Thumbtack vs HomeAdvisor: Which is Best for Professionals?

man screwing in a nail on wood with yellow and black drill

Gone are the days when you’d have to scroll through your dusty old phone book or ask your neighbor where they got their shower fixed or if they could recommend a good and reliable handyman. As we get busier and rely on apps and marketplaces to find things that we need, it was only a matter of time before we’d have a service like Thumbtack and HomeAdvisor to find professional help for our home projects.

While word of mouth advertising in the home service industry can help handymen and home professionals find business within a certain radius, an online marketplace makes them discoverable to a much larger audience. This also gives customers a wide variety of options to choose from as they can view the pro’s profile, ratings, and past reviews along with comparing their rates. If you want to list your business in different business directories to strengthen your online presence, check out our article on the best sites and apps to find local businesses to see where customers are searching.

In this article, we will be comparing Thumbtack vs HomeAdvisor on various parameters so you can evaluate which of the two platforms can help you generate more leads for your business.

What is covered in this article

Let us deep dive into each of these platforms to see which one may be best suited for your business and needs. 

 

Thumbtack overview: the best for reaching a wider audience

thumbtack homepage

Thumbtack is a San Francisco based startup that went live in 2008 with a large database of service professionals spread across the United States. As a customer, Thumbtack helps you  find professionals listed even in the smallest towns. As a service provider, you get an opportunity to list yourself to reach a larger audience. 

Thumbtack’s user interface is a lot more intuitive and easy to understand. A customer looking to get a job done just needs to type in the name of the service and their ZIP Code to view the number of pros serving their area. They can then apply filters to the results to find the pros who are a good match.

 

Who is Thumbtack best for?

Whether you are an independent contractor, a small business or someone who is looking to get some help around the house, Thumbtack will connect you with local professionals to help you with any project on your to-do list.

Thumbtack eliminates your job of spending hours researching and calling to check for estimates as they have them all in their database for you to easily compare and book. This makes it faster and easier for you to bring your project to life. As a service professional, you can set up your free profile within minutes to begin your journey on Thumbtack to find new leads.

 

Thumbtack Pros

  • Service professionals can list themselves for free.
  • Customers have the freedom to choose the service professionals they want based on their need and budget.
  • Contractors and professionals can bid on specific and niche projects.
  • Contractors do not have to pay until the customer responds.
  • Customers are most likely to find a professional contractor in their area because of Thumbtack’s wide network.
  • Service professionals can customize their profile details to get better matches and a higher chance of winning new gigs.
  • Service professionals can use Thumbtack’s Instant Match feature to make the platform bid on their behalf.

 

Thumbtack Cons

  • As a service provider, your customer will not be able to contact you outside of Thumbtack as they rank on Google using the profiles that they have set up for themselves.
  • Since the leads are not exclusive, there is no guarantee that you or anyone will get the job. Customers could very well be in the market doing some passive research.
  • Since Thumbtack works on a pay-as-you-go model, they only pay when a customer responds. The price you pay to communicate with the customer is high and there is no guarantee that you will get the job.
  • Since joining the platform and creating your profile is free, you are competing against several vendors and contractors for a job.

Download It Now: Android | iOS

Download It Now (for Thumbtack Pros): Android | iOS

 

HomeAdvisor overview: the best for established businesses 

homeadvisor-homepage

HomeAdvisor is an online marketplace connecting customers to licensed professionals and contractors offering home renovation, electrical, plumbing, and other home maintenance services. Service professionals have to bid against competitors in their area to win a job. Leads are not exclusive, so there is no guarantee that the pro will get the job as the client could pick anyone based on their preference.

Professionals who list themselves on HomeAdvisor have to pay an annual fee to create their profile even if they don’t get any work from the platform. Along with this, they also have to pay for individual bids that they are interested in. All in all, for a small business, this becomes expensive.

 

Who is HomeAdvisor best for?

Because of the annual listing fees and the individual bid fees that a contractor has to pay, HomeAdvisor may be more suitable to big and established companies who have deep pockets and already have a steady stream of revenue coming in. HomeAdvisor then works for them as an advertising platform and brings in additional revenue from new clients.

