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Last updated: Oct. 21, 2017

20 Kickstarter Consumer Reviews and Complaints

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 21, 2017

I pledged for a product 11 months ago. After several questionable delays and just as many lies from the project creator, communication was stopped and the product was never received. I filed 2 complaints with Kickstarter. They basically have no mechanism in place for protecting consumers from fraud and do not properly screen project creators or hold them accountable. They facilitate fraud with their lax terms and agreements and refuse any accountability for what happens on their platform.

10 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: July 22, 2017

I made a pledge for the Edible Cutlery campaign almost two years ago. After a lot of patience and a lot of excuses, the project has stalled completely. I NEVER received the items promised and when I asked Kickstarter to help me get a refund, they said they do not offer refunds on failed projects.

14 people found this review helpful
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Original review: April 24, 2017

I've backed several Kickstarter projects in the past. All were paid for in full over a year ago. Randomly I received a charge last month for $295.05 CAD on my credit card from them. I tried complaining but they only have an email and no phone contact. I've emailed them back and forth over a dozen times with no resolution and now they're not even responding to me. I asked multiple times for them to phone me as I want this issue resolved and they're taking their sweet time, but they've never phoned. I have taken this up with my credit card company and will be pursuing this as fraud. DO NOT GIVE THEM YOUR INFORMATION. They will steal your money.

23 people found this review helpful
Original review: Jan. 18, 2017

Have had so many complaints from backers on a unsuccessful campaign who did not get their money back months after the campaign closed. This is just a pain in the ass and pathetic on the part of customer service by Kickstarter. I would not recommend or use them again.

20 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 30, 2016

Was pretty easy to post to Facebook as there was a link button after I finished to make the post. I'm pretty sure I didn't need to add much. I think there was also a button for Twitter. Was very easy to set up an account. Then very easy to find the project which I wanted to fund. Funding the project was very easy only took a click of a button. I did not read the fine print so wasn't aware that there were any fees but a very small fee such as 2 or 3 percent would be reasonable. The website seems so simple to use that it probably wouldn't be necessary to deal with customer support very often.

5 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 28, 2016

Using this site with Facebook has helped me get even more donations than I normally would. With a simple click it was easy to integrate this website with social media. The ease of use and setup of this service was not difficult to use at all. I had absolutely no problems setting this service up and because of the quickness of this service I would recommend to others. There was little to no additional fees in using this service. What fees were added were simple maintenance of the software which was not a big deal to pay at all. The experience I had with customer support went overall well. They were extremely friendly and helpful with whatever questions I had had. I also did not get transferred over to another representative which was great.

9 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 27, 2016

This site integrated sufficiently. I used two other social media sites to act as a medium and awareness to my cause that needed fund raising. I believe that these sites were very instrumental in aiding to lead people to the kickstarter site where they could the donate funds. Probably the best thing about Kickstarter is the ease of use. They were the first big site to organize people publicly to fund causes. It's for this reason they are most popular and it motivates them to streamline their site and keep it most up to date. It's my biggest reason for recommending this site.

When I decided to use Kickstarter I had never used a funding site before. I was naive and ignorant and Kickstarter was the only one I really knew about even though I did know there were other sites of its kind. After it was too late I did a little more research and found that Kickstarter charges one of the most if not highest fees not to the fundraiser but the funders themselves pay a very high rate, I believe 8% of the amount funded. This on other sites is as low as 1% so to pay 8x higher just for name recognition is a bit ridiculous. People are donating because they know you or believe in what you need funds for not the name of the site. If I could do it again I would go another route. I needed funding for a legit cause and don't feel the people who were generous enough to do this should be making these greedy people do much for what should be the opposite of greed.

Customer support was helpful. There have been other online entities I have used that were far far worse. Sometimes you wonder if there is a customer service dept at all. I had some people with payment issues that were resolved fairly quickly with their customer service. With the nature of a lot of these funding causes being time sensitive that is crucial.

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13 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 24, 2016

Has a smooth transition to share on social media and other sites. If you want to share to Facebook, click the Facebook logo. Want to share to Twitter, click the Twitter logo. From signing up to completion of what you are working on everything you need is laid out in front of you so you don't have to search for anything. Fees are reasonably cheap compared to other crowd-funded sites. Payment processing is not a hassle with a lot of payment options to choose from. If you have a question or concern about anything, customer service is there at all times to help. Whether it's a payment issue or something else, they are fast and reliable.

3 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 23, 2016

I used Kickstarter years ago... way before Instagram was as huge as it is now. Facebook was around, but I think if I used it today w/ Snapchat & Vine, etc... it would be a much different experience. If you know computers & have a simple knowledge of technology you will get through Kickstarter with such ease. It is pretty user-friendly for most ages. I am satisfied with the Kickstarter fees. When raising money for a film project you wish it was all free, but I understand that can not be the case. Overall I was fine with the amount. We did not need to utilize customer support during the Kickstarter project, but I imagine it would have been fine and with ease if we did.

3 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 21, 2016

I found some items to find using social media. It allowed me to find something I would not normally search for. My most recent backing was for a Guys of Cosplay Calendar that a friend is going to be in. You can easily see how much money they will need to attempt to complete this project as well as the amount needed to collect certain items from the company/group. They need to make money somehow I guess. It's a little disappointing there isn't a website that allows people to come together for free and exchange things. I am only giving this a 3 because I have never dealt with their customer service. Any projects that were cancelled I received my money back and never had an issue.

