5 Tweaks in Your Online Marketing Producing the Most Change

By now, everyone has heard the story of how Target uses predictive analytics to better target their customers. So why does Target engage in predictive marketing? Is it worth their time and money?

Online Marketing SuccessAs an outsider, you can only measure their success through company growth. Understanding how much of that growth is attributable to analytical efforts is known only to those inside the company.

I have seen small changes in ad copy increase conversions by 50%. The fact is that every company has a set of marketing levers they can tweak to improve performance. Target may have the resources to become optimal, but small businesses can make use of powerful yet simple tools and tactics and still achieve higher results.

Below is a consolidation of channels and improvement guidelines where I have seen the most potential for growth.

Update Your Email Marketing

Email marketing commonly becomes a routine to the marketer. Therefore the offers and driving content usually becomes boring and repetitive.

According to this study by Exact Target, the 2nd most important reason people unsubscribe is that the content becomes repetitive.

To avoid falling under this trap, marketers should consider creating various types of offers to each of their customer segments, at different times during the relationship.

A,B,C testing all the offers, imagery and content helps you understand what works and what doesn’t so you can disregard those without much success and continue to use the most popular ones. Small changes in click-through rates can significantly increase sales and conversion rates.

Check Your Frequency

The problem of mass email is twofold. Consumers are bombarded with emails and retailers cannot capture well the consumers’ attention. Opting out of newsletters and offers has become a common practice and it is estimated that 15% of people once on your list will opt out.

According to the study cited above, the top reason is “email came too frequently.” You have data on how often people purchase and what content drives engagement.

A simple segmentation exercise based on last customer interaction, products purchased, and response history can provide insight on the ideal frequency for each customer.

Ad Placement is Key

The websites your ads appear on and page placements are the two main factors of click-through success. It’s been found that ads that appear above the fold and seven times more successful than those delivered below the fold.

Frequency turns out to be very successful. Ads shown 5 or more times to a user are 12 to 14 times more successful than ads shown less than 5 times.

I personally witnessed significant increases in click-through rates as a database marketing consultant. Simple tweaks in messaging and location improved our conversions and lowered costs. Trial and error is key in understanding what drives people to your sight.

Keyword Selection

Keyword research is more of an art than science (although everything can be measured online.) Search is becoming very specific when people look for a specific product for their needs. Many of these keywords go unnoticed by vendors. These are likely to be cheaper, drive less traffic, but provide higher conversion rates.

There are many analytical tools to measure keyword success so there is no gut feeling. If you clearly see that a keyword drives more that 85% away then one would want to adjust.

By continually adjusting, you will find the right set of keywords and messaging needed to position yourself in a stronger position than your competitors.

Content is Still King

What you put on your email newsletter, offers, website, blog, and even ads is the most important aspect of any campaign. Companies like Target cited above understand this concept very well: “The right content at the right time.”

In the article it said that Target even purposely sent offers about un-targeted products so it didn’t concern the shopper of privacy issues.

The secret to good content is adding value first. A coupon or offer can be helpful when one is in the market for a specific product and the coupon has the right price and ease of purchase.

Other times, marketers need to engage the customers by sending important and useful information. This is where you develop your customer life cycle campaign.

Content and messaging directed at increasing trust and engagement in a brand in pursue of a purchase at a later stage.

Marketing is about execution, trial and error, and value creation. Big ideas come from creative minds and having a high quality product still triumphs, but there are various levers to adjust and improve results. Continually study your online measurements, try new ideas, and be flexible to adjust.

Jaime Brugueras the CEO of Mineful – a customer retention and analysis software. Jaime writes frequently about marketing analysis, customer retention, and email marketing. He has been published in several industry publications including eCommerce Times. Follow Mineful on Twitter for industry insight and conversations.

Social Networking Making a Positive Change

In earlier days, the computers were hailed as ‘world changing technologies’ and it was hoped Social Networking that email would bring about a revolution in communication.

Some said that the Internet would eradicate any form of national boundary. All these took place and there were some partial changes, but the world did not change overnight, it only became a little bit different.

In hindsight, all these things did bring about a change but it was never that catalyst that would actually transform the face of the world.

However, it seems that social media is actually changing the world. It helps to connect people and brands, empowers consumers and brings about revolutions in countries where it is needed.

Politics Re-invented

Recent studies have found that social networking is actually encouraging young people to get involved in politics.

