Introducing Price Assurance!

Community Manager
Community Manager
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Hi pros,

You told us you should only pay for leads you have a real shot at winning — and we agree. That’s why we’re rolling out Price Assurance for your services with targeting preferences. 

With Price Assurance, your exact match leads are eligible for:

  • Unread refunds. If the customer doesn’t look at your first message within 48 hours, you never really had a shot at the job. So we automatically credit the cost of the lead back to your Thumbtack balance. Look for “Read” under the messages you sent. These read receipts show you the most recent message the customer saw. 

  • Shop around savings. If a customer contacts multiple pros from the start, it means more competition for you. We don’t think you should have to pay full price these. So the more pros initially competing, the lower the price (for everyone using targeting preferences). 

Check out the full terms and conditions to learn more. 

So what do we need from you?

  • Turn on your targeting preferences. You’ll pay automatically (at a 20% discount) for leads that exactly match your preferences. Learn more about targeting preferences.

  • Respond to leads within 4 business hours (8am - 8pm local time). If the lead is an exact match to your targeting preferences and you pay automatically, you’ll be covered by our Price Assurance.

Frequently asked questions

How will I get the unread refunds? 
Unread refunds and shop around savings will both be credited back to your account automatically. Check your Payments to see what you’ve saved. 

When will I get my unread refund?
We’ll email you when an unread refund is on it’s way. These can take 3-4 days to appear in your account. 

Shop around savings are included in the lead price. You'll see the savings reflected in your Payments 15-20 minutes after you get the lead.

What else do I need to know?
We're also changing the cost of leads for some services to ensure they match the quality of the lead you get. You’ll see those changes starting Monday, Oct. 28. 

Price Assurance for pros carries a simple promise: when you set your targeting preferences and pay automatically for those leads, you’re protected. We’re excited to share this update with you —  and stay tuned because we have more coming soon!

171 responses
Community Veteran

@ChefOfAllSeason, I would indeed like a full and informed explanation from Thumbtack, however I don't believe one will be forthcoming.

Regards,
Laurence

Community Expert

@Lar @ChefOfAllSeason In Meckell's last response she gave the reasoning for partial matches not being included for unread refunds.

I'll remind you to please see our new updated Community Code of Conduct. Section #2 in particular. "We do our best to answer questions quickly and with as much detail as possible. If your question has been addressed, please accept the answer in good faith and move on."

At this point, we've addressed your question to our fullest extent and knowledge and won't be discussing it further. 

Community Veteran

@Kameron, I did see @Meckell's reply and her answer, for which I thanked her.

I made a post in reply to @Meckell in which I asked her a direct question related to her answer. My question was...

"...why is 'opting in' and 'seeing the job details' even a reason for exclusion from Price Assurance?"

In that same post I described at length my reason for asking that follow up question.

Thank you @Kameron for taking the time to remind me of the Thumbtack forum code of conduct. 

As quoted by yourself @Kameron, "If your question has been addressed, please accept the answer in good faith and move on."

My question, "...why is 'opting in' and 'seeing the job details' even a reason for exclusion from Price Assurance?", has not as yet been addressed or answered. When it has then rest assured I will accept the answer in good faith and move on.

Regards,
Laurence.

Community Newcomer
I was send a message for assurances lead that we wouldn't have to pay for lead if the customer didn't respond in 48hr and I have been charged for lead and customer haven't responded so are you all going to fix this .
Community Regular

so a possible client reaches out, you respond and they don't respond, not in 48 hours, not at, maybe to no one, they read it, but never responded. does anyone else feel like this falls under the policy for refunds? if a client reaches out, I have a great rating for any client, in fact most clients become repeat clients. But those that are not only "shopping around" but also not responding after requesting availabilty, that should be refunded...NO?

Community Expert

@Lar 

I hope that it's ok for me to chime in here as I have an example to share.

The other day,  a "customer" asked for my availability. It wasn't an "exact match", as customer checked off a fog machine in their preferences. I don't offer fog or bubble machines for various reasons, one being that accidents happen.

Lead cost was $42, and after reading Price Assurance again, and chatting with a rep via email, I found this lead not to be "exact", and was told by rep that it wouldn't be guaranteed via Price Assurance policy. So I declined it because if customer ghosted me, I wouldn't be refunded this very high lead cost.

