I have brought this up numerous times with phone support for months. I can search for ¨best of¨ in my area on Thumbtack and I get a list of pros, none of which in are my area, all of which have way less reviews, hires and experience than the pros/competition in my area. This is partly because search results default to ¨Can Be Done Online¨, which in my opinion is a little convoluted, but that´s just me. I hope that doesn´t violate any guidelines.
The other thing is the feature to filter results is somewhat hidden, likely to make it look tidier. I feel this is at the expense of the Pro, which most things now seem to be. Ultimately I don´t think this serves the customer either as it does not return accurate results. Most likley resulting in either not finding anything and leaving or clicking through the maze resulting ¨interest¨ and getting ¨leads¨. To me this paints an untrue picture of success.
Just because a customer clicks through a prepopulated question to get through to for some sort of unknown result, doesn´t show success on the part of the Pro. In fact based on how many contacts I see on the bids, this most likely is not the case. I am seeing an increase in pros contacted, which to me says less likelihood of an actual hire. General sentiment on the forums seems to confirm this, across multiple fields.
Any time I have requested a refund on the phone it has been met with the verbage that it is a courtesy, even though the situation has clearly been an inconsistency/flaw with the new system/search results/GUI flow of the process of customers finding a pro. The majority of ¨interest¨ for me has been from people looking for a local, thinking they are talking to a local, and not knowing they are hiring someone outside of their area.
The last time I called about it I was given a solution to take off Can Be Done Online on my services, but I want Online work. Then I was given a solution for that but it seemed convoluted and I didn´t quite understand how it helped the problem or how to go about it. Sadly I don´t recall at this point to recount how it actually worked.
But again this is just more fodder to show how complex this is all becoming. There used to be ONE way to get work. And it worked. Now nothing works.
The only attempts I see to help is to improve profiles. but there is only so much that can be done and the design and even how details are filtered and used is actually on Thumbtack. And anyone that got to Top Pro had an adequate profile to get hired in the first place.
I honestly don´t see where there is a solution the Pro has control of sadly.
In the last few days I've had at least two more potential clients who assumed I was local. My earlier screen shots tell the tale. As long as Thumbtack search results continue to fill in the customer's zip code instead of the Pro's zip code, the problem will persist. And clients will learn that Thumbtack is a place where many highly-rated "local" pros decline to do the job.