Fiverr Community Forum

Under-Cutting When You're Over-Qualified & Why You Shouldn't Take Gigs that Don't Pay

Hello Everyone!

This is something that bothered me when I initially signed up for a Fiverr account back in 2016. I got so tired of getting $5 requests for 3 SOLID days of work to be delivered within 24 hours that I was too embarrassed to mention I had a Fiverr profile to anyone in a professional setting. I was appalled at the number of people offering very professional / highly skilled services for less than the cost of the coffee I had to buy to keep me awake all night to complete that $5 task before the deadline. :sleepy:

After reviving my account last week, nothing’s changed. In fact, it’s gotten so bad that the GIGS getting the most work are not only under-charging for the type of service they offer, they have terrible profile pictures, poor spelling/grammar as well as a tendency to just Copy-Paste text from profiles of Top Rated Sellers in their niche.

Now, I am not saying you can’t charge $5 if you don’t have any experience at all, but DON’T take on or compete for Buyer Requests that offer higher payouts if you do. Conversely, if the going rate for a simple logo design is $20, you should be charging $20 minimum and shouldn’t entertain buyers who offer you less than that.

The problem with Sellers is that they allow the Buyer to dictate the going rate. The reality is, most Buyers have NO CLUE what they want or how much time something creative or detail-oriented is going to take. If the Buyer keeps getting offers for their $5 budget, guess what’s going to happen? All the people doing really good work & charging a fair price are going to either lose gigs or have to compete with under-cutting from other Sellers. The people offering very high prices are also going to lose out because Buyers are going to dismiss their offers altogether if they see lower offers coming in all the time.

So let’s stop selling ourselves short, please! Also, sellers who are looking to make extra bucks without any experience in their niche, need to be respectful of people who know what they’re doing. Work on building up trust and a solid client base rather than jumping on every gig that comes your way for spare change. Deliver higher-quality work and improve your own skills instead of trying to compete by cost-cutting. There are FREE courses for beginners, but it doesn’t make you a professional and you shouldn’t be charging or competing for jobs with those who are.

Just my two cents, and you’re welcome to disagree, but I think everyone on here would benefit from a fair wage for any work they deliver.

There are plenty of Buyers with ridiculously low budgets who will keep taking advantage of people who can afford to live on less than $5 / day - but the reality is, most of us can’t. I pay more than that for my internet/electricity usage per day! True story. I am certain there are a lot of professional people who have HAD TO take gigs online because of the current situation and the job market is already competitive. Let’s not make it harder on each other and do the right thing.

Thanks for reading.


Welcome to the Fiverr forums.

You are not alone in this thought/opinion, and many of the Regulars here on the forums will fully agree with you. Personally, I think the biggest root cause of this is due to Fiverr’s almost complete lack of barrier to entry: if you’re over 13, you can join. That’s it. While Fiverr does call on its userbase to act and work professionally, there’s nothing to really encourage this.

Have you read this thread yet? Stand Your Ground: Setting Boundaries as a Seller


Oh I love that! YES! Out of 5 buyer requests I could find today, 4 of them can only be deemed Slave Labor - but they had over 70 offers each! What kind of message is that sending out? I had no idea that anyone over 13 could join Fiverr. This is definitely NOT a platform for minors with that type of thing going on. There really does need to be stricter terms & easier ways to report / remove abusive Buyers too.

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Fortunately, Sellers can offer genuine bids for skills. (Another rant, similar topic.)
. Free Work is NOT part of a Professional offer

And most of those ‘70 offers’ are probably junk:
. Buyer's Request: 39 Offers, Should you bid ❓


Oh Miss Tigger T can I marry you? Hang on, seems I better check with wife #1
…apparently not. Sorry I am told I must remove my offer.

My real point inside the joke is that we see too few here who would defend the honor we should have as not only people but Craftspersons who take pride in our work.

It galls me greatly when people who have no professionalism try to say how my craft should be done when they are going against everything that made everything from Ole Hank Williams to The Spice Girls (with a bit of Pink Floyd somewhere in the middle) Great work. If they want the hack work others offer, go get it from them. Just don’t cry to me over how hack it is and expect me to fix it afterwards.


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Fiverr brings out so many mixed thoughts in me. Bear with me, it ties in with your post…

Equal opportunities. On the one hand I believe everyone should have equal opportunities in life. But on the other hand, the Fiverr marketplace is awash with unskilled and untalented sellers who crowd out those who can do a great job and be true brand ambassadors for Fiverr. The good sellers suffer by association with the bad sellers.

English. I have great respect for those who can communicate in a non-native language. I have always struggled with learning other languages and my own skills in French and Spanish are extremely poor. I am blessed to be a native English communicator. But the official language of Fiverr is English. Sellers (and buyers) need to be able to communicate effectively in English in order to be understood and so that orders are processed correctly. In the same way that I would never dream of trying to do business in French or Spanish, I am astounded that so many people believe their level of English is good enough to run their own business as a freelancer.