Question to @Meckell and @Kameron, will Price Assurance be expanded to help Pros, if we accept these leads, such as I received the other day.

DJ Stevie 11-7-2019

Community Expert

@Kim39 it sounds like you're referring to unread refunds under our new Price Assurance. Unread refunds are for when a customer reaches out who exactly matches your preferences. You respond within 4 hours Business hours (between 8am - 8pm local time). But if the customer doesn’t even look at your message within 48 hours, you never really had a shot at the job. So we’ll automatically refund you the price of that lead. The refund is NOT based on whether or not they respond. To learn more you can read our recent announcement on Price Assurance.

Community Expert

@UrbanFields I'd be sure to look over our this Price Assurance thread and our regular refund policy for clarification. If you have additional questions after that please feel free to reach out.  

Community Veteran
- just read your post. What is so disheartening about what I read was the cost of a lead for you. $42. sad. I really appreciate that - after 15+ months since changing the format - and many of us Pros losing a lot of money - and the triple cost increase being beyond comprehension - that a step towards adjustments has finally been made. However, the main problem and complaint is not being dealt with. Triple cost in leads. I’ll say again - Triple Cost In Leads. I bet before Promote you never saw a lead that cost $42 right? I couldn’t even look at My last 4 week insight report. Seriously. Made me sick. My concern is not just for me - but all these Pros out there with small businesses who are trying to get ahead in the world and provide for their families or simply survive. $42 a lead? I can relate. I am attending the Los Angeles Thumbtack event tonight and this will be the top of my list to speak up about. I truly suggest that TT pull statistics and look and track actual pros statistics over the last few years. Before Promote and after. I’ve done it. The numbers don’t lie. The triple price has had a major impact on this platform for us Pros. Price Assurance helps - but lead costing $42 will not sustain for long term loyalty or success for individuals Pros on this site. What has been so noticeable is the amount of new pros in my category. And the drop off of pros with with a lot of hires or reviews. Better for me right? No. I believe I’m now getting under bid. So far this week - I have yet to get a lead. Zero.

Finally - when I google TT in my area for videographer, google shows Thumbtack “cheap videographers in your area”. So - what message does that send to the public? Cheap? Amazing choice of words.

Adjust the triple price. Not one Pro should be paying $42 a lead.
Community Veteran

@jcp I see many leads and jobortunities (IDK what else to call them) that are priced as high as $70. It does not sicken me, per se; just makes me cautious. They may turn out to be a viable lead, or not. I never accept them as the ghost rate is still high. My cap is @$25 and accepting even that is largely based on how that price is determined. I have a firm policy of not paying more than 5% of any event's potential revenue. As Mike Brady, L.A. Architect says: Caveat Emptor.

 

Community Veteran
@ChefOfAllSeason That’s why you’re THE Chef of All Seasons!!!!! So True.
Community Veteran
Can you just simply explain or justify why all leads tripled in cost after Promote went into effect? A simple statement that addresses that fact. It is a fact. So I can clearly understand why a lead that used to be $8 is now $26 for the same exact details. I need to be reminded again. Forget the discounts and price savings and all that for a moment. Just a simple statement from TT that I can absorb that explains why we are paying triple costs for leads. If you can answer this question it can possibly reset my thinking on all theses matters. Can you answer the following for me: The cost tripled because ...

Thank You 🙂
Community Expert

@jcp because this thread's purpose is for discussing the aspects of the new Price Assurance. I want to insert a quick reminder to please try to make sure your contributions are related to the specific thread where you post. In the future, if you want to discuss a different topic (like the cost of leads) please try to find a more related thread.

It's true that the cost has changed, but so has what you're actually paying for. Back when you were paying lower amounts, it was likely to send a quote with no guarantee of any response. Or the lead reached out, but we didn't have pro preferences to see how good of a match it could be. Now pros only pay if a customer responds or reaches out to you directly which has shown overall to hold more value, hence the higher prices. 

