Why Freelance Sites Make It Harder To Find Quality Work

by | Sep 5, 2023 | Business, Consumers, General Information, Op Ed

Will Freelance Sites Kill Your Event - DDM Creative and Dirk D Myers Photography - The Vegas Image

As a business owner and also a member of a household I know that it feels good when you can reduce operating costs. However, I also know that you get what you pay for in most cases. That is what we are going to discuss in this post. Do you get what you pay for when you go looking for discounted help on freelance sites sites like Thumbtack, Fash, and Fiverr? If you are a freelance artist reading this, are you really able to find quality leads?

A freelance hiring site, also known as a freelance platform or freelancing website, is an online platform that connects individuals or businesses looking to hire freelance professionals with freelancers who offer their services on a project basis. These platforms facilitate a marketplace where clients can post their projects or jobs, and freelancers can bid on or apply for these opportunities.

Drawbacks to using Freelance Platforms

Freelance platforms like Thumbtack definitely have their perks, but I’ve found a few drawbacks worth considering before diving in.

First off, the competition can get pretty fierce. Everyone’s vying for those gigs, and sometimes it feels like a race to offer the lowest prices. It’s tough because I take pride in my skills and experience, and I want to be compensated fairly.

Then there’s the whole fee situation. They sneak up on you – subscription fees, transaction fees, all sorts of fees. As a freelancer, it’s frustrating when a chunk of my hard-earned money goes to these charges. And as a client, it’s like adding hidden costs to the project.

Quality can be hit or miss too. Reviews help, but I’ve had moments where the final product didn’t match up with what I expected. And sometimes, communication within the platform can be a bit clunky. Important details can get lost in translation, leading to misunderstandings that can mess up a project timeline.

The Personal touch - DDM Creative and Dirk D Myers Photography - The Vegas Image

You know what really gets me though? It’s hard to build lasting relationships. Everything seems focused on one-off projects. I’ve had great interactions, but it’s not easy to find clients who are looking for consistent work. And as a freelancer, it’s tough to keep relying solely on these platforms for income.

Also, the branding. I want to stand out and show who I am and what I can do. But on these platforms, it’s all standardized profiles and limited customization. It’s tough to let my personality shine through.

And let’s not forget about those disputes. They happen. You put your heart into a project, but sometimes things go south. Resolving conflicts through the platform can be a hassle, and it’s not always a win-win situation.

So, you see, while these platforms can be a godsend, they’re not without their quirks. It’s all about weighing the pros and cons to figure out if they align with your own needs and aspirations.

If you are a Creative, I am sure you have seen much of this. If you are thinking about hiring someone, than you can see why professionals may prefer to stay away from these platforms. This will be why most freelancers you find there are new or inexperienced.

My Personal Perspective

Wedding Shoot - DDM Creative and Dirk D Myers Photography - Te Vegas Image

The first freelance site I had experience with was Fash. I got lucky with my first gig. It was a Wedding Reception shoot and I really enjoyed working with the folks that hired me. I believe they were happy as well. It was a good experience for me, and I threw in some video simply because that was something I knew would be really special to the bride and I wanted her to have it.

Then there were ten opportunities that never amounted to anything. I made another investment in leads and got snookered by some guy who wanted a website done. The lead was so large it ate up my lead investment. Considering I could never talk to a person on this site (just like all of the other freelance sites I encountered) I never was able to get more credits from that investment.

As a business owner I find it isn’t worth the investment. I know the percentage of leads that pan out is generally low anyway, but with the lack of personal touch, it’s even more difficult. A lot will have to change before I start thinking about that again.

After being involved with the process, if I were going to hire someone, I don’t believe I would use one of these sites. I would likely use a hiring site like Indeed or FlexJobs before I made that move.

Do Your Homework When Hiring a Freelancer

Your event is special, why would you use a mostly automated service to find that photographer or creative specialist? Is saving a few dollars worth weeding through information about people that may not even be a true source? As a Creative, is it really worth it to pay for leads that are increasingly more suspect?

With the creation of AI (Artificial Intelligence) there are shortcuts being created everyday for people. However, those shortcuts are also made for those who work those sites to seek information or quick cash. I guess you have to decide whether saving a few dollars might be worth the chance of getting worked over by a scammer.

Learn about how artists are often getting cheated by AI

It’s frustrating communicating through emails when you just want to be able to ask your questions to a real person. Do yourself a favor and do a Google search, then talk to some actual artists by calling them. You will feel better about what you are getting and your costs won’t be padded by the professional that had to pay for the lead. Always remember, most often, you get what you pay for. If you are in my area, please feel free to contact me!

I would love for the memories of your portrait shoot to be happy ones, or the website for your business,+ successful. Losing money to someone that scams you or gives you less than you wanted is a terrible feeling. Bear this in mind when hiring your freelance artist.


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