Twitter had good impacts on the Iran elections and the Orange Revolution in Ukraine. More and more people are getting involved in politics and they feel that they can make a difference.

The Huffington Post is one of the most popular blogs on the web and is mainly political in nature. Social media is enjoying a growing influence in politics and the same sentiment was echoed by the UK Prime Minister, Gordon Brown.

News Travels Fast

People are no longer interested in passive messages. They now get news through the social network and then this news is passed onto others. By this the others understand – what we are interested in and what is important to us. You may call this gossip but this is news to users on social networking sites like Twitter, Digg and Stumbled Upon.

Marketing Flux

Marketing and advertising have embraced the power of the consumer and makes a serious attempt to engage in conversations.

Earlier these two aspects were part of the mass market channels that the industry relied on. It had a more wider reach but very repetitive. Now marketing and advertising have a smaller reach and engaged in people-centric activities. People say that advertising is dying but we believe that it is only changing form. The consumers today have more power and more choice.

Child Literacy

There is no denying the fact those children who have reading habits are usually better at reading and writing. Believe it or not, they do get motivated to read and write by participating in online blog posts and putting up status updates.

A recent survey has established a correlation between the child’s involvement in social media and his overall literacy. To put it more bluntly, social media has helped our children to become literate.

Influence on World Events

Social Media is associated with many world events. The overthrowing and subsequent removal of the dictatorship in Egypt was only possible due to Facebook groups and large scale online protests.

There have been many instances when important world events had broken out on Twitter even before it has been announced on CNN or reported by respectable papers like The New York Times.

Social Media will continue to be a driving force. As long as it is being used in the proper way, Social Networking will strive to change the way the world functions.

Margaret is a blogger by profession. She loves writing on technology and gadgets. Beside this she is fond of books. She recently bought a gaming chairs. These days she is busy in writing an article on steam support.

Traveling Your Way to a Better Blog

Chances are, you enjoy blogging. At least you did at the start. While some people blog as a profession, most of us start them out of passion. Why is it, then, that blogging often turns into a chore? After a while, at least for some bloggers, it feels like something we have to do, rather than something we want to do.

Has the passion really dissipated?

Better BlogNo, in all likelihood there are a number of factors that go into blog dissatisfaction that have nothing to do with passion…

It might be the staleness of comments discussion, or even a traffic plateau. Most commonly, though, we grow bored with our blogs because it feels as though we’re spinning our wheels.

Nothing feels fresh any more. Thankfully there are ways to combat that feeling.

A change of scenery

I’ve found that some of my freshest content ideas come immediately following a vacation or business trip. That is, those are times when the juices flow.

I can usually bank a few weeks’ worth of content on all of my blogs. The ideas sometimes come while I’m on the trip, sometimes while I’m on the airplane, and sometimes immediately afterwards. But whenever they came, they coincided with times that I’d been on the road.

Changing the scenery, apparently, did change my mind. Being away from familiar dwellings inspired something in me. That is, it seems as though my blogs had grown stale, because my environment had grown stale.

After talking to many more people, particularly work-from-home types, I found many similar stories. Getting out of our comfort zones apparently gets the creative juices flowing after they’ve gotten stagnant.

The great news is that traveling doesn’t have to be a big ordeal. Simple trips can suffice. You can also find useful purposes for travel, so you can combine your best interests. Here are the two ways I’ve traveled, much to my benefit.

To the surprise of some, none of them involve a tropical beach…

Traveling to get away

A vacation? Perish the thought. There’s too much work to be done. While many of my office dwelling friends get three, four, or even five weeks of vacation per year, I’m lucky to get but one. It’s one of the few drawbacks to working for a start-up, and working from home. With constant pressure to grow our sites, it’s tough to get away even for a week. Yet, as outlined above, getting away is still important. The best way I’ve found to reconcile these issues is to take frequent mini vacations.

The key here is to completely change your surroundings. I live in a mostly urban area, so these mini trips are to the land of small towns and trees. Lots and lots of trees.

Friends of mine who live in small towns like to take their trips to New York City, Boston, Washington D.C., or other fast-paced, populated areas.

The overall point, though, is to find stimulus that you simply cannot find at home. That will get the creative juices flowing again.

Of course, over the years it has become more difficult to create an all new environment. After a while, vacationing in small towns gets stale, too. Still, there are all sorts of adaptations of this. For instance, I’ve taken to seeking out a car rental as far in advance as possible (as to keep the cost as low as possible — you don’t want to book a rental car just a few days before you need it). You can also choose an uncommon destination. Have you ever been to a beach town in the winter?

