Airfare Daily Deals eCigarettes Eyeglasses Hotels Jewelry Online Backup Online Dating Online Printing Online Tickets Skin Care Textbook Rentals Vitamins Web Hosting Weddings
Find coupons, reviews and similar sites for any retailer
SEARCH

How Does Service Magic Compare With Angie's List?

As an avid home improvement enthusiast, I do lots of renovation projects around the house (often to the chagrin of my wife!). From kitchen remodeling to bathroom projects to building new decks, I love all sorts of DIY home repair and renovation projects. For some projects I use contractors, and have used Angies List for some time now. Overall I've been happy with them. I ran across another company called Service Magic recently, which seemed similar but offers its service for free (you have to pay for Angie's List on a monthly subscription). I decided to give it a try to see how it compared. Here's what I learned.

First, review of Service Magic

ServiceMagic is an Internet based database of service contractors, which is designed assist you in finding a high quality contractor. This list offers information, reviews, and details on 40,000+ professional contractors of all areas such as contractors, plumbers, re-modelers, architects and so on.

Pros of Service Magic

  • Huge database - It has a huge list where you get information about any type of professional service you would need anytime around your home. There are more than 40 thousand contractors from all over the USA indexed in the database.
  • Free to use – ServiceMagic does not charge anything from you – the customer. They charge a token fee from the contractors who pass the test and become eligible for inclusion in the list.
  • Efficiency Bar - To make it to the list each contractor is screened and graded; which means you would get an idea about which contractor could give you the best of service. There is a ten point qualification round that each contractor should pass in order to be included in the list. The contractors also receive rating from their customers, so a prospective customer could get a good idea about their ability to deliver.
  • Extremely user-friendly - You need to fill in a free request form where you fill in the details of your job. SeviceMagic then matches your needs to the information available in their database and voila – you would get the contact telephone number, profile and rating of the professionals who would be best suited to your job. It is as easy as that. The contractors listed know that they would receive reviews that would be posted on the Net – so they usually do their best.
  • Extra support - They also offer a number of tips and expert advice to ensure that you get the best of service and contractors at all times.

Click here to browse Service Magic contractors for free now.

Cons of Service Magic

  • Some contractors not interested in smaller home jobs - I found that some of the contractors listed are not interested in minor jobs. My overall experience is that the contractors listed are not actually looking for small “home” jobs – but large contracts. It is very often that the regular customer is turned away when the request is a small house-level (micro) problem. I tried contacting people to help with some smaller plumbing jobs (which I hate working on myself) but was unable to find anyone who would take the job.
  • Database of contractors sometimes did not provide what I needed – it is true that they have 40 thousand plus small and medium size service entities listed. However, there are still some gaps in the database. Searching for specific types of electricians, for example, yielded no results.
  • Reported poor treatment of contractors by the company – apparently there are some issues with the way the company has treated and compensated contractors. There are some reports that contractors were not compensated fairly. I can't verify how accurate these reports are, but just noted that there may be a few disgruntled members - I would guess that those contractors would no longer use the service, though.

Overall rating You'll see my comments comparing Service Magic to Angie's List below, but overall I feel that these are two different services targeted at two different types of customers. Service Magic is great because its free to use, has a really large database of contractors, and provides good customer support. However, you don't get the ratings and reviews and some of the details that Angie's List provides. That said, it's a free service, and it's definitely worth checking out before you pony up the money to sign up with a paid service like Angie's List.

Next up, Angie’s List

Angie’s List covers about 350 plus categories of services that include medical providers and professionals. As a member, you would have access to the reviews of a huge number of customers on each of the local owned home-related business. It costs around ten bucks a month or so to subscribe to the service. What I liked about Angie's List

  • Huge and highly coordinated list - Angie’s list had a huge database classified geographically for easy reference. You can find the service you needed in less than 10 minutes over Net. The reviews are based on the experience of people who have used the services listed in the Angie’s List. The company provides leads in more than 350 categories.
  • Endorsed by customer gradation – The reliability of the Company comes from its direct feedback from people who use the services of contractors. Angie’s List receives more than 40 thousand reviews every month, which are then coordinated to grade each of the contractor’s it lists.
  • Positive feedback – The overall feedback on the Net indicates positive feedback from those who use the list.
  • Free for customers – the list charges membership fee from its members and it is free for people who need to find reference for their work.

