We’ve talked about Fiverr on this site before, in both a good and a bad sense. None of the mentions, though, really give the site a fair shake. We talk about how it’s detrimental to buy traffic or followers through Fiverr, but that’s just one of the many, many services available on the site. I’ve used it before, both for video intros and for book covers, and I’ve gotten professional quality work back for frankly much less than it was worth. I’ve seen people get decent writing from the site, and there are a whole lot more services out there.
I say all this to let you know that, while some services on Fiverr are crap, many are not, and people who choose to sell through Fiverr generally know what they’re doing. They’re using fringe options on the site to make more than $5 for high quality services, or they’re doing something extremely easy for them to do so that $5 per iteration is a good return on their time.
However, given that Fiverr’s starting price is $5 – of which the seller gets $4, since Fiverr takes 20% — it pays to do everything you can to optimize your traffic and sales rates. You want to make sure you’re getting as much interest and as much volume out of it as possible, otherwise you’re not going to maximize your profits. Here are a bunch of tips to implementing that maximization.
1. Offer Something Unique
There are a lot of gigs on Fiverr, and there are a lot of variations on the same concepts over and over.
For example, say you want a video intro for a YouTube video. Check out Fiverr and you see dozens of them, mostly running some set of basic templates they plug your logo into. To compete with all of the existing level 2 or level T sellers, you’ll need to do something much more unique. You’ll need to make your own templates, or offer something in addition to just the intro video, or add extras for customization options.
The same goes for any industry and any niche. You need to find a unique selling point, something few if any others are doing, something you can do well and something you can produce at a higher quality than the existing sellers. You won’t stand out if you don’t have something unique going for you and the quality to back it up.
2. Offer Surprising Value
Fiverr gigs start at $5, with extras that allow you to make more money out of each customer. Most of the time, these upsells are how you’re going to make a good return on your investment. However, you shouldn’t gate all of your quality behind these upsells. You need to have enough value in your base gig to allow you to impress customers enough that they feel fine buying the upsell.
The best way to do this is to include enough content or value that $5 seems like an exceptionally low price to pay. Many people will feel fine with buying an upsell because they’re already getting significantly more than $5 worth of work, in their perception. You, of course, should have a production plan that is efficient enough to make $5 for that basic level of value a worthwhile use of your time.
3. Offer Upsells and Extras
A huge amount of the value people get out of Fiverr comes from upsells, even when the site is presumably based around the $5 transaction. With upsells you might end up making $30 or $50 or more per sale, rather than just $5. Ideally, upsells will be targeted at specific users, not just general add-ons people would need. Think customization options, not “you need this upsell if you want your product to function.”
The best part is, Fiverr allows you to customize your upsells at any point. You can change what they are and what they cost whenever, so if you find an upsell is effective but too expensive you can change it, or you can drop ineffective upsells and test others. That’s really the key here; extensive testing. Create ideas you can implement and see how well they sell as add-ons, and if they prove to be good, expand them to other gigs.
4. Solicit Excellent Feedback
On any site where sellers compete with each other to attract buyers, feedback becomes essential. Two sellers with the same service, one with 70% positive feedback and one with 95% positive, the 95% positive will most likely win the sales. This has a snowball effect, because the more sales you make, the higher the volume of positive feedback you can get.
Asking for positive feedback is important, but you shouldn’t press too hard; Fiverr’s feedback is literally just a thumbs up or down. You can’t ask for great reviews, since there’s no real way to leave reviews.
There is, however, one thing you can do to expand your positive feedback potential.
5. Offer a Guarantee
When you offer a money-back guarantee, you’re offering to cancel transactions if a user isn’t satisfied. The user doesn’t need to pay, and since the transaction is cancelled, any negative feedback they left is removed.
There are two problems here. The first is that, in some industries, even a preview sample of a product is enough. Some people will abuse this by getting the preview, taking it and adapting it on their own, and cancelling the transaction. This is theft and is illegal, but let’s face it; you’re making $5 per, you can’t afford a lawyer to pursue action.
The other problem is that cancellations appear on your account as well. A 100% positive feedback rating isn’t all that impressive if you have a 75% cancellation rate too; that indicates that either you can’t do the work or that you don’t satisfy most of your buyers and cancel transactions in order to keep a high rating. Customers are savvy; they know better.
6. Keep Your Title Short
The shorter a gig title is, the easier it is to understand and parse immediately. It’s also important because Fiverr is a very space-premium site. Gig displays, particularly locations on the front page, don’t have a ton of space to view the details of a gig. You get a limited number of characters, and you need to make the most out of them.
There are two ways you can optimize your titles. The first is to pay attention to keywords in an SEO sense. What are people searching for? Even if the title isn’t 100% accurate, using a more popular keyword can attract a lot more traffic.
