Fiverr is a site that allows creators and entrepreneurs to sell their services, in a similar manner to UpWork or Freelancer. However, Fiverr stands out by being more flexible and having a personality entirely its own. In this post, we’re going to look at how to make money on Fiverr and flex our creativity. You’ll see that it’s much more than a gimmicky way to make a quick buck, and that there is actually a lot of potential here for a resourceful seller.
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The concept: anything for a Fiverr
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If you want to know how to make money on Fiverr, first you need to understand how the marketplace works and what makes it unique.
Fiverr gets its name from its initial central concept: that you could get anything for a fiver. Back in the day, this would include a vast range of services, many of which were extremely unique. My friend once paid someone on Fiverr to sing happy birthday to his girlfriend while dressed as cupid and jumping around a forest (delivered via video, not in person thank goodness!).
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You can likewise use Fiverr to get yourself a portrait, a caricature, a voice actor to read an advertisement, photo editing, poems, and much more.
I used Fiverr as a seller during this period and had some success with it. I sold bespoke personal training programs for people who wanted to get in shape, and was featured in a national newspaper!
When speaking with the journalist (who was writing a piece about outsourcing her life), I learned that she had also interviewed other sellers on the platform. One woman was able to make a full-time salary from writing brand names on her body and providing the photos! This isn’t uncommon, it turns out.
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While I enjoyed this exposure, it quickly became obvious that selling customized training programs for just $5 was not a profitable enterprise. It simply took too long! This was especially true as Fiverr took a $1 fee, meaning that I only received $4 per gig.
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The evolution of Fiverr – selling for more
This is what Fiverr was all about for a long time, but it did somewhat limit what the site was capable of offering. Eventually, it added the ability to upgrade orders with extras that creators could charge more for.
This drastically altered the scope of what could be sold on Fiverr. In my case then, I might be able to offer a generic training program for $5, a customized one for $50, or an online consultation and ongoing support for $250 per month. Suddenly, it becomes very viable to make money on Fiverr in a much bigger way!
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Sellers and buyers responded well to this change, and so over time Fiverr underwent something of a rebrand and change of focus – introducing an entire new market called Fiverr Pro. Now the platform places greater emphasis on professionals with serious skills to share.
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How to make money on Fiverr Pro
To open a pro gig, a seller needs to be “Pro Verified.” This indicates that a seller really knows what they’re talking about. To become Pro Verfied, you simply need to submit an application detailing your expertise, qualifications, and back catalog of work. There is no fee and anyone can apply.
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New pro features also include seller requests. This lets sellers post requests for specific work they need completed. Pro sellers can also complete courses in exchange for a “badge” to demonstrate their professionalism.
Fiverr Pro offers gigs divided into specific categories. At the time of writing, these are:
- Graphic and Design
- Programming and Tech
- Writing and Translation
- Video and Animation
- Digital Marketing
- Music and Audio
But the company has plans to add more over time, and there is nothing to stop you from listing the more obscure gigs in the main marketplace too.
It’s common to find gigs that start at tens, hundreds, or even thousands of dollars. These include everything from professional digital art, to programming, to article writing, and much more. For the most part this works, and now those service providers sit comfortable alongside the cupid-impersonator-singers.
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Who is Fiverr for?
Perhaps then the next relevant question for programmers, copywriters, data security analysts, and video editors to ask is: should you explore how to make money on Fiverr, or should you stick with tried-and-true options like UpWork?
The answer may surprise you.
If you are someone who sells a more creative or less easily-defined service or product, then Fiverr is a great option. If your specialty is jumping around dressed as cupid, then you’re not going to find many takers on UpWork!
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Fiverr is a good option if you want to appeal to a slightly younger and more creative audience. Video editors will find this is a great place to find YouTubers to work with for example. Illustrators and photo editors can design thumbnails, or touch up Instagram photos. Musicians will likely be able to find a few indie game developers to work with. If you know how to make money on Fiverr, then you can have a lot of fun here working in creative ways.
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Fiverr Pro vs UpWork
There is also a lot to be said for Fiverr Pro. As you create specific services and packages to sell on Fiverr, that puts you in control of what you offer; rather than leaving you reliant on the whims of others. You aren’t selling “programming services,” but rather you’re offering to build an app with X many activities that takes no longer than N hours.
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Moreover, the more modern design of Fiverr allows you to use videos and images to help make your offer seem more appealing. This can actually be a big advantage when targeting the right kind of buyer. That’s how to make money on Fiverr Pro.
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That said, larger corporations tend to use sites like UpWork, PeoplePerHour, and Freelancer. If you’re looking for long-term employment, or if you want to be considered for large corporate projects, then Fiverr is not the best strategy.
