Rahul is an app enthusiast who loves scouring the web for alternatives to popular apps and websites. Monopoly mustn't prevail!
Fiverr is a leading freelance marketplace with a unique model. Unlike the work request listings by clients on other websites, Fiverr workers create gigs that are then bought by customers. The typical gig starts at approximately $5, giving clients access to high-quality, affordable services from qualified providers.
What Makes Fiverr Popular?
With over 3 million active buyers from 160 countries, Fiverr is a great place for every freelancer to generate new business. In F.Y. 2020, the company processed about $700 million of gross merchandise value, the total value of all transactions completed on its platforms.
Fiverr also charges cheaper fees compared to its peers. A buyer only pays Fiverr the gig price and an additional 5% service fee of at least $2. Once the project is completed, the seller receives 80% of the total project cost.
Don't Put All Your Eggs in One Basket
However, there are many sites like Fiverr for both contractors and clients. While they differ in format and key processes, all of these websites perform a single function: to bring quality service providers in touch with employers ready to pay for said services in an efficient, secure, and trustworthy environment.
As the saying goes, you should never put all your eggs in one basket. With a deluge of options available in the marketplace, however, picking a good Fiverr alternative can be tiresome. Fret not. The following alternatives are personally tried and tested by me. Take a look:
Top 5 Alternatives to Fiverr (Plus Pros and Cons)
Upwork is likely the biggest freelance marketplace in the world and one of the best for budding and experienced service professionals in the world. With a presence in 180 countries and approximately $500 million in annual revenues, Upwork has both the labor and work pipeline to cater to the needs of freelancers.
In 2021, the marketplace had about 12 million freelancers and 145,000 active clients, with an average of 3 million jobs posted per day. These contributed about $2.5 billion in annual billings processed on the platform.
However, Upwork charges higher fees than most freelancer marketplaces. For instance, the marketplace charges 20% of the total project amount on every order, as well as $0.15 to buy Upwork Connects used to apply for jobs.
Similarly, Upwork charges employers varied fees for processing payments, administration services, service costs, as well as currency conversion and membership charges.
- Higher-paying projects than other sites
- You get hired quickly
- Easy, convenient payment methods
- Work remotely from anywhere
- Hefty fees compared to contemporaries
- High competition, difficult to get first clients
- Most clients pay very low rates
- Poor website user-experience
Freelancer is an industry titan among online gig marketplaces, connecting more than 57 million users from 247 countries around the world. It is a leading jobs marketplace by the number of registered users as well as jobs posted, reporting over 20 million job postings in 2020.
While it is free to register and start both as a freelancer and employer, the website charges varied amounts to keep using its platforms. As a freelancer, you must buy one of the four-tiered membership plans going for between $4.95 per month for the basic plan and a premier plan at $59.95 per month.
These plans come with Freelancer Bids that allow users to bid for projects. Further, the platform charges a $5 commission fee for every project invoice below $50 and a flat 10% project fee for invoices larger than $50.
Freelancer allows cross-user payments in the form of direct payments as well as project milestones, with the platform offering a dispute resolution mechanism to address conflicts. However, research shows this mechanism is highly skewed for employers than freelancers.
Unlike its peers, however, Freelancer takes a lax approach to platform security, with the marketplace ridden with fraudsters. The platform admits newly registered users with unverified identities to post scam projects on the website, while users can abuse their internal payment systems by reneging on prior agreements without much intervention.
- The website is easy to navigate
- Easy to get started
- Easy communication using the built-in chat functionality
- Multiple money withdrawal options
- Competency development tests are available
- Very competitive, tough to succeed
- Lots of low-quality projects with low pay
- Tiered membership fees
- Desktop app is poor at managing hourly projects
- Rampant fraud
In 2021, Guru had more than 2 million registered members, connecting individual and organizational clients to highly qualified affordable specialist workers across the globe.
Of these, 1.5 million users are skilled freelancers from more than 50 countries who work in about 30 different work categories. The company recorded approximately $118 million in annual net revenues from job listings worth about $500 million in 2021.