Issues with Angie's List

  • You have to pay for it - free vs. paid is always an issue to consider. I do believe you get much higher quality by paying, but still, it's something to consider.
  • Low coverage in some suburbs - The coverage is a little thin in the suburbs while in the cities it offers plenty of choices. The Angie’s List also allows advertisements from companies that rate B and above for earning revenue, which many see as a clash of interest.
  • Risk of lawsuits for bad review? Two reviewers of Angie’s list were recently sued for large sums of money for maligning the character of some companies. This slowed down the interest of people to offer clear and true feedback, lest they would be dragged to court at later stages.
  • Conflicts of interest – Angie’s List accepts advertisements from its members – though they claim that only those who are graded B and above are considered. I haven't personally experiences anything negative from this, but I would prefer a service like Angie's List be free of advertising relationships with its service providers.

Overall rating I found Angie’s List professional and able to deliver on its promises. The list is huge and is continuously growing. Their grading system is strict and accurate and you can safely choose according to the ratings listed. I've found many great contractors through this service and would recommend it. However, there is the BIG drawback that you have to pay for Angie's List, but if you really need to find a quality contractor, ten bucks a month seems like a small price to pay.

Need an answer?
Get insightful answers from community-recommended
experts
in Home Contractors on Knoji.
Would you recommend this author as an expert in Finding & Hiring Contractors?
You have 0 recommendations remaining to grant today.
Comments (27)
Darrin

I'd recommend folks take advantage of www.RateMyContractors.com to find good contractors and avoid not so good ones.

Rate My Contractors is completely free to use and contains unbiased ratings of local home improvement contractors provided by friends and neighbors. RateMyContractors.com works much the same way as RateMyProfessors.com which is used by millions of college students each year to select their professors. If you've had a really good contractor experience or a really bad one share it with others.

The good guys get rewarded (with more business) while the not so good ones learn that leaving customers unhappy doesn't end at the customer's doorstep.

4WeHelp Cincinnati Movers

As a service provider I can relate experiences about both Service Magic and Angie's List.

Service Magic

PROS:

1) A ton of volume.

2) Decent exposure

CONS:

1) The contractor/service provider pays $10-$15 per lead.

2) Because it is free for the consumer, often the leads are not sincere interest, more just fishing expeditions "Honey, I wonder how much it would cost to have our house painted".

3) Approximately 60-80% of leads do not even return phone calls or emails.

4) Service Magic's customer service in regards to how it handles us businesses is HORRIBLE.

5) Service Magic claims to only send each lead to 4 contracters but there has been evidence that the leads are sent to many more. One person pretended to be a customer and was contacted by almost 10 different painters from Service Magic. I am sure you can see as a business how infuriating it would be to pay to fight over a customer with 10 other businesses.

Angies List

Pros:

1) You don't get leads, the customers contact you directly and you don't have to pay for that.

2) It is almost impossible to fake revieess so a good Angie's List rating is gold.

3) Consumers pay $50-$100 a year to join. When they seek out a company they are serious buyers.

4) The "class" of customers is 10x better than the free services.

Cons:

1) Angie's List is definitely biased towards the consumer. If you have a problem with an irrational client Angie's List is going to take there side no matter how ridiculous it is.

2) You cannot join Angie's List as a business, you have to be rated by a consumer member and wait for Angie's List to invite you.

3) The top 1 or 2 rated companies get 90% of the business. Most consumers just don't contact anyone else.

4) Their advertising is relatively expensive and gets you no more business than being listed without advertising does. Consumers don't look through the ads and think "OH, I should hire a painter." When they want a painter they go directly to the directory, ignoring the ads, and pick call the top rated 2 or 3 companies for quotes.

conrad hansen

I was a contractor who bought leads from service magic.I started in december 2004 and in Febuary 2010 i was terminated because of a felony committed some 20 years ago,so they do not prescreen as they claim until some contractor like me robbed their customer

Contractor Marketing Services

I tried service magic and was not pleased at all. Unqualified leads, no credit. Everything not as promised. I started using Findprofessionalsnow.com and was startled to find they did everything they promised with qualified leads and so forth. You got to try them.

Anthony Perez

I'm a contractor that used servicemajic in hard times to hopefully get some good jobs Ha! I might as well have lit my $2,500.00 on fire.

Just punch in servicemajic complaints all TRUE!!!!

