Let’s talk about becoming a Top Pro

Community Veteran
11 99 4,756

Hey everyone! I’m Jason, and I manage both the Online Community and the Top Pro program. You may have heard about Top Pro in our Newsletter or seen a Top Pro badge appear next to certain profiles in search results. And now I’m here with a couple of Thumbtack Top Pros, to answer any questions you might have about what it means to be a Top Pro and how to become one.

Here’s how the program works: twice a year -- in January and July -- we evaluate and announce a new class of Top Pros. These are the highest rated, most popular professionals on Thumbtack. Only about 4% of Thumbtack professionals currently qualify for Top Pro status. If you’re named a Top Pro, you’ll earn the Top Pro badge on your profile, which helps you stand out to customers.

Now we want to hear from you. What questions do you have about becoming a Top Pro? What suggestions do you have for improving the program?

Here’s how to participate:

  • Reply below with your question or idea by 6pm EST on Tuesday, January 29th
  • Please limit to one question or idea in a single post so I can respond to as many pros as possible
  • A couple of Top Pros and I will be online starting from around 6:30 EST on the 29th answering your questions and comments. I might also tag you in one or more of my earlier responses if I’ve already answered a similar question
  • Note that off-topic posts may be redirected to a more relevant thread.

A big thank you to @RevDrLCT and @Eric for being our Top Pro panelists! They will be helping answer some of your questions, as well as sharing their tips for how to succeed on Thumbtack.

99 responses
Community Newcomer

I made Top Pro a year or two back but there were many more job requests coming my way and the few that do come now are not enough to justify costs and make top pro.

Community Regular
Hello. I’m just wondering I have 31 reviews and I happen to get one bad review from a customer back in May that I never even did business with and for some reason on my customer page it comes up as the second or third review when I have gotten 20 review since then. Why are you guys trying to show the customer our one bad review? Do you not want us to get work? I’ve noticed in my insights that I have tons of people look at my page or into my services and I got barely any responses and I’m wondering If it has to do with that one review. Thanks.
Community Regular

I am very new at Thumbtack and Im already noticing how many views I'm receiving.  However, even with so many views, only a few respond.  After initiating contact with those who do respond with answers to their questions and my rates, I have heard nothing back from them.  Are there any pointers on how to get hired?  Or, what kind of response do you give when someone does contact you that helps seal the deal?  I am not sure if my prices are scaring them off or my response to them (which is usually a friendly hello, answer any questions they have and give prices).  Thank you!

Community Newcomer

Thumbtack is a review based service. As a top pro I strive to have the highest rating possible as it does give you an edge in getting jobs. That being said. How in the world do you allow verified reviews from customers we have never worked for? How is this in anyway fair? I have 39 reviews 36 5 star ratings 2 4 star ratings and 1 1star rating. That 1star rating came from someone we did not work for. Explain to how that’s fair and how that’s looking out for your Top Pros? 

Community Regular
Dealing with the same issue. I had a customer tell me a dirt cheap price was so expensive. So I gave him advice on that and he got all mad and wrote me a horrible review and I never even did business with him. For some reason it comes up as the second review when the customer views my page. I’ve had 20 good reviews since then. Crazy
Community Regular

Hi Jason, thanks for an opportunity to speak about my experience as a Top Pro.  I was a Top Pro almost from the start with getting hired and my feedback.  Unfortunately, I lost my Top Pro status because of the algorithim used to determine the 75% response status.  (I think mine came in around 72%.)  Anyway, if a customer replied to a quote sent where they said "hey, profile looks good, call me" then I would simply pick up the phone instead of replying back,  "ok, I'll call you" just to stop the clock from ticking.  Then, I would get reminders about hurry up and reply before it's too late.  Other examples were if a customer replied back "thanks" or whatever else, and I don't reply back when no reply was necessary, then the clock counts down and I get rated a dead beat pro.  Funny though, I always got highly rated by my clients as being "very responsive."

