Voices.com vs. Voice123: A Comparison Of Two P2P Voice Over Websites

Feb 17, 2020

As voice actors, we are continually asking questions like: "Which voice over website should I join" and "What is another website besides Voices.com?" or "... Voice123?". 

I have wrestled with these questions myself. So much so, that I couldn't choose without causing myself a considerable headache.  

On top of that, I felt I needed to learn more about these companies before I continued to recommend them from personal experience, because, as it stands in 2020, these two websites are considered the largest P2P sites in the world for VO and the cost to join is pretty high up there.

What's is all about anyway?

This article is a guide and comparison of the two platforms side by side. I will do my very best to leave the decision making up to you by presenting the evidence fairly. 

So, for my students, voice actors of the world, and anyone else interested, I present to you Voices.com vs. Voice123: A comparison of two P2P voice over websites. 

Quick Note: I recommend reading this article and using the links provided to click back and forth from the article to the websites for the best comparison.

Business info:

Voices.com (founded 2003)

  • Management - Company's Co-founder and CEO, David Ciccarelli.
  • Address - 100 Dundas St., Suite 700, London, ON N6A 5B6, Canada
  • Telephone - 1-888-359-3472 / International - 1-519-858-5660
  • Hours of Operation - Monday - Friday 8 am to 8 pm ET and Saturday 9 am to 2 pm ET.
  • Email - [email protected]
  • Leadershiphttps://www.voices.com/company/leadership

Voice123.com (founded in 2003)

** Overall, it was much easier for me to find the contact data for Voices.com compared to Voice123. All of the info for Voices.com was on their website, but the information for Voice123, after searching the website, Voicebunny, and Torre Inc (Parent Company), I could not find a telephone number or hours of operations for any of the three. Also, I was only able to find the address by searching through the terms of service. I am not sure why it is this hard, but don't expect to call Voice123. 

1. Membership Price 

For the Guest (Free) option, you get a personal profile, ability to upload demos/samples, visibility to clients from being listed on Voices.com, payment protection (SurePay), and the capacity to be invited to private auditions. 

Voices.com says the guest option is for a voice actor just getting starting in the voice over business. However, the likely hood of a voice actor being invited to private auditions on this platform by merely signing up for a free account is slim. The website claims to have over 500,000 memberships. They do not say if those are all voice actors, however.

The Premium offer has all the same options the Guest has, plus the ability to audition for jobs, jobs to your inbox, Free PayPal services, Priority ranking in the search engine (which I assume means over the Guest accounts since they are the only accounts available), and increased access to help and support. 

  • Voice123 - 4 account options: Standard plan (Free), Bronze ($325 yr), Premium 1 ($395 yr), Premium 2 ($600 yr). Payment plan found here https://voice123.com/plans

The membership plans are broken into 4 categories: Project invitations, search appearances, project auditioning, and competing voice actors. 

Each membership plan offers more project invitations, and search appearances with less competing voice actors the more you pay. 

When you are just starting, you can only see four membership options, but I have heard some voice actors say there are upwards of 9 opportunities, but I cannot substantiate that. 

Also, it is hard to put a real number on the competing voice actors and search appearances because the keywords that you enter, like male or female voice actor, age, accent, etc., will most definitely skew the data. 

**Voice123 seems to give you more options for membership. However, both sites seem overly ambiguous when it comes to your chances of making money.  

2. Extra Fees

  • For a long time, I heard on the grapevine Voices.com charged additional fees to its clients, outside of the membership fees it charged its voice actors. So, I wanted to see if there were any hidden fees that I could find for Voices.com and Voice123. 
    • Voices.com - Extra Fees: Each client that purchases a voice-over from Voices.com must pay a 20% site usage fee, so the example they use is if the job costs $500 for the voice actor, Voices.com charges $600. Also, there is a $199 fee to post union jobs on the site. There is no extra fee for posting non-union jobs, but Voices.com offers a $24.99 monthly fee for unlimited union postings. However, Voices.com does take payment and hold it in their escrow account through SurePay and pays the voice actor when the job is completed. 
    • Voice123 - There are no extras fees upfront for the voice actor or client. Voice123 acts as an intermediary, and once the client and voice actor has matched up through auditioning, the transaction is completed off the platform. However, they are beta testing a new option to take direct bookings through their escrow account and charge a 6% fee to the client and voice actor. You can click this option "on" through your settings tab. The voice actors set their own rate cards based on audience size and script length. 

3. Will I Get Work

Neither website claims any numbers on how many different voice actors are getting jobs. Voices.com has released figures showing numbers of jobs per month going through the site, which is in the thousands, but not how many are actually booked and what the average is. 

If you work that out and take the 500,000 members on the site, and give a generous number of 5,000 jobs per month, that would come out to about 60,000 jobs a year.

With 60,000 jobs a year, and being in this business for a while now, I can say that all those jobs are probably not going to 60,000 different people, many are going to the same people over and over again, there is not enough work to go around for all 500,000 people to make a decent wage (This is my opinion, which I said I wouldn't do, but couldn't help myself). 

With all that said, and having been on BOTH sites for a few years now and working with many voice actors on these sites, it is clear the competition is stiff, and some people can complete hundreds of auditions before getting work.

