The Death of Customer Service: The Better Business Bureau

Computer Fraud
Computer Fraud

In the age of online shopping even from our phones many people do not look for companies to be part of the BBB like they use too. Twenty years ago, if you weren’t part of the BBB chances are you would not receive much business. People would call to find out if the company they were going to deal with was part of the BBB and if so what their standing was. It was like a government run Angie’s list with consequences.

Today with thousands of companies online the BBB is not as important as it once was. Though many companies still register with the BBB far less people look into companies through the BBB and much less care if a company is registered with the BBB.

Even companies with the BBB no longer have to adhere to strict policies once laid down by the BBB. Though the BBB still has their 8 important steps to being a member:

– Build Trust
– Advertise Honestly
– Tell the Truth
– Be Transparent
– Honor Promises
– Be Responsive
– Safeguard Privacy
– Embody Integrity

Now these things may sound good, but for many consumers who have a problem and try to seek help from the BBB may find that this list is easy to work around.

Building trust for the most part is already established once a person finds out a company is with the BBB so they figure if anything goes wrong they are safe or safe enough.

Advertise honestly. Here it can get tricky. Let’s talk in the realm of computers. Some companies offer rebates with their systems. Many people have come to realize that rebates are not so much to give the customer back his or her money, but to hope they forget to send their form in so they do not get the discount.

An example would be that a computer has a $500 off coupon which makes it a great deal. What you may or may not read is all the limitations and time restrictions on that rebate. For instance, one trick is to make you send the rebate in within a month of purchase. This means when you are charged. So if you are charged before building and it is a custom system, then it could be almost a month before you receive your system.

Now, in order to retrieve most rebates you have to have your invoice which only comes with the system, so if you receive your system at the 25th day it could be very hard to send it back within the timeframe.

Another trick it to make you request the rebate once your system ships they claim they do this to prevent being scammed, but the scam is on you. Now all this is totally legit, it’s not illegal or against BBB rules, but the idea here is to give you another task that hopefully you will forget.

Many times the rebate form will not arrive in the box and you have you call in and have it mailed to you. If you are ever told this demand they fax it or e-mail it to you, there is no reason they should not be able to.

Even if you send the rebate in on time you may encounter problems with them only applying the rebate to the card you used to purchase the system. In most cases this is normal and standard, except when you split pay across multiple cards. Here the problem comes in when the company delays the process making you wait. It is a known fact that many companies will delay payment when nearing the end of a financial quarter.

There’s much more to break down regarding the BBB and we will be doing so in the next installment. For now, if you have any experiences dealing with computer related or gaming related companies giving you a hard time with rebates please share them.

Click here to read part 2 of this article. Click here to read part 3 of this article.

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J.A. Laraque

J.A. Laraque is a freelance writer and novelist. His passion for writing mixed with a comedic style and intelligent commentary has brought him success in his various endeavors. Whatever the subject, J.A. has an opinion on it and will present it in writing with an insight and flair that is both refreshing and informative.