@tr8theta first I’d like to welcome you to the pro Community and thank you for taking the time to write up and share your experiences and concerns. There’s a lot that you’ve covered here and much of it includes previous discussions with our support staff along with our policies. Because of this I’ll do my best to touch on some of the higher level points you’ve addressed and any clarifications I feel may need to be made.
1. On Thumbtack what you pay for is the connection with a potential customer and not the hire. We’re always striving to improve the strength of those connections in how a customers project will relate to the pros they contact. Once the connection is made it’s on you to close the deal and unfortunately, after reviewing what you have to offer some customers may choose to go another route. This page explains when the cases where a contact may be refundable here: https://help.thumbtack.com/article/refunds.
2. We’re always working to learn more about each service that’s listed on the site and the potential amounts that pros can earn from a job, which can have an effect on the price we charge per lead. It sounds like you’ve let us know about this instance already which will be great feedback for our teams that work on pricing.
3. I recommend reading two of our recent posts about pro feedback and how they relate to changes that are made on the site. Keeping you in the (feedback) loop and Why does change take so long?. In the first link be sure to check out the video webinar attached about how feedback is processed.
4/5. The site no longer primarily functions based on pros sending quotes to customers. Instead, customers now find and reach out to pros directly based on which ones show up and stand out to them in the search results. You want to be one of the pros a customer reaches out to directly. If you’re not, the Jobs tab is where you get a second try to catch the customer’s attention. If a job is listed here, it means the customer already reached out to other pros first in search results. But you could still be a great fit for the job. An opportunity found in the Jobs tab will allow up to 5 pros to manually quote on it in addition to however many pros the customer reached out to.
Thank you for responding so promptly to what I posted today. Don't get me wrong. I do appreciate the few hires I have gotten as a result of using Thumbtack. I do realize that it must be quite a challenge to satisfy all service provider's requests or demands or resolve all grievances but some of these grievances are upsets about common business sense which TT does not practice. I don't think that any of my grievances expressed are unfair to TT.
re: making a connection - If I quote a potential customer based on my clear understanding of their needs i.e. their request specifically states that they want Wedding Videography (which is a service that I DO provide) and then they respond with one question: "Do you also do PHOTOGRAPHY (which is an entirely different service which I DO NOT provide) and I never hear back from them again. THAT to me is NOT a connection. If I knew BEFORE quoting her that she also needed a PHOTOGRAPHER and would be making her hiring decision based upon a person that offered (or could provide) BOTH services...I would NOT have quoted her in the first place. Therefore her request was NOT clearly stated. It "hid " the fact that she was actually looking for TWO services from one provider. My impression was that she needed Wedding Videography ONLY! To be told by TT that "she may need your services in the future" is an extremely highly unlikely probability as my extensive experience has shown me. If I relied upon earning a living from the prospects who "may need my services in the future" When by the way? Perhaps In 2023, 2025, 2037? I would wither away to nothingness WAITING for it.
I totally agree that I may lose a hire to another service provider who offered better pricing or more for their money...well THAT is how competition works and I have no complaint there, but to allow up to 15 providers to quote on the same lead sometimes is very unfair and then to CLOSE quoting on another lead only after 6 providers have quoted and the window of time that the lead was to expire wasn't even reached yet thus disabling me from quoting on a potentially profitable job (if I was hired for it of course) is likewise unfair.
To pay $42.50 for a lead with a job value worth $575 and then be charged less than $14 for a job value worth $1200 or more does NOT make sense to me. This is why I have STOPPED quoting on Videography and especially why I did NOT turn on promote for the same service I provide.
I highly doubt that you have any executive TT staff who have 40 years of providing videography service or transfer service (converting tapes to dvd) that I do, yet my suggestion to TT to ADD transfers of: old film reels, color slides, still pictures to DVD and audio cassettes, reel to reel audio tapes and vinyl record albums to CD which TONS of people all over the USA need to have done and which some of us service providers are capable of doing was NOT implemented, nor have I ever heard any feedback as to whether my suggestion was ever even brought up at the table where suggestions are discussed by TT staff or execs. A suggestion which by the way would result in much more profit for TT and the service providers who can do it. Why wouldn't TT want that?
@ChefOfAllSeason if customers decide to go another route, that's not something that's refundable. However, if you quote on a job through the Jobs tab and their first response is "I'm going another route" you shouldn't get charged.
@MLCC Thank you so much for this thoughtful email/post. You have come to the right place - we are here for a continued conversation and an open dialogue.
For a little more detail about how we price leads, check out this post from one of our Product Managers. Once you have read that, let me know what additional questions you have about pricing.
While reading this post and a couple of your other posts, it's obvious that you want to see Thumbtack work for you, and that you are here to be productive and constructive - I appreciate that so much (we all do). I can assure you that we are working on improvements right now, with our pros in mind. Keep watch here in this forum for product improvements as we roll them out. In the meantime, please keep your thoughts coming. We are here to listen.
I still have a problem being charged $5.13 for a $15 pet sitting job.
Even though I may visit 2 times over a weekend (possibly earning $30), then maybe not again for 6 months or so, if, and/or when, the client takes another vacation, just seems incredibly ridiculous to me. It used to be under $2.
@Gilliamashley88 we don't want there to be any confusion on what you pay for when using Thumbtack. As a few pros mentioned above, you pay us to get connected with potential customers. From there, it's up to you to seal the deal! If you have any questions about charges in general, be sure to check out this article.