I want to be able to control what geography I repond to. I can't do it. It used to work and we got leads from it. Now we don't. I just pay.
First and formost I want to thank Thumbtack, It truely played a great role in my business from the beginning.
I feel like we grew together now but to be honest, new system and way of charging doesn't seem fair.
I don't get business like before even though I follow up, I message and reply and have good amount of reviews (all 5 stars) but the result of new changes are not satisfying. to some extend I even wanted to discontinue but still waiting to see and hopful to witness good changes.
I want to know EXACTLY who I am being charged for! I get these charges appearing and I don't know if they truly hired me or they were just responding "no thank you"!!! It's usually only $5.00 per quote, but I just got one for $5.43! REALLY?
And just HOW do YOU determine what a job is worth? I'm the one sending out the quotes!!! The least expensive job is a pant hem at $20.00 - so a $5.00 charge for a quote is pretty steep! Granted, other jobs (like bridal) are worth more, but...
My advice, stick with $5.00 per quote that has actually been accepted as a "hired". Not just some back and forth negotiating! Or, give people looking for services, clearer instructions on HOW TO actually "hire" someone online. I have had to ask multiple times for people to do that!
So, in some respects your "system" is okay, but there are many kinks to be worked out - not the least of which is that quotes are quite varied and really do require monitoring by HUMANS and not formulas.
If you DO raise your rates AGAIN, I am going elsewhere with my business!
I moved recently from Rural, Poor, New England to wealthier, populated Southern California. I can't compare apples to apples because I moved across the country and am in a totally new situation. It's been working for me so far here in CA but I think thumbtack needs to get out of the grey area here and decide
1. Pay for credits, old style
2. Pay a higher fee, on CLOSED business, on a clear percentage basis for the referral, no or wondering what it will be
3. OR an amalgam of both? Pay for credits at a lower cost and then charge a low percentage for closed business. That way Pros can price in the marketing cost without wondering what it will be and they are only paying a larger marketing fee for cash in hand transactions.
And no matter what, charge the customers a subscription or at the very least a nominal per quote fee to weed out the people who are not serious. I think Thumbtack owes this to it's professional community.
My impression is that a lot of people use thumbtack to get quotes and then look elsewhere for business, and the current platform encourages lowballing. I've definitely quoted lower than I wanted to because I didn't want to quote my premium services for a lead that may or may not work out. That doesn't make sense. I need to be able to interface with potential customers without worrying about what I'll be charged. My perception is that in my business I either hear nothing from people because my prices are a lot higher than other pros or I tend to close a good percentage of the interest I get. So personally this is working (for now) but I could see how it could be a major problem for lots of other business owners, and it's very particular to my situation - ie there is a paucity of pros with the depth of skillset that I have in this area.
One challenge for Thumbtack may be that the best fee structure for my business (music entertainment and education) might be totally crazy and make no sense for someone like a contractor or landscaper. I'd be curious to know if those pros would be able to pay the higher fees on closed business rather than warm referrals.
I think the descriptions of the job customer is needing should be looked at a little harder, for example..
We do roofing and a lot of the time customers just need repairs instead of an entire replacement but they list the job they are needing as total roof replacement instead of the repair option. There is a huge price difference in what you take between the two (14 for a repair, 56 or so for a replacement). That would be my only complaint other than anyone being able to go in and write a review slandering your name( for instance the competition) and there is no way to get that removed.
1) I think you are overcharging for security camera installs. Most security camera jobs are a couple hundred bucks at best there is no way I am going to take a chance at bidding it for $20 a pop.
2) I think if there is a misconfusion when the customer contacts me and they don't actually need my services you should reimburse me. I know this is hard to catch but it's annoying when I call or respond to a customer to find out they are looking for a service I don't offer.
3) If I have a discrepancy over a lead there should be a simpler process for me to appeal the lead.
Thank you and let me know if you have any further questions.
Thank you for your interest in how we feel about Thumbtack pricing. My business is photography, but my views are like so many who already have replied. When I started with Thumtack, it was using a credit based system where in order to send a quote, I had to spend a certain number of those credits. The pricing for a wedding, for example, was around $13. Then, the price jumped to average $25 per quote. Because the majority of quotes were never accepted, this became way to expensive, so I found I rarely quoted. Plus, my opinion of the people who create photography job requests is that the majority have little or no interest in actually hiring me. They are merely using Thumbtack to either obtain a second opinion on pricing or to see if they can find a photographer willing to do "anything for a buck" so to speak. A six hour wedding for "$250 or less" is not a quote I can even take seriously. Instead of constantly fooling around with pricing and credits vs. no credits, I wish you could do a better job filtering the people who create quotes and at least make sure they are 18 or over.
I had renewed interest in Thumbtack when you switched from the credit system to the current system and changed the quoting system so I didn't have to pay just to send a quote. Unfortunatey, the price of a wedding jumped even higher, as did the price for other photography jobs, to the point that I am back to where I was in the beginning. The price is simply too high for the few number of customers who hire me through your company. Whereas I prefer the non-credit based system, I can't afford the risk of paying $50 for someone to tell me I'm not hired.