Consumers and businesses turned to the Better Business Bureau of the Maritime Provinces more than eight hundred and eighteen thousand times last year, an over 21 percent increase in activity from 2009.
“The BBB is the go-to source for information on how businesses conduct themselves with customers, suppliers and other companies,” said Don MacKinnon, president and CEO of the BBB of the Maritime Provinces. “The BBB’s Reliability Reports and the letter grade system introduced two years ago can help consumers make wise choices in tough times.”
BBB Reliability Reports and letter grades from A+ to F reflect customers’ experience with the businesses over a three-year period. Grades are based on 16 factors, including how long a company has been in business, how it handles disputes and whether complaints are addressed promptly, among other variables.
Requests for BBB reports on businesses jumped to 287,934 up 8 percent from 2009. Complaints declined slightly to 1367 from 1441. The bulk of traffic came through the local BBB website, which logged 468,212 page views for the year.
The BBB’s dispute resolution service was able to obtain responses for 80 percent of the 1367 complaints filed with the BBB by consumers, and 75 percent were resolved, including many by informal mediation.
The BBB of the Maritimes is known for investigating questionable practices by businesses. Last year, the BBB issued 24 warnings and press releases and was mentioned in the media 83 times.
The BBB held its 6th Annual Maritime Business Ethics Awards and honored L’Arche Cape Breton, Propeller Brewing Company, Survival Systems Limited, Northeastern Investigations and T4G for their outstanding ethical contributions to the Maritime marketplace.
Scam Jam- a free half-day educational and information event for consumers was held for the 5th year. Consumers were treated to information and presentation from numerous organizations about the latest scams and frauds targeting Maritime consumers.
Your BBB has also added a social media component to its services. Visit us on Twitter, Facebook & YouTube to keep up to date with the latest scams and tips for consumers and business in the Maritimes.
BBB services are free. Consumers may obtain Reliability Reports 24 hours a day by going online to www.bbb.org or by calling 902-422-6581 twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Counseling services are available from 9am to 3pm, Monday thru Friday.
Top Ten Industries for inquiries for 2010
1. Roofing Contractors
2. Paving Contractors
3. Auto Dealers-New Cars
4. Auto Dealers-Used Cars
5. Construction & Remodeling
6. Appliances-Small-Supplies & Parts
9. Plumbing Contractors
10. Landscape Contractors
Top Ten Industries for Complaints for 2010
1. Telephone Communications
2. Cellular Telephone Service & Supplies
3. Auto Dealer-New Cars
4. Internet Services
6. Auto Dealers-Used Cars
7. Paving Contractors
8. Telephone & Television Cable Contractors
9. Auto Repair & Service
10. Construction & Remodeling Services