Pete’s sake!


I’m just sending "Hi, I’m sorry, but I can’t help you with this."

I have tried lots of other cookie cutter responses like:


I’m sorry, but your request is too vague for me to offer to help you with this. However, if you can clarify your brief, I’d be happy to let you know if I can help."

However, this just results in people taking 3-days to tell me that they own a Canadian beauty salon. In this case, the less said, the better.


Yep, that’s the approach I’m taking.
I can’t help you if you can’t help yourself.

In my category it’s “I need a logo, can you help me?”

If I have time I do ask them two or three questions and if they are still being mor*ns then I send “I’m not the right person”.
If I don’t have time and overwhelmed with orders then it’s direct “I can’t help you” if they are unable to answer my “what kind of logo?” question.

I know that probably fiverr algorithm is punishing me if I don’t convert new messages into sales but my emotional stability is more important


generic response is the key for time wasters :grinning:


Potential Buyer: Hi
Me: Hi
Potential Buyer: PlEaSe GiVe OrDeR, DeAr SiR


I have a questionnaire and I find it mostly effective but sometimes it serves as a repeller and nothing else. I can usually tell who will attempt to answer the questions and who will disappear into the thin air seconds after I send it out. After all, if a person takes zero effort to communicate their request to you, they’re not going to bother to go through the questions.

My favorite kind of potential buyers are those who will answer some of the questions and ignore the rest, even if you ask multiple times. And they never go: “I don’t understand what this means. Can you clarify?” They just decide on my behalf what I need to know and what I don’t.

It’s just the Payoneer stress aftershocks, I hope the universe balances itself. Or whatever.


This is my favorite one :grin:

And these are lazy sellers:


That’s hilarious! Luckily I’ve never had to deal with sellers messaging me, but I did get the occasional:

Potential Buyer: Hi
Me: Hi there! How can I help?
Potential Buyer: I need help
Me: Would you like me to proofread or translate something?
Potential Buyer (1 day later): Hi


I feel your pain!

Besides the four or five “Hi” or “Hello” posts I get per day, there are far too many who ask vague questions or give tiny blips of information about their needs. Add in the regular “You have lots of work. Can I have some of it?” messages, and … argh!

I have a lot of premade responses ready to go with one click. Helps keep me sane.


Hi Cyaxrex. I totally know what you’re talking about. I had a really bad experience with a potential client over something that could have been really simple. I want to know if I’m the one that’s insensible here. This is the summary of my story. A potential client messaged me sometime around 9pm 1st of July, regarding my convert word to pdf and pdf to word gig. He stated he needed a word doc converted to pdf and how soon I could complete. I responded with something like “Are there any charts or graphs included?” He sent me two sample copies of the same file. I looked through them thoroughly. Then I asked if there were any special requirements for the file. No response. Then I stated that if it’s a simple conversion I could complete in less than a day. No response. I even proceeded to give him a special offer if he chose to use the service. No response.

The morning of July second around 8am. I got a message from him saying, "show me what you can do with this file. I sent him the simple conversion which his what he requested at the outset. Then I said I hope this is what you wanted? “No it’s not, tell me what’s different”. ???

I’m sorry for dragging this out, but I’m really upset.

Anyhow, being patient I responded with something like, “I gave you what asked me yesterday, but you did not respond to are there any special requirements?” Then he proceeded to send me a pdf version of the file. Oh my God!

My response: what exactly are you asking me to do with your file, please?

Client: File should be satisfy and archivo font.

My response: I’m sorry, I don’t know what you are trying to convey. You may find someone else who can do the job for you because the said fonts are already in the format you are requesting. Thank you for considering this gig.

Client: You sent me helvetica fonts.

??? Wow.

Client: Is English your second language?

??? Wow. I wondered if I was a speaking in another language all along.

Anyhow, client blocked me. And got someone who completed the job this morning. A person who speaks English as a second language to boot. Wow.

So, please tell me, if went wrong somewhere. Or did I handle that situation well? I don’t know.


Yes, yes. Got something like that too some time ago.

Hi Lena. Could you please clarify “payoneer stress aftershocks”? Thanks.

Dude stop crying and try to understand what the buyer wants. After a brief chat you will understand if you want to work with him or no. Some people need a bit of interviewing about their project and needs. I don’t understand what is the problem, too many people are messaging me and i’m too lazy to answer to each and one of them? It’s like comparing that you having a shoe store and a potential client comes in and says hey i need new shoes and you are tired of so many people asking you the same question…

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That’s assuming the person actually says “I need shoes”. The problem is that they’re not saying that. They’re not providing any information. It’s closer to someone staring at the menu in a fast food place while the cashier is waiting and not ordering.


Dude, put Bill and Ted behind you. It’s 2020 already. .


If you’re not willing to spend some time with the buyer, how can you know? If i am a buyer i would also contact a freelancer and give out all my details slowly as we talk, there is nothing wrong with that. People are paying money for your time and services.

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That’s just it. You’re willing to communicate. The complaints are for the Buyers who don’t give details.


People are not paying for time here. They are paying for services, and that doesn’t include teasing what they want out of you over the course of five or ten messages.

To use your shoe store analogy…

A man walks into a shoe store. “Hi.”

“Hi. Can I help you find a pair of shoes? What type are you interested in today?”

“I need shoes.”

“Yes, but what type? Sneakers, sandals, boots?”

“Do you carry shoes? Size ten.”

“Yes, but what type of shoes. What occasion do you want the shoes for? Dressy, casual?”

“Why haven’t you given me shoes yet?!”


Not to mention that these types of people usually turn out to be difficult buyers… which we obviously want to avoid, especially when we’re not newbies on Fiverr and have no patience for nonsense…