Guru freelancers can list their services individually or as a group. Thus, a potential employer decides whether to work with a group or an individual freelancer, while freelancer profiles enable employers to conduct a pre-hiring evaluation. Further, freelancer profiles have essential statistics to lessen the evaluation process, including the amount earned and freelancer rating on the platform.
Some of the key Guru features rank among the best in the industry. The safepay integration, for instance, allows freelancers to demand employers deposit the value of a milestone with Guru before commencing work and is more robust than the milestone-only feature on Freelancer.com and Upwork. Similarly, the platform's no-cost job posting feature differs from its cost-based peers, while it pioneered a group approach to managing organizational user profiles.
Guru users also enjoy fairer fees, with 10% project costs charged on each invoice and membership plans more affordable. However, Guru has one of the most expensive on-platform currencies, with one Guru bid costing about $1.5.
- Easy to connect with clients
- Several payment processing methods
- Affordable commissions and fees
- Free job posting
- Many functional features
- Fake clients and scammers
- Costly membership plans
- Limited third-party software integrations
- Lax security
- Poor website design and functionality
- No mobile app
Outsourcely is the shiny new kid on the block among online freelance marketplaces. Founded in 2014, the website has already garnered more than 200,000 users in about 180 countries, of which 50,000 were small businesses. The marketplace serves a further 400,000 remote freelancers.
As of 2020, Outsourcely reported annual net revenues of $8.4 million, approximately 100,000 website visitors per month, and about 1 million jobs posted monthly.
Unlike its more accomplished contemporaries, Outsourcely works to develop longer-term engagements between freelancers and their clients, a major deviation from industry norm that's sure to provide reliable work and steady income for freelancers.
Further, freelancers do not pay fees or project commissions on Outsourcely, with the marketplace making the majority of its income from client-side fees. Freelancers are therefore paid directly by the clients they work with and may only pay an optional $10 per month for a featured profile. A basic freelancer profile is free.
The biggest pain point with Outsourcely is competition. As you'd expect, doing away with freelancer-side charges attracted plenty of remote workers, meaning you'd labor a lot just to secure a gig. Similarly, this marketplace has one of the lowest pay rates amongst online freelance marketplaces, a product of both over-supply of labor and the fact it's still a new platform.
- Zero commission or fees on freelancer income
- Employers pay the freelancer directly
- Emphasis on long-term projects with steady income
- Good mix of part-time and full-time work
- Convoluted verification process
- Very low job volume
- Lower pay per project compared to peers
Toptal is the LinkedIn of freelance gig marketplaces. It fuses the tenets of gig economy platforms like Fiverr, the professionalism and candidate screening capabilities of online hiring agencies, and the professional exclusivity of LinkedIn. Simply put, Toptal niched down to matching top-tier freelancers with top-tier, oft-institutional clients, onboarding only the top 3% of service providers.
The platform has one of the highest paying freelance marketplaces in the world, averaging approximately 62% higher than the normal annual freelancer salary in the United States. The company enjoys a 95% trial-to-hire success rate at $0 recruiting fees for employers.
The company reported $300 million in net annual revenues for 2020, with more than $500 million in gross merchandise value.
As of 2020, Toptal had more than 10,000 premium clients against a select global network of 10,000 top-tier freelancers sourced from over 100 countries. With a 90% guarantee of an employer-freelancer match, Toptal is one of the dream talent pools for employers because the platform only admits the very best and most professional service providers with years of experience.
- Rigorous screening guarantees quality workers
- High-value projects for workers
- High-caliber, institutional clients
- Projects are very expensive for clients
- Intensive, extremely difficult interview for freelancers
- High competition for client projects
- Only suitable for large-scale projects
- Low effort-reward ratio for freelancers
While there are a plethora of apps and websites like Fiverr, my experience with the above alternatives has been excellent. If I have missed out on any other apps or sites, let me know in the comments section.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.