It’s surprisingly relaxing.

Again, the overall idea is to take a day or two off work, overlap with a weekend, and completely change the scenery. The new stimulus will inspire you and get you back on track.

Traveling with a purpose

While traveling with the sole purpose of changing the scenery can be helpful, it’s even better to combine this with a professional purpose. As I noted above, it didn’t matter whether I was vacationing or traveling for business. Either way, the ideas would start flowing. So why not take the opportunity to grow professionally?

For anyone who works on the Internet, there are dozens of helpful conferences every year. Affiliate marketers have a number of conferences that have long track records and are run by successful people. There are general blogging conferences, and there are niche blogging conferences. There are also industry conferences – tech bloggers will find plenty to their liking here.

Conferences give us a chance to expand our social networks. Surrounded by people with similar interests, it’s hard to walk away without a ton of new address book entries.

Conferences also provide a great opportunity for a face-to-face meeting with people we’ve met online. Twitter can be great for conversations, but there’s so much more to a physical connection.

Additionally, conferences provide many educational opportunities. Panels and keynotes feature material from some of the most successful people in any given field. These speeches and panels can give us ideas that we can apply to our own sites. That is, conferences provide a veritable treasure trove of ideas. Those ideas spur the mind, which helps us keep things fresh.

Time was, traveling was an expensive, time-consuming process. But now, with the Internet and travel agencies, it’s quite simple. We can use cheap travel for many purposes. While going to a conference or other industry even helps reconcile our professional and personal needs, a simple trip away from home can do the same. There are plenty of opportunities to do so. When things are feeling stale and you need new stimulus, a short weekend trip can provide weeks, even months, worth of solutions.

Joe Pawlikowski edits several blogs across the web, including his latest project, A New Level, which addresses issues for at-home workers (and whatever else he’s thinking about).

3 Ways to Set Realistic Professional Goals

Coming up with big ideas and setting goals to put those big ideas into motion is easy. Unfortunately, oftentimes we don’t reach the goals we’ve hastily set.

Professional GoalsThe reason we don’t reach those goals is because they’re unrealistic, even though they may seem realistic. You might argue that it’s totally plausible to make a million dollars in two months simply because other people are able to do so.

If this is the way you set goals, you’re missing an important detail. You’re forgetting that what’s realistic for another person may be unrealistic for you, depending on your situation.

For instance, if you’re just starting out as an ecommerce merchant, you’re going to have to spend some time building your online marketing skills and reputation before you’ll be able to attract hordes of customers to your online store.

Many people set lofty goals, fail to reach those goals, and then give up. If you want to avoid falling into this trap, you’re going to have to know how to set goals you can achieve.

Professional Goals

Here are three goal setting tips to help you:

1. Assess what you know you can achieve now

Maybe you already know how to build a website or launch an email marketing campaign. The skills you already possess can be the basis of realistic goals you set.

Remember that you have unique talents that will help you succeed. If you’re just in the beginning stages of a new professional venture, focus on setting goals that will allow you to use your natural talents. These goals will be easily achieved.

2. Build your skills

It’s generally a good idea to set some goals that require you to build your skills. You might want to learn how to use Photoshop or write SEO content.

You’re probably not going to be able to make millions of dollars if you’re lacking skills that are crucial to your industry.

For instance, you have to learn basic HTML and how to use WordPress before you launch the blog of your dreams that makes two million dollars every year. Set simple, straightforward goals to build your skills, and hit the books. Just remember not to try to learn too many things at once.

3. Focus on what you can control

If you weren’t able to get that freelance gig or attract a thousand people to your blog last month, assess what you can do differently and how you can change your goals.

Maybe you could set a goal to apply to ten freelance opportunities every day or you could set a goal to work on the SEO component of your blog content for five hours every week.

You should always try to set goals that are dependent on what you can achieve, not what the universe may or may not deliver to you.

An unrealistic goal is to see your company’s name on the Fortune 500 list in six months. A realistic goal is to have a hundred products for sale on your ecommerce store in six months because you personally have the power to achieve that goal.

Carolyn is a guest writer on the topics of the ecommerce industry, success, and the perks of Big Commerce.

