Fiverr Community Forum

Let's talk about the Fiverr/Payoneer unfair 2 tier system

First things first. I’m in the UK. It is my belief that fiverr has created a 2 tier system, with US sellers receiving more money for the same work. This is an unfair practice. It needs to change.

For UK bank transfers we are stuck with fiverr/Payoneer and their fees/rates.

(I have a UK paypal account that can receive US dollars, but as soon as I transfer to GBP I suffer the terrible paypal exchange rates)

So consider the following example.

A UK buyer contracts me to provide a voice over. The gig will cost them $100.
that same UK buyer contracts a US seller to provide the exact same gig for the same price - $100

Fiverr will take their customary 20% leaving both myself and the US seller with 80 dollars.

So far so good.

we both request bank transfers at the cost of 3 dollars.

The US seller walks away with $77

I Don’t

My $77 dollars should be worth £60.26 at the time of writing (mid market rate)

with fiver applying their ‘currency exchange fee’ of 2%, my $77 is now $75.46 before it is even converted into GBP leaving me with only £59.05

I would be fine with this if we had the option to receive dollars and handle the conversion ourselves. But we are not being given that option.

we are always 2% worse off than our US counterparts.

If your average fiverr income is $2000 a month/ $24000 a year that equates to a deficit of $480 over the course of a year.

The solution is simple - allow for virtual US bank accounts like transferwise et al. let us as sellers determine the best way to handle our US dollars - Pay us the same as the US sellers

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The solution isn’t so simple. Payoneer is the only paymnt service which operates globally. I would prefer to get paid via Skrill. However, Skill isn’t available in many places outside of the EU. Neither are platforms like Transferwise available where I live in Malta.

To please everyone, Fiverr would have to onboard several different payment providers. This could lead to shakier AML compliance. Some payment providers also require platforms to adhere to their AML standards. This means signing exclusive contracts where other payment providers need to be dropped.

PayPal and Payoneer are not ideal. However, overall, these are the best payment options for Fiverr.

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You make good points but if I can be a little bit facetious here…

so what?

how fiverr implements these changes is on them. The fact is, UK sellers are at a disadvantage. They need to change it.
How difficult is it really for Payoneer to pay out to Transferwise US dollar accounts? the system is already in place - they just don’t recognise virtual US dollar accounts as valid. Thats a policy issue, not a logistics issue.

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You could try to increase your prices to cover the bad exchange rates…

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not a good argument - Look at my $100 example in the original post. I would have to charge $102. If I do that I am now charging more for the same service as someone in the US. That still puts me at a disadvantage.

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PayPal doesn’t recognize virtual accounts either. The reason why is simple. Virtual accounts are predominantly used by people who like to use online gambling platforms. I know because I used to live solely off online gambling income. There are huge money laundering problems with that market. - Hence why you have most gambling sites based off-shore.

After online gambling, there are lots of people who use virtual dollar accounts for other illicit purposes. Payoneer can’t go near that market which is why you can’t even use a Payoneer card to credit an online bookmaker account or buy Bitcoin.

It all always comes down to policy decisions based on compliance with AML laws and compliance with financial regulations in lots of separate jurisdictions. It might sound simple to you. However, asking Payoneer to payout to anothe service like Transferwise is a very big, very messy, and potentially very expensive deal.

All that said, Fiverr has a Twitter post all about how they have given the finger to the gender pay gap. Maybe head over there and start dropping some financial prejudice bombs everywhere. That way, you might at least get your issue on the radar.

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At the end of the day, it is what it is. I am ok with PayPal myself, sure their exchange rate is not the best, but then again I prefer it over Payoneer.

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I have no interest in dropping ‘financial prejudice bombs’ :smile: on a public platform that could harm fiverr’s reputation. That would be biting the hand that feeds me! I’m posting here because I want a constructive discussion about how to improve the system.
I’m interested in how transferwise, or any other virtual account is any different to paypal as it relates to fiverr. I can be paid in dollars on paypal. Is it any less susceptible to money laundering? Suppose a criminal sets up fake gigs to be paid for illegal activity, is being paid by Paypal any different to transferwise? where is the difference in liability on fiverr’s part?

