English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?

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English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?

Hi everyone, in this post i will suggest a new feature that i think would benefit the whole marketplace.
As we have Levels and Levels requirements, i think there is one more thing that needs to be added and that's a English proficiency test?

Now many of you may disagree, but let me explain why before you ask.
Firstly, i have to confess that my English is not great and i always have grammar errors, etc. as English is not my native and i actually think in another language before saying something. So before you say something like that or start going against me, please read this whole post.

On SEOClerks and all the other Ionicware marketplaces, there are many, many people that barely understand something. A lot of them are "Power Sellers" on the marketplace and not understanding English while having so much customers that rely on you is really not a good thing.

Few days ago, i had a really, really bad experience from a seller and i don't like to address or reveal who the person is as my purpose is not to ruin their ratings or something. The reason for all of that was his English.

What happened?
The seller delayed the order which i now that normally happens from time to time.
I didn't get a response so i told the seller that he's late without freaking out, i just wrote a simple message "You are late." to see if he is going to answer.
Seems like after that the seller was thinking i was complaining and responded to me "have late" which i didn't actually understand what would it mean and i asked him to deliver the order as soon as possible. Which resulted in another cancellation request stating "system problem can't do this now".

I still don't understand what did this seller think of all of this, but i don't think i was treated fairly. So i decided to give him a third order which resulted in a 5th cancellation request for me. That's very mean! English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?

English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?
As you can see above, this person didn't even bother to try to explain what the problem is and if we had a English proficiency test as a requirement for Level X and he would not pass it and i would not order. I don't know what you think, but i would not do business with a person that doesn't speak English at all or uses Google Translate while my business depends on him.

So let me know your thoughts and suggestions, do you think we should have this feature or not?

Thank you!



Hey Steven,
First of all, I'm sorry for the bad experience. Secondly, I'm not native in English either, so from my personal perspective, I'd have to say no to a suggestion like this.. Even though I actually think it would be a great idea. At least from one side of the coin.

That being said, there's literally TONS of non-native sellers and buyers on SEOClerks, and many of the sellers are difficult to discuss with, due to their level of understanding. - And honestly speaking, that sucks.

Even though I'm not native in English myself, I always try to communicate as good as I possibly can. I spend time on everything I write. Both here in the Community Discussion, but also in my order pages, my service listings, emails, everything. I do what I can to make it readable and understandable. - I mean, this is business. Each time I'm involved in something with a client, or if I'm looking for a seller, it's business. I need to communicate properly with the people I'm working with.. But some people doesn't even seem to care. And those people are annoying indeed.

So yeah, on one side of the coin, I definitely agree on something like this.

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I agree with all your points hitmeasap, but also the test doesn't have to be something difficult, just basic English skills that i think everyone should have. Not being able to explain why an order is being cancelled is not someone who should have a Level more than 1 if you ask me. I also know to have late orders most of the time, but at least i try to explain why i am late and when i cancel i apologize and state the real reason why an order is cancelled. Thank you very much for your opinion and thoughts! English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?

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Well I think something like this should be optional but not mandatory. There are many people out there, sellers, that can't really manage to string a sentence together in English on their own without using some interpretation of some kind that still manage to provide a good service to people that they don't speak the same language of. But they are able to read between the lines and provide the service without anything like such as the case sample you have provided happening as can happen sometimes. Sometimes, sure, there are some people out there, sellers that aren't as professional as other sellers are and don't have the same skills and experience or just don't care.

And that's what defines a good service, by how much that people care about it. If they really really care about their clients and their business and name, then they will show that by how much effort they put into that service. By how responsive they are. By the quality of their work. And there are a lot of people out there, on here that are like that. But sometimes you do come across one of those bogeys!

But in which case, just like how the seller ratings, feedback and recommendations and response time works, those are what you can use on signals as to what the seller and the quality on their service will be like. Some people just stand out like a lightbulb in the dark! Some people seem to shine the same as everyone else and some don't seem to shine at all. So if possible try to go with the shiney ones! English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?

But how to make more sellers more shiney? I guess one way to do it would be to make this kind of test optional so that if they took it, it would show their score on their profile. Some other freelance sites I wont mention here, actually do that but have many many tests you can take, all of which show on your profile as completed or not.

And for all intents and purposes, it's actually quite a good system for buyers to find the best sellers from all of them in the system. But at the same time, it doesn't mean that if they haven't taken that test, that they aren't the right man for the job. Sometimes you gotta bight the bullet and try but fortunately there's a good system in place to protect you from bad sellers and or not getting the job done that you paid for with your good money! English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?

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As a buyer I find it really annoying when I am trying to communicate with a seller and their level of English proficiency is really bad... so yes I agree to an extent that this would be a really cool idea.

