ThumbtackConsumerAffairs Unaccredited Brand
Thumbtack has recently changed the way it conducts business. If you are a professional, you have to set a budget that says no less than $20 but really it just depends on when you try to send a quote to someone looking for your service. And the terms and conditions say that they have the discretion to charge my acct. when and how much they want to. It’s very misleading the way it’s described so BEWARE. Read those terms and conditions. Ruined a good App.
It worked for us only for about a month or so, but then everything have changed with this new system they came up with. It is horrible and very unproductive for the professionals. The pros can't see the prices per lead before they purchase it and can't choose the lead based on the prices. This system blindfolds professionals by allowing the company to charge whatever they feel like without giving you an opportunity to pick and choose or letting you know about the original price per lead at the beginning. Very DISHONEST practices! When we go to the grocery store, we as consumers have the right to see the prices before we buy anything in that store. It would have been crazy if we were notified of the prices after the fact of purchase, not even at the register.
This is CRAZY!!! VERY DISHONEST PRACTICES!!! Pros are being robbed and taken advantage of, while the customers have no idea what it takes for professionals to get in some kind of contact with the a POTENTIAL customer (the keyword potential). It takes on average 5-10 leads to get 1 decent customer and if one lead costs $10 -$20 -$30… Well, you do the math. These are the prices every pro have to pay to get one out of ten customers that would convert into a job. We don’t mind to pay $5 per lead, to try out many leads in the hope to get one customer, but paying $20 for leads/customers that just want an estimate and are looking for very cheap work is very challenging.
When I first started using Thumbtack in 2014, the prices were very low, the leads were great and their customer service was outstanding! Thumbtack now 2018, the prices have quadrupled, the leads are terrible and their customer service is horrible.
Thumbtack used to be a great service to work with. You could bid on jobs for as little as $2.00. Now they've created a new system where you don't know how much you are paying for a bid, and you only find out after the customer has contacted you. The costing is completely arbitrary, and can run as high as $41.00 for a single bid. Considering that a lot of people are just kicking the tires and not even looking at bids, this can get to be a very expensive proposition for the service provider.
Now, I've been a provider with Thumbtack since 2010, and have worked with over 300 customers through Thumbtack, garnering over 130 reviews (mostly 5 star). Why they've changed to this new system designed to soak their partners is bizarre. I've largely deactivated my account and will ignore future bids. I can't imagine them staying viable for long with this model.
Thumbtack states the only time you'll get charged is when the customer either: 1. Sends you a message. 2. Calls you. 3. Books an appointment or 4. Hires your services. Which are all fine and reasonable until you understand that even if a customer hires another Pro or passes on your quote without ever actually contacting you or messaging you to at least give the chance to win the business, Thumbtack will charge the pro and every pro that was not contacted or hired. When you ask them why they feel it is fair business practice to charge everyone for the business even when they were never contacted or given an opportunity to win the business.
Now, they will tell you that you should follow up on your routes to get a chance, but there's the other catch. The moment you do you just got charged for the contact. Thumbtack started out doping business fairly and then things started to change as they got greedier and greedier. I am all for sustainable and profitable business, but not at the expense of the customers who are making you profitable. Thumbtack forgets that their customer is the Pro, that is who pays them, not the Pro's potential customer. I have tried to talk to Thumbtack about this issue but they continually talk around the issue and find every way possible to tell you that they are justified in their business practice. Buyer (Pro) beware, Thumbtack is not your friend.
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I have been using Thumbtack since December of 2010. I have always felt they are very confused about who the customer is. The customer in their business model is myself and countless others that pay them for leads. The consumer that creates an opportunity pays nothing and yet, the consumer is what they are more concerned about. I understand they have to appeal to the consumer, but this new model is not forthcoming about what the fees are. Prior to their changes, you had the option of not pursuing a lead based on what Thumbtack magically calculated for the opportunity. Now, you find out after the submission, which brings back my original issue with them and their confusion of who is the customer. They can have millions of people submit free leads, but if I and countless others (the actual paying customers) pass on the leads or outright stop using Thumbtack, then how are they expecting to generate revenue?
