Get more of the leads you want

Active Community Member
1 13 1,944

With the start of the spring season, we want to take a moment to remind you how the new Thumbtack works and share a tip for building your business in the year ahead: set your preferences.

With the new Thumbtack, the best way to be consistently matched with customers you want is to tell us what you like. You make this happen by setting your job preferences.

When you set preferences, you tell us exactly what kinds of jobs you really want -- the locations, days and specific kinds of jobs. We'll show you to more of your desired customers so you can get more of these leads.

Here's why: If you tell us you really want a certain type of job, we know you'll respond fast and provide a solid customer experience. So we give you a rank boost to help the right customers find you in search results. You'll be automatically charged for leads that exactly match your preferences and get a 20% discount.

You don't have to set preferences for every kind of job you can do, but you should set preferences to tell us the jobs you know you’ll always want. If you skip this step, you'll still get leads, but they may not be exactly what you want. We won't know if you want them, so we’ll still send them your way, and you can always decline them at no charge.

If you're not getting the leads you want, start setting preferences for your go-to jobs, your favorites, the ones that you really want or really need.

13 responses
Community Regular

This is addressed to Thumbtack. Setting preferences does not work the way you think on the pros end. 

Often, there is specific missing information that is needed by the pro which helps them determine if the job really is

a good fit.  Letting Thumbtack decide that and having to pay in advance just is NOT a good change. The old system worked

better for many pros. It was easier getting leads, deciding if it was a good fit or not, then sending a quote with an explanation of

your services and being able to ask more questions, which then often prompted a response to better understand the type

of service needed.  I think you should only have to pay after the customer responds. It is the fairest way for both sides.

That way, we actually know if the lead reached the customer. At the present time, with the new system, since I do not 

set preferences anymore, I am low on your system and do not receive any responses back from customers. 

I have been with Thumbtack for 5 years with a 5 star rating and was high on your list. Your new system has put doubts in 

my mind as to whether it is worth staying on Thumbtack. There are other sites that work better with less risk for spending 

too much on leads.  I am sad to leave Thumbtack. It worked well for several years. 


Community Expert

@firedupcatering I'm really sorry to hear this and we'd be sad to see you go, but ultimately want you to make the decisions that you feel are best for you and your business. I do want to ask a few questions and hopefully some clarifications here.

What information do you feel is missing or would be useful to add for customers to answer? I'd be happy to forward those ideas to our product teams to review and consider. 

The old system did work well for some pros but not all, and certainly not the majority of customers. In the old system customers had to wait for a response from pros, and many times didn't get an answer or know how long they'd have to wait to hear back. The new system gives them immediate access to the list of pros available so that they can choose them and contact them directly. Under the current system pros only pay for a customer that was interested enough to click on their profile and reach out or respond to the pros quote. That said we know it isn't perfect and we're working hard to take pro feedback, see where we can be better, and then do what we can to improve it.

Community Expert
Apologies if I repeat again. But, it seems that now, the majority of the Pros do not hear from customers, and we are the paying customers, true? So how could this new system benefit both Pros and customers? The old system did work, as Pros were able to bid on jobs after looking at customer profile, lead cost, event info, etc. The old system gave Pros access to a list of customers that we knew who to "weed" out. We knew right away who is a good fit for us, but the bidding is taken away from us. I'm top DJ for my area with Promote on, and not one lead in my inbox!!! Why is that? I keep getting 5 star reviews, and I had a rep help me with my profile, but again, nothing!
Community Regular


The new system is NOT working. I have read countless complaints in the last few days on Better Business review sites regarding these same issues. Many of us are not receiving any leads since the change. Strange! I used to tell my fellow Small Business friends about your service but I can no longer be an advocate. I gave the new system 6 months. It has been since Fall of 2018 and at first I thought it was just fluky that I wasn't getting any more responses to my quotes. Now I realize, it is your new system causing the problem 

I am a mobile catering business. When a customer sends his request it often is missing specific information to give and accurate quote. On the old system, I was able to choose, according to my needs, if I wanted to quote, not put a fixed rate (because you can't quote a fixed rate if you don't know all the details/menu etc...of the event) I was able to put N/A. I could ask a few questions in my quote and give a general price and I was willing to do that for a lower cost, which was the credit system. I'm not saying you should go back to the  credit system but keep your price lower or the same as in the past. Right now, your costs have increased so much that it is not worth the risk of quoting and DON'T require a fixed price aspect. Many Pros need ALL the facts before quoting a price. ***I will not let someone else determine if the job is right for me and pay $30-$60.00 for a lead. There are just too many factors involved in determing who is the right fit for the job. 