I got hired, repeatedly, got 5-star reviews, but since my response rate was not adequate, I was dropped as a Top Pro.  I called and repeatedly tried to get this reversed or looked into to change, but nothing ever happened.  They just said it was what it was and sorry.  Why are we even rated on response time anyway?  We either get the business or we don't.  The customer likes us or they don't.  We get a 5-star review or we don't.  So why does it matter about some algorithim to determine if we are responsive when the algorithim itself can't judge when something is appropriate or not that it needs a reply.  

Sorry, I was proud to be a Top Pro, but find this response rating to be included as a Top Pro absolutely should not be included.

Karl Moore

Was a Top Pro!

Community Newcomer
I have been a Top Pro for years and loved Thumbtack until about 8 months ago when everything changes and now I rarely see anything from Thumbtack. Hard to remain a Top Pro when no clients from Thumbtack to respond to. Appreciate your comments.
Community Newcomer
I’m a little upset that I lost my Top Pro and had no clue that not replying fast enough can hurt your score. Also, the price per lead is somewhat high. If I decline a job, I hope you put that money back in my account.
Community Newcomer
Hi. My name is David and I just became a top pro. I was really happy about this accomplishment. I worked so hard to build my profile and add pics and reviews. Even took the background check. After finally being where I wanted to be. 2 days later thumbtack makes a change to their system. I loved getting the email alert on leads so I can reply asap. Now you no longer get the email alerts. When I called thumbtack they said at first it was a glitch. 4 days later they claimed it's just a change they did to their system. I was so upset. To me it seems like they are forcing you to use promote which I honestly dont like at all.
I was so happy with the thumbtack service. I felt like I paid my dues and now the jobs were rolling in.
So now I decided to open a account with Gigmaster and bark to give them a try. Now I have to start from the bottom and work my way up.

My question is why change something that's working?
Community Newcomer

I just lost my Top Pro status because of a couple 4-star ratings which were elicited by Thumbtack before the job was completed (what do you expect when the job is not yet completed?)

I don't know if you're still doing that ... but if you are, you should stop.

Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi all you amazing pros! Just a friendly reminder that this thread is specific to questions regarding Top Pro. If your post is more relevant to other threads, it will be moved. Thanks for all of your contribution! 

Community Regular
How about opening a thread titled “Hello Pros, what are your thoughts on Thumbtack and the new process for getting/paying for leads?”

I’m sure your servers would explode!
Community Regular
I was a top pro two years in a row, all of a sudden not any more. Did you add more requirements? I had one negative review from an unknown individual that contract was cancelled, is that why I was dropped from Top pro? All my reviews are 5 stars, my current rating is 4.9 I’m constantly in touch with new customers. I respond within a reasonable time, I just don’t get it on new requirements.
Community Newcomer
I was Top Pro for a long time. I didn't make the cut this time. I feel like its because I got a bad review from a customer who was very difficult, couldn't be pleased and disrespected my staff. That review is the very first one people see now. I contacted Thumbtack and tried to have it removed. I was told that it could not be done and my reply is what people looked at. I eventually removed my reply because people did not care about that and it was difficult for me to try to be nice in my reply after the way this man treated my girls and then gave a damaging review. Now people see that review first and do not answer my quotes. Unfortunately, people don't really read the rest of your reviews when they see one like that. You could at least move the bad review down some because it really affects us getting jobs. I am seriously considering dropping out if things don't get better and I have spent alot of money with you over the years. Looking forward to your reply. You really need to figure out what to do about this problem because I see some other pros on here in the same boat.
Community Regular
Don’t feel bad I had one bad review out of 31 and for some reason thumbtack put it as my third review on my page. I have gotten 20 something review since then but for some reason it’s staying as number three so people can see it and not want to use my company I guess even though I never did work for this gentleman or met him or provided any services. Crazy.
Community Newcomer

I was a top pro for a few years. Then I got only partial matches. I have not had any notices at all from your service in months until hearing of this Q & A session. Is your company even getting requests for math tutoring any more? I was starting to wonder if your services was still in business.