Community Veteran
Thank you! I understand this is the hot topic of the week so sorry to stray a bit. But my comment kind of addresses the Price Assurance because, though we appreciate these efforts to address the costs we Pros are absorbing due directly to the change over to Promote, I believe the overall concern that I’ve read on the message boards has been the actual triple increase in the leads. We still are paying for leads we have “no guarantee of” as you mention. So that hasn’t changed. Sure a customers reached out to us before Promote - but We paid to reach out to their requests because We read their request, budget and date needed and We chose to respond to a lead that We felt met our preference. It’s just reversed now. So why a triple rate. And if a customer responds now in Promote - you said it has shown overall to hold more value. Well I have not experienced that “more value”. The ROI in my case shows that. So I am very grateful for this Price Assurance - it helps. It’s a great start! I had several leads completely refunded in the last two weeks. Money credited back so I can stay engaged in the site. Which is what I want! However, here it is Thursday and I have zero leads this week. I
am looking forward to the LA event this evening to have face to face conversations with other top pros in this highly competitive market and hear their thoughts.
Community Expert

@DJStevie no, as of right now I'm not aware of any plans to expand unread refunds to partial match leads. 

Active Community Member
While I am really liking the concept, I have spent the last two hours trying to update my calander.. every day is blocked, and when I try to open days it goes right back to being blocked... mekell could you please help me?
Active Community Member
Allow pro to suggest other dates, should be removed from customers. While some will choose this option the majority, want cleaning done on specific days and times.
Community Expert

@Wreach it sounds like there may be some technical difficulties going on there with the site updating for you. I'd recommend going through our troubleshooting page, and if that doesn't solve it reach out to support. 

Active Community Member
Thanks! I got it straight! With help from support!
Community Newcomer
Yes I understand that but yall have gave me a refund on one lead and it the same could you take a look at the lead that i am talking about
Community Manager
Community Manager

Happy to take a look @Kim39. What is the first name of the customer? 

Community Regular

I think if we pay for a lead we should immediately be given their contact information instead of relying on TT as the middle man. Many of my exact matches fail to follow the TT protocol and miss my communications....until I BEG them to text or write me directly to firm up details on the job. 

Community Regular

@Kameron one of the manu issues with the "price assurance" is the fact that many clients, that i've prepaid for the contact< do not respond. Sure, maybe they read my response, but no response, how am I to know that they responded to any contact? it just seems like a cash grab to me. raise the rates, don't give more for the money given and give less back. so essentially i'm getting less for my dollar, i have to pass this cost onto the client, as does every service provider, so then the cost of everything goes up, then less people looking at Thumbtack because it becomes expensive. not really seeing the logic nor the benefit of hire cost to me or any other service provider. 

Community Regular

@Meckell  again, we are being precharged for jobs, sure you have to make your money, but it seems predatory to do it in this manner. there is no transparency about the client, who they responded to, have they responded to anyone, is the job real. everytime i dispute a charge, i get told, well the client read it...that doesn't mean anything. i didn't receive a response. when i'm told by a potential client that they went with someone else, okay. if i don't get a response i assume no job. and honestly, i do not trust thumbtack at all at this point with the everchanging price structure and the fact that my costs as well as all service providers costs has risen. we all now need to raise our prices to match the cost of doing business on thumbtack. 

Community Regular

@Notinsured the point is that if thumbtack wants to be our "partner in business" we shouldn't have to rely on work around to their system, it predatory and misleading. it should be easy to manage and easy to pay. they went away from the credit system that so many other platforms that i have started using are still using. i like getting leads, i don't like getting leads and paying for them for unresponsive clients. i also don't like the fact that now leads are more expensive, forcing me to increase my costs. I'm going to start adding a Thumbtack user charge so the client understands the costs. 

Community Newcomer

I have had $451 in "no response" leads in the past couple months. I was not aware of the 30 day refund policy and unfortunately customer service did not refund a single penny back to me. Is there anything that can be done. At this point I will have to move to a competitor if Thumbtack is unwilling to make it right. I am a 5 star Pro and am too busy most days to review all "no response' leads and file for a refund. My busy season is over and now have time and can't get anyone to help out.

Community Regular

@Meckell the problem is letting the pros decide what they will be charged for and won't be charged for. At this point the pros are not consumers but being charged for leads, sure it helps, but they should only be charged for leads they accept. the current model is like shopping around for a vacuum cleaner (the vacuum cleaner being the service). at this point, i am getting charged for every vacuum cleaner provider that contacts me, not the vacuum cleaner providers i choose. so anyone with a potential vacuum cleaner that i may want i get charged for. this leads me to being able to look at more vacuum cleaners....