The Sound of Success: Inspiration to Help You Stick With It

Sometimes the fruits of our labor don’t drop as soon as we’d like, and then when they do drop, it’s in the last place we’d expect. In times like these it is all we can do to just persist and keep doing the best we can. But how are we supposed to continue on without any sign of progress or reward?

inspirational storiesWe’ve all been in a situation that tried our patience, whether it is at work, where you’re just not getting that raise you know you deserve; or at home, where you just aren’t losing the weight you desperately want to.

Staying the course can be difficult, and in these situations a little inspiration goes a long way.

If you are in need of that little bit of inspiration, the following story should be music to your ears.


A sixth grade boy, Jared, showed up on my doorstep for piano lessons. His mother dropped him off without coming inside or introducing herself, so I was left alone with the boy, who sat politely on my piano bench awaiting instruction.

I tried to explain to Jared that I usually did not teach boys as old as him, mostly because they were too rambunctious and resistant to learning. Jared only smiled at me and promised to be on his best behavior, excitedly telling me that he was determined to learn to play for his mother, who dreamed of hearing him play some day.

His willingness and charm convinced me that he would be a moldable student, but his native talent did not match his enthusiasm. In fact, he seemed to have been born with no understanding of tone or rhythm, the two basic building blocks of music.

Normally I would have discouraged a student like this—piano just isn’t for everyone—but I could tell right away that nothing could suppress his zeal. That, and I never met his mother.

I taught Jared for over three months, and never once got the opportunity to speak with his mother. If I had, I probably would have tried to discuss the matter with her.

To my surprise (and I must admit, to my relief) Jared didn’t show up one afternoon, and then never returned. I felt a little guilty about feeling the way I did, but at that point I felt like all my efforts were not getting Jared any closer to his dream.

A few weeks passed and still no word from Jared; but there was a recital coming up, and I thought it would have been insensitive to not at least send him a flyer along with all my other students. A day after I sent out the invitations I got a call from Jared (which surprised me, for obvious reasons) saying that he would be there.

Jared persisted and I caved, against my better judgment. Something inside told me that it would be ok, and I uncharacteristically listened.

The recital went splendidly. All of my students played their pieces flawlessly, and the auditorium was packed.

Then it was Jared’s turn.

In all the hubbub, I hadn’t caught a glimpse of his mother, but assumed she was in the crowd somewhere.

I will admit that when Jared took his seat at the bench, I was a little more than apprehensive. He lightly placed his fingers on the keys, and when he started playing …
It was outstanding!

In all our time together, Jared had never showed this incredible talent that now was impressing both the audience and me. When he concluded his piece, the audience roared with applause and I couldn’t help but run and hug Jared.

On stage, I asked Jared where his mother was, and his response devastated me.

“My mother died of cancer this morning, and even though she was born deaf,
I knew she could hear me tonight. She finally got to hear me perform!”

It was at that moment that I realized the true meaning of persistence, and was so glad I hadn’t given up on Jared.

Even more so, however, I realized how much Jared had taught me. He never gave up, even when his mother was too sick to bring him to practice, and in the end, his hard work paid off.

It was music to my ears.

Mariana Ashley is a freelance writer who particularly enjoys writing about online colleges and She loves receiving reader feedback.

EssayWriters.net Review – The Wolf in Sheep’s Skin

EssayWriters.net is the prime academic writing company of the Universal Research Corporation. At some places, the Academic Writing Bureau is mentioned as its owner but the real owner is Universal Corporation.

EssayWriters.net ReviewBefore I review EssayWriters.net, please take 5 minutes and read my review on another similar academic writing company – FreelancerCareers.com.

Both are fraudulent at its best. Do yourself a favor and stay away from them.

Read my full EssayWriters.net review below

The advice works for both the writers and students who hire their services. Students should stay away from them because of plagiarism charges. A student can never be sure if EssayWriters.net pays the writers. Therefore, if the writers are not paid, writers can easily apply plagiarism charges.

I worked with EssayWriters.net for few months in 2009. Giving EssayWriters.net the benefit of doubt, I realize that things might have improved with them so I am basically going to present here my own experiences with a balanced approach of other criticism that I found online from credible sources.

BASIC FACTS:

  1. As of 2009, the company did not bother to pay on time. As of 2011, the company does pay but most of them are delayed payments.
  2. They will invariably support the client even if you are right.
  3. Irrespective of what you would read on their site regarding per page payment to be as high as $16/page, most of the writers get only $3-$4 per page, less when there are dissertations to write. Dissertations generally pay $2 per page or less.
  4. Your account can be suddenly discontinued without any explanations.
  5. They block your IP address from accessing their site once you are removed from the ‘team’.