I have also tried to help them improve their system, but any suggestion was ignored as it would mean less revenue... such as if I am paying for a lead, then it should be mandatory that I get either an e-mail address or a phone number as part of the lead. I have paid for hundreds of leads that I paid for and the "consumer" read, but never responded to, thus it is a paid opportunity. This purposeful oversight on their end in my opinion creates an environment that could easily allow for the creation of fake leads as there is no ability to actually find out if the lead was legit to begin with.
I have been a business pro with Thumbtack since 2014 and have, up until the past month, been very happy with it. I have been hired almost 100 times and have a 5-star rating with 59 reviews. A month ago they changed their business model. Before I paid $3.34 for each request for bid that I decided to quote. Now I am charged $20.88 whenever I am contacted by a tire-kicker. Their across the board increases take no notice of varying demographics. Complaints result in an operator trying mightily to put lipstick on this pig. I cannot afford such a huge price increase. All without clear information on what they planned to do. I understand that they want to make more money; so do I. But I cannot afford to pay this huge increase.
Their new system... charge the customers crazy amount to leads that someone responds to. This is not confirmed business just someone that responds to your lead... I see a photographer got charged $45. I got charges almost ten dollars and almost 18 dollars for two pet sitting leads. One asked me if I charged $25 for a week or pet sitting or per time... Obviously not a serious lead... $25 a week of pet sitting... That one cost me almost $18. I don't know who thought up this system, but I am going to my credit card to fight the charges and quitting working with Thumbtack. This is bizarre practices. Good way to lose customers.
I had been referred by my sister who was using a housekeeper from Thumbtack. Although I didn't hire them directly through Thumbtack, my sister did. Angie ** and her husband, Jim, came to work for us. I was usually in the house but just so happened to leave ONE TIME for 30 minutes. They stole EVERYTHING of value I had, including family heirlooms, tons of silver items, jewelry and expensive family treasures, some dating back to the 1800s. EVERYTHING WE INHERITED FROM MY FAMILY'S ESTATE!!! Unfortunately, it wasn't until this happened that I Googled these people (Angie & Jim ** of Nitro WV). I assumed they had no previous records being hired by Thumbtack. WRONG! A convicted felon was allowed to use Thumbtack and go into people's homes and steal from them posing as a housekeeper. She had only been out of jail 1.5 years having served almost 2 years for identity theft and credit card theft.
I have never written a negative review... until now. A fellow photographer suggested that I signup with Thumbtack. After he explained how it works it sounded like a good way to get extra jobs. After the first few weeks I received several "warm leads" or requests for photoshoots. They were mostly for portraits and a couple for commercial jobs. Yesterday I received a "warm lead" for a commercial job which I was interested about. I message the potential client selecting the category "More information needed for pricing" so I could better prepare a quote. The client responded with better details for the job. I almost immediately received an email from Thumbtack that I had been charged $45 for the quote.
I contacted support and chatted with a rep. I was told I was charged for this request because they consider it a successful introduction to a customer. Last month I quoted two commercial jobs thru Thumbtack and was charged a total of $8.35 for both quotes. I explained to the rep that this was not a quote, but a request for info. I was told when the customer replies, message you, calls you, books an appointment, or hires you right away then you get charged. I asked if I am not awarded the job by the client is the $45 in refunded. I was told it does not qualify for a refund. I told the rep that the Pro should be charged until the client awards the job to the Pro. They recently changed their policy where quotes are free. So, now they charge the Pro with disproportionally ridiculous fees when the client contacts you no matter the reason. I will wait to see if I win this latest job. Then I will deactivate my Thumbtack account.
I have spent hundreds of dollars with this company on fake leads and I believe that they should brought into court for theft with their fake leads and taking money. They advertise it is free. It is not free. For the companies just like Angie's List posts it's free but the companies are paying 1/3 of the fee for the work to these companies and they are all out to earn money for free.
Thumbtack doesn’t protect the paying customers/Pros and they don’t do any verification that people aren’t making bogus accounts and bogus requests. I worked with Directly also answering questions from Pros and multiple occasions Pros saw the problem and would create multiple accounts pretending to be people looking for services and sending requests to Pros causing them to spend money on a wasted request. Thumbtack does not stop this practice and charges regardless if it’s fraud or not. As a Pro I’m losing money weekly on fake and false requests. Thumbtack created auto responses to force more charges on Pros saying people were overwhelmed with 5 quotes at the time but now have up to 15 Pros sending quotes still using the auto response for fraudulent charges.