The second is to test out different variations. As mentioned, you can change the details of your gig on a whim, so you can test out different titles as frequently as you want. Just be aware that some words are used in more than one way, which means you might attract people looking for something completely different.
7. Write a Very Detailed Description
Unfortunately, Fiverr limits your descriptions to a mere 1200 characters. This is really, really not much space. Depending on how verbose you are, that’s 200-250 words. This means you have to strive for concise clarity in your descriptions as much as possible. In some ways, it’s the exact opposite of most web writing. You can use formatting to make things cleaner to look at, though.
Ideally, you will be as clear as possible about the basic gig in your description. Add-ons have their own little description spaces, so you don’t need to go over them in your main description. I also recommend using other forms of media to enhance your clarity. Video descriptions, covered next, are huge. So are images and even off-site FAQs.
8. Produce a Video Description
Producing an explanatory video 30-120 seconds in length is ideal for getting the point across. A good video is relatively easy to produce – or you could commission it on Fiverr – and it will dramatically boost your sales. Fiverr’s internal data says that video descriptions increase sales by 220%.
You don’t necessarily need a huge, professionally produced video. You can get away with a simple “you talking to a webcam” video easily enough. Just make sure your script is clear, your audio is crisp, and your video isn’t awful.
9. Test Options, Upsells, Pricing, and Timing
Selling on Fiverr is marketing a product, and all marketing requires testing to be successful. Since you can change pretty much any variable at any time, you can run all sorts of tests. Unfortunately, since statistics are gig-specific, it’s difficult to make two identical gigs to do same-time split tests. Not only are you splitting your traffic, you’re splitting your metrics, meaning you have a harder time rising in the rankings and being featured on the front page.
Try to test variables for equal amounts of time and only one at a time. If you change three or four aspects of your gig and test the new one, you don’t know what effect the changes had on your sales. Test slowly and methodically.
10. Create Passive Gigs
You won’t get famous on Fiverr with passive gigs, which are things like books you sell copies of, or other forms of digital delivery. They do, however, allow your seller account to rack up successful sales without you needing to invest the time into each and every one of them. The main reason they’re not used much more often is that they aren’t unique or valuable in comparison to actual services. Why would someone spend $5 on a book on Fiverr if they can get it for $3 on Amazon? Fiverr also doesn’t frequently feature digital delivery items on their front page; instead, they tend to focus more on unique and valuable services.
That said, passive gigs are great for allowing you to make money and boost some metrics without ever having to put another ounce of work into it again. You can, of course, add more; keeping books and references up to date will keep sales coming. That, though, is up to you.
11. Seed Sales From Friends
If a bunch of food is laid out on a table in a room full of people, are you going to get up and go get some? What if no one has told you what the purpose of the food is, or who its for? You wouldn’t want to commit the ultimate social faux pas and cut into the wedding cake early, would you? That hesitance comes from the social inability for most people to be the first person to do something. It’s the same reason why no one wants to be the first one to turn in a test at school.
The same goes for Fiverr; no one wants to gamble on a seller with no sales. They’ll wait or find someone else. You need those first few sales, and you need them to be positive reviews. How can you get them? One good way is to get a few friends to register and buy your gig. You can pay them back if you like, you just lose a few bucks to the site commission. 10 or so sales should be enough of a seed to get you going.
12. Don’t Forget to Sell Yourself
Remember that a gig isn’t just about the service you’re selling; it’s about you.
Who are you to be offering a service? Some services speak for themselves and don’t require much about you, like template videos or “person holding a sign” sort of items. Others are highly focused on you, like website audits, logo design, or SEO advice. These are the sorts of services where you need a real opinion backed up by experience if you want to make a profit. Sell yourself so you can sell your stuff.
13. Advertise Your Gig Off-Site
There are no rules against advertising Fiverr off-site, and in fact they encourage it. They encourage it so much that they introduced a service that allows you to create custom deals and pricing options on other sites. This allows you to bundle upsells for a lower overall cost to encourage sales through sites like Facebook and Twitter.
I highly recommend looking in to various sites through which you can advertise. Social networks are great, but you can even invest in some cheap paid ads, if you have enough of a profit margin to make it worth your time.
14. Over Deliver on High Value Gigs
One bit of advice I haven’t seen around is to go above and beyond the bare minimum for your best clients. The people who buy all your options deserve to be pleased, so do your best to go the extra mile for them. As long as you’re still making a reasonable amount of profit for the time involved, at least.
15. Make More Gigs
At the end of the day, the best way to make more sales is to make more gigs. The more options for buying a person has, the more different ways you can sell. I don’t recommend multiple identical gigs, but several interrelated gigs can be more effective than one gig with a labyrinth of options and add-ons that confuse the user. If they really pick the wrong one, you can always recommend they pick the right one next time.