 

HomeAdvisor Pros

  • HomeAdvisor has 13 million profile visitors every month.
  • Pros can call, text, and email their potential clients through the app.
  • Video chat allows professionals to connect with potential customers to understand the scope of their job better.
  • Pros can take notes about the lead and the job details.
  • Fixed price for the job, allowing no room for customers haggling for discounts or reduction in rates.
  • If your business has not invested much on creating an online presence, HomeAdvisor can be a great platform.
  • Since the customers have to fill in an elaborate form describing their requirements, there is a good chance that they are not just price shopping and are serious about hiring a professional.

 

HomeAdvisor Cons

  • Lead generation is very expensive.
  • Customers have to fill in a very detailed questionnaire before they can see a list of professionals who can help them with the job. 
  • HomeAdvisor’s default option is to assign a service professional to you, since they have to bid for the project. But in case the cost suggested by HomeAdvisor is not acceptable, there is an option to see the list of pros serving your area. To get in touch with each contractor, you’ll have to individually invite them to quote their price, which is cumbersome. 
  • Not ideal for price shopping for services, as it forces you to enter all your details to be able to see the cost.

Download It Now: Android | iOS

Download It Now (for HomeAdvisor Pros): Android | iOS

 

Thumbtack vs HomeAdvisor comparison table: how these sites stack up

Now that the cards are laid out and we understand who both platforms serve and how service professionals can take advantage of them to grow their business, let’s take a deep dive into some other finer details.

FeatureThumbtackHomeAdvisor
Estimated Average Costs for Common Jobs$40-70/hour$80-120/hour
Review SystemUsers can view a pro’s rating and reviews before booking their services.Since HomeAdvisor assigns a professional to the user, they get to see their reviews only after that. 
CoverageAll 50 states in the USAll 50 states in the US
# of Services2000+400+
Customer ServiceVery responsiveVery responsive
PrivacyProfessional information is displayed for the customer.HomeAdvisor protects the information of the service professional from the customer.
Ability to Connect with ProfessionalsCustomers can look for a pro by just entering their ZIP code and no other personal details.Customers have to enter all their personal details including their email, phone, and address to be able to see what it would cost them to hire a pro.

 

Thumbtack vs HomeAdvisor: quantity & variety of services offered

Winner: Thumbtack

Along with providing home renovation and repair services, Thumbtack has a list of professionals for wedding services, web designers, personal chefs, affordable attorneys, fitness coaches, and much more. On comparing this to HomeAdvisor, Thumbtack offers a wider variety of services.

 

Is Thumbtack or HomeAdvisor’s review system better?

Winner: Thumbtack

On Thumbtack you have the option to shop around for service professionals and make an informed decision after viewing their profile and ratings and reading their reviews. Customers can chat with a pro to explain the scope of the job, giving them full control over where they are spending their money and who they are hiring.

HomeAdvisor, on the other hand. is a bidding site, where professionals bid for the job once they get the exact requirements from the customer. Customers can check the professional’s rating and reviews only after they are assigned one, but HomeAdvisor has a detailed background check process. 

 

Who has better fees for contractors: Thumbtack or HomeAdvisor?

Winner: HomeAdvisor

HomeAdvisor is a more premium platform compared to Thumbtack, thereby allowing contractors to charge a higher fee. Contractors on Thumbtack can set their own price based on their level of experience and look at how much their competitors are charging. As a customer on Thumbtack, you can view different contractors and their rates before booking. On the other hand, on HomeAdvisor the price of the job is determined by the platform, which is then opened up to professionals to participate in a bidding war.

 

Which service provides the most leads for contractors?

Winner: Thumbtack

For a small business owner or an independent contractor, Thumbtack can be a great source for leads, especially because it doesn’t cost anything to set up their profile. Contractors can connect with potential clients and then it is based on their responsiveness, the services they can offer, and their flexibility to win the job. 

 

While both Thumbtack and HomeAdvisor are leading players in the home maintenance services industry, they both cater to different types of professionals. Choose the platform that suits your needs to have a successful career as a service professional, whether it is filling gaps in your schedule, having flexibility, or reaching a wider network of customers.

If you still haven’t made a decision, see our article on whether Thumbtack is worth the costs. If you still haven’t found what you’re looking for, see how Thumbtack and HomeAdvisor stack up against Angi.

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