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It’s also important to consider the commission that Fiverr takes. Remember I said before that Fiverr used to take $1 for every $5 gig? That 20% rate still exists, which is on top of PayPal’s commission. That’s the same starting rate as UpWork, but that platform reduces the commission the more money you make. Sites like PeoplePerHour and Freelancer charge even less!
There are ways that you can circumvent this limitation. But this is not a long-term solution.
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This may be why big businesses still avoid Fiverr. But on the flip side, that also results in a somewhat less saturated market if you provide professional services. If you know how to make money on Fiverr, you can be extremely competitive here.
How to make money on Fiverr – tips and advice
So, how do you make money on Fiverr? Here are some of the best tips that will help you to start making money and turn this into a successful side hustle!
Choosing your gig
The key is to understand how to provide your service as a package. Find a way to deliver the maximum value, in the minimum amount of time, while targeting someone specific with a particular service or product.
Thinking this way means that rather than listing yourself as a photo editor and illustrator, you are instead listing yourself as a thumbnail designer. This appeals to the entrepreneurial creator who finds themselves browsing for ways to make their channel more professional, and also allows you to appear in relevant searches.
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A service can even combine multiple skills. You could offer an entire brand design, including logos, video openers, and more. Think about ways to make your skills stand out by combining them in useful, different ways. Choosing something you enjoy is another important tip if you want to be as successful as possible. Consider searching through our back catalog of posts to find ideas for professions you can try out. It’s a safe place to experiment!
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Think carefully about your title. This is what will grab attention and what will help to simply explain the service you’re offering. Try taking a look at some of the other gigs on the site that are working well, and ask what you can emulate about those. Note the structure that starts with “I will….”
When describing the gig in the description, make sure to be as clear as possible about what you’re offering and what’s included. This can help to avoid confusion later on, meaning less hassle and happier customers.
Breaking down your service into tiers is also a good idea. Where possible, having a more affordable offering (ideally a fiver!) will also help you to draw in your audience, while also playing nice with the culture of the site – increasing your chances of being featured. At the very least though, you should aim to have an “introductory” price to help attract unsure buyers. If they’re impressed, then they might consider placing a bigger order next time! Take a look at competitor offers for ideas about pricing.
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You will be able to choose a turnaround time (TAT). People generally want their jobs completed as quickly as possible, but you need to think carefully about the number of orders you can handle, especially if you get a sudden flood of people coming in! Creators and gigs can be reviewed by their buyers, which will result in comments on your page as well as a star rating. This will play a role in your visibility, and can have a big impact on your likelihood of being hired for future gigs.
Remember: under promise and over-deliver! If your TAT is 4-5 days and you deliver your work in 3 days, that’s a sure-fire way to get a positive review. Want to know how to make money on Fiverr? Just keep delivering a quality service!
Note: Fiverr does show how many orders are “queued” and it is possible to set a limit to prevent being inundated. This is a very useful feature!
When describing your gig, you need to pull out every stop to make it look and sound amazing.
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That starts by making yourself sound amazing. List your previous experience, your qualifications, and your past projects. Show positive testimonials, and do what you can to bulk up your CV. We’ve talked on this site about a wide variety of different certifications and qualifications you can get to improve your employability. This would be the perfect opportunity to put those to use!
Also read: Microsoft Certification: A guide for tech professionals
But the real key if you want to know how to make money on Fiverr? That would be your video. This is particularly important for B2C sales, though it can make a big difference in B2B offers too. Your video gives you an opportunity to show yourself and help build trust and familiarity with your potential buyers. It lets you showcase your portfolio of previous work (don’t have one? Make one!), and it lets you leave a lasting impression with high calibre music and editing.
If you don’t know how to create a video, then I highly recommend that you hire someone to do it for you. And guess where you can find someone to do that!
Also read: Adobe Certification is a great career move for creative professionals
Productizing a service
If you want to know how to make money on Fiverr easily, then consider “productizing a service.” This means taking a service (such as video opener creation) and automating it as far as possible. For example, instead of letting your clients choose the orders they want, you instead create a specific effect – let’s say text with fire behind it – and save it as a project in After Effects. You are selling this opener, but with the buyer’s logo. As such, all you need to do to deliver the order is to change the text and then export a new video file!
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You can even sell ready-made products this way, such as eBooks or online courses! The audience for this kind of work is limited, but as it’s a near-passive revenue stream, there’s not really a downside to trying.
There are plenty more things to consider when selling your service on Fiverr; from how you’ll deal with difficult clients, to how you can market yourself and get noticed. We’ll cover all this in future posts, but for now you should have enough information to get started. Now you know how to make money on Fiverr, it’s time to start experimenting!