3 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 20, 2016

Their integration with all social media platforms is flawless. I found it easy to navigate and share my campaign with all my social media accounts. I would definitely recommend to others. Starting a campaign is simple. You show what your project is, give it a description, add a video and post. It doesn't get much easier than that. It is rather expensive for smaller campaigns. But I guess every business needs to make money. I've never actually used customer support. The process was seamless, so there was no point in contacting them. Kickstarter is highly recommended.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 17, 2016

Facebook and Twitter especially are useful to promote Kickstarter projects. Easy to share links of the projects I want to support... Projects of friends/friends' family members and classmates from HS and College. Seems very easy to set up. Enough guidelines to follow to fully set up project funding. Need to follow guidelines and suggestions for a successful campaign. Fees are reasonable as comparable to other crowd funding sites. Need to make sure to read fine print so you are fully aware of what the fees are and how related to amounts collected. Truth be told I have not had much need for customer experience. I imagine that the customer service is helpful as the overall site is very active.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 15, 2016

There doesn't seem to be any recourse for defective/missing products once you've donated. Click - pick which $$ funding you want and pay. Easy peasy. I've had mainly good results with Kickstarter - some took longer than initially thought but still came. However, there is 1 that a defective product was received and I've communicated for about 2 years with them. Last I hear I think they are filing bankruptcy or selling.

3 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 15, 2016

It's linked to my account. All I have to do is select the donation I want and it's automatically charged to my Amazon account. Donating on Kickstarter is incredibly easy. You can easily and quickly donate to all the projects if you so chose to. The only challenge lays with the project founders/creators themselves. Not all projects come to fruition and many are rife with problems or setbacks. I've been fortunate, in that most have come to market and when they haven't; my funds returned.

4 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 15, 2016

Good information, straightforward, good follow-ups every month or so.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 15, 2016

Everything went smoothly. No hitches or delays. Click, enter into, done. Good way to promote project, which was creation of elibrary of book collection.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 15, 2016

I had two experience. The first is the one I'm reviewing now. The second was terrible. I simply charged to my credit card. I received the item the company made. It exceeded my expectation as to quality and design.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 15, 2016

I used a credit card. It's been charged on the date and no problems at all. Also it made it easy for me to bump up into a better tier when it became available. All communication and updates has been through Kickstarter and it's been easy. It's been great, no surprises.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 15, 2016

It was easy to integrate and add it to social media. I liked that it was so easy. All I really had to do was push a button and it would share it to social media and same with Twitter it was easy there too. Has very clear step by step directions on how to set everything up and how to use it all. I liked that it was easy to understand and not complicated. It was cheap to set it up. Initially I thought that it was free but there was a small fee. I don't remember what the fee was. It is nice that it was cheap. I never used customer support because I never needed to call and ask a question. But I have heard that they have good customer support who is willing to answer your questions.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 7, 2016

It's hard for a project to get off the ground if it doesn't have the "social media hype". You need lots of talk about your game since not many people check the Kickstarter websites often. Easy to navigate. The project's main goal or purpose is always at the top of the page, more information as you go down. Then you have your tier list on the right as well as what's usually with them. As for the main site, they have all the different projects into categories, making it easy to find something you are interested in.

2 people found this review helpful

Kickstarter expert review by Rose Spinelli

Since its inception in Brooklyn in 2009, Kickstarter has helped campaign owners raise nearly $2 billion to fund over 92,000 projects. It's a haven for creative projects across diverse categories such as dance, food, music and games, as well as a variety of subcategories, and has quality name recognition. Originally only for those living in the USA, Kickstarter continues to expand globally. In 2015 Kickstarter became a Public Benefit Corporation, which means that they are obligated to consider the impact of their decisions on society, not shareholders.

  • All or nothing: The "all or nothing" philosophy at Kickstarter encourages donations and minimizes donor risks. Nearly half of Kickstarter projects get funded.

  • Fees: Kickstarter takes 5 percent of each donation if a project meets its goal, with a third-party processor collecting between 3 to 5 percent. Kickstarter does not charge fees when a campaign fails to meet its goal.

  • Name recognition: Backers who want to fund creative projects tend to gravitate to Kickstarter, and campaign owners benefit from that built-in audience. Entrepreneurs, and increasingly some businesses, can also use Kickstarter to fund a wide variety of creative projects.

  • Project visibility: Through curation, Kickstarter chooses to bring attention to those projects that are getting backer and media attention through the use of staff picks and weekly newsletters.

  • Best for: Kickstarter is the best fundraising platform for artists, designers and product-related businesses to get support for creative projects.

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Rose Spinelli

Crowdfunding Contributing Editor

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Rose Spinelli, founder of The CrowdFundamentals, is an internationally recognized crowdfunding specialist, mentor, trainer and writer. In 2014, she was voted one of the 100 Most Influential Thoughtful Leaders in Crowdfunding. Rose is the author of one of the first online crowdfunding courses called “Working the Crowd: Know the Fundamentals,” and she has served on a board of directors for the CrowdFunding Professional Association.

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