 

okay, this anology is getting tired. we hate paying for leads that go no where or leads that are just shopping around and maybe not choosing anyone but being charged. you are creating a difficult work structure that will self distruct. charging the people that make your platform work more money than they are willing to pay is a faulty system and while you say you are listening, it appears you are just padding the bottom line and creating more revenue at the expense of the service providers you rely on. what happens when service providers find alternative platforms. from my expericene while you have deep market penetration (due to the new clients who have never used thumbtack, those that are more internet/online service provider savvy, are moving to other platforms). please, just make it fair enough for the service provider to make a living so that they can charge a fair price for their service while being to ay their bills and pay thumbtack. i don't have a problem paying for the service, i just need it to be transparent (like going to a store and knowing what i'm paying before i agree to pay). everyone needs to make a living, the current model just seem anithesis to that idea. 

Community Manager
Community Manager

@gregvanham non-responsive customers are not something we refund for, however, if you're targeting and have a perfect match customer who doesn't view your quote within 48 hours, you'll be refunded. Please check out this article with more info on our refund policy and let us know if you have any questions! 

Community Regular

@Fleet @Meckell I agree. I think that thumbtack should let the client base know that the pro is paying for every contact. i also think that every service provider (pro) should add a line item to charge the clients for the charge they receive from thumbtack. 

Community Regular

@Kameron i suggest, for legal clarity, that the statment say that all pros receive, not just from the second down. also, so a potential client thinks about it and after 15 min. contacts other pros. or after 15 reads the responses, never reaches out to any of the pros intially contacted and contacts other pros, the first group of pros only recieve a discount and don't get a refund? like, this wasn't well thought out at all. that was me riffing while writing this post. the amount of unclarity and amount of disinformation that seems to be purposfully misleading is really questionable. 

Community Newcomer

So you collect the lead fee from the multiple pro's that it was sent out to even if there is no response from the customer when the Pro had replied quickly?

Community Regular

@Noah2002 it's fine if leads are too much, the fact is that we all state a baseline cost. clients can increase the cost with requests. are you going to do dinner with cavier for $55/person? is some one going to paint a room that was stated "just need paint" but wall paper has to be removed before hand? the fact is there is no transparency in the pricing structure/contacts reach out to/hired. we get to see competitiors, okay, great. i want my competitiors to see my pricing, but that fact is that pricing is project specific. we can all state upfront cost, the client can state what they want to pay, that doesn't mean that client expectations (somewhat set by the platform) are realistic. we all need to charge our clients a surcharge for the price we pay to get clients via thumbtack.

Community Regular

@Jonathandonnell I agree, we should all be able to accept or decline a charge. it's not like it cost thumbtack more to give clients certain contacts, it's and algorythm, sure it takes a little tweeking here and there, but what at the end of the day what all the costs we are are paying for admount to is people answering our texts/emails/calls, which would probably decrease if it was more transparent and fair. write code/debug code/rewrite code. (rewriting takes less) on and on and on. now it's about bottome line and making an idea profitable without adds. i say make the clients watch adds. i would pay for ads. 

Active Community Member
Believe me, I get it. A competitor keeps trying to get me to join their lead finding service, but it’s actually more expensive!
I also raised my rates, not entirely due to TT, but it is a factor. I also employed some suggestions from other users, such as changing my preferences and having a tighter target area.
All in all, I’m very on the fence about this but in the long run I still cannot dispute that the leads are fruitful and I earn way more than they charge me off a single client. I do a LOT of follow-up and it may take 3 pushes by me to get a client, but if I can get them and help, that’s my main objective.
Community Newcomer
I think the leads that cost $30 or.more is little.too high for a hob that only pays $80.00
And also some.of does customers after they request the service they dont answer the phone I think it's because they dont know what is a exact mach to us
Community Veteran
Here is the problem @Meckell

Nothing is “Perfect” - except maybe my lasagna.

Perfect Match should be changed simply to “Match”.

