Guru: 10 Profile Mistakes That’ll Cost You The Gig

Guru
As a freelancer on Guru.com, you really are one in a million. One in 1.7 million, to be more precise! How can you stand out to employers and win more jobs? Start by avoiding these common profile mistakes and you’ll be miles ahead of the competition.

Mistake #1: Viewing Your Profile As An Afterthought

Providing employers with an accurate profile is the first step of getting hired. If your profile is lacking, employers have no way of judging whether you have the skills and experience they need. In fact, if you don’t add any services, you might as well not have an account because employers won’t be able to find you on Guru! Help clients get to know you as easy as possible by providing a profile that has character. Upload a quality profile photo (logos are OK but not as effective). Introduce yourself and your company, and spell out what you can do for employers by adding services. Remember to include keywords so your services show up for relevant searches.

Mistake #2: Letting Your Profile Get Stale

Once you’ve completed your profile, you can’t simply let it set. Your profile should reflect your current skills and best work at all times. If you haven’t updated it in over a year, it’s probably out of date. Keep your profile fresh to attract new employers. Add new work collections to your portfolio and attach them to your services. Revisit your work terms regularly. Ask employers to leave you feedback every time you finish a job. Expand your offerings by identifying current in-demand skills and taking skill tests to prove your knowledge.

Mistake #3: Writing Generic Titles & Descriptions

If your services look identical to everyone else’s, you will have a difficult time getting hired. Focus on why you’re different or unique. How do the services you offer relate to your unique vision? Anyone can master a skill, but not everyone can offer the expertise that you’ve built up in your body of work. Put yourself in an employer’s shoes. Use the same language they would when looking for a freelancer like you. Search for jobs that interest you, and see what keywords employers use in the descriptions. Make sure you include those terms in your service descriptions. The more you use a given keyword, the higher you’ll rank for it! You can also take a look at what other freelancers are doing. Search for services that are like yours, and study those that are ranking well. Finally, attach work collections to your services so employers see an image alongside your services.

Mistake #4: Lack of Personal Brand

Your profile is where you get to express who you are and how you work. The language you use is important when developing your brand, and pitching incorrectly will cost you clients. Too informal and you could come across as unprofessional, while too formal could prove too impersonal for some employers’ tastes. Keep your intended audience in mind. How do they want to be talked to? Try to write in a way that speaks to them and their needs. If you want to work with larger companies, a formal tone is a safe bet. However if you work in a creative industry you can use a more informal tone.

Mistake #5: Empty Portfolio

Unless you show examples of your work, an employer may not feel confident in hiring you. The work collections in your portfolio help attract attention to your services. Attach a work collection to a service and its cover image will show next to that service in search results. If you don’t have any previous freelance work to show, get creative. You can create work examples just for your portfolio. For example, if you are starting a freelance writing business you can write a sample blog post even if an employer didn’t hire you for it. If the type of work is not visual, you can create a work collection and upload a word document, PDF or video explaining the work you did. Talk about the employer’s needs and how you met (or exceeded) their expectations. For the work collection’s cover image, design a simple image that spells out your service or represents it. For example, if you offer accounting services you could upload a photo of coins on top of a book.

Mistake #6: Cluttered Portfolio

On the other end of the spectrum, putting everything you’ve ever done in your portfolio isn’t the best strategy. If you show too much, employers could be overwhelmed and miss your best work. Select the work you display in your portfolio with care, and organize it by project or client. Try to represent each of your services with at least one work collection. You should be equally proud of each and every piece you add. Quality over quantity!

Mistake #7: Grammar Errors

The quickest way to scare off an employer is to use poor grammar on your profile. They might assume you are as careless in your work as you are in your writing. Not to mention, poor grammar can make it hard for employers to understand you. Communication is key to success as a freelancer, so you need to be able to clearly state your work terms and expectations. Proofread everything you write on your profile and check for these common grammar mistakes. Not a native English speaker? Consider asking a fellow freelancer who specializes in English translation to help.

Mistake #8: Lack of Confidence

If you don’t believe in yourself, who will? Employers want to work with freelancers who assure them that they will deliver quality results. While you shouldn’t pretend to have skills you don’t, never talk down about your abilities. Prove your skills by taking skill tests and adding your best work in your portfolio. Avoid using phrases like, “I’m just getting started” or, “I hope to one day achieve…”.