CRITICISMS:

Problem 01: There are no subject restrictions

When you sign up on the site, you come across a ‘professional’ section when you have to fill up the subjects you are willing to write about. Selection of these subjects is entirely at your will, which I feel is not a good policy because one should choose subjects they specialize in.

For instance, if you are a literature major, you can choose linguistics, history and maybe sociology but not definitely engineering and mathematics!!! EssayWriters.net allows anyone and anybody to blatantly choose all the arts; commerce and science subjects and they don’t bother to check whether the applicant is really knowledgeable.

This attitude considerably lowers the quality of paper and there is nothing authentic about it. A student does not know who is doing his/her paper. God forbid, if a history student is writing a mathematics paper, I can only imagine what the outcome will be.

Problem 02: They edit client and writer messages

Essaywriters.net has an internal messaging system where the writers are strictly told not to reveal their names or the time zone they live in.

Often I had experienced that their support system tweaks the messages and then forwards it. I could understand this by judging the client’s response.

Once a client had asked me to make some changes, around 1400 words, to his law paper, which I obviously denied because the client had not read the drafts sent before and at the last moment asked for changes. I told him that if you pay extra for the 1400 words I will change it. The client agreed.

I was waiting for his confirmation mail and other changes to the order when ‘client’ messages me again saying why should he pay more, I have to make changes without any payment. Moreover, he said the bibliography is not correct and I have to revise it.

This was but one of the instances when I felt the support system editing messages. In this particular instance, I felt that the support system was interacting with me as the ‘client’ and not the real client.

Problem 03: They don’t promote writers easily

When you start out, you are a ‘Junior’ writer. After 2 months, you can apply for ‘Intermediate’ position and after another 3-4 months, you can apply for ‘Senior’ position.
The criteria for promotion are:

  • more than 5 positive feedback
  • no more than 2 negative feedback
  • less than 10% plagiarism report
  • more than 2 months of working experience

When I applied, I had:

  • more than 10 positive feedback
  • no neutral feedback
  • no negative feedback
  • no plagiarism report
  • more than 3 months of working experience

They reverted back saying: “Thank you for your request. Our Quality Assurance Department has reviewed your request and we are sorry to say that we cannot promote you to the ‘Intermediate’ position as of now. Please try at a later date”.

I asked for reasons. I didn’t get any.

Problem 04: Rush hour delays

Do not expect to get payment on time when it is the writing season (Oct-Dec; Feb-May). Supposedly their payment department runs into technical glitches and other “unmentionable” problems right at the payment time.

Moreover, if you feel that you have been penalized wrongly, it is mandatory that you contact the support department within 3 days. However, this system is very much flawed.

For instance, if the paper deadline was 15 Sept and the client requests revision on 18 Sept, you complete the revision on 20 Sept and the penalty for whatever reason shows on your account on 21 Sept, you CANNOT contest it because their idiotic system recognizes 15 Sept as the original deadline; hence, you cannot contest.

Even if you do, they will just revert saying ‘we are going to check the paper’ and add more penalties.

Problem 05: Falsification of plagiarism reports

After few months of working with them, I noticed a 2% plagiarism charge on my account. I clicked to see the report. You won’t believe what I saw!!!

I had done a historical paper on US military. In this same paper, the Quality Assurance Department detected 2% plagiarism.

What were those?

Words and phrases like ‘and’, ‘went there’, ‘went into the house’ were marked as plagiarized!!!

By this time, I had already decided to close my account and this instance was a nail in the coffin. I waited until I received all the pending payment and closed the account.

POSITIVES:

Only positives I could find so far after analyzing my own experience and feedback from others:

1. Flexibility to close your account anytime you want.
2. Flexibility to choose your own projects

If you want to know about other EssayWriters.net problem, I request you to read the FreelancerCareers.com review. Since both websites are run and managed by the same corporation, they have the same flaws as well.

Please share your experiences below about these two sites and other academic websites you have come across.

Chitraparna Sinha founded and runs ‘Writings By Chitra‘ – a web content and academic writing service portal.

Freelancercareers.com: Review From The Writers Perspective

Unlike popular opinion out there that freelancercareers.com does not pay its writer, the truth is that they DO PAY; however, it is an academic writing portal that you should definitely stay away from if you were thinking to make it your primary source of income!