Community Regular
I've been a Top Pro for the last couple of years and have never been more disappointed in Thumbtack as I am today. I've not received a single lead in the last 3 weeks here in Metro Atlanta area since your recent changes as far as introducing * promote* feature. It's very unfortunate that as a top pro with excellent 4.9 rating I don't even appear in the list of contractors, while my competitors with far fewer reviews and bad reputation are at the top and it's only because they are using *promote*. This tells me only one thing: Thumbtack is not the same company as you guys used to be when I first started. Every new change you introduce is hurting us more than the last. And the worst thing is you just don't seem to care at all...
Community Newcomer

In determining the "average" for rating, how about throwing out the one lowest review out of 100.  It's easy to get somebody on a bad day and ethically, it is completely out of the question for the contractor to attempt MAKE a client write a good review.   Yes, we can respond to oour reveiws but that doesn't figure in to the rating.  Even if I COULD offer some way to mollify an unhappy client, once written, the review cannot be changed.  I like having the "Top Pro" designation available, but I do not like the fact that it doesn't take very much to knock me off the mark and that my finest service can be "blown up" by one unhappy individual.  

Community Regular
True that,only got one 4star but she was very pleased but dang what would happen to me if I got another 4star..
Community Newcomer

To that end, why are customers allowed to give reviews at all before service has been rendered.  Perhaps we, as contractors, don't want reveiws from some clients.  I submit that reviews should only be available upon invitation from the contractor!

Community Expert

@Tovicand  glad that you've mentioned this. We've actually had a few Q&A sessions about our pricing and the search results system already. Feel free to search in the Community for "Let's talk about pricing", "Let's talk about Search Results", and "Let's talk about Ranking in Search Results" to read more about those. 

Community Newcomer

I was getting about 2-3 request every months for about 2 years. You changed the way you do thngs a little and I have heard from you guys since. I been in business over 25 years. I cannot put muy open schedule up on your board because the amount of busines from Thumbtack is not substantial enough. I would also only get about 1/3 of the leads that I bid on. I understand others are in the area I work although the old way was working well and the new way lack communication and that is necessary in my business. The base fee is for cookie cutter homes and few are that way. I think bidding without proper info is a step backward. How do I get more business from your clients?  

Community Newcomer

I understand that a quick and timley responce is important. Someimes I don't get reviews from my students right way. It takes time for them to write a review. Do I need a 5 star review all the time to quality? Thank you

Active Community Member

ONE BILLION KUDOS! Well said. And 100% True.

Community Regular

When you mark yoursefl hired you can opt out of sending a review until you do so. That feature does not work on the app obviously as you can not mark yourself hire. I do it all of the time. If i want a review i will go in and send it on my own time.

Community Newcomer

I have the same issue.

One person who I never worked with, and who gave me a one star rating, Thumbtack did actually remove. The other was a woman who said she wanted me to work with her son (suffering from trauma), then switched to herself at the last minute. We talked and after 30 minutes we both decided we were not right for each other and I immediately sent her money back.  I was extremely polite and professional.

I think it is dangerous for the reputation of the professional that people can rate someone without us having agreed that we actually worked with that person.

 

Community Regular

Jason,

     As many PRO's know, not EVERY project can go without a hiccup.  I have received only one bad review from work in which I was performing, and I had the chance to get back with the customer and make everything right.  With that being said, if someone leaves a negitive review concerning something left incomplete or not to their standard and the PRO is able to resolve the situation, I feel we, (The PRO), should also be able to resolve the review.  Thanks for your time.

Regards. 

Community Newcomer

So, I'm back as a Top Pro after losing it for a while due to a lady I never actually worked with giving me one star.

Anyway, I'd just like to say that it would be much fairer for Thumbtack to charge for a lead once we accept it.

For instance I get a lead and they are asking if I take insurance (it says in my profile I don't) but they have clicked the button 'what's next' or whatever and Thumback have already charged me for this so called 'lead'. I reply to say no. Instead I should be able to politely say no and refuse the lead and get reimbursed for it.

In fact I notice how iritated I get when I see all these so called 'leads' that mostly are not, and how I have already been changed for them before I even see it. If it's not appropriate, like a guy wanting me to make him into a baby for instance, I don't want to be charged. It has made Thumbtack very expensive.