Overall, Thumbtack could be a great place to pick up extra jobs for a lot of professionals. With their current setup, however, it's just a great way to throw money out the window. I don't necessarily agree that they use bots to generate higher revenues. I do believe their job request form on the customer side is far too easy and you end up getting more customers looking for quotes out of curiosity vs actually looking for a job to be completed. If someone is serious about hiring a pro to do work for them, they won't likely mind entering in details about the project they're looking to have done.
The other major issue is that you are charged a fee as soon as a "customer" reads your first response or estimate. It's very rare that a first response is not read by the so called "customer", whether they're actually looking to hire or just wanting to get ideas of price. Considering the majority of request seem to be for people looking to get ideas of price, that means you as a pro lose the majority of your money on wasted bids.
Example: Person is curious how much it will cost to paint 3 rooms in their home. They find Thumbtack online, select a few "details" from drop down menus, enter an e-mail, and send their request. The request pops up on the pro side, the charge is $18. The pro responds asking for more info (often the case as it's hard to give an accurate estimate with minimal details) and offering to come out for an estimate. The "customer" receives the response, opens it, and then moves on to the next response because they're not really looking to have someone come out for anything. The pro is out $18 for a lead that was never really a lead.
Advice: Thumbtack is still useful, but would not expect to use it without taking initial loses. You do end up getting solid leads that lead to real jobs and this generally pays off the money lost on empty leads. There is an option for customers when filling out their request to enter details about their job. If they're unwilling to enter anything in that space, make your own decision as to whether that person is really taking the time to find a pro to hire or just looking for quick quotes because they're window shopping. Bottom line, plenty of potential to connect with real customers and make a profit. Also plenty of room for improvement to make it more pro friendly. You can make money on Thumbtack, but you have to be patient and realize you're going to toss some money out for absolutely nothing more often than not.
Here I thought I was actually gonna be able to make the money I deserve to be paid with my levels of experience but instead I am charged a RIDICULOUS amount of $ for a contact I never even messaged, or paying $38 to give someone my number hoping they will follow through with the bid. When I asked Thumbtack how was I to know that it wasn't someone on their side posting a job and then pocketing my $? This was their response, "We'd like to convey that all requests are from real customers. Not us. It wouldn't make sense in business perspective because we will only succeed if our pros succeed." I mean seriously? Right cause I'm supposed to trust their word for it? Def deactivating my account and taking this to BBB.
When I first registered with Thumbtack it was as I expected but then it changed. I had wonderful referrals. They reel you in, let you make contacts and money and then scam you. Well I recognized this and immediately stopped 'bidding' on jobs. I’m not going to say here how so as not to give them the skinny on how to continue to scam. They are a nasty group of disgustingly dishonest group of people to be avoided.
My company (MDK Fitness And Nutrition) has been on Thumbtack for over 4 years. Despite all of the changes, we never once complained about much, besides maybe fake leads. They without notice, deactivated our account because they said we were affiliated with some other accounts that were closed. When asked, no one gave a valid reason why. After being hired over 150 times and over 60 five star reviews, they charged us then shut our account down, for reasons they could not explain. It shows, that even after being loyal, they treated our company with absolutely no respect. Even with possible fake leads, price increase, and everything else, we never said one word. But their actions made absolutely no sense. Hopefully in the future, they will have a better business sense.
I signed up for Thumbtack thinking it would be a great way to find some customers for some miscellaneous jobs to make money until I find new employment. I quickly realized how much this site is a scam. They charge you not each time you land a job through their “service”, but each time you send or receive a new message, & it’s not cheap. You set a “weekly budget” which allows you a certain number of new messages. The minimum you can choose is $15 per week which gets you “1-2 new customers”.
Once you’ve sent/received your maximum for the week, you have to wait until a new week to send/receive another 1-2, unless you increase your “budget”. So basically you could end up spending a minimum of $60 in one month for a maximum of 8 messages to/from new customers, but you may never actually land a job & even if you do, it likely won’t be worth the $60 you spent to get it. At that rate you’re paying TO work not getting paid to work. Also, anyone can sign up for the site so anyone can message you & act like they’re interested in your business/work which means the people who run the site can easily be making fake accounts just to message people so they get charged. It’s disgusting. I can’t believe this site hasn’t been shut down yet. Don’t fall for their scam!!!