Mistake #9: Charging Too Little For Services

It is a common misconception that freelancers have to price their services low to succeed. Many freelancers begin by undercharging for their work — and then get stuck in an endless cycle of mediocre gigs. Charge what you are worth! To start, take a look at what other freelancers are charging for similar quality and type of work. Then figure out what you need in order to support the lifestyle you want using this handy calculator. As long as you’ve completed your profile, an employer will have plenty of proof that you can do what you say. The more information and work collections you add to your profile, the easier it will be to justify your fees.

Mistake #10: Marketing Yourself as “We”

If you are a one-person shop, make sure your employers know this even if you run your freelance business under a corporate name. You don’t want to give the impression that you have an entire staff working on various roles when it’s just you. Be clear on who you are, what you do, and what you don’t do.   By:

Anna Bassham

Communications Manager

The top Fiverr’s don’t do list – to have a perfect Gig

Fiverr Don't

Top 10 Fiverr’s don’t do list

1- Never post your Gig in buyer requests page.

Only clients are supposed to use this page to submit work requests which you as a service provider (freelancer) can send your offer to any of this work. You can only post your Gig in the sellers menu under My gigs – add new Gig. In Buyer requests page you can see only buyer requests of work categories you are offering your Gigs in. Other work categories requests will not appear to your profile unless you create a gig for it. The consequences of posting your Gig in buyer requests page is having your account closed for 3 months. Probably it can be closed permanently.

2- Don’t submit your work files in private Messages.

One of the most interesting features of Fiverr that you can set the number of work revisions your client can have. To take advantage of this feature you have to send your work only via the deliver work button from your order page. Then the client will not be able to ask for more revisions than you specified in your gig. If necessary your client can ask for more revisions for extra money if you have set this Extra option in your gig. So when you send your work to the client via private messages whether in or outside Fiverr you will lose this amazing feature and your client will be able to ask your for as many revisions as he want. And you will have to do all the revisions.

3- Don’t use stock images for your gig preview without buying them

Many freelancers have their gig refused and they never know why. One of the most common reasons of refusing your gig is using an image for your gig preview which you don’t have the copyright for it. You can’t also download preview pictures of other freelancers gigs and reuse it without permission. The best practice to do here is to create your own gig preview images whether by taking snapshots of your latest work, or even by designing your own image on any photo editing software.

4- Don’t write fake information in your description

Some freelancers thinks that if they say that they are professional in a skill while they are just beginners this will help them to have their gig bought. Some even say they can do things they never knew how it is done. Actually they are right, clients most likely will select gigs of professional freelancers rather than beginners gigs. But if a client buy your gig in this case and you failed to deliver a quality work that meets his expectations, you will have a bad review. Bad reviews will be as a sign for other clients saying “this client is bad”. You can’t also just copy paste other freelancer’s description. The best practice in this case is to be honest in your description. You can find other ways to sell your gig even if you are just a beginner.

5- Don’t write short gig descriptions.

Gigs with a very detailed description achieve more sales than short description gigs. The reason is that clients always want to know exactly what are you going to offer them in details. Short description gigs gives the client an impression that you are not professional.

6- Don’t postpone answering buyers messages.

Response time is one of the most important evaluation measure that clients care about. Having average response time of two hours or less will encourage clients who have urgent tasks to hire you instead of other freelancers who have higher average. Installing Fiverr mobile app on your smartphone would help you to respond to new messages even when you are away.

7- Don’t offer relatively long delivery time.

When you create a new gig you need to check other similar gigs. If the you find that most similar gigs delivery time is two days for example, then you better not specify a longer delivery time. Otherwise your gig will not be considered as a competitor between similar gigs.

8- Don’t accept too much orders simultaneously.

If you are working on many orders you may consider turning the gig vacation mode on. Thus clients will not be able to order your gig. But they can always contact you by private messages to arrange a custom delivery time if they wish to. You may also activate the “LIMIT ORDERS IN QUEUE” option . And set the maximum number of orders for each gig. You may find it unfair to lose extra orders but keeping your performance high is more important on the long run.

9- Don’t pass your deadline to deliver work.

Freelancers tends to offer shortest delivery times to stand out from the crowd. There is nothing wrong in this, just make sure you have extra time for unexpected circumstances.

10- Don’t deactivate the “Activate watermark” option

Active watermark option is set by default active. This option makes the fiverr water mark appears on the image of your previous orders in the gig portfolio. This prevent others to copy these images and reuse it. It will also protect images you delivered but waiting for buyer acceptance.   You might also want to read these related articles