7: Troubleshooting Sourcing Issues

In this module, we'll be looking at what you can do when your Sourcing work gets difficult and you need some additional help & resources!


1. Use Your Wonder Tools: WRC
2. Use Your Wonder Tools: Slack
3. Keyword searches & Finding the “Golden Keyword”
4. Taking a Step Back

1. Knowing what to do when you have questions
2. Learn what to do when the answer the client wants isn’t available
3. Familiarize yourself with ways to come up with great keywords for searches

Let's get started!

Use Your Wonder Tools: Wonder Resource Center

Wonder Resource Center

The Wonder Resource Center should be the first place you look for help.

There's lots of great information in the WRC, including:

  • Sourcing expectations and criteria that reviewers use- 5-star sourcing examples
  • Payment and scoring
  • The sourcing tutorial
  • Plagiarism rules and quoting sources
  • How the different roles like vetting, sourcing, writing, planning, and reviewing all work together-
  • General questions about submitting, timing, removing your claim, and more.

There are also a number of helpful resources to help you with your researching and sourcing!

These include tools and sites on business stats, website stats, social and demographic info, academic papers, news sources, company comparisons, and more.

You can also find these tools in the Wonder Resource List!

Here are some other helpful links in the WRC:


Get Started Sourcing

Sourcing Rubric

5-Star Sourcing Examples

Pro Tips


Control+F the above two resource lists to try to find the tools you need, rather than scanning the full list!


Bookmark the Wonder Resource List so you can access it quickly and easily! 

You might even want to compile a bookmark folder of the resources you use regularly for Wonder, or that you know you’ll be going back to, again and again.

Use Your Wonder Tools: Slack

Using Wonder Community Slack

If you check the WRC and still can't find an answer to your question,  then you can try the Slack #02-general channel!


The General channel is full of researchers like you, all with amazing and different types of experience and knowledge. The more you help out others, the more they’ll be keen to help you out back, and all of that goes towards creating the kind of team we’d like to see!

Check out the next page to learn more about examples of how/how not to use Slack!

Non-Ideal Slack Interactions


1. “Can anyone help me?”

It’s totally reasonable to ask this, but because this doesn’t specify what type of help is needed, people will be unlikely to volunteer

2. Swearing, or, insulting others directly, or indirectly

While feelings of frustration are often legitimate, the Slack channels are spaces for professionals to collaborate. That means the environment needs to be positive, supportive, and respectful. Communicating in this manner is a direct violation of the Wonder community code of conduct, and may result in removal from the platform. If you ever have any concerns, please contact a site admin directly

3. Sending private messages to reviewers when you’re worried about how they’ll score you, or angry about how they scored you

It’s perfectly okay to DM with other researches - reviewers, writers, and so on, and ask for clarification on something when you need that: that sort of collaboration is great! However, bugging, harassing, or taking things out on other researchers is unacceptable.

Ideal Slack Interactions


1. “I’ve tried the following keywords for my question on the blue finger market, does anyone else have any other keyword ideas?”  

Being specific about the kind of help you need makes it more likely that someone with the experience or knowledge you need will pipe up and help out.

2.“Do people working on the Koala spreadsheet have any great resources to share?”

Often, multiple analysts will be working on different parts of the same spreadsheet, or on a series of related questions from the client. Slack is a great place to link up and collaborate on those types of questions

3. “X person did a great job on sourcing the Musicians request”

Encouragement and positive reinforcement among analysts is a lovely thing to do, and something we all need to hear now and then!

Keyword searches & Finding the “Golden Keyword”

Keyword Searches

Keyword searches are a Sourcers best friend! 

If you want more information on this and other kinds of advanced search techniques, check out the 'Building Sourcing Speed' module!


A string of words that a search engine user types into the search box to extrapolate data about a given topic.

Check out the next page for useful tools for doing keyword searches!

More about Keyword Searches: Tools

If you’ve tried a brainstorm of keywords and you’re still coming up empty, or your search isn’t producing the information you’d expect, try these tips and tools to start brainstorming different keyword searches:

-Read a general article about the topic and note the different ways the author describes the topic and related vocabulary they use. 

Learning the specific language/lingo that someone would use when talking about a given topic can help you discover even more search strings.


Google Keyword Planner


Great tool, though it is focused on how people typically search for a topic rather than how the experts often describe it. You’ll need to register.

 The Keyword Finder 


For example, if you search for market, it suggests: stock market, share, news, stock quotes, live, today etc. No registration required, free.*The Keyword Toolhttps://keywordtool.io/Uses autocomplete to generate ideas - eg market report, market study, strategy, plan etc.



Provides lists of typical keywords searched for a topic



Also lists the top keywords typically searched for, as well as top sites and mentions - however it only gives you 20 free uses per month 



Shows the top 10 related keywords for free

Taking a Step Back

Take a Step Back

If you've tried searching all of these other resources, and are still stuck- try taking a step back for a moment and just imagine yourself as the client.

What does the client want?

What is the client REALLY looking for?

If you were the client, what would you want this research to include?

Thinking in this way can help you think of additional search strategies and places to look to find your sources!If you're still stuck- you can always remove your claim.

Check out the "Learning the Sourcing Interface" module for more information about removing a sourcing claim.

Quiz Time!

Treasure hunt!

Find one tool that does the following in the Wonder Resource List the following topics and the direct links in the WRC that you would use to find this information:

  1. Find email addresses for a person’s names
  2. Profiles companies, including their estimated revenue
  3. Lists fashion influencers

Write your answers in this format:

1: Find email addresses for a person’s names [insert direct link to the section in the WRC]

2: Profiles companies, including est. revenue [insert direct link to the section in the WRC]

3: Lists fashion influencers [insert direct link to the section in the WRC]

Client Request

A client wants information on the internal hierarchy of a company called Bobismol Cats. 

The client wants to know who to contact at this company - names of people in different positions and who is above whom. 

It turns out that specific information isn’t publicly available.

What other findings could you include that would be of some assistance to the client?

List these findings below in a numbered list:

Childhood Learning

You have a question about childhood learning processes. 

Googling those exact keywords isn’t yielding you many results. 

List at least 15 other keywords you could try (format in a numbered list):

Which of these things is it okay to say in a Slack channel?

  • I need help with my question
  • Does anyone know of any databases that focus on African demographics?
  • Reviewers are lazy and incompetent!
  • I think it would be a great idea if we could add sources while editing

True or false: I should always check the Wonder Resource Center before asking a question about how Wonder works in Slack

  • True
  • False

Which is an example of an inappropriate message in Slack?

  • "I need help on this request about opera singers. I'm stuck and can't find the sources I think I need. Is anyone available for some advice?"
  • "I got a really bad rating on my last job and need the reviewer who rated my work to message me IMMEDIATELY."
  • "Great work on that last job!"
  • None of the above


Module Success Code: -Socrates