Having worked about five months there, I have realized three things:

  • the motto of this site is to slap unjustified fines on writers;
  • their Quality Assurance Department (QAD) is in serious need of brainy proofreaders;
  • No matter how correct you are, the QAD will support clients and penalize you.

To all the new and experienced academic writers out there, think thrice before signing up on this site. Read our detailed Freelancercareers.com review with evidence below.

CRITICISMS:

Problem 01: Misleading Statistics Info

When you visit their home page, they show you a brief info about their company and on the left side, you are shown a brief info about the number of assignments available, highest cost of those assignments and the number of registered writers…It is easy to fall into their trap seeing those numbers…

Once you see the real number of assignments available, they are not even worth the time, forget about getting any decent pay!

On 20th July evening, the left hand bar on the home page showed this stat:

(click image to enlarge)
Freelancercareers.com Review

Check out the total order cost, available orders, most expensive order…Now see the reality…Below is the insider screen shot of the truth:

Freelancercareers.com Reviews

In reality, there were only 28 orders available and the highest available order was $506.04 as you can see…

Often I have seen that the company misleads its prospective writers this way…And if one compares the number of orders available (28) to the number of active registered writers (7521), tell me honestly, do you think there is much scope of earning any substantial amount of money here?

They are clearly overstaffed at any point of time.

Problem 02: Misleading Affiliations

Before I had signed up on freelancercareers.com, I was working with essaywriters.net but stopped once they didn’t pay me my money. Stupid that I was, I thought freelancercareers.com would be different.

I passed their test and started working with them. After completing about 5 assignments within 5 days, I noticed something…the web layout of both the sites seemed similar!!!

I emailed the support system asking whether freelancercareers.com is associated in any way with essaywriters.net…They denied…kept on denying…while my intuition said something else. I clicked every link on the site to find some evidence and viola! See the screen shot below…

Freelancercareers Review

Check the web browser and what I have marked in red.

Not only essaywriters.net, freelancercareers.com also owns superiorpapers.com, bestessays.com and rushessays.com…at least that’s what I found out when I contacted each of the sites for applying as an academic writer and they directed me to freelancercareers.com.

Moreover, twice I received phone call from freelancercareers.com and their support representative mentioned she was calling from superiorpapers.com regarding an assignment…

Just imagine how much trouble the company takes in hiding its sister sites and such untrained support people bust the bubble…LOL!

Problem 03: They Pay On Time but Their Automated Payment System Sucks!!!

They will not tell you this when you sign up and neither will you see this in their website guide or FAQ. You will know this once you experience this yourself, like I did.

Freelancercareers.com has an inbuilt useless system that keeps track of earnings. The payments are sent every 15 days. For assignment completed between 01-15 of any month are paid on the 16th of next month and for assignments completed between 15-30 of any month are paid on the 01st of next month…There is no problem here once you are regular with assignments but the problem arises when the client request for revision.

For instance, you submit an assignment on 10th July, the client downloads it and the earning is reflected in your account. According to the info above, you will receive payment for this on 16th August. Now, suppose, the client sends back the paper requesting a genuine revision on 15th July with a new deadline of 20th July, what happens? The assignment earning is removed from your balance amount, which means you won’t get paid for this assignment on 16th August but on 01st September.

When I work for freelancercareers.com, I try to ensure that the assignments are not sent back for revision but sometimes you come across irritating clients who are dissatisfied with everything you write…even if you want to shout ‘why the hell don’t you do your paper yourself?’ you have to keep your cool and basically, go with the flow. This is a serious disadvantage here.

Problem 04: They Have Devised Every Reason Possible to Apply Fines

…and they have this automated system that applies these fines. Four or five times, they applied fines on my account citing low quality paper and reference mistakes. I knew they were wrong so I contested and they had to remove all the fines but still they don’t learn…they keep on trying…well, two can play this game!

Below is a screen shot of the various kinds of fines applied, followed by my solutions; always remember that you won’t get to see this while you are applying, the hell breaks loose later!

They define fines as:

Freelancercareers Reviews

They explain fines as:

Freelancer careers Review

How can you deal with them?

[1] Order Deadline Over – if you cannot submit the order on time, ask the clients’ to “update” the time and not “extend” the deadline. If you ask for repeated extensions, fine is applied. If the client does not respond to your messages, message the support system to put the order on HOLD. Even if fine is applied later, you will have evidence of your communication to the client and the support system, and they have to remove the fine.

