ServiceMagic is in the business of selling leads to contractors and service business that ServiceMagic generates from Google Adwords primarily. For them to make a profit they need to sale each lead generated to at least 3 contractors. How ServiceMagic does this is by over promising to the consumer and under delivering to the contractor. Thus the problem with ServiceMagic leads. ServiceMagic has no real review of a contractor's qualifications or their personal because they simply ask a contractor to certify online they comply with ServiceMagic's qualifications, of course this is no problem for a criminal.
If you are a consumer just remember the old adage "you get what you pay for" and "if it seems to be to good to be true it just might be". In the case of ServiceMagic you need to question why you are not paying for their service and who is paying?
If you are contractor remember that ServiceMagic makes a profit for each lead they sell. [continued below]....
..... Their lead replace program is designed so as to disallow replacement. I my case 4 out of 5 leads for remodel were from people whom did not even own a home in our area. In fact when I got a lead from a ServiceMagic 2 out of 5 times the address was for a home in foreclosure. It appeared that either someone who was on comission at ServiceMagic was creating leads from foreclosure listing in the news paper or one of my competitor was trying to run my bill up with ServiceMagic. In any event 9 out of 10 lead replacements requests were deined even after we proved the lead was fake.
The bottom line is that ServiceMagic is a poor investment of you ad dollar, after year of working with their system we had conversion rate of 1/55 leads at a cost over $1,400 per conversion. We would have been better off to have had someone stand on a street corner and hand out $20 bills with our card attached than to use ServiceMagic.
Our firm has a 4.96 star rating with Yelp, Google and ServiceMagic so we are not some flake. But what I learned was that most ServiceMagic contractors are one man operations looking to make a quick dollar. If you are a consumer ServiceMagic should be a last resort after calling everyone in the phone book and on the internet. If you are a contractor take the money you would spend with ServiceMagic and buy your wife and kids a trip to Disneyland, at least you will have some fun with the money and not feel like someone just stole it.
In conclusion ServiceMagic is the Ripoff poster child for the consumer and contractor "beware of this dog it bites everyone".