But I also feel bad for sellers that provide a really good service and really try hard, but their English just isn't great... is it really fair to put them at such a disadvantage and prevent them from reaching higher levels here at SeoClerks?

I would really hate to see something like that happen so overall I have to disagree with this idea.

Perhaps something a little different could be implemented, like Clerkboy3 suggested. I think that adding an option to do an English proficiency test would be an awesome feature to have and then a nice big English Proficiency badge can be shown on that sellers profile.

This would benefit everyone, maybe even make it that someone that has that badge can level up a little easier... so it would be highly beneficial to take that test, but it won't prevent other sellers from levelling up?

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I get your point that sometimes it is really difficult to understand some buyers/sellers, or to communicate with them. I have had my share of problems in this regard. However, I do not think that it would make sense because this is a platform which accepts people from all over the world, and setting such a test would be a way of putting a good percentage of users at a significant disadvantage. It could make them feel demotivated to sell or buy services here. In the case of lack of understanding it is best to be patient, and if cancelations occur as happened in your case you can always contact support.

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Hi EliteWriter, i never said that they must pass a test to be able to use the website.
It's just for Level 2+ (as far as i know, being a Level 2 makes you able to sell what a Level 3, 4, 5 and X can).

Anyways, being a Level X3 and not being able to state a reason for cancellation properly, is really not something that should be happening. English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think? But, that's just my own opinion.

Thanks for expressing your thoughts!

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What I meant is that if they are aware of the fact that they cannot be promoted they are not going to feel inclined to join the site. Having said that, If he is Level X3, he must have been handpicked by staff, and it is rather strange that he is not able to clarify what he wanted, or express himself well.

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Hey Steven i think this is a great idea man! This will make the site better overall in my opinion. Communication is probably the most important thing to a smooth running business and transaction. I know English very well and i can also hold my own when it comes to Spanish speaking. Sometimes sellers have issues as we know nothing is perfect i think he couldn't do the work and rather than say he was busy he said not working. I think the X requirements are pretty high as it is and to make them even higher might kill the program entirely. You also have to remember that not everyone who shops here speaks English. Some people sell services here but only speak their native language. In this case i think that instead of trying to guess what to say using Google translate could help the situation a little bit better.

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I understand your concerns and frankly, if we try to be very strict, it can be a good idea, at least in theory.

But we should try to put ourselves in the people shoes.
You barely have food at your home, you live in a dysfunctional country, in panic. It is not easy to learn another language. You are struggling to pay the basic bills... And we are talking about Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, etc.
Take a look at Africa, with the exception of South Africa, there are almost no sellers from another subsaharan african countries, they don't even know what seo is, let alone the seoclerks website! Many of them don't know how to read and write!

Seoclerks provides that opportunity to some of the least fortunate to have a better present and also hope for the future eventually English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?
That's what happens with the users from the 3rd and 4th world countries that use seoclerks.

I would suggest a language badge for example in order to overcome this problem. You do an english language test, you pass, you got the badge displayed clearly on your profile English proficiency test as a requirement for Level 3, 4, 5 and X - What do you think?

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I think we already talked about this in past CDs. Having some sort of test and badges for sellers here on SEOclerks. A lot of platforms have this type of feature implemented, freelance marketplaces like UpWork for example, have loads of tests and badges one can acquire proving he/her has decent English skills, SEO skills or whatever.

The problem with all of this is that it can be faked, actually on most test on Upwork I was able to find every answer online just by typing the question in Google. All of this I believe will create a race among sellers to get the best score and as many passed tests as possible.
Either way, I still believe tests can help the community overall, especially the buyers.

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Absolutely agree with this.

I appreciate many sellers may not speak English as a first language and I applaud them for trying but some sellers seem too lazy to even turn on spell check or have their services proof read.

Every service with bad grammar or Engrish costs us sales as people leave the site and don't spend if they fear communication issues.

It might be time for somebody to offer a service to proof read Sales Threads before they go live.

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Pardon me for this comment but bad English has been the butt of jokes in the movies of the olden times. It was called carabao English with the bad grammar and pronunciation. I think until now that kind of humor is still being used on tv shows. But anyway, communication in business requires precision. It’s not good if people will be misunderstanding a statement, worse if the statements is misinterpreted in the wrong way. I guess a simple English test will do it.

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I like this debate. I think that it is one that should be held frequently. I have compassion, however when sellers can't write or speak proper English they should not take the job. English maybe a skill you have to learn. But you have to be honest with yourself.If you insist on taking those jobs you simply spoil the market for other non-native speakers who can write in proper English. I'm sure you have seen the advertisements for natives only. They are many people once they see your Country they will reject you because of the other people they have encountered from your country who lied that they can write in perfect English.

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