[2] Revision Deadline Over – usually the revision time is 24 hours, less in some cases. Meeting revision deadlines are sometimes impossible because of two reasons: different time zones and extent of revision (a dissertation can’t be revised in 24 hours!). In this case, follow the same tactic as in [1].

[3] Cancellation – the QAD draws pleasure in applying fines for submitting low quality paper. If you know the paper is not of low quality, bombard them with your reasons. The more reasons you give, they will have no option but to remove the fine. Remember that their proofreader is not worthy of their job. Why?

On one particular assignment, I had copy-pasted three paragraphs written by me at different places in the same assignment…the proofreader didn’t detect it…Amazing! The paper was through and I got paid. My small experiment paid off and proved that their proofreaders are utterly useless and lacks common sense.

This is the reason why writers are often charged with low quality paper. Don’t fall into their trap when you know there is no fault from your side. Other reasons like “writer disappeared” and “writer plagiarized” never applied to me so I didn’t face any issues.

[4] Low Quality – First, read the different definitions of low quality in the screen shot. From the five reasons listed there, I faced problem only with reason one: “inability to follow instructions”.

A paper I completed and got paid for in May was charged a $50 fine few days back. Why? Apparently, the client/student received below pass grades. Politely, I asked the support to send me the teacher’s feedback given to the student. The teacher had written that even though the arguments in the essay were strong and relevant, the student didn’t apply essays/concepts from the term module.

I checked the order page to see if I had missed reading any essays/concepts uploaded by the client/student. I did not. To make a long story short, the client/student had not uploaded all the essays from his term module and therefore, the below pass grades.

Well, guess who suffered? ME!! I couldn’t get this simple explanation pass their dumb minds that it was not my fault…

I can only advise to handle such situations carefully.

[5] Plagiarism – This is one aspect where it is justified to apply fines!!!

[6] Partially Refunded Order & Refund – Read point [4], it’s the same.

[7] Late Reassign Request – Once you accept an order, you are given 15 minutes to refuse it. If you feel the need to request reassignment of order/s, do so before half of the deadline is over and you won’t be penalized. If you request reassignment at the last moment, the whole project fees will be deducted from your account.

[8] Others – Try not violating any of the rules in this section. Whatever the case maybe, never be rude with the client or disappear or ask for repeated extensions. Doing so will be in your favor only.

Problem 05: Non-Disclosure of Company Details

I read online that freelancercareers.com, essaywriters.net and other sister companies are owned by a Russian entrepreneur and this guy has been in this business for the last 15 years. Oh boy, he must be an unnamed millionaire!!!

Also, the company, registered under Universal Research, doesn’t take pride in owning their presence online. This further questions their authenticity. I mean, if you are legitimate, why don’t the owners come forward?

Upon further research, I found various numerous complaints about the company are registered at Better Business Bureau. Further, the Universal Research is a bogus company name that not only indulges in academic work but also TV gadget promotions and pornography.

Problem 06: Payment Receiving Problems

Presently, freelancercareers.com pays through PayPal, MoneyBookers, AlertPay and Wire Transfer. I have used only PayPal and MoneyBookers so far. There were no problems with payment processing in PayPal but the second time I received payment from freelancercareers.com in MoneyBookers, they stopped my withdrawals. They emailed me to re-verify my account by sending an account statement, especially the last transaction sent from freelancercareers.com. See the screen shot:

Freelancer careers Reviews

The transaction marked in ‘red’ is the one from freelancercareers.com. Perhaps, MoneyBookers had some doubts regarding the sender of the payment. If you face a similar situation, its better you submit full verification details and get the account limits withdrawn.

Problem 07: Cost per Page is LOW 95% of the Time

The remaining 5% gives at least a better cost per page (min 275 words, double-spaced per page), ranging between $8 and $14 per page. Further, their inbuilt system is such that they pay more when the deadline is closing near.

Often I have seen 2-3 page assignments paying $40 per page and the deadline is like 2-3 hours. But don’t jump at seeing the page count because the project is so tough that you need 3-4 days to complete them. This kind of system is nothing but a lure. Out of greed, a writer might take them but failure to adhere the deadline results in penalty.

Finally, your chance of getting projects with better per page cost is very slim given the high number of writers available. As a result, you are mostly in the 95% category where you are paid between $2 and $8 per page.

NOTE: When you take higher paying projects, be assured that one day or the other, you are going to receive a low quality paper feedback. That’s their way to scam writers out of their hard earned money.