It would help a lot if clients could actually write themselves what they want rather than just clicking a preset button. It would get rid of a lot of the people just playing. Then we should be allowed discernment as to what's a viable lead or not.

It is a great hub though and it means I have clients I would otherwise never have met, and I appreciate your efforts to improve the service.

Community Newcomer
Hi I was a Top Pro for the last period. Then in December we had less availability since our recurrent clients had us booked for the month. And now for January we are not Top Pros anymore. We just got a new truck (the 3rd one) and are expecting to win more clients during february. The use we give to the app surely is important but We beleive availability shouldn't have such impact on your profile. We also beleive that declining a client is going to close any option with them in the future its kind of rude its not the same to pass on someone that haven't make any direct contact with you but declining someone already tried will close the doors for ever.

With the new search results thumbtack is not assuring "ready to buy clients" anymore they are shopping around and the cost for replying is too expensive compared with google adwords. In my case is 6 times higher many many clients reply with I am not ready yet I will contact you later but they don't si you start seeing less value on the quotes.
Community Newcomer
hi i am not familiar with Top Pro status on Thumbtack how do i achieve that?

thank you

paul
Active Community Member
Agreed.
Active Community Member
The overall changes have been less then favorable

My comment is about the way Thumbtack is rating the pros I think you should change the rating to:
1. number of years as a pro
2. Pros customer reviews versus mixing everyone together because now you have new pros mixed with seasoned pros. as a five-year seasoned pro it’s unfair. This is my opinion and I’m sticking to it 🤗
Community Regular
Ya putting the issues aside for now as things work there way out from lead generations..
Being a TopPro isn't just a badge for thumbtack it's a badge that represents quality within itself kinda like a brand but its our company,hey I got 19 reviews ima 4.9 rated at 5stars,Hey I'll wear that badge cause that's me and I'll promote that socially "right"?if I'm not landing jobs here I'm looking for them lol but heck ya I want to be a 20yr time TopPro,My trucks almost to where I want it at and when someone wants it this yr,bet this baby handyman contractor has the 10 ply railroad truck lol,My badges represent quality assurance reviews for future business agreements,like anything its business,Thx ThumbTack for a $60 bid that landed $10k in multiple jobs in 1 lead
Like allways,Thx to the Tack #IronHandyMan #IronMan
#cabanaman #rjshandymanservices.com
#rjsgutterpatrol.org
#ThumbstakesTopPros
Active Community Member
Serious kudos on your message
Active Community Member
First of all never apologize for the price that you charge if you’re good at what you do it doesn’t matter you can’t please everyone

And if your responses to the customer do not seem right then you call customer service and they’ll reverse the charges🤗
Active Community Member
It’s funny how things have changed with Thumbtack from five years ago

that happened to me with a customer that refused to pay and I immediately called Thumbtack and sent them all the verbiage emails that we had back-and-forth to each other and they blocked her from leaving me a review now things have changed and customers are allowed to just all willy-nilly send reviews but if this ever happens to you again immediately call Thumbtack before letting a day, hour or min go by and report the customer
Community Newcomer
Thumbtack has been very good to me. I've earned THOUSANDS with it. But with the change made late last year, I don't know who has viewed my profile because I've not received even one hit!

My profile is strong; my prices are very competitive; and yet nothing.
I honestly think that the change tipped the scales away from the fairer method of getting business than this--at least for me.

What are your thoughts?
Community Regular
We had the stats for top pro. Then got a one star review (with no text) AFTER the deadline but before you guys made the top pro announcement. Why did that review, which came AFTER the deadline, keep us from becoming Top Pro?!
Community Regular

I've been a highly rated Thumbtack Pro for a number of years, starting in the Chicago area, where I at least landed a number of quality jobs at a fair cost per lead.  Since moving to SW Michigan (and since you've changed your pricing / promoting structure a number of times) that has dwindled down to virtually nothing.   For one thing, it appears that people don't want to pay a fair price for the level of quality, experience, depth and breadth of services,  especially the valuable, cut-to-the-chase, specialized food and health services that I provide.   