In this new system, I get leads sent to me asking, for example, "Wendy wants to know if your available"?  It would be better if you sent a lead with more information. Maybe you should ask Wendy more questions before sending a lead to the Pro. It would be helpful to know if the customer is SERIOUSLY planning an event in the near future, (I have sent quotes just to hear back from customers that they were just trying to gather information) if the date is set in stone, (I have had customers change their stated date after I sent a quote and I was not available for their new date)  or did they decide on a specific menu? (sometimes they really don't know what menu they want and just list a bunch of choices). How are you supposed to quote a fixed price if you don't know what food they are requesting? How is a Thumbtack Representative making a good lead match with out the proper info but charging just on the fact that someone wants to know if your available? I will not pay for that lead unless I get guaranteed response back from the customer. Once the customer responds and you have an opportunity to quote properly, should you be charged. 

Right now there is not enough information and assurance that I will get a customer response. (since I haven't had a customer response for the last 6 months) However, I had 19, 5 star reviews and many, many responses since 2014, from your old system. 

Not sure why that is happening but I'm sure you know in the backround. If the object is for your site to earn more money (which I could understand) the present system in NOT the answer.  I think you will lose more past Pros than gain new ones.   



Community Veteran

@firedupcatering The system has ground to an absolute halt for many of us. There is waaay more activity on these boards than there is in the lead inbox to say the least. Even for many of those with Promote On - the key to success per TT - the lead engine has gummed up and ground to a halt.

When a rare lead comes in, the chance of it being a ghost is extremely high - near 100% for some.

Nobody can explain what is going on. The only admission is that TT agrees there are unhappy pros out there, but there has been no admission that the system is misbehaving in some way. There may be a reason why they can't speak to it, but we do not know what that is. 

Active Community Member
Don't you think it would be easier to tell TT the things we don't want? Perhaps then TT will be acting in the professionals best intrest.
Here are some hints.
1. We don't want to pay for leads that do not include a phone number and email address.
2. Leads that do not provide dates for job to be done and jobs that are 1 or 2 months out.
3. Leads asking when we are available .
4. Leads telling us how long they think a job will take.
5. Asking for prices thru TT. It our business not TTs.
6. Someone making requests late night.
7. Do not let any potential lead make any more than one request per task .
8. No more than 3 other pros to be contacted.
9 Do not allow same person to post same exact job from 2 different locations.
10. Jobs being posted in categories that do not exist.
Active Community Member
@MR If TT listens to our complaints and does nothing to resolve those issues and it's bad for TT pros, it's bad for TT.
Active Community Member
Maybe Wendy should write exactly what she wants instead of TT asking questions and providing answers to choose from a business they know absolutely nothing about while making handsome profits.

Gee, if 1 million pros donate $600.00 to TT, how much is that ?
What's the problem? What needs to be fixed ?
Community Veteran

I think alongside the Kudo button there needs to be a "downvote" button so that we have the opportunity to also show those posts that we dissagree with or believe provide low/no value.


Active Community Member
@DJ Steve,
I am always suspicious of new platforms. Changes are good but constant changes that have not been proven to work makes me automatically skeptical. My guard goes up when things are going a certain way and then I'm just supposed to trust something new.
Nope not me. I got 2 negative reviews from people I never met, never signed a contract with or received a check from. Thumbtack refuses to refund my money and let's the review stick. TT wants to play in the middle of the street. I suspect if pros don't use the Pay To Promote the inbox will once again be full . Instead of Thumbtack exhausting it's pros with their own resources in Pay To Promote, wait till those leads fall to the bottom in the inbox and take a stab at that. If it's bad for the pro, it's bad for potential clients as well. TT will have to wait longer to drum up new money as well.
The quality goes down if TTs best pros walk or wait. It's hard to walk away from reputation,ratings,time and money already invested in a platform. We don't want to lose but we don't want to feel conned either.

Gotta go, Harold Melvin and The Blue notes just came on 😊
Community Expert


I agree. But I wonder how many of our posts/comments get shown to the higher ups of Thumbtack, including @MarcoZ ? Perhaps only the positive ones? I know that many Pros(some I know personally) have given up commenting here in the Community Forum, as they feel that they aren't being heard. Others have left TT to pursue different platforms.

Community Expert

@JuliusI just replied to your comment, and it looks as if it was deleted for some reason. Did you see it post? If it got deleted, I want someone to please explain to me why?  I've been very careful with my comments as of late.

Active Community Member
It posted !