Price Assurance has helped with maintaining my budget And ROI for sure - however booking clients is what is most important to us Pros. Customers need to be guided better to select the pro that fits best so they don’t end up clicking on 10+. I had a lead with 28 pros selected recently. Sure it only cost like $3 - not the point. Don’t show any Pro until filters are selected. TT shows a list of Pros before any filters are applied. I let all
my customers that hire me know that there was a fee using TT. Just so they know for future. They are all surprised and all wish they knew that. The customer who reached out to 28 did hire me and when I told her she felt bad. She simply didn’t understand the system and needed someone and she said she just started clicking to see who who get back to her. 12 pros responded to her. I ask my customers because I need to know what worked for them and how they personally felt about the TT process. I don’t think TT reached out to any of my clients and asked them directly any questions. Anyway - Happy Holidays everyone!
Community Veteran

@jcp You beat out 28 other Pros and landed the gig. You make perfect lasagne. You are a Super Pro.

Community Expert

@jcp 

Looks like we may have to have a "throwdown" to see who makes the perfect lasagna!! Been making lasagna for years, using my grandfather's recipe from the restaurant that he owned in NYC.

Anyway, I agree with all you said! I've had customers tell me the same thing (that they didn't understand the system) I always give out a questionaire and those that hired me from Thumbtack give me feedback as to if I need to improve anything as a professional, or what they thought of the process at Thumbtack (basically for my records on both). Many were surprised about the fees that I, along with other Pros, are charged. Some gave that fee back as part of their "tip" to me.

I know that there have been times I try to see what customers see, and your assessment is correct, they see numerous Pros first, so the filters aren't in play. I'm sure if they fill out the filters and checklists in detail, even have them fill out their message part of their request, it would help, and possibly weed out majority of the Pros for their events.

Anyway, I pray that you and your family have a Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving

DJ Stevie 11-27-2019

Community Veteran
Exactly! Glad you understand @DJStevie
Showing customers 30 Pros BEFORE any filters defeats the whole “promote”.

Example, if customer enters “wedding and event photographer” the are shown 30 photographer Pros. But I am NOT a wedding photographer. Only events. But there I am. Customer should filter first before any pro is shown. Is that not the premise of “promoting” and triple increase in cost of leads? This will help with price Assurance issues, connecting the right pros and customers and reducing confusion for customers. Price Assurance is helping and makes me feel a little
more assured moving forward with TT.

Community Regular

I have been using thumbtack since I started my business 3 years ago, my very first job came from thumbtack. When I started the pricing was awesome for me. But over the yearsit keeps going up and I think weather you auto-pay or not if you pay for a lead and they don't respond or cancel the project we should get our money back!! I send alot of money on leads proably 150-250$ aweek some weeks. and pay for 10 leads and maybe 2 respond! I don't think it's fair to not refund a lead if it's cancalled! Why should I have to pay if I can't get the job??

Community Veteran
@Shannonleen. I too have been with Thumbtack for over 4 years and had great success with the reasonable prices and workable format until Promote was introduced. My statistics clearly show the drop in bookings and significant price hike. I’m not sure about this TackMaster Program - what does it have to do with our repeated concerns like triple prices - I have been constantly “hiding my business” when I can not respond to a lead within a minute or two and keeping filters accurate. As well as keeping my calendar updated. I do my best to get each hire to give me a review and everything I can to stay within a reasonable ranking for the chance to get hired. However, yesterday a “partial match” match came in and was $48 to respond. Absolutely no way will I ever respond to a lead that cost that much. Regardless of the customers budget. Too risky of an investment. I’m a small business- just me. Price Assurance has helped me in many ways however - now if they don’t “read” my response within a hour - I pray they don’t at all. When we give them all our details before they reach out to us- then it shouldn’t matter if they just read our response to them. It should matter if they never respond after reaching out to us and reading our message. Nothing frustrates me more when a customer reaches out and it says “wants your availability”. I respond - they read it - and then never respond back. Of course I’m available! My calendar would not show you my profile if I blocked the day. So yes I agree with you. We should only pay if the customer engages with us in actual conversation back and forth. Maybe a small flat rate of $3 if they just “read” it. But certainly not $48. I signed up with a Success coach and find that better than TaskMaster. But both have something to offer and both are doing their best to make Thumbtack better for both customers and Pros - because last year’s switch over to Promote was a disaster for me. It’s getting a little better and I have hope for the future. Good luck - and choose wisely. I’ll say again - choose wisely how you make your money work for you. On this site and in life.
Active Community Member

This is a step in the right direction, but it also assumes that the service categories on which Targeting is based are adequate.  They are not.  I do small welding repairs so handyman is a common sense category that applies, but I don't have the ability to target to that level of specificity, so I get and end up paying for leads that are irrelevant.  Targeting also assume that customers correctly select/use the service categories - they don't always do so, so I get/pay for leads that are not really within the category that the customer has selected.