I will tell you two tricks I devised to turn back the ball into their court. Of course, before applying these, you have to be sure that there are no faults in the paper from your side. The tricks are:

[1] Apply this trick when the QAD is acting smart and there is no problem with the client. Subtly insinuate that you are going to publish the paper online in few hours if the issue is not resolved. Yes, you will risk your earnings on this paper but it’s worth it. Knowing this the QAD has to give in because they know that if you publish the paper online and at the same time, the client/student submits the paper in his school/university and the teacher finds out, the student’s career will be in trouble.

[2] Apply this trick when both the QAD and the client is trying to rub you on the wrong side. But for this trick you need to know where the client/student is studying. How do you find that? Check the assignment instructions! You can clearly state that if the issue is not resolved in few hours, you are going to call the school/university and report the client/student. This will silence both the QAD and the client/student.

I know both the tricks sound like manipulation but what else can we writers do if we are denied our hard earned earnings??? Once again, I will state – apply the above tricks only if you are damn sure there is nothing wrong with the assignment from your side.

Problem 08: Quitting / Account Closing

If you are already a member there and thinking of quitting or closing freelancercareers.com account, do so after there are no pending payments in your account. If there are, they will withhold them for 90 days mandatory period, during which all your assignments will undergo a rechecking (again a way to apply fines!).

You have to be patient here. Make sure you receive all your earnings and while you are waiting, log in occasionally to randomly check orders…they will know you are still ‘active’ in their system.

APPRECIATION:

There is not much to appreciate, except these three:

[1] They pay on time, always. At least, I have never faced any kind of payment delays.
[2] Their plagiarism rules are strict in a good way.
[3] There are no membership fees.

In the end, I can only hope that you will take note of the above review positively and make an informed decision about joining this company. This review may seem negative to those who are still trying to find a legitimate way of making money online but don’t be dissuaded, there are other legitimate companies out there!!!

If you have experienced other issues with freelancercareers.com or any of their sister sites, kindly share your experience below

Chitraparna Sinha founded and run ‘Writings By Chitra’ – a web content and academic writing service portal.

Legitimate Ways for College Students to Make Money

Ways to Make Money in College

The economic recession in the U.S. is hindering almost all individuals to manage their finances and meet their basic needs.

Ways for College Students to Make MoneyEven college students have been trapped in this dark phase of the economy due to which they often face the problem in paying for their semester fee and for books.

So as a result, they increasingly turn to the most viable option of payday loans in order to support their educational expenses.

Payday loans usually come with high rates of interest, which the students are often not able to pay in time, and ultimately are overwhelmed by payday loan debt.

However, there is nothing to panic about how to save your neck from the debt. You can begin your debt management plan and can also unlock the entrepreneur inside of you so that you can pay off your debt as soon as possible.

Here’s a list of ideas for college students to get them thinking about the different ways of earning money to pay off the debt…

  • Tutoring younger students or your peers can be a healthy source of income. You can hold your tutorial sessions at your school library, an empty class room or your home. You may also offer a home service and can charge a bit more for your travel. You can charge on an hourly basis and if possible, teach several students an hour for your income to multiply substantially.
  • If you have enough time on your hands then you can also earn some cash by assisting a writer in proof reading and editing. For this profession, you only need to have good research and writing skills. No matter how good the writers are, they always prefer to have a second pair of eyes take a glance at their work. You can also help the students in writing their papers or preparing the thesis.
  • Every campus organization loves to have a great web presence but most of them are boring and outdated. So if you have a technical know-how to design the web, then you can earn some money in your free time by designing the web for the campus organizations.
  • If you are blessed with a bit of creativity you can indulge yourself in making t-shirts, flyers, banners, business cards, or other types of promotional items for student organizations in order to earn money.
  • If you have some artistic ability and have some passion for photography then you can click images and sell them online. You can upload your images on the websites like Fotolia or iStockPhoto, and sell them to millions of people.
  • If you have a flair or skill of writing then you can be a freelance writer and write for the websites like Associated Content, Helium and others. These are good platforms for freelance writers and publishers. You can choose to write on suggested topics that publishers are actively looking for content on or… you can choose any topic to write on. If the publishers like your article they will buy the one, and pay for it.

Hence, it is to be concluded that college students can earn money in several legitimate ways to pay off their debts and to meet their regular expenses.

Stewart Smith is a financial analyst and writer. He has written some great articles on topics like bankruptcy, payday loan debt consolidation, investment opportunities, and more. He has created diverse content for the edification of various finance communities.