But in reality, I have no way of really knowing.  There is no realistic system for communicating with customers during this process.  For example, your "accept or decline" only choices do not support your professionals or foster good customer service when there is no way (without paying $22.35 eg)  to indicate that "I'm booked during that time, but would love to work with you at another time."  And I've paid out a lot of money for what appear to be tire kickers.   People simply don't respond back.  And now your prices, (along with your frequently changing marketing programs, which I really don't understand)  are disproportionate and have gone through the roof, making it difficult to justify using Thumbtack, which I've loved in the past, for getting jobs.. ROI just isn't there. Apparently I am not the only one with these sentiments.  In fact on just about all of  these comments in this thread, virtually everyone is saying the same thing.   I really hope that you guys are listening and will address these issues that are being brought up,  Directly and specifically.     Thank you..   Nancy Lee Bentley 

Community Newcomer
First, talk to me how I can make some money by getting customers - I send quotes to the few leads thrown my way, but never seem to hear back. How do you deal with that? Is there anyway you can improve tie scenario for me so I have some clients at least?
Community Newcomer
Having an easy way to send a note to the client for a review after we have performed the work. Being able to access the customer info after we have been working with them from the initial contact
Community Newcomer

What is the cost of Top Pro and the duration of the cost?

Can it wait until April payment/designation-badge when lawn maintenance/landscaping begins?

Is there constant monitoring (Example monthly or end-of-year monitoring) to see that Top Pro standards are still justified and can be taken off Top Pro status?

Is there survey that shows Statistical Success Difference for those with the Badge?

Community Regular

Pete1-I am having the same issue.  I hope we get a response for this.

Community Regular

Will the Top Pro status cut down on the many leads that we receive that don't respond back to us?  I would love to try and become a Top Pro if so!! 

Community Regular
The same thing happened to me! Thumbtack refuses to delete the review. I never worked with the person. I’m actually pretty sure it wasn’t even a real person. Total scam. Now that thumbtack has opened up to have our profiles viewed, it’s become a hot spot for scammers.
Community Regular
I was a top pro for 4 years straight now I'm not due to a bad review from a customer who wouldn't pay their final bill. They also didn't pay the DJ. I contacted tt and explained what happened and they said they would look into it. They tried to contact this person and she didn't respond. She accused me of throwing away her wedding cake. I made this cake, why would I throw it away? I sent tt screen shots of our conversation. Absolutely nothing was done and they wouldn't remove her review. I work hard to be a top caterer and feel very screwed over bu tt. Not to mention the prices are way to high. GO BACK TO THE OLD PRICING. Us pro would appreciate not getting screwed over anymore. I don't even care about your top pro program anymore. So frustrated with Thumbtack.
Community Regular
They have to fix this!! Same thing happened to me.
Community Regular
Hi, this is a problem I have. We are one of the top Pros. We know exactly how you get there and how to remain there. Unfortunately, all of the other movers know how as well. I have found that for some of the movers that are not legitimate companies, their approach is to kick your legs out from under you in lieu of bettering their own business model. Recently, we sustained to negative reviews from individuals for whom we have never worked. One of them went as far as to file a complaint and state that we had damaged their property. When the rubber met the road and it was time for them to verify that we had actually work for them, they disappeared. They have not spoken to Thumbtack again nor would they answer any requests we made to address this fictitious problem. What I need to know is how can we get these reviews removed. It seems that if you guys cannot match up emails to a prospective customer and existing mover that the use stand no matter what. I would greatly appreciate you supporting your clothes, who actually make the payments to bid in lieu of fictitious customers who don't have a dime invested. We spend somewhere in the neighborhood up $2,000 to $3,000 per month would you guys. I would like a little loyalty. Instead, it seems like you're more anxious to kick one of your prose out and believe some individual on the other side of a computer terminal from which you have no history with. This is very disheartening.
Community Regular
I have been a top pro several times and have not been doing very much work from thumbtack lately but I still get charged for calls that I never accepted or in most of them even recognize
Community Newcomer
Thumbtack had been great to me . I was busy on 2018 but you are right pricing when up a little too much