Active Community Member

Me too.  I end up paying for leads that die because the customer simply doesn't respond after the initial contact.  

Active Community Member

@Meckell Does this include giving consideration to the total revenue from the project?  I pay $10 - $20 for single leads that are $50 - $75 TOTAL REVENUE.  That is outrageous.  There really should be a tiered fee structure for something like no more than 10% of the total project revenue if that is under $100.  My entire business is based on a small fee strategy.  This pricing either encourages me to quit TT, eat up to 50% of my revenue or raise prices to offset the TT fee, which then eliminates my strategy and competitive advantage.

Community Regular

Hello jcp, I don't know really what tackmaster is suppose to do. I posted it the wrong place I guess however it doesn't change the fact that I wish thumbtack would listen to the pros!! I totally agree with you on the pricing, I got a lead that said they wanted to hire me, and when the lead came in and I saw the price 53.25 to just response no way was I paying that and not know if I would get the job and they reached out to 4 other pros. Then like a hour later I got a message saying that they wanted to hire me, so I thought it was the person looking for a pro that said they wanted to hire me, So I thought well if they want to hire me it's worth the money so I accept the lead and send them a message and to my surprise they message me back saying they had already hired a different pro a couple hours before!!! So it wasn't them who said they wanted to hire me, it's was thumbtack wanting me TO THINK they wanted to hire me so I would pay for nthe lead even though I didn't have a chance at winni8ng the job, so there went 53$ FOR NOTHING!! Not cool thumbtacknot at all!!!! Very dissappointed in thumbtack for mi8sleading me!!!

Community Veteran

In my opinion the message that "Lead wants to hire you" should be deleted from the system from top to bottom as the system has no way of knowing that and nothing has happened to that point that would give ANY indication of that being the case. The language is misleading and I fear could trap an unsuspecting new TT pro into thinking that the words were actually correct and commit to spending money he or she would not otherwise have spent. 

I often wonder what the lead would think if they knew that their simple "shopping on TT" led to such a difinitive statement being sent to the pro.

I pretty much ignore any and all messaging from TT and look at each lead for what it is and then make my own decisions on how to proceed. TT presents a lead and provides me a way to reach back out to them... I just wish the system was better at protecting us for when the leads are simply shopping and never respond. The price assurance thing, to me, is only solving that issue about 10-20% of the time so there is much more TT needs to do to protect the pro's money. TT is not cheap compared to other lead services, I would expect a more premium quality of service for that price than we receive.

 

 

Community Veteran
@Shannonleen Many times I have spoken to customer service and posted here on the board requesting that Thumbtack stop sending notifications to Pros that have the tag line “wants to hire you” because it is false and highly misleading. Especially for those new to TT. I will speak again with my success coach about this. I am very mindful of every single lead that comes in. I lost a lot of money this last year on TT - right now the only thing saving me - and helping me book - is keeping a sharp eye on my preferences, utilization of Price Assurance and hiding my business when I can not respond with five minutes. And being on other platforms. Good luck!
Active Community Member

Until reading this thread last night, I have been completely misled by that phrase, thinking it meant exactly what the words say.  I now know I was wrong and will ignore the message from now on.  Thanks to everyone who commented on that point and clarified that for me.

Community Regular

I Have spent alot of money this year on Thumbtack as well and it use to not be like this! I just wish that sometime they would LISTEN to what the pro's are saying. Because if not for the pro's thumbtack wouldn't be making the money they make to just provide a contact to someone, because at the end of the day the pro's are doing all the work not Thumbtack.

Community Veteran
TT May be better served if it were a subscription model. Then they would have a better handle on their revenue stream and would be more inclined to make the changes us pros want and deserve.