“Fiverr is the Amazon for digital services,” Micha Kaufman, CEO of Fiverr told Jacob Morgan on an episode of The Future of Work Podcast for Forbes, titled “Why the Gig Economy is the Future of Work.” During the broadcast, Kaufman explained how with his company, the “sellers” are actually freelancers and the “buyers” of the services are owners of small businesses with tight budgets.
According to Small Biz Trends, Fiverr announced in November 2015 that the company would be raising $60 million in funding to help build out its “community.” The company believes that they are only working with 3 percent of freelancers out there who normally look for work via word-of-mouth. The new campaign aims at reaching the “lost 97 percent.”
According to Micha, as he explains on the podcast, the changing workforce is a big reason for Fiverr’s new campaign and future changes.
“As the old concepts of work are being challenged, the gig and freelance economy is being viewed as a legitimate option to participate in, and build a career,” Morgan explained.
To keep up with the demand (and to muscle out the competition of other freelance sites) Fiverr is doing away with its own rule: All jobs must start at a $5 base price. Small Biz Trends also reported that the company will be offering new “gig packages” that “will offer several tiers aimed at making agreements clear with fair and straightforward pricing. The packages are standardized to eliminate the need to negotiate with buyers over the terms of service and to make the whole process easy-to-understand for both buyers and sellers.” The packages will begin in the areas of Graphics & Design, Writing & Translation and Music & Audio subcategories.
This all makes sense, because really, who can make a living doing gigs at just $5 a pop? Apparently, quite a few. The New York Daily News did a story recently interviewing various Fiverr people who have as much as six-figure salaries with the website. Linnea Sage is one of those people. Sage has done voiceover work promoted on Fiverr since October 2011. Currently, she takes in between 40 to 60 gig orders a day and spends about 20 hours a week working on them.
Redd Horrocks joined Fiverr at the end of 2012 also doing voiceover work. By 2014, she quit her regular full-time job and began to make gigs her new career. She puts in about 35 hours a week completing about 200 orders and plans to make about $120,000 if all goes to plan.
If you are familiar with Fiverr, you know that the site has more untraditional gig offer than traditional. New York Daily News found people like “Arjunrocks” who will “scream loudly for 20 seconds.” For $5 more, you can see the same person screen in HD, and if you decided to blow the whole ball of wax, you can see them perform while smoking a cigarette. (A perfect gift for that family member who has everything.) The listing actually has a number of positive reviews believe it not. However, there is no statement given that “Arjunrocks” has quit their day job. At least not yet.
Then there is Glitter Girl, who simply sends cards or letters with heaps of glitter thrown inside to various people upon request. The Spaghetti Speller will write anything you want out of canned pasta sauce with noodles shaped like letters and then send you a picture of the evidence to pass on. Simple and no clean-up for you.
The site also features a variety of people who will send short videos of themselves giving messages to others as various people or creatures like Jesus, Madonna, a Muppet, or what have you.
Not everyone is a fan of Fiverr’s services, though, and it is ironic that Kaufman compares his company to Amazon when, last year, Amazon went after over 1,000 Fiverr freelancers who were offering to sell fake online reviews of various Amazon products, both positive and negative. It is unclear why Fiverr would even allow such services on its site to begin with. Also sketchy are those who offer to sell “likes” on Facebook or followers for Twitter.
[Photo by Bruno Vincent/Getty Images]