I pay almost $7 per lead for murals and faux finishing. More often than not, the potential client is very vague in the description of the project. In order to be fair I need to see the space and meet with the client. I state this in my "Needs More Info" reply. The potential client opens my message and I immediately get charged the $7. I have repeatedly followed up with these people and there have been no replies. Thumbtack will not issue me refunds. To me, this is a scam. Who knows if these people actually exist? A bot can open a message up, no? I'm at the point where I'm going to close my Thumbtack account. Throwing money out the window is the same thing and produces the same results.
They charge too much for big project... $45 for bath or kitchen remodeling and more. New system with budget is 100% cheating. I don't like this service and I guess I will close business with Thumbtack.
I have submitted over 30 quotes to Thumbtack with only one person to review my quote. Yet, I was charged for it and there is outrageous fees for these referrals that do not exist. I think the leads are something they make up. There is no contact information given, I use other lead boards and I do not have this problem. It is my company and two other companies bidding. But, with Thumbtack you are billed whether you are hired or not. I am going to get something done about this issue. This company is a scam, robbing the small business person out of already tightly earned money. I get quotes that cost me $15.85 and I don't even get a hit. It will say no pros contacted but that is a lie, I had one of my friends to contact a person before my company did so and when I went to bid it said 0 pros contacted. SCAM!!! We need to boycott THUMBTACK...they are a total rip-off with no set pricing.
I have been trying to make a payment on my account since 03/15/18. I owe $22.97. I have made 3 payments prior to this charge. I have called my bank and the specialist there told me there is no block on the account and that Thumbtack has been charging me $0.00. I have been trying to speak to someone there about how much they are charging per customer reached, and no one will provide that information. Red flag big time. There are no set prices for their services. They can literally charge whatever they want and won't break it down for you.
Now, since they can't figure out how to charge my bank, they have blocked my access to my customers and to send quotes. This looks super unprofessional on my end. I have tried the customer service chat room, calling (on hold for 30 min each time), emailing, and now texting. The people I interact will don't seem to understand English and have a copy paste response to everything. This month I have already spent $40 for a $100 customer. So far that's 40% of my profits. Save your time, your money, and most importantly, your sanity. Avoid at all costs.
This company is a Scam. If you're a business owner watch out. They send you false calls. Some of the names were bogus. I looked some of them up there was no one by that name. If you sign up you will be throwing your money away. They won’t refund your money either.
I listed myself as a Thumbtack Pro for house cleaning and pet sitting. After spending over $200 I have never been hired once! How many of the job requests are fake? Well, Thumbtack's own video about how to increase your chances of getting hired tells you to create job requests on Thumbtack so that you can "experience what the customer experiences." All of those become fake bids! Also, when you bid it will tell you "Pro's contacted: 0" but what that really means is that any number of pro's bid the job but that the client (or fake client) only contacted one. So there I am bidding away thinking I am the only pro for that job only to find out that over a dozen other pros have already bid.
I tried using Instant Match and having Thumbtack set all of my prices to match what they considered standard for my area (rates like $200 for a deep clean of a 5 bedroom, 4 bathroom house including interior windows, fridge, and oven cleaning - all bid sight unseen) and despite those low rates and them auto sending my bid to over 30 requests I never received a single inquiry about my services. In another case, a woman who is a hoarder with mental health issues requested house cleaning help but after accepting my bid it turned out she needed hoarder help including multiple trips to the donation center. Well house cleaners aren't equipped or insured to handle the mental health aspects of a hoarder situation and so I had to decline that job.
The woman then gave me a 3 star review even though I never worked for her. Thumbtack's response? “People are allowed to review you based on the hiring experience." Oh and even after I reported this woman to Thumbtack, they still didn't de-activate her account and so she posted requests a few more times - each time wasting $11 in a bidder's money and a ton bid on each post. Thumbtack claims they know what variables help pro's get hired - having more reviews on your profile, having more photos, etc., but when you ask them a basic statistic like "How many requests actually ever hire someone?" they can't tell you.
Lastly, this kind of service does a disservice to house cleaning professionals. A normal client/cleaner relationship should be done on a regular basis where the cleaner doesn't have to reinvent the wheel during each visit. Cleaning is very back breaking work - I'd love any staff person at Thumbtack to try going in to clean a 5 bedroom house "just once" sight unseen for $200 then have that client allow their dirt to build up again for months before hiring another $200 cleaner to dig the mess out again. These poor cleaners who accept these jobs are ending up working for minimum wage - certainly not the goal in joining the house cleaning profession.
