When looking at a company, such as the one found at reputation.com, you generally want to check out the Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating for the company in question. If they have a high rating, you will feel better about doing business with them, and you know that you should avoid them if they have a very low score. The BBB ratings are somewhat like the marks you would get in school, with an A+ being the best that is possible. However, do you know if you can trust the BBB rating or not?
As you will find, these ratings are very trustworthy. The main reason for this is that businesses cannot buy better ratings. They cannot donate to the BBB or pay them off in order to get higher ratings and draw in more customers. Some sites that review businesses are open to incentives from those businesses, but that just means that they are little more than marketing devices. You cannot trust them because they are being paid to make the company look good, not to give you any honest information that you can use. The BBB is not like that, so you never have to worry about whether or not the information is genuine.
Another reason to trust them is because they take many different factors into account. It starts with how long the company has been in business. Longevity is often a sign that the company is pleasing its customers. If it was not, those customers would have left and the company would have folded. This does not necessarily mean that the company is going to be good – everyone has worked with companies that did not make them happy with their products and services, despite having been around for decades – but it is certainly a good sign.
The BBB also looks at the complaints that were filed, and considers the sheer volume of them. People are able to file these complaints to the BBB independently of the business itself, so the numbers are an accurate portrayal of what is happening. A company would otherwise underreport the complaints that were filed to its own department to make itself look better. Since the BBB gets the complaints and passes them along to the company, you know that the reporting is real. You are actually seeing how many people had issues with the company and decided to do something about it.
Next, the BBB looks at how many of those complaints were resolved. It is impossible for even the best company to make everyone happy all of the time, but the mark of a good company is one that then takes positive action to fix the problem. If they just ignore the complaints, they get a lower rating. If they resolve them and make the people happy, even if it came after the initial interaction, that helps the rating. An A+ can only be earned by a company that at least tries to go out and make things right.
If you want to learn more about these complaints, the BBB lists them for you by type. Some could be complaints about pricing and billing, for example, while others could be complaints about the actual products. Being able to see the categories can help you get a handle on the company’s strong points and its shortcomings, making it easier to work with them if you choose to do so.
As you can see, the BBB is a good source of information if you want to work with a new company that you just discovered and you cannot decide if doing so is actually a good idea. You can take the rankings and the ratings seriously. Every day, thousands of consumers turn to the BBB so that they can make good decisions, even if they have not actually had a chance to work with these companies at any point in the past.