Anthony Perez

I'm a contractor that used servicemajic in hard times to hopefully get some good jobs Ha! I might as well have lit my $2,500.00 on fire.

Just punch in servicemajic complaints all TRUE!!!!

I just stumbled upon this site, seeking reviews of Servicemagic. I was considering using their services as I am a small HVAC contractor. Now I have a few issues to ponder. Thanks to all that have commented.

anthonyP

Would you like to put your money in a pile and light it on fire????

Then sign up with servicemagic.

Mark

Service Magic is a scam for contractors. They charge you for leads and no one calls back or answers the phone. Its called a "Ghost Lead" SALESMAN SET UP FAKE LEADS SO THEY CAN GET A COMMISSION and they are going to get sued. Its a scam BEWARE!

Tony

I thought it meant something to become a 5 star rated servicemagic contractor.....it did, a 5 star rated stupid sucker for giving them $2,500.00 of my hard earned cash!!!!

Tony

I thought it meant something to become a 5 star rated servicemagic contractor.....it did, a 5 star rated stupid sucker for giving them $2,500.00 of my hard earned cash!!!!

David Price

I worked for Angie's List for 6 1/2 years from April 2004-August 31, 2010. My knowledge and personal experience is from the 1st 19 months selling memberships to homeowners, and then the remaining 4 1/2 years I sold advertising to companies. I was able to help real homeowners and real companies. You can verify my employment and data with management and HR staff there as to the accuracy of my statements about employment. I was one of the top reps there, now I am working on my masters degree and so while in school I am advising and consulting companies that want more business, free and paid from Angie's List. Only 1% of the companies on Angie's List nationwide actually advertise. And those listed freely get a lot of business and generate a lot of revenue from "The List." Advertisers can often experience a 10 to 1 advantage over non advertisers through web positioning advertising and magazine advertising. REPORTS IS THE KEY. Advertise or not, ASK FOR REPORTS BEFORE AND AFTER EVERY JOB. Reports and you will huge results. Make sure to reply to reports or members will think you are taking their business for granted. They have some newer options not previously available, like non members being able to rate you now, the catch is only paid subscribers ratings effect your standing, BUT members will read non member reports and may result in their hiring you. Wish you all the best, David Price www.nightanddayincome.com

Chris

Thanks for the article. I have a kitchen design website and have been looking for a good service provider to recommend to my visitors. It seems that they all have bad reputations but I am inclined to check out Angie's List more thououghly.

gofish

Use them both! Wow, servicemagic was scary fast! I tried it out first (since it was free). Being a complete newb, I submitted the info to request pressure washing bids and started reading the "need anything else page" and got a call from a # that I didn't recognize. It was a provider! The call came inside of 5 mins and may have been closer to 3! Got 2 calls within 30. Went ahead and signed up for angies list (search for coupon codes - i got 45% off of 1 yr subscription making it only ~$20) so I could research those who responded. I think you'll find the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Mark Renne

I have never used Angie's List but I probably should cause I have excellent references. As far as "Service Magic: is concerned, they are a Con Game outfit. They make you pay for leads and the people never call back to make an appointment or the sales person sends you on a ghost lead like a friends or relative with no intention of having work done but the sale person gets their commission. Service Magic is a SCAM!

Jay

I would use neither Angie's list or Service Magic. They are in the business of providing a referral for profit. Would you go to either and ask for a good doctor - I hope not because they would probably name some doctor just to make a buck. Service Magic charges the contractor who is already struggling, good contractors don't need to pay for referrals -- do they? Angie's list like the BBB sells ads to the contractors. The BBB actually sells products to business that helps improve their BBB ratings. Its all very questionable. Ask your family of neighbor if they know of a good contractor, don't ask someone who gets paid to give you a name.

Friends and Neighbors

Jay, you said -> "Its all very questionable. Ask your family or neighbor if they know of a good contractor, don't ask someone who gets paid to give you a name."

I couldn't agree more. RateMyContractors was started by homeowners to allow friends and neighbors to do just that -> help friends and neighbors.

RateMyContractors is totally free, does not require a Membership to view the Home Improvement Contractor Ratings and Reviews, does not have any business relationships with any Home Improvement Contractors and does not accept advertising dollars directly from any Home Improvement Contractors.

If a home improvement contractor referral site on the web CAN'T claim ALL of these things that I'd recommend you AVOID using them.