You need a fantastic voice over demo, great headshot, and incredible bio to stand a chance against the extremely high numbers on both websites.

Also, you will want to stay active by posting samples regularly to ensure you are ranking as high as possible. 

4. Customer Support

Judging both of these sites on customer support is not easy, especially when I have not had to go through every scenario and compare accordingly. 

However, I will do my best.

Voices.com - It is evident by the way you can find their information on their website that they want you to contact them. Also, they have set up multiple channels to contact them for clients, voice actors, technical issues, etc. with all requests going to separate departments. 

I have been helped by Voices.com customer support, and they were easy to get a hold of and courteous as well. 

Voice123 - There is one way to contact Voice123, and that is through one single email address. I suppose you could look at this as a simple system to run everything through one place, without having to worry about where to go. 

I have dealt with Voice123 on multiple occasions, and they have certainly tried to help. They have always emailed me back promptly and with a solution. 

So, I would say that ease of contact info goes to Voices.com, but both websites seem to do an excellent job on the customer support side. 

5. Resources

This section was an eye-opener for me. I spent a considerable amount of time on both platforms checking out their resources for voice actors, and here is the comparison:

Voices.com - At the bottom of the home page, there are multiple tabs for beginning voice acting guides, professional guides, rate suggestions, and ways to see the top-selling voice actors on the site. (Beginners guide from Voices.com here: https://www.voices.com/help/beginners-guide-to-voice-acting)

They also have a section on practice scripts: https://www.voices.com/blog/voice-over-sample-scripts/ - This was under a blog post and is highly used for practice.

On a side note, I would not recommend using these scripts for samples or demos because everyone has used them. 

Lastly, Voices.com offers coaching for your profile. You can set up an appointment with them, and you get a call with a consultant that goes over your account with you. 

Voice123 - When I first started this, I was skeptical of the resources that Voice123 offered because they are not as pronounced as Voices.com's are. 

But, I found the jackpot. Voice123 has a beneficial section that is filled with all sorts of support and guides for voice actors, not just for working on Voice123, but in general. You can find that here: https://thevoiceoverguide.com/

Also, there is one section I found on Voice123 that voiceover websites like Voquent (https://www.voquent.com/) have championed, which is a "Most Searched Terms" section. Voice123 shows you in order, from highest to lowest, the most searched terms on the site and how many searches they get by number: https://voice123.com/directory

**I wasn't quite sure where to put this little note so I will stick it here:

Voices.com has a nice feature that allows the voice actor to see if a client has liked their demo, how many times their demos have been listened to, if they have been added to a client list, etc. This seems to be helpful for a voice actor trying to figure out if they are getting seen and liked.

Voice123 has a similar feature. You can see if someone likes your profile and what other profiles they have seen. They do not show you how many times your work has been viewed or if you have been added to a client list. 

Note: Last year, Voice123 went through a major website renovation and changed the entire operation. Before the current model, voice actors were rated by the clients. It is not clear why they went away from this model, and many people were angry, but I thought it important to state. 

6. Ease Of Use

Both platforms are pretty straight forward and walk you through the set-up. Each site contains sections for your profile, samples, talents, equipment, awards, etc. 

Both sites recommend you put as many keywords in your profiles as possible because it helps determine how many auditions you will get chosen for.

The more keywords you have, the better. 

Both Voices.com and Voice123 say the most important thing to do while using their websites to get voice work, is to UPLOAD SAMPLES

I have seen upwards of 60 -70 samples on some profiles from people who are getting work. It is straightforward to upload them, make sure to follow the correct settings though. 

7. Auditions vs. Direct bookings

There are two ways you can get business on Voice123 and Voices.com.

1. Auditions - Both websites will send audition notifications to your inbox and/or email (You can turn this on or off). You can also receive private auditions. Once you are notified, you can go and audition for the job and submit through the website. If you are chosen, you will be notified and asked to finish the job. 

2. Direct Bookings - As of now, 2020, both Voices.com and Voice123 offer direct bookings. It used to be that Voices.com was the only one out of the two, but now Voice123 is excepting payments through their escrow account so they are taking direct bookings (Voices.com uses SurePay). 

The only downside to this is was unclear to me if the voice actor is being charged 6% for using direct booking. According to Voice123, voice actors are, but the language is ambiguous, so I am not completely sure. The client is charged 6%, however. 

Final Notes:

Both websites are monsters in the online voice over casting world, and head to head, they both put up a good fight. 

My initial thoughts are Voices.com is a more easy website to use because of navigation, ease of finding resources, etc. However, Voice123 does not charge it's clients an extra 20% to post on the site, so theoretically, that is more money for the voice actor.  

Voice123 does have 2 paid membership options that are less than Voices.com, but it is impossible to compare if they are better or worse, especially since auditioning is subjective. 

With that being said, both have there good points and bad points.

My hope through this article is that you have got a good look at Voices.com compared to Voice123. 

It's now up to you to make your choice. Best of luck! 

Cheers!

Anthony  

**At this point, I have had the fortunate honor to have coached 100's of voice actors, and these two websites are always a part of the decision-making process for marketing their voice over businesses, so these sites are important. Please do your own research as well and good luck! 

 

 

 

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