BBB Accrediation Means Very Little To The Consumer

When I first started blogging and working with companies I would often tout their high BBB (acronym for Better Business Bureau) accreditation, yet deep down inside I knew this was of no value.   How do I know? an experience I had a while back with a "phone company" sending me bills for services I never requested or didn't have for that matter.  I filed a complaint with BBB hoping to not only get the situation resolved, but as the only way I knew of at the time, to report fraudulent activity. The head of this so-called phone company replied to BBB and said he spoke to me personally and that I did indeed request their services.  This was a blatant lie, unfortunately BBB was satisfied with this response and went ahead and closed the case.  I was at a loss.  I remember I ended up speaking with the attorney general who investigated the situation and was appalled by this company's scam activity and took over the case.   The situation was finally resolved.  No help from BBB.

BBB is only interested in companies that respond to complaints, not whether or not the company rectified or remedied the situation in an ethical manner.  

I'm often approached by questionable eCommerce merchants to endorse their products and company, and I've noticed that some of these companies not only  have a BBB accreditation, they have a high grade.  This is interesting considering that they have a long list of complaints.  Outside of BBB, these companies have all kinds of scam alerts, complaints, rip-off reports and so forth.  Yet good BBB accreditation.  This really shows that BBB is only interested in companies that respond to complaints, not whether or not the company rectified or remedied the situation in an ethical manner.

More and more ethical businesses are finding BBB accreditation to be of no value 

According to Wikipedia; one of the jobs of BBB is to alert  the public to scams.  Sadly they failed miserably in this regard.  Even when presented with evidence of a scam, they turned a deaf ear.   I could not say why BBB appears to be failing the consumer. I also don't believe this is limited to a certain BBB locale, it appears to be an overall demise of the entire organization.  I've noticed  many are convinced that BBB has fallen victim to corruption.   This wouldn't surprise me in the least and it would certainly explain quite a bit.

Has BBB has rendered itself useless to the consumer?

Does this mean that BBB is completely useless to the consumer?  For the most part I would say yes, but I would still encourage reporting bad business practices to BBB, this is because they list the number of complaints against a business,  this enables a savvy consumer to discern the credibility of a business.   The grade in itself means absolutely nothing.  So the next time you visit BBB, remember to take their accreditations with a grain of salt.


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Emily Stephens said...

I think BBB was valuable before social media gained popularity. Now, people don't threaten to go to BBB with their complaint - they take it directly to twitter or Facebook!

[email protected] said...

I agree with Emily. It seems like social media is a pretty effective solution these days!

I can't believe the company did that to you! Crazy.

Natasha Mairs - Serenity You said...

I agree with Emily too. Seems writing and sharing our experience on Social media would get people to take note more.

Heather said...

I have always wondered if people even look at this anymore. I agree that this use to be more valid.

Unknown said...

I have to admit that I don't really check out BBB accreditation anymore. If I'm researching a company, I usually search for reviews online.

Brooke Fowler said...

I have had terrible experiences with businesses that are rated A+ by BBB time and time again! What a shame.

Betsy Barnes said...

I agree with Emily above. Social media has really opened up a way for consumers to let their experiences be known. Companies too have upped their presence too on social media. It's very easy to go to a companies Facebook page and read the comments to get a feel for how the operate. I don't rely on the BBB that much because of this. :)

Unknown said...

I have to say that I don't really check out BBB accreditation anymore. I just go by social media and what people say or read people's blogs.


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