How Does Care.com Compare With Its Rivals And Is It Worth Signing Up For?
What is Care.com?
If you are reading this Care.com review, you are mostly a parent looking for a new, simple way of finding a reliable babysitting service. With Care.com you can sign up to an online resource with links to sitters in your area and be provided with experienced, professional help for any job you post. Not only that, they can also help you find carers able to help with tutoring, caring for the elderly and pet sitting. All this can be found by searching the site’s database, which categorizes carers based on their skills and location and makes their details readily available for a much easier choice.
How does Care.com stand out from other babysitter providers?
These features are all well and good, but you are probably using this Care.com review hoping to read about something that makes it stand out as being a service that you cannot do without. Any respectable babysitting service will provide skilled, reliable sitters, what makes Care.com so special?
Care.com goes beyond other providers because it does so much more than just provide a service for a specific job. When you sign up to the website you are joining an online community of parents, families and healthcare providers that not only want to take on your vacancies, they want to provide advice and support at any time. The creators of Care.com brand the site as somewhere that people can “easily connect, share care giving experiences and get advice”; that is why alongside the details of the professionals and services there are links to articles that give tips on a range of subjects important to you and your situation.
This sense of community is no better expressed than in its attitudes towards its sitters and military families. Not only does Care.com offer a great 33% discount for members of the USAA, it also provides them with links and advice to help them cope more easily. The site is also a great resource for sitters because not only does it offer them potential jobs it lets them create detailed, personalized accounts that will raise their profile and get them noticed by prospective clients. New carers are even promoted at the top of their relevant page for even better exposure. These profiles are also great for clients because it allows them to see reviews, details of experience – such as first aid, previous work with disabilities or specific areas of tutoring – and the rate that they charge.
Finally, this Care.com review has arguably saved the best feature for last – the Care-on-call service. One of the biggest concerns you will face as a parent of a young child is the need for a babysitter at the last minute when others have either cancelled or are unable to help. With Care-on-call you can receive express, emergency cover quickly so that you do not have to cancel your plans.
How does Care.com compare to its biggest competitor Sittercity?
As you probably expected, it did not take long before this Care.com review began mentioning its closest rival, but with the obvious similarities between the two services it seemed like the best way to look at the positive and negative implications of choosing Care.com over another option.
The two sites are very similar in their approach and methods, brought down to their basics they are both resources for finding care providers in an efficient, online search engine. Where they differ most greatly is their focus – while Sittercity appears to appeal primarily towards parents looking for sitters with a range of skills, Care.com aids both the clients and the care providers in equal measures. This can be seen both a good and bad thing depending on your main reason for using the site.
Once you start looking in more detail at what is on offer, unfortunately for Care.com their rival has a slight edge. This is partly due to Sittercity’s greater experience and larger database – which can mean a greater chance of finding the perfect candidate for the job you post – but even more to do with the issue of security. While Care.com rightly promotes its use for advice and support, Sittercity flaunts its security system and policies. This does not mean that Care.com is not safe, they also make background checks and references available to clients on their paid premium service, but they do not give the option of an independent check like Sittercity does.
The final issue to discuss – one that no Care.com review would be complete without – is cost. Care.com offer a free basic package for the bare minimum of access and a newsletter, but this does not include the ability to look at candidate’s details and background checks. For that you need the $30 a month premium service. This rate may be less than Sittercity‘s monthly rate, but do not forget that they also provide a $70 yearly rate making them more cost-effective in the long run.
So, what can we learn from this Care.com review and is the company worth using? The issues over its focus and user friendly nature – not to mention the lack of details and background checks for those opting for the free basic package – can be seen as reasons to choose Sittercity over Care.com, but there are other elements to the site that make it worthwhile. Sittercity may come out ever so slightly ahead with a direct comparison, it really does depend what you are looking for.
The ethos of Care.com, with its approach to advice and sharing experiences, gives it a warmer, community feel that members will want to use for more than just posting vacancies. This connection to the site and its members promotes a long-term, rewarding relationship, and while they may not have the database of Sittercity to meet the demand, it is easy to find contacts within your area to make all your care issues much easier to handle – especially with their care-on-call feature.
Essentially, what can be taken away from this Care.com review is that people looking for an efficient, parent focused, babysitting service that is value for money should probably turn to Sittercity. However if your needs in terms of care and support are greater and you are prepared to search the databases and pay a little extra, Care.com could be favorable.
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