Business experience. Many of the successful sellers on Fiverr have some real world experience and a general aptitude for running a business. I’ve run organisations with larger than life personalities that would test the very soul of most people! I like to think I understand how to communicate in a friendly and professional way. But you’ve only got to look in the forum to see that some sellers literally have no idea how to communicate to a buyer. No idea whatsoever.

Money. As a seller based in England, my living costs are higher than those for sellers from many other countries. If we think of a $5 gig as an hourly rate, $5 may prove an exceptionally generous hourly rate for people in some parts of the world, but for me in England it’s less than half the legal minimum wage for an adult. With my skills and experience, I therefore need to think of an hourly rate as being closer to $25… where as for some people, $2.50 an hour might be acceptable. But arguably, we could potentially both do the same job…

All of the above is why Fiverr is a mess in my opinion. Rather than allowing people to join (and remain) based on ability, Fiverr has opened the door to anyone. It’s created opportunities for all, but in doing so Fiverr has also created one mighty mess.


I don’t even know where to start with this so I’ll just say AMEN. It drags standards, rates, and industries down.


I absolutely agree with you.

fiverr still need some time to re-brand itself off the ‘cheap,low quality; get the moon for you for just $5’ freelancing platform image.

I’ve been on this platform since 2011, it’s 10 years when reach April. Fiverr did change a lot compare to the beginning, now I considered fiverr as my career, I grow with this platform, I love it because it bring me opportunities to work with anyone around the world as long as they have a paypal account & Internet.

On the other side as you said it’s over crowd with really low quality seller who want to get rich quick overnight who selling low quality service in cheapest $5.

Go to their twitter or FB page, you can see people only ask fiverr to take note to their support ticket most of the discussion, not really engaging into their social media post’s topic.


:smiley: Funnily enough, I just had this conversation with a friend who is a Chiropractor. He’s constantly having to deal with requests to drop his price and he’s the most professional/qualified chiropractor in the country!
He was telling me about the countless times people come to him after going to someone with zero qualifications offering ‘‘professional massage services’’ for $5. Then expecting him to ‘‘fix them’’ AND offer a discount. How is a cheap masseuse even remotely qualified to compete with a professional Chiropractor?
My mother, once said to me ‘‘if you want a diamond necklace, you go to a jewellery shop, not the corner shop’’ in other words, you get what you pay for - in life and in business.
I am sorry that people don’t appreciate your talents and experience. It really is up to professionals to call out the Jokers and maintain high standards in our respective niches.No one else is going to do it, and as long as 5’r is getting their percentage, I don’t think they care what is going on.

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Thank you for your support and I am so sorry you have to experience this too. It is laughable & infuriating.

Very valid points and so organized too! You said that so much better than I could have! I do my best to keep my emotions in check every day & know my own worth. It is challenging to keep motivated when I keep seeing the same disappointing offers and missing out on REAL opportunities because of the lack of consistency, transparency & integrity of Sellers bidding on them.


Great post! I agree wholeheartedly. One way of getting above all of this would be for Fiverr to create a barrier to entry. A simple English test; ask for experience in your chosen field?

As it is, they don’t make money off the meksells anyway, so why entertain them?

My take (well my wife’s) is that these places are not really in the business of facilitating successful freelance transactions anywhere near as much as they are in the business of playing the short-term money market.

So their focus in only on throughput of money, not how it happens. As a result, the apparent business is given lip service whilst the real business drives everything else, no matter how damaging it is to the source of transiting money in the kitty that can be hedged overnight, every night.


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Wish any sellers follow that but great post.

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You’re completly right.

The thing is that a lot of “sellers” in this platform simply have poor/no skills at all and are desesperatly looking for orders and getting dictated by buyers even if they have to work days for 5€…

There are bad buyers and good buyers, 5€ gigs only attracts the bad one who are looking for pro work for 5€ (that they will never get for this budget) ready to exploit naive sellers who think they can do fast money on fiverr with no experience because they watched clickbait videos on youtube
And good buyers who are ready to pay services at it’s real values.

Well, in my case, I did the 5€ thing because the first time i went on fiverr, i just finished my video/audio production studies at school, covid arrived, we were under lockdown, I’ve never done business before, had no idea how to setup prices and neither how to sell services, so I also watched those tips, got some reviews, and then raised up my prices and got experiences.

But let’s be honnest, most of people coming on this forum asking why they don’t have orders since months, you just have to click and watch their profile, notice they have written “professional with 10 years experience” and see a garbage gig with wrong dimensions, draws and logos looking like a 5 years old child made it, most of those “pro graphic designers” stole things from google picture, literally copy/pasted top sellers description, reverse logos, I saw 2 youtube channels with the exact same logos and font, just the name was different, and every sorts of horrors…