I have been going with Thumbtack for quite a few years now. I just recently found out that they changed their policy. I was wondering why I hardly ever got a response from a homeowner recently and found out why. Because I'm competing with 14 other pros. What a bunch of garbage. I'm sure in just a matter of time when 1 homeowner gets 30 emails from Thumbtack to paint 1 room. I'm looking for another company or companies to take my business elsewhere. I have 5 stars so where is the business. This is going to put 1000's of small businesses out of business real QUICK.
I have been a customer of Thumbtack for almost 5 years. I think they are a great company. They match those needing services that my company provides (Anything Outdoor KC) with companies and individuals who provide the type of services the consumer is needing. It is the best way for me to find customers needing the services my company offers. (Anything Outdoor KC) I have had very few issues and have experienced tremendous success through Thumbtack. I am surprised that there are so many who think negatively. Thumbtack is great!
I began using Thumbtack as a Pro last year and achieved a 5-star rating and Top Pro status in under a year. Pricing has crept up from $5.01, to $13.36 over the past year. I just was billed $113 for an Instant Match referral and told I wouldn’t get quality referrals without using it. There is no information on the referral about cost. I had to look it up and found the cost buried in my profile.
Warning... Stay away from this Thumbtack! Thumbtack is definitely running a scam. I signed up with them several years ago and thought it might bring some extra gigs for me because I'm a DJ and children's entertainer because I'm doing good with GigSalad. Thumbtack constantly sends what I believe are all fake leads to my email. I responded to a few local ones and paid the fee to do so. I think I did about 10 in total. There was never a response from any of them. They take your money and run!
Website has always been buggy. When they (eventually) fix a bug, four new bugs are introduced. ROI was acceptable until lately (March 2018). My company went from Thumbtack Best of 2016 to zero responses to the past 135 quotes. Support was good, but has now gone completely dark.
First off when people use this service they are not required to leave any contact info. Not only will you be paying tire kickers that expect a price on the spot, you're competing with any junkie lowballer that signs up and you'll also be competing with 15 others. The little symbol will tell you zero people contacted the requester then when you reply (and paid) it all of a sudden changes to 6 of 12 responded to that lead for 20 buck. Am I dumb to expect to have a chance competing with drug addicts that will bid a bathroom for $500 while wasting my money and efforts. It's a total waste of time and money and online shoppers are too dumb to know they are getting the worst of the worst using this service looking for the cheapest. All you good stewards of your trade stay away. Eventually they will call from corporate sell you a pitch for instant match and the lead price triples to $45.00 each with 10 others replying to contacts. ** them!!
I’m getting more and more frustrated with this app. I did booked jobs with Thumbtack but the ratio of requests and response is very suspicious. I spent a lot of money quoting chef jobs and lately, despite great reviews I get no response other than generic “sorry I’m going the other way”. That’s weird since I can see the request was created 10 minutes ago and no one else sent a quote but me. I can also see the same request coming in on the exact same block in Miami under different names and dates. You can book jobs on Thumbtack but it will cost you a lot of time and money. I'm done with them!
Thumbtack expert review by Joseph Truini
Thumbtack is a website that connects homeowners with service providers in their local area. This online company offers more than 200,000 active professionals available in all 50 U.S. states.
Customized quotes: Homeowners can provide specific information about services they need and receive customized quotes from a range of professionals.
Customer reviews: The site compiles customer reviews so you know you’re hiring someone who’s experienced, trusted and reputable.
Fast hiring: Customers can hire a bath-remodeling professional with the click of a button once they have received quotes. Simply type into the search box what you need—bath remodel, bath tiling, bath vent fan installation, etc.—then follow a few simple prompts to receive a list of local contractors.
Photos and videos: Service providers offer videos and photographs of their past projects so customers can see the workmanship firsthand.
Messaging options: Thumbtack offers customers and professionals several communication options, including online messaging and direct phone communication to arrange the details of a project.
Best for: Thumbtack is best for people who need help finding professionals for an affordable bath-remodeling project.
Thumbtack Company Information
- Company Name:
- Year Founded:
- 360 9th Avenue
- San Francisco
- Postal Code:
- United States
- (800) 343-1710