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How to make money on Fiverr as a creative professional
If you are looking to sell your services online, make sure to consider making your money on Fiverr.
While serious professionals typically focus on sites like UpWork or Freelancer, Fiverr can actually be just as profitable or even more so for the right type of work! Fiverr does a lot to differentiate itself from those other platforms, giving it some exciting and unique advantages. Read on to discover how to make money on Fiverr.
What makes Fiverr different?
The reason many professionals overlook Fiverr is that it started as a very different business. Fiverr derives its name from a central concept: that you could get any gig for five dollars. For much of its life, this was the niche Fiverr had carved out for itself. You could use Fiverr as a creator if you wanted to get a logo cheaply made, or if you wanted a fun novelty. Fiverr was where you would go to get someone to say “happy birthday” to your partner in the voice of Optimus Prime (we all need that!) or to get a thumbnail for a YouTube video.
While creators were free to charge extra for more complex projects or additional bonuses, every gig had to start at $5.
Since then, Fiverr has grown to adopt much more of a professional focus. As soon as you visit the homepage, you’ll notice that the site projects a far more serious image. Creators are no longer required to offer their base services for $5, and, in fact, most gigs will cost much more. The main ‘Become a Seller’ page advertises that the price range for gigs goes all the way up to $10,000!
The site now features tabs for common gigs (and the kinds of things that Fiverr wants to promote). These are:
- Graphic & Design
- Digital Marketing
- Writing & Translation
- Video & Animation
- Music & Audio
- Programming & Tech
But while this is true, it’s still possible to pay someone to record a birthday message as Optimus Prime!
This huge versatility is already good news for those that want to make money on Fiverr. It gives you far more options for what you want to sell and who you want to sell it to. Whereas sites like UpWork and Freelancer are very much B2B (meaning you sell to businesses), Fiverr gives you the option to sell your creative services to consumers. You are also far more likely to find other creators on Fiverr too, making this the perfect place to sell services like graphic design or music composition to bloggers and vloggers.
More importantly: Fiverr lets you create gigs. In other words, you are choosing how you package your work, the kind of work you want to do, and how you want to communicate that.
By saying, “I will record Optimus Prime for a birthday message,” you offer a very set product at a set price. This is very different from listing yourself as a “voiceover artist,” which is far broader. If you can only do one voice and you want a fun way to make some cash, you’re in luck! Or, if you want to focus on precise skills (portraiture, EDM music, thumbnail design, PyGame), you can do exactly that.
By productizing your services in this way, you can make them far more manageable. You can also differentiate yourself and practically eliminate clients with unreasonable demands.
See also: How to become a digital artist
How to start making money on Fiverr
To start making money on Fiverr, click the Become a Seller link at the top of the page. You can then head to the gigs tab and choosing Create a New Gig. The good news is that this process is rather straightforward. Just choose a title for your gig (it must start with “I will”) and then choose a category. You can then create several different packages with set delivery times, pricing, and more. Using search terms is also important to improve discoverability. Creating different “tiers” is a great way to encourage buyers to give you a shot and broaden your appeal.
You’ll also be able to add extra services (faster turnaround times (TAT), additional materials, etc.). For example, music composers will often provide higher-quality tracks or the original files for editing.
Top tips that will help you stand out
Adding a video and images is strongly encouraged if you want to capture as many orders as possible. It’s also essential to explain to the reader why they should choose you over the competition. That might be because you have more qualifications, because you have highly relevant experience, or because you have a real passion for your work. If you don’t have anything that sets you apart, your job is to get out there and collect the qualifications and experience that will.
As you provide your service, you will collect reviews from clients. Ensuring that you get positive scores is very important to your overall success, so go the extra mile wherever possible. Keep in mind the maxim: “under-promise and over-deliver.” It’s also wise to respond to any reviews you get.
Finally, remember that there is a pinwheel effect going on here. This means that you may not get any orders at first, but that’s just because it takes a while to build up momentum. The more orders you get, the more prominently your gigs will be featured. This can then cause a snowball effect.
It’s tough to get orders when you don’t have any reviews, so if you do have a way to drive more clients to your listing… use it! That might mean leveraging a social media presence or even asking previous clients to hire you through Fiverr. You’ll lose out on commission, to begin with (more on that in a moment). However, because Fiverr offers a great platform for more people to discover you, it is potentially a worthwhile up-front loss.
Terms and commissions
While Fiverr has a lot of great features for sellers, no platform is perfect. Fiverr has a fairly high 20% commission. This is in addition to withdrawal fees. Overall, Fiverr is still much cheaper than Upwork however, which is arguably one of its biggest competitors.
Sellers, therefore, need to think carefully when choosing the distribution platform that’s best for their services. Do you choose a platform like UpWork that is more restrictive but charges less? Or do you consider selling services through your own website with a payment gateway offered by WooCommerce? This option would almost entirely remove any commission while creating a lot more admin on your part.
Or do you do all three?
Fiverr users are also unable to share their email addresses in case they should circumvent Fiverr’s systems. There are, of course, workarounds.
How to make money on Fiverr Pro
Fiverr Pro is a subsection of Fiverr aimed specifically at higher-paying, B2B clients. For a seller to offer a gig on Fiverr Pro, they must first be verified. This guarantees a certain standard of work and further streamlines the type of gig offered to cater to a professional audience. That is to say that searching “Optimus Prime” on Fiverr Pro brings up no results.
Fiverr Pro has a smaller number of tabs as compared with the main site:
- Graphic and Design
- Programming and Tech
- Writing and Translation
- Video and Animation
- Digital Marketing
- Music and Audio
Essentially, being on Fiverr Pro means that you can charge more, and you’re taken more seriously. You’ll also face less competition.
Fortunately, becoming Pro Verified is an easy process. You will need to submit an application detailing your expertise, qualifications, and back-catalog of work. There is no fee, and anyone can apply. Sellers can convert an existing Gig to a Pro Gig if it has less than 26 reviews.
Pro also has additional features, such as seller requests. This lets you respond to ads posted by the client.
In summary, Fiverr is a fantastic platform for selling gigs that you control. Creative types, in particular, will find a lot of unique ways to make money on Fiverr. The site may cater to a less professional audience and charge a rather high commission, but if you know how to fit it into your workflow, there is a lot of potential here. Don’t overlook Fiverr!