Today I want to write a quick article about the freelancing platform “fiverr”, and why freelancers should stay away from working there.
I have been offering German transcriptions on fiverr for the past few months and I have received 9 five-star reviews by now, because my transcriptions are good and my buyers were very happy. So far, so good. But a few days ago I suddenly started having trouble. I must have attracted the attention of the competition and I realized that as an honest freelancer with good reviews you will eventually get scammed out of there by other fiverr sellers.
First, many sellers offer gigs they don’t actually work on themselves, but “outsource” them to other sellers. In my case, I received an order from a seller from “Cameroon” who offers German transcriptions as a gig but doesn’t actually speak German. So the client buys from him, and he buys from me. This is problematic for two reasons:
- The re-seller receives the good review for YOUR hard work
- The re-seller can give you additionally a bad review to knock you out as competition.
The other scam the competition will play ist that they will send you work you cannot complete for whatever reason (in my case the audio quality was so bad that a transcription was impossible) and you are then forced to cancel the order and your ranking in the search will drop as a result. Beware that not all sellers are visible as sellers, some just open a second account to appear as a buyer and scam you from there. (The desciption of my scam-buyer stated: “I’m a magazine publisher and I usually need transcriptions and illustrations. I don’t really offer services, so yes y’all I’m a user baby… deal with it.”) Very professional, right? Think twice before you start working for these kind of people.
When I researched in the Internet, it seems fiverr’s customer service doesn’t really care about these incidents. Worst case, your account will be banned and you won’t ever see your money that you worked for, which apparently has happened to many.
To complete the list, here are the other disadvantages of fiverr:
- You receive your money only after 14 days of completion of the order
- fiverr takes 20% of your earnings, which is a huge amount as most of us have to already offer low prices and work for under minimum wage there.
After these troubles I experienced recently, I decided to not continue to work on fiverr and start finding clients by myself.
So, freelancers out there, beware of fiverr and find a more trustworthy way to offer your services!
Alright… that weird time of the year we call Christmas and New Years… is over. No more excuses, no more laziness! It is 2018 and this year will be the year that I will make my dream come true: To become a successful Freelancer!
I have taken the time to let everything pass through my head and heart to see: What do I really want NOW?
Because the door is wide open. I can go in any direction.
But the question is, when given this chance: How well are we able to recognize our freedom every day, and if we see it, how well are we able to find our dream, our inspiration, and of course, how strongly do we believe in ourselves?
- The first step is to acknowledge our freedom. Not only at the beginning of 2018, or after our studies, but every day. Nobody should ever be able to make us do anything we don’t really want. But of course, you say. However, the hardest part in this scenario is to know what we don’t want. For example, after my Web Development course, everyone suggested to go find a job in Berlin and get some practise with my skills. And it does make sense, it’s a smart thing to do, so for a while I did look for jobs. Hell, I even got offers. But something didn’t want to go to these interviews. And when I took the time to reflect, I knew it was not what I wanted to do. I didn’t take the course to go back to working full time, I took the course to get out of the treadmill. And so I threw the jobs overboard and went to step 2.
- The second step is to know what we want. And not just within the small outlines of our “current situation”, because then we already limit ourselves. Of course it is important to be realistic and be able to make plans that have rhyme and reason and can be followed through. But, the visions should be big, not small, that’s important. When I realized that what I really wanted was to become a freelancer and travel developer, and when I decided that all I do will be geared towards this goal, I wasn’t done. Because in my mind I limited myself. I envisioned myself just having enough money to survive and being able to live in another, very cheap country like India. But wait, that is not how one should start working for a dream. Why not envision to become a successful freelancer, who offers quality work and is able to bring in up to 3000$ per month? I know it’s a high goal and I may not achieve it in a year, but it should be at least the vision in my mind. Because if I limit myself in my mind from the start, it will be much harder to grow and become successful. So ask yourself, what do you want to do in life? And not just work-wise. Because for me, the most important thing in life is the freedom to travel. No only for a certain timeframe, or a few weeks per year. I want to be able to travel whenever and wherever I want. I also want to be able to take vacations when I need them. I also want to have the ability to travel to the US, New Zealand or take a trip into the Himalayas. So I need to be able to work remotely and not be tied to a work contract, but also I will need more than 500$ per month.
- Third step: Believe in yourself. This may well be the hardest part of the process. Most of our parents do not teach us self-confindence, neither did our teachers or friends. At least in my case. My self-confidence is purely self-developed over the last two decades. And if you haven’t done so, it is good to start now! Because like I mentioned above, it is very easy for our mind to put limitations onto ourselves. And limitations are simply lies. The only limitations we have are the ones we set ourselves (and, I guess, the natural laws). You can find plenty of examples of people in the world that became very successful in a certain area despite having an obvious disadvantage or physical limitation, for example I have seen a drummer without hands. Or have a look at Stephen Hawking, he can’t even move his body but writes bestseller books and is one of the most famous scientists in the world. So you better start going for what makes you feel good, and what you are good at, rather then what you think you should do. Jim Carrey said once:
“You can fail at what you don’t want, so you might as well take a chance on doing what you love.”
Alright, so I now have found what I want to do, and I started by believing in myself and giving myself a chance to go for it. Now, the next steps are going to be more practical: Which direction should I take? Which areas should I specialize my business in? Which skills to learn?
The time is now, always.