5 Easy Way to Identify “Bad Clients” and How to Deal with Them?

I don't need to tell you about the good clients; they are amazing people, and you will be amazed when you get in touch with them.

I am a freelancer and mostly work for clients from different marketplaces.

From my experience, I know scammers are all around, so we need to be aware of both bad clients and spammers to stay safe in the game by adhering to marketplace terms. Some clients are bad on purpose -I call them spammers, while others are bad by nature. 

Both could inevitably be harmful (both financially & reputation-wise) if you encounter them. Here are few signs of bad clients and how I usually deal with them.

1. Unreasonable Requests, But Don't Listen

I will start sharing my experience as a Fiverr seller. I do offer an unlimited revision for all my services. As long as it’s my fault, or if the revision will provide a better experience to my clients, then I happily do it even if it costs me a little fortune sometimes – which is perfectly fine with me.

However, after delivering an order, if someone comes back with a revision request that we never discussed and/or my gig does not promise, in general, then I call it a new scope of work, which means a new work request.

In this situation, I politely ask them to buy an additional gig and offer them gig extras with a “crystal clear” explanation of why they should buy the extras.

If they dump my offer without any discussion, then I call them “bad clients.”

Why do I call them bad?

They’re the type of client who thinks they bought my “head” (not my gig), and I’m bound to do whatever they want. However, in reality, I sell them a gig that may offer a couple of hour’s effort of my skills and expertise. And, most importantly I have the right to say “NO” to anyone!

What do I do with them?

 immediately cancel that order without a second thought, especially if they’re ignoring me. 

However, canceling an order is not easy sometimes, especially when a client does not accept your cancellation request. 

In that case, don't argue with them – arguing with a client (or anyone online) is a complete waste of time. Step back, relax, take a little time, and get in touch with customer support explaining everything in detail. Eventually, they will cancel the order without destroying your reputation in the process. It was the easiest case, right?

Now, the BIG question is, how do you know who might be a bad client if you never work with them? Furthermore, how do you deal with them without breaching the Fiverr terms and conditions?

Fortunately, with my last 6 years of experience at all major freelancing marketplaces (Elance, oDesk, Upwork and last 2 years on Fiverr), I can easily identify the bad clients because they provide a very strong signal (of being bad customers) during their communications and messages.

You May Also Like To Read: How to Avoid 20% + 2.75% Upwork fees?

2. I “Don’t Care” Policy Type Client

They will ask you to communicate outside of Fiverr with their first message; perhaps they will ask you to contact on Skype or email address or sometimes leave you a number to call them. If someone does this, then this is the first sign of being a bad client. Most marketplaces don’t allow or encourage personal contact, but they simply don’t care about these rules. If someone doesn't respect the Fiverr policies, then how will they respect you or your work?

Also, sending them your contact (email address or Skype) is = put axe on your own foot. Fiverr will disable your account without any mercy. This is the number #1 reason why Fiverr terminates seller accounts on their platforms.

See the images, how I avoid them! Simple!

3. Cancel Addicts Client

When an order is cancelled, I take some time to find the reason why the order was cancelled? Who is responsible for this cancellation? Because cancelling order negatively hurts both profile and gig ranking on Fiverr. So, I try to keep the cancellation rate less than 1% all the time.

Now, you will find a client who has canceled an order with you in the past. After a few days, if that client comes back and asks you to do another job but my findings say that the client was responsible for that particular cancellation.

Then I say “NO” immediately. It’s a waste of time to read their messages.

4. Time Crush Client

There are some clients who might have a time crush on their end. They order a gig and will continue to push you to keep their deadline but never buy the extra fast option available on the gig. I call them more a “bad manager” than a bad client, but they are both. Every time I have faced this type of client, it ended up with a bad review, unfortunately.

Every time, I felt like they left all their stress, failure, and aggression through the review they left me, and I clearly don't deserve it, being barely responsible for their failure. 

I thus try to avoid them if possible.

5. I need Start "Right Now"

You will see a few clients who will ask you to start their job "right away" or "right now". They don't care how many orders you have in the queue or never ask if you are available. I call them an "emergency client" rather a bad client.

Why do they do it?

I believe they have something in mind and want to test you for $5, seeing if you deliver their results. For some reason, if the result does not come out as per their expectation, they will leave you a bad review in most cases, if not 100% of the time. Usually, these types of clients and projects are worthless. A worthy project essentially needs good planning, a schedule, and a reliable person to handle it. They simply don't need a random freelancer who can start right away.

What do I do in such case?

I do not want to be a guinea pig for their immature idea or test. Avoid them.

In the conclusion, I’m not claiming that anyone who asks to contact you outside of Fiverr or pushes you to keep a deadline is a bad client; they might be the amazing client too. I am trying to say that if you find a client with one or more signs above, then there is a pretty high of percentage chance that they’re bad clients.

Now, my question to the community expert is, does anyone think any of the above actions may violate Fiverr’s terms? If so, which ones and why?

Also, have you ever faced a bad client before? If so, how did you deal with that situation? Please write your answer in the comment sections below.

You May Also Like To Read: How to Avoid 20% + 2.75% Upwork fees?


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