Friends and Neighbors

Jay, you said -> "Its all very questionable. Ask your family or neighbor if they know of a good contractor, don't ask someone who gets paid to give you a name."

I couldn't agree more. RateMyContractors was started by homeowners to allow friends and neighbors to do just that -> help friends and neighbors.

RateMyContractors is totally free, does not require a Membership to view the Home Improvement Contractor Ratings and Reviews, does not have any business relationships with any Home Improvement Contractors and does not accept advertising dollars directly from any Home Improvement Contractors.

If a home improvement contractor referral site on the web CAN'T claim ALL of these things that I'd recommend you AVOID using them.

Mark Renne

Contact me if you have been ripped off by "Service Magic" and we will find a lawyer and file a Class Action lawsuit. If we get a good response and orginize we can not only get our money back but put them out of business.

markissrenne@yahoo.com

trish tayal

Service- magic contractors are joke,Unqualified, non licenced con artist.I had the worse experience of life hiring a contractor from Service-magic.

Janine hoffman

Service magic is a joke. They only allow positive

Reviews of the contractors they have. I tried to

Give a bad review to one of their people to warn others

And they called me saying under a "technicality" they

Would not post my comments. They were in no

Way innappropriate just stating that the guys tried

To scam us .....a joke never use service magic please!!

Flowergal

I used Service Magic for a reference for a screen door company to make me a new screen door for my patio sliding door. The company owner? emailed me with an estimate without even coming out to measure and look at my patio door first. When I didn't take the bait, he then finally (2 weeks later) sent a guy out to measure. The guy said it would cost the same as the email estimate I had received, and asked me to give him a check for 30% down. I asked for a written estimate first. I was not going to hand over $50 based on a verbal estimate from a guy I just met. He said he would email the written estimate. A week later, after not hearing from him, I emailed him and asked why. No reply. Do not give these so called Service Magic contractors any money down without a written estimate with their company name and address on it in case you need to take them to court for never showing up again! I've used several Angie's List contractors, all with excellent service and results. You get what you pay for!

Chris

WOW...I just got off the phone with the people at service magic and came home to investigate them. Glad I did!!!

Chris

WOW...I just got off the phone with the people at service magic and came home to investigate them. Glad I did!!!

Ferris Crilly

Service Magic does not require contractors to carry workers compensation insurance. Check out this article. http://www.proarbor.com/miscellaneous/service-magic-does-not-screen-contractors-for-insurance.php

I have used these pay-to-play companies, when I was a REALTOR and when I went back to contracting.  Believe this if you believe anything:  NONE OF THEM DELIVER WHAT THEY PROMISE, EXCEPT TO TAKE YOUR MONEY! PERIOD.  I have no experience with Angies List because, as a contractor, I get my own leads and tons of referrals and repeat business.

Im not Sure why so many are mad at Service Magic. I am a contactor, my service field is over saturated, With Service Magic I have experienced growth of leaps and bounds. I have a 90% close rate. I can say this, I do have marketing abilitys, I do spend money to make sure someone always answeres a phone and I put in the effort that all successfull companys do to be sucessfull. I was screened and I do pay lots of money for the leads. But it has made for massives growth. My wife is in a completly diffrent line of work. She has experience the same from service magic, Great growth. Yes there are bogus leads but youll always find that anywhere. I have found the reson we win is we arnt trying to make a living on one single job. I use both Angies list and Service magic as well as handfulls of other services. Both are great, Both are worth it for a business that wants to network build relationships with people and grow their dream. I would encourage consumers to use both you will get a good understanding of your project with bids from contractors on either side. Hope this puts positive prospective on this!

ABOUT THIS CONSUMER REPORT
RELATED OFFERS & COUPONS
Angie's List Coupons
Service Magic Coupons
Top Related Deals
Extra $10 Off $70 or $20 Off $100 + Free Shipping @ PetSmart
Activate Coupon
46% Off + Free Shipping - Compact Juice Extractor @ Cooking.com
Activate Coupon
40% off Your Online Membership @ Angie's List
Activate Coupon
30% Off Sitewide @ Botanic Choice
Activate Coupon
17% Off Premium Brand Coffees @ Coffee Wholesale USA
Activate Coupon
RELATED ARTICLES
ARTICLE KEYWORDS
RELATED DEALS & OFFERS