Thumbtack Research: What customers care about (video)

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At Thumbtack, we’re extremely data-driven and we conduct a lot of research to understand pro and customer needs. We learn a great deal from this research and, in the spirit of partnership, we want to share with you what we have learned!

We recently concluded a survey of roughly 2,200 Thumbtack customers. In it, we asked Thumbtack customers: What matters most to you when you’re hiring a service pro?

Customers want reasonable prices, good reviews, relevant experience, and fast responses. 

According to customers, the top 4 most important attributes of a pro are:

1.  Reasonable prices that fit the customer’s budget

  • Pro Tip: Keep your prices up-to-date and be clear what is included in your price 

2.  A high average review rating

  • Pro Tip: Remember to ask for reviews 

3.  Relevant experience

  • Pro Tip: Add past projects and clearly outline the type of jobs you do, as well as any jobs you don’t. These help customers understand whether you’re a good fit for their job.

4.  Fast responses

  • Pro Tip: Set your saved responses and reply quickly. A customer who sees a pro respond in 5 mins is 50% more likely to reply than if the pro takes 6 hrs

Obviously, customer preferences vary depending on the type of professional they need to hire but we were surprised to see that these four attributes were consistently ranked at the top even when we broke the data down on a per category level.

So, whether you're a chef or a DJ, make sure you're communicating your prices upfront, collect reviews, showcase your experience, and respond quickly!


Re: Thumbtack Research: What customers care about (video)

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@Drew This project is a great step forward in advancing the Community to a higher level. Many thanks for being proactive. I agree that showcasing prices is important; unfortunately Thumbtack is not the best place to do that. 

When I did show my prices, Thumbtack (for reasons never once revealed to me) had a strange policy of choosing one of my prices and automatically placing it in the bottom right corner of my response to a lead. This was done regardless of the fact that my quote would, in many instances, be a different price. This, of course, creates a conflict and the appearance of the "left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing". As there has been no mention of fixing this peculiar and awkward feature, I have no recourse but to play it safe and hide my prices. Is it possible for Vinimrata to explain why this practice persists? Ultimately, I am put in a position that either demands I hide prices, so as not to offer a false estimate; or send my quote and explain to the customer that this site is glitchy and can't transmit information adequately. Both choices are not desirable and run contrary to the results of the survey. Each project is different. If I quote $50 per guest, and Thumbtack puts in "My estimate is $65" then no one wins. This actually happened last summer. 

I believe some interface between the customers (That's us! the Pros!) and Joe on the Category Team is necessary. I have given many examples on these boards that show how off the categories are. The way they are set up does not benefit your customers (yes, that's still the Pro!) and our customers (those nice folks who post projects) I have been at it over 30 years, and no one looking for a Caterer or Personal Chef wants to hear that their Bridal Shower is the same as a Baby Shower. By the way: no categories for Bar or Bat Mitzvahs? No categories for Bachelorette Parties? I work dozens of these every year and not one comes from Thumbtack; because TT does not offer the opportunity to ask us for one. They go to other service platforms that do understand their needs. It seems insensitive and sends a poor message to our potential customers. Something to consider.

Anyway, great job on the survey. Hopefully there will be more; it shows you are definitely making the right moves in a productive way.

For the next survey, how about asking the Pros what you should ask our potential customers? We talk to them all the time. We must know something. 




Re: Thumbtack Research: What customers care about (video)

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Hi @ChefOfAllSeason,

I appreciate it. I'm sorry to hear listing prices hasn't worked out for you to this point- it sounds like we have some work to do to make it worthwhile for you. I'll see what I can find out.

Turning this back to the Community, I think you’re right. As the Community Manager I can do a better job of connecting pros to employees who oversee the categories and industries you work in. It's time to open up the channels of communication and bring the right employees into Community conversations more often.

I’m posting this publicly as a way for you to hold me accountable moving forward.