A couple of months ago, I started offering web design services on Fiverr as a part-time freelancer. My motivation in doing this wasn’t about making loads of money in the first place — I rather wanted to test if freelancing itself is something for me.
However, whatever your motivation might be to start offering your services on Fiverr as well, there’s probably one question that arises in your mind too:
Is it still possible to succeed as a new seller on Fiverr in 2019?
Either as a buyer or seller, someone who visits the gig economy platform for the first time will be overwhelmed by the enormous offer of services. And once you create your first gig on the platform, you recognize quickly: You don’t only compete with local agencies and freelancers any more, now you compete with people from all around the world. How should it be possible there to stick out of this seemly infinite number of sellers?
I think everyone who has ever thought about selling on Fiverr is familiar with these concerns — I had them as well. But as I can tell you now, it is definitely still possible to grow a successful business on Fiverr. And in my case, it was even simpler than I initially thought.
In order to succeed on Fiverr, you need a basic understanding of how those platforms work and what their goal is. With this article, I want to help new sellers who might be as frightened as I was in the beginning. Providing a dead simple strategy, you will learn how to quickly land your first projects and build furthermore a noticeable presence on this platform in just 5 steps.
1 — Create professional, thought-out gigs
First of all, I think it is definitely good invested time to carefully design your gig. A good gig should stand out by a professional look and some sort of uniqueness.
A professional look is essential because it can already distinguish your service among all others that look rather untrustworthy and shady — and on Fiverr, you will find a lot of those. So make sure that you only provide relevant and clear information in your gig description and your profile as well. Furthermore, it can be useful to answer common questions in the FAQ section of your gig. Thus, customers are aware of every detail around your service upfront. And moreover, a nice profile picture of yourself will also work like a charm — people like to know who they work with.
Uniqueness is something that seems nearly impossible to reach on Fiverr nowadays. However, try to find at least some aspects that make your service stand apart. Think of some additional services you could offer around your core competence — like Wordpress websites which not only look good but are SEO-optimized as well. I promoted, for instance, that I am a German native speaker. Since people usually prefer to communicate in their native language, I received a lot of interest from a German audience, therefore.
2 — Set an irresistible price
A good looking gig alone won’t do the magic. Once we have created our gig, we have to make sure that it will pop up in the search results at the very top. To reach that, we can make use of a simple trick: Set an irresistibly low price.
I know that might sound painful first since we want to make money on Fiverr instead of working for someone else almost free of charge. But taking this approach will definitely pay off in the long term since it follows a simple but effective strategy.
This strategy is based on Fiverr’s ranking algorithm and its several factors which determine whether your gigs rank high or not. In general, there are two major aspects that influence the ranking algorithm heavily: prices and reviews. Since the latter requires an existing presence on the platform and we don’t have that yet, we can only make use of the price as our leverage in the first step. Setting a low price until you haven’t reached a significant number of positive reviews can, therefore, be a nice tweak to boost your visibility right away.
And as a small consolation, on Fiverr, buyers have the possibility to leave a tip at the end of every project. Since a lot of buyers actually have a bad conscience for not paying you more than a pittance, they often leave a tip. So even though you offer your services for low prices, it is most likely that you will earn more than that.
3 — Be online, respond fast.
Followed along, you will receive first messages of potential clients soon. Now, it’s your turn to act. Try to respond to each message as quick as possible. One of Fiverr’s key metrics is the response time of sellers. Therefore, it is most likely that they will value fast responding sellers more than slower ones. Even though, it can be annoying sometimes — responding fast will be very beneficial for your rankings. And remember, our main goal is to get the best possible rankings in order to quickly get our first clients. You don’t even have to immediately answer every first message in detail. For example, there were several situations where I had no time to respond really. Then, I just sent a standardized message where I appreciated the client’s interest and let him know that I come back to him later on.
In addition, try to be as much online as possible in your first days. The goal of platforms like Fiverr is to enable interactions between freelancers and clients — as quick as possible. Given the scenario that a client is looking for a specific type of service, it only makes sense that Fiverr ranks sellers that are always online higher. Thus, Fiverr guarantees that the client finds a suitable partner to work with within minutes. And Fiverr, as well, has an interest in creating as many interactions as possible. It wouldn’t be really smart to reward rarely active sellers with good rankings.
4 — Gather reviews
Once you’ve created your low-priced gig, you should be able to land your first projects quickly. Since Fiverr is a platform where reviews and recommendations matter the most, these first projects are really important. You will clearly recognize that after you’ve received your first 5-star reviews, your rankings will be much better, in general. Hence, it is definitely worth to do some work almost for free upfront if you get some good reviews for that in return.
So, make sure that you definitely overdeliver in your first projects and be as pleasant as possible to the client or customer. In general, most customers are already satisfied if you communicate clearly and regularly with them and additionally deliver everything on time.
5 — Raise prices
At this point, you have finished your first orders on Fiverr, congratulations! Having your first reviews in place, you should already see an increase in gig visitors. Finally, you can reap the rewards of your hard work.
The last step in this strategy now is to raise your gig prices according to the growing number of reviews. We can do that because, as I previously explained, we are now able to gain leverage and visibility on the platform more and more from a built-up trust-mark which is based on excellent reviews. Therefore, we are not solely reliant on low prices.
My suggestion is to raise prices after 3 reviews as a minimum. But this is something you have to figure out for yourself. If you still don’t get that many quotations from clients, keep prices low. If the combination of low prices and excellent reviews, however, lead to a number of quotation which becomes hard manageable, raise prices.
This simple strategy I laid down in this article worked perfectly for my niche — web design services. However, I have to admit that there are probably sections on Fiverr where this approach isn’t that easy applicable. For instance, most logo design gigs start already at $5. Obviously, you have no chances for underselling in this section. But even though, use this article as an inspiration and motivation. It is still possible to succeed on Fiverr in 2019. All you need is a thought-out strategy — which can be might even as simple as this one.
If you are interested in reading more about my experience with Fiverr as a seller, I wrote an article about 3 lessons I’ve learned as a freelancer on this platform and what I would recommend new sellers to be aware of:
In addition, one of my next articles will be about one of the biggest advantages I see for beginning freelancers on Fiverr — so if you don’t want to miss out that one, leave me a follow.