Micro Jobs – Income For Some, Savings For Other!
Do you need a video testimonial to help promote your product? How about inexpensive banners to promote your site? Do you need graphics to dress up your blog or website? Maybe you need to find and affordable SEO copywriter to write your press release, proof read your sales literature, or just someone to write a resume. If so, turn to online entrepreneurs offering their time and skills as micro jobbers
Micro jobs, usually referred to as gigs, are tasks people are willing to do for very reasonable prices. For just a few dollars, you can have someone create a voice over for a slideshow video presentation of your product. While someone else will create and edit a video for you for $5 to $10. Others will create banners to promote you website, make headers for blogs and websites, design your custom avatar or a logo, and so on.
Need a professional quality 15 to 60 second radio ad recorded that won’t break the bank? No problem! You can get one done for $10 or less from any number of micro jobbers.
The best known of all micro job sites is fiverr.com, which as been reported on by The Wall Street Journal NBC, Yahoo! Finance, CNNMoney.com. TechCrunch, FoxNews, Wired, SmartMoney and others. However, there are a number of such services that are easy to find by doing a Google search for “fiverr like sites” or “micro jobs”. Fiverr is somewhat ahead of all similar services because it was one of the very first on the scene. Being an early bird, Fiverr has addressed a number of problems suffered by micro job sites that I want to highlight. I, personally, buy on Fiverr more than any other micro job site, and have more gigs I’m selling through Fiverr than other sites as well.
All gigs on Fiverr are $5. However, there as extras that can be purchased from some sellers that cost either $5 or $10. Many micro job sites have already followed Fiverr’s lead and have started providing sellers with the option to offer extras. I assume it will be just a matter of time before all do.
The most common extra is to have the work completed quickly, while others add on useful extras to an existing purchase. For example, if you purchase a testimonial video to promote your product, service or business, there may be an offer to purchase it in HD for an extra $5. Or an extra may be to have it shot against a green screen, to have your company logo embedded, a choice of special background video or image added, or maybe to add text. These extras are often the difference between getting a decent product for very little money, thus getting an amazing job, or to have the work finished quickly.
There are three levels of sellers on Fiverr, plus those that are not rated or have achieved no level of customer satisfaction. The first two categories of sellers are those that have yet to sell anything, and those that have sold something but are not yet awarded with Level 1, Level 2, or Top Rated Seller recognition.
New sellers are those that only recently signed up, and are unknown entities. I recommend with this category of seller some caution be exercised. Like all online sources of money, there are scammers a plenty descending on the service to try and give nothing for the money they can extract. Fiverr, being the best known of all micro job sites, gets more than their far share of these crooks. However, all micro jobs suffer from the same low-lifes trying to victimize buyers. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of honest sellers signing up all the time. They’re simply wanting a chance to do a good job and make a few dollars in exchange. Unfortunately there are enough crooks among their ranks that I have to suggest letting someone else test the waters. To be on the safe site, collect a new gig you’re interested in by clicking on the small heart icon with the word “collect” beside it on the Fiverr gig page. On other micro job sites it may be a check mark icon, a smiley face, or something similar. This will add the seller’s offer to a personal list of gigs you like. You can then check back to see if there have been any sales made, and if there were you’ll be able to read what was said about the seller. If there were sales and the ratings are all thumbs up you’re probably safe buying the gig yourself, at least in most cases, that is…
Fiverr and other micro job sites first need a buyer to accept that a seller has delivered whatever it was he or she sold. They then hold funds for 21 to 30 days before paying it out, which you’d think would be protection enough. However, some clever con artists have managed to find a way to circumvent this system. These people will create a gig that’s too good to be true, literally. They’ll then offer something like 50,000 Facebook fans in 72 hours, or 5000 Twitter followers. A buyer takes the bate and purchases the gig. In short order the buyer receives a communication from the seller stating something like, “Thank you for your order. I placed your FB page in the queue.” The con is that the communication sent by the seller uses the job completed response field in the reply form, not the standard communication field. If you reply without first clicking on a link that is to be used to communicate there is a problem, or click that you are rejecting the delivered purchase, you effectively accepted that the seller delivered the goods and your money is gone. With many micro job sites, confirmation of delivery instantly gives the con artist a thumbs up too so other potential purchasers assume the seller delivers as promised.
