Three concerns. First, the pricing wouldn't feel so outrageous if only the WINNING pro were charged the fee and those not getting the work were refunded. I would go after many more leads if this were the case. Second, and this is only from my perspective with regards to my area but I'm sure it relates to make other types of business here. A lead to build a new deck for a $75 fee is acceptable to me it I get the work. A lead for a repair to a deck, however, cost me as much as $50-60 where I might have only charged $100-150 for the entire repair. This is completely unacceptable and the algorithm for those fees need to be adjusted as i won't even look at a repair leads anymore as a result and that was more than half of my business prior to now. Thirdly, The leads for decks and porches need to be separated. I don't do concrete and concrete guys don't do decks. I have had a number of occasions where I replied to a lead on paid a fee only to find the needed stamped concrete or something similar. This could be easily rectified by making the 'type of material preferred' category a menu that MUST BE FILLED IN by the customer so that concrete and decking pros can differentiate what the customer wants.
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I am a deck builder. Over the last year, my deck leads fees have increased considerably. Though I understand this , I feel that they have spiked a little too high at this point. In addition, your fee structure does not differentiate between a deck build and a repair causing me to dismiss any repairs due to the inability to make a profit from them (i.e.- repair a few boards on a 300+sqft deck costs me 75% of my profit in thumbtack fees. Secondly, I feel it is only fair to charge the fee to the builder that received the job. Not ALL whom reply. This is where most of my losses in profits come from. I'll happily pay a fee for a job I get, but I don't feel that you charge and collect five $75 fees and only one contractor actually gets the work to justify the fee. Can we please work on formulating a more accurate and affordable fee structure?
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