When TT keeps referring to "pros" when offering to match users up, they are actually misrepresenting who the people will be receiving quotes from. It's actaully false advertising when they say they are matching the user up with "pros", when in actuality, many of them are unlicensed, illegal, uninsured people operating without a legal entity and not reporting income or paying taxes.
I'm surprised that TT's legal team allows the use of the term "pro".
i agree! Pros should have to produce the apprpriate paperwork and insurance in order to be listed as a pro on TT. we are ready for that now. But many pltforms do this also. Even with a proper business document and insurance trail It is buyer beware and they should ask all the right questions of the people they hire.
ALL the other platforms that I have looked into require this info. A tax ID # is pretty standard. TT's excuse, when I told them this, was that it was too time consuming to research it. Seriously? It's a simple google search! But TT doesn't want to eliminate anyone from the bidding process because less bids means less profits - which is quite short-sighted. If TT were to become nationally recognized as THE place to shop for quality professionals, they would dominate the market! Instead, they focus only on the bottom line to get as much $ today as possible. Perhaps they realize that they need to grab while the grabbing is good because they cannot keep this going forever. If you google review of tt you'll find tens of thousands of x-tackers screaming that its a scam. Eventually something really good will come along and everyone will jump off TT and onto that and TT will crash because there's no intention to building this as a world-class service. It won't change until it's gets sold off and marco becomes a billionaire and google takes it over and starts doing things like vetting the pros to make sure they're not a 16 year old with a camera calling themselves a pro... qualifying the leads so that pros are provided with solid pre-qualified requests... etc. But, this is how they want to run it, so just find the best way to play within their rules and make it work for you. You've got to roll with the punches. Every time they do another thing that makes me want to rip my hair out, I dig in and make my quotes better and more thorough so I avoid the nonsense questions about things that should have been clearly visible to them in the interface.
Rapid expansion is not a good thing, but slow growth working with qualified pros is a good thing. I 100% agree with your perspective. I wondered why they never asked for a W-9 or anything else. That and insurance should be required along with ficticious business filing or articles of incorporation. This would eliminate some of the garbage from TT from ever happening. Just my 2 cents of support for your ideas.
Thanks for your thoughts @DefiningImagery @Qwksilver. We understand the importance of having safe and trusted pros on our site. We expect all pros to follow their local, state, and federal laws and that includes obtaining the correct licensing to do the job.
Aside from that, we also have teams, including our Marketplace Trust and Safety team, that spends a lot of their time policing for illegal or dubious behavior. If they find something suspicious, they'll then take the needed action.
But TT takes no measures to even question if the businesses are legal. When TT states on every request that "we're matching you with pros" it is a promise to the user that they will be matched with real pros. People presume, by that statement, that they indeed will be matched with legitimate pros, not any fly-by-night who wants to bid. Unlicensed, uninsured, undeclared-income producing "companies" are NOT pros. Every other site out there offers vetted pros. People come to TT expecting and assuming the same. If you are representing the people who will be bidding on projects as "pros" then they'd better be actual pros. The truth is that TT really doesn't care if anyone is a pro or not. It comes down to $. As long as the profits earned by illegitimates paying to bid, outweigh the lawsuits that come from consumers being burned by these incompetents, TT will continue to call any clueless, incompetent, uninsured, bogus, illegitimate business a "pro" and take their bid money.
I know for a fact that they are not properly policing for illegal or dubious behavior" because they are not doing anything whatsoever to confirm that anyone joining TT is running a legal entity, is insured, has a merchant account to accept credit cards, has some sort of business bank account or Paypal account, has a tax ID #, etc.
Anyone with a camera can come to TT tomorrow , open an account and start bidding on jobs and call themselves a photographer - no questions asked, no proor necessary. If TT's team were policing, a large number of "photographers" would have been removed from the system. They are sitting there waiting for reports of suspician, rather than looking at the lowball bids that cannot possibly be coming from legit professionals. I run a home-based studio which means I don't have massive overhead. Yet, every day, most of the the people bidding against me, are bidding below my break-even price. Any other legit biz has to have somewhat similar overhead to me. I'm forced to cut my session prices in half, from $295 to $150 to bid anywhere near "my competition" and get the job. At $150, I was still at the top end of the bids. But, TT finally wised up and realied that giving us the Insights was enabling us to see where we stood in the bid range, allowing us to see that there has to be a load of illigitimates bidding against us, and that's just another reason why they took away Insights.
Totally agree with you.
Not to consider that the lead cost 4 years ago used to cost me $3-7 per lead and it’s now costing me $30 $50 even $75 per lead without any guarantee that he is only talking to me.
Prices per sqft I have to drop down to $1.50-2 in order to even take the job. But labors have gone up to $20-25 per
What kind of margin profits is that?
And all that because thumbtack allow any wet back who has a van, call them selfs Bosses and put their names here..
It need to change and need to change now.
Not counting that not they changed the way a customer approach’s is giving those who has more reviews the better chances to get hired,
Even Homeadvisor I pay $33-50 per lead.
Thumbtack it’s loosing it it’s a shame.
Used to be the best place to go to.
I have mhic license and been months the system can’t even sss or accept it.
Besides what’s the point ? It’s not like customers care when they come to thumbtack they already know it’s the palace to go to to pay less.
I WISH that they would put the pros with the most reviews first, because I'd be at the top. Instead, I'm penalized and put at the bottom because I won't hand over the keys to my bank account by enrolling in Instant Mess. So the people who are clueless enough that they let TT run their bids, get priority over responsible hands-on accountable, serious professionals who are asute business owners.
You're not actaully factoring in that you're only paying for contacts now. It doesn't matter if you pay less per lead, at the time of request, or more per lead, only when they contact you. The math equals out. You have to do the correct math - the only math that counts: calculate the amount of hires and what you have paid to get hired that amount of times. That is your COA - cost of acquisition. Everyone is screaming about the higher costs, but in most cases, it works out the same. And if you can send effective enough responses that cover the questions they normally ask, you won't be paying to answer silly questions. Everyone needs to determine their own COA. Once you do that, then you can come here and scream as loundly as you want about it. But most people are not doing the math and screaming when they don't need to be. There are a few categories, like wedding photography, that have outrageous fees ($33-$62) per contact and that can be on a job with a budget less than $250!!! So, those have to be rectified. I'm fine with the fee rates on all the other categories of photography. I know they were also gouging on archetectural, but that may have changed price. I haven't seen one in a bit. Just go back through your years or months and determine your COA. THEN decide if it's actually a problem.