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when you’re paid exclusively in a foreign currency, finding the best exchange rate is just good business sense. That’s why I want to push this discussion.

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Not just UK sellers suffer that loss.

I get and agree with your point, just one remark, you don’t need to use Fiverr’s currency exchange offer, that’s a recent option only, you can still have them transfer your whole US$ amount to PayPal, from then on, it’s in the hands of what PayPal/your bank leave you of those US$.

I prefer to get the US$ to my PayPal instead of € because I get more than with Fiverr’s exchange option, plus at least I can then pay things I pay for in US$ online without exchange loss - actually without double exchange loss, imagine I have Fiverr exchange my US$$ and send them to my PP as €, then I buy something online in US$ and get hit again with the currency exchange fee for the very same money … pretty ridiculous in our “global world”.
I hope there’ll be an end to that some day, just like bank transfers all of a sudden take seconds instead of days and don’t cost more…

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I’ve already explained this. Payoneer operates globally. No other payment provider can say the same, not even PayPal. When a platform integrates a payment processor, it doesn’t just add an add-on. There is a deal made and a contract put in place.

With Payoneer, we know that this deal results in:

No initial charges for prepaid mastercards
No annual fees like if you open a Payoneer account on your own
Branding of cards with Fiverr imagery

These are all powerful benefits for Fiverr. Branded cards are essentially free marketing. Zero annual fees are also an incentive for people to join Fiverr. Added to that, Fiverr can attract freelancers from anywhere,

It is very likely that Fiverr gets these perks by offering Payoneer exclusivity for managing payments off the platform.

As for how Transferwise and other payment providers are different, I’ve already explained how many don’t cover the same territory as Payoneer, As far as anti-money laundering goes, it is best practice in every business to funnel payments through as few payment providers as possible. This is why PayPal and Payoneer can’t be integrated with other payment services like Skrill.

From a security perspective, we also know that Fiver does not let people use the same PayPal or Payoneer account with more than one Fiverr account. This helps prevent sellers from making multiple accounts or new accounts after being banned. As soon as you add more payment providers into the mix, you have a potential loophole scammers can use to create more accounts.

It is a very complicated subject, but that is basically it.

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Sellers from every country where the currency isn’t US dollar.

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I was specifically referring to how it is different to paypal in terms of security, not in global reach.
I 100% agree with you that fiverr have signed a deal with payoneer that demands exclusivity. I’m saying that deal is unfair to non us sellers. I’m saying it’s on them to fix it. How complicated that is to achieve is an entirely secondary concern. The goal should be equality.

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It was explained to you that Payoneer is global and they sign a contract that they do not allow competitors to Payoneer on the platform if they want to use it. No other payment provider is global. You can’t push fiverr to change it. They can’t.

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New information. Thanks

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Rivals like PayPal? :wink: All contracts can be negotioated. I’m sure regional deals could be negotiated. Even if it’s negotiating better transfer rates for fiverr withdrawals or reducing exchange fees. Everything can be negotiated. The current system penalises non US sellers. It’s up to fiverr to work out how.
Here’s a bit of an overexagerated tongue in cheek example

Hey we’re paying you less than your colleague!

Why?

We signed a deal with the brown envelope people that we only use their specific envelopes, and they only allow us to fit this much cash in.

But how come he’s getting more?

His bank notes are smaller and they fit.

But that’s crazy! You need to change this!

No we can’t. It is what it is. The contracts have been signed . Our hands are tied etc etc.

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If Payoneer is the ONLY one who is global then fiverr needs them. I have no doubt there was a negotiation.

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That is good solutions, it’s like without moving building just take little side to get your destiny.

A deal can’t be renegotiated when there isn’t a service comparable to the one you already have and you already have a good deal. Brexit is an example of that.

Payoneer charges approximately $40 per year for use of their service. Fiverr sellers do not pay this. If there are a million sellers on Fiverr using Payoneer, that equates to a revenue loss of $40 million.

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@awdickson - why don’t you create a GBP account on Payoneer? It’s just a few clicks.

You will withdraw from Fiverr in USD on your Payoneer USD balance, and you transfer USD in GBP. In that case, you pay just 0.5% fee.

Plus, once you use the card for Payments and etc, you wil skil the cross border fee.