How to Avoid Common Problems with an Essay Writing Service

Javiera Vega

Javiera Vega

Study Consultant at Gradehacker

Updated February 10, 2022

Essays are a critical part of your academic journey. Whether it’s just a few pages or an innovative project proposal, this type of assignment can have a significant impact on your final grade. With this much riding on your overall grade, you might look for help to ensure it is done right. So you jump on Google and find that there are countless essay writing services.

You know the feeling, right? The anxiety of seeing time passing in the corner of your computer while the page on your screen remains blank can be nerve-wracking. This type of stress is intensified even more when you have more activities in your schedule like work, having to pick up the kids from school, or anything else that life throws at you.

Hiring an essay writer for help is not a luxury; it is a necessity for many. This seems like a more effective way to complete all your tasks without worrying about doing research, summaries, and spell checks.

Here at Gradehacker, we always hear the same understandable questions: Is it legit to have your essay done? What problems can there be? What benefits can an essay writing service bring me?

These are valid concerns and are some of the ones that cause some students to stay away from this type of assistance service. However, the truth is that college classes are getting more fast-paced, and typing your ideas into a Word document seems like an easy task at first. Even if you know exactly what you want to say, it can be difficult to easily put it on paper.

However, there are always two sides to a story. There is still a chance that this type of service that might look like a liberating solution can end up bringing even more problems than what you asked for in the first place.

Essay writing services can become your arsenal’s principal tool to earn the degree you know you deserve. However, like any other helpful instrument, you have to pick it well. To start weeding out options, we have developed this list of 5 problems when hiring an essay writing service and how to avoid them.

The most common essay writing services problems and solutions are:

Now that you know them let’s see how these problems unfold in more detail!

PROBLEM #1: Ethical Concerns of an essay writing service

“Are essay writing services legit?” is one of the usual top Google results when it comes to this type of assistance. This phenomenon is explained because formal schooling has ingrained this question of morality if work is not 100% independent.

However, remember that you are a college student juggling many things like work and family on top of classwork. It is not about you being unable to write the essay because of your skills, it is about finding the time to sit down and write it.

In theory, colleges are after plagiarism and not who is the original writer of your work. If your paper is 100% authentic and well done, you don’t have to be concerned about your professor finding it suspicious.

If you are still not comfortable presenting someone else's writing, you can always use the essay you solicited as a reference to create new content. You will save a lot of time by not looking for references or finding the right way to put your thoughts into coherent sentences. Still, remember there are no legal restrictions for submitting an essay as yours as long as it is original in its entirety.

PROBLEM #2: Essay mills are cheap low-quality options

This is a term you will find a lot when researching essay writing services, and most of the time, it has a negative connotation. At first, this type of business seems like you have found gold. Their prices are dirt-cheap since they are only based on the length of your paper and the time you need it delivered. The fact that you don’t have to give many details about your paper might also be alluring for a newcomer who is paranoid about privacy.

Unfortunately, those initial attractive characteristics are, in fact, big fat red flags. Essay mills tend to cover their flaws in this secrecy. Recycling previous essays, deficient or nonexistent plagiarism checks, lack of communication, and a total disregard of the client’s overall academic performance are common problems that a serious essay writing service absolutely won’t have.

Stay away from them! Platforms like Freelancer, Fiverr, or other sketchy sites might seem like you have struck gold, but remember that not everything that glitters is indeed gold. Always go for well-established businesses with a strong online presence and glowing reviews.

5 Problems When Hiring an Essay Writing Service And How to Avoid Them

PROBLEM #3: Under Qualified writers produce unimpressive results

There is this long-standing belief that only native speakers have flawless grammar and spelling. If Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? has taught us anything it’s that sometimes, there is a massive gap between what we know and what we should know.

Being a non-native speaker is not a synonym for lousy essay writing. Actually, as  mentions, since non-natives have conquered language concepts step by step later in their lives, they have a more conscious understanding of grammar and spelling. For this reason, don’t use the “native over non-native” rule from the get-go.

Quality writers must be tested through a selection process before writing, which includes language proficiency, grammar/spelling skills, and exceptional writing development/organization. Quality essay writing companies use this selection process as a standard. In contrast, informal platforms only use available people who can pop out a certain amount of words before a deadline.

How secretive the website is with its writers is very telling. Check if you can find their real names, profiles, and genuine pictures. If a company is open about it, you will know they are not afraid of you going to Google and searching for their LinkedIn profiles.

PROBLEM #4: Deficient Plagiarism Checkers

Since plagiarism has to be your main focus, so you don’t commit academic fraud, you have to keep your eyes open to any suspicious advertisement about it. Most of the websites offer plagiarism checks, so that doesn’t seem like a concern at first.

Still, you have to ask yourself which anti-plagiarism tool they are using. Some services are proud of themselves for using their own originality checkers, which sounds great on paper, but can you know for sure how reliable they are?

Do they do any plagiarism checking system at all? Ask for their plagiarism checking methods. If they don't give you a straight answer, then you should start looking somewhere else. Grammarly, which is our favorite here at Gradehacker, is a quality plagiarism tool to look out for. It scans for matches in academic journals and the usual college student doc sharing websites like Coursehero and Scribd. If your professor thinks you are taking credit for someone else's work, believe that they will look there first.

PROBLEM #5: Scam Sites

As mentioned before, not everything that glitters is gold. Maybe you found a site that looks pretty, serious, and the prices are unbelievably low. However, just like those Facebook ads where you order an expensive item for a low cost, you end up with a cheap knock off version of what you wanted in the first place. Or even worse, with nothing at all. As Business Insider points out, in the US, one in ten adults will fall victim to a scam or fraud every year, and the vast majority of these fraud takes place online.

Like any other online business, scammers will take advantage of an existing audience and make them believe that they can offer you the best of the best at a really affordable price. Forums are full of scary stories of spending money for these so-called essay writing services only to get all contact cut after payment.

Paypal offers some return policies in this case, but they take a lot of time, and you will still need your essay done before your deadline. In the end, you will end up empty-handed for both your money and class submission.

When in doubt, go to Google! Check other people's experiences and reviews with your chosen service. If you can't find anything, then do not risk it. Essays are an essential part of your final grade, and leaving something like this to luck is not the smartest move.

You are probably  still wondering if you should give a chance to an essay writing service. Yes, for newcomers a lot of doubts arise and that fear of “kind-of-cheating” may be too deep-rooted in you. That’s understandable, but keep in mind that, as any other service these days, you will find good quality and bad quality. In order to avoid that bad experience that you fear, play safe and follow the advice you just learned so you can confidently ask for help when you need it the most.

Hopefully, now you know what are the red flags you have to look for and you will hire the best essay writing service around. In case you need more information, you can check our other posts about the ethical implications of hiring someone to write your essay or, if you still want to try your luck and write everything yourself, you can check our APA and MLA guide for citations. We hope your academic journey is as easy and painless as possible! 

Javiera Vega

Javiera Vega

Javiera Vega is a Study Consultant and Content Creator for Gradehacker. She has a degree in Education and Literature and is currently working on getting a master’s degree in Linguistics. Even though words, languages, and books are her thing, science and psychology were her hidden passion for many years. Luckily, Gradehacker has allowed her to use all that knowledge by helping many clients with everything they need. Javiera considers herself a proud nerd who likes to learn and read about everything she can find. From movies and comics to microbiology and genetics, every topic is interesting for her. Her curiosity has no limits. Find her on LinkedIn