Today’s technology and internet allow opportunity for businesses to build their reputation so that the world will know about their customers’ experiences. Almost all of consumers trust online reviews to help them make their buying decisions when it comes to local business (“Build Your Business Reputation, 2017).
The BBB, Better Business Bureau’s rankings are considered trustworthy, yet nationally recognized businesses are falling into fraudulent advertising that scams the weak, business people desperate for a good rating at any cost (Rhee & Ross, 2010). The BBB gives criteria for business owners to follow “Overview of BBB Rating”. This list of criteria is said to determine what makes a good business or not, and the BBB claims that consumers can complain about unfairness, but the BBB is really doing an injustice to consumers, because it is they are committing fraud, and handing out A’s to business owners that are willing to pay for their reputation.
Now in 2017, technology-savvy consumers are everywhere and the mass population is more educated. People are chatting, sharing feelings and posting opinions to social media.
Positive reviews are extremely influential in gaining consumer’s trust since, “90% of consumers read online reviews, and 88% of them trust online reviews when considering a business” (McCormick, 2016). According to research, what they read online about a product or service is just as important to consumers as the recommendations given to the them by their family (“Advertising and Marketing Blog”).
Yelp, a relatively new application, which is popular with mobile users, has “13 million reviews. Hundreds of thousands of local businesses are adding their own photos, descriptions, etc,” and these are primary sources of how consumers feel about a particular item, or business, in general (Barone, 2010). This information gives an accurate account of how users feel about a product or service.
Online, people are allowed to be free, unafraid of widespread censorship by others’ opinions, and write their true, often passionate thoughts. This helps American consumerism because, uncannily, and unlike the crude, and slapstick “Better” Business Bureau, which is considered a pedestal for businesses to hang their business’s credibility, social media applications that provide review services, have the power weed out desperate business owners, and save consumer’s time, money, and mental energy. Business reputation is earned over time, not bought.
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“Advertising and Marketing Blog” MDG, http://www.mdgadvertising.com/blog/how-much-do-consumers-buy-into-online-reviews/. Accessed 23 2017
Barone, Lisa. “The Mystery Of Yelp’s Overwhelming Success, Solved” Business Insider, 5 Oct. 2010, http://www.businessinsider.com/the-mystery-of-yelps-overwhelming-success-solved-2010-10
“Build Your Business Reputation: The Power of Online Reviews.” Proceed Innovation, 19 June, 2017, http://www.proceedinnovative.com/blog/build-business-reputation-online-reviews/
“How to Build a Better Review Marketing Strategy.” RevLocal, 22 Sept. 2017, https://www.revlocal.com/blog-reviews-and-reputation-management/how-to-build-a-better-review-marketing-strategy
“Overview of BBB Rating” BBB, https://www.bbb.org/council/overview-of-bbb-grade
McCormick, Kristen. “The Power of Online Customer Reviews.” 30 Aug. 2016, https://thrivehive.com/power-online-customer-reviews/
Rhee, Joseph and Ross, Brian. “Terror Group Gets ‘A’ Rating From Better Business Bureau”ABC News, 12 Nov. 2010, http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/business-bureau-best-ratings-many-buy/story?id=12123843