Fiverr has changed their communication form to make it much easier to respond without accidentally accepting that a non delivered sale was delivered, but as of the time of writing it is the only micro job site to address this very common scam. This is very likely because Fiverr, being the top traffic micro job site has more of these scammers signing up to steal a few dollars. I suspect as the crooks migrate away from Fiverr to other, similar sites, those too will make changes to their communication scripts to thwart this scam. Until they do, simply use caution when buying from newer sellers, and remember that if a product or service sounds too good to be true, it is. Also, use care to not respond to a sales being delivered communication unless it was. If someone sends you notice of a delivery and there is nothing delivered, or you are not satisfied first click on the “Problem” or “Reject Delivery” links.
The next level of sellers are those that have made a few sales but have not sold enough, or delivered enough to the satisfaction of the buyers, to have earned recognition. If such a seller is offering a gig you want, I recommend reading the comments. If you see comments that are saying something like, “OK, I will wait for…” or, “Thanks, I look forward to receiving…” forget the gig. These are the typical replies given to the scammers mentioned above. However if the vast majority are positive reviews, you’re most likely going to be safe making a purchase.
As for ratings given sellers on Fiverr, as well as all other mico job sites, 100% satisfaction is obviously the number to look for. However, there are sellers who have sold hundreds of gigs, some even thousands, and their rating may be less than perfect. A reality in dealing with consumers is that, “You can not make all of the people happy, all of the time!” The more a seller sells, the more likely he or she is to have a complaints. Plus there are buyers who are scammers too, though not many. They sign up for an account, then order gigs that include graphics, or downloads of some kind. Once they get the file sent to them as a completed job, they reject it to keep the money on account which is use to victimize the next seller. So, if a seller has an account that is months or years old, and has a rating of 95% after numerous transactions, you’re safe assuming that person is going to do his or her best to make you happy.
Before I go into the describing the 3 award level sellers, there is a glaring difference between Fiverr and a number of the lesser micro job sites. These are gigs marked as “Featured”. Featured gigs are not necessarily reflective of excellence earned by the seller. With Fiverr, “featured” gigs are selected because staffers because they are useful, have been added to numerous gig collections, or sell well. That said, “Featured” on a good many other micro job sites is a placement and highlighting that can be purchased by a seller. Do not be fooled into thinking that all featured gigs, on all micro job sites refer to the same quality offerings. In fact, buying featured listing placement is another tool being used by the con artists I mentioned earlier. Unfortunately, it isn’t easy to determine on which sites the “Featured” status has to be earned, and on which it’s for sale. Usually, the only way to tell is to create a gig yourself. If at the end of the process you’re presented with an offer to purchase a “Featured” gig status, then you’ll know.
Now, about the award levels on Fiverr… The levels are Level 1, Level 2, and Top Rated Seller. All three levels allow the seller to ad on extras that help them make better income, but also provide purchasers with additional options over and above the basic gig that enhance the gig. Extras can include a priority placement in a queue to have the purchased job completed in a day. Other extras include offers to buy a second gig and get a third for free. The higher the Level, the more extras are available to sellers to offer buyers.
Level 1: This level is available to any seller that has been active on the site for 30 days, and completed at least 10 orders while maintaining excellent ratings and a great track record. It’s a good bet you can trust Level 1 sellers to do their best to fully satisfy buyers because they do not want to lose their status, but rather advance to Level 2.
Level 2: These are sellers that have sold and delivered 50 orders over a two months period, while maintaining excellent ratings and a solid track record. Advancement to Level 2 is automatic, and unlocks further advanced sales tools to expand a seller’s services and help increase their sales revenue. Level 2 sellers also receive priority support. Level 2 sellers can be trusted to give excellent service.
Top Rated Seller: These sellers are manually chosen by Fiverr editors. Promotion is based on criteria, such as: seniority, volume of sales, extremely high rating, exceptional customer care, and community leadership. As a Top Rated Seller, sellers gain access to even more extensive sales tools, early access to beta features, and VIP support. Obviously Top Level Sellers deliver as promised, and do so on time.
I used micro jobs all the time. Even though I’m able to do most website development tasks myself, I prefer to work alone. This being that case, I often have to out-source a lot of work so I purchase videos or have videos I shot edited, have graphics created, blog or template websites set up that I then customize, have photos edited, and so on. A micro jobber will deliver the same or better level of workmanship as I get done for ten times as much going to brick and mortar operators. Plus, I may be prepaying both the people selling through the micro job site, and brick and mortar operators, but I’ve never been burned using micro jobbers. I can’t say the same for brick and mortar businesses. So, in my opinion, if the purchase is less costly, the end product compatible in quality, and the risk minimal, sourcing micro jobbers to do whatever needs to done is the way to go.