September 22, 2017
I was recently reading an article on Houzz, where they stated that 81% of homeowners use reviews of General Contractors to choose the team to do the work on their homes. Well, this applies to almost any industry!
This also started me thinking about reviews, and how to determine the bias or lack thereof…any business is going to post testimonials on their website, and they will have control over the content. They will cherry pick the good ones, weed out the negative ones, and take quotations out of context. It is hard to trust this type of review process, and customers take them with a grain of salt, looking for other confirmations, such as word of mouth. It is very easy to type the words “best in …”, but that does not mean it is true, or true any longer…
Some customers will go with a known brand or popular ad, but this can simply mean the company has a marketing budget, often based upon a successful business history, but this alone does not give the comfort of a gathered and growing body of legitimate customer experience reviews.
There are many models cropping up in the online world where neutral third parties offer a forum for ratings and commentary – TripAdvisor comes to mind. The construction industry has not had this venue, until now.
Many qualified contractors compete for your maintenance and renovation jobs, and with the popularity of such programs as Holmes on Homes, and Deck Disasters, the perils of making the wrong choice are very clearly known! The general contractor industry has, however, been painted with the brush of a few bad apples. There is excellent work being done, and should be recognized. Homeowners would benefit from to having the confidence that the reviews collected from contractors’ past customers are direct and unbiased. Our process gives the homeowner such a voice in the industry, a very powerful voice.
I feel strongly that every contractor bidding on a job should know the homeowner will be posting a review of their completed work for all future clients to read. This homeowner review is welcomed by the good contractors, as they know it will speak more clearly than any statement they could make themselves on their own websites. They know they are providing quality work, and encourage this public forum. Those who do not warrant a good review know to stay away or up their game!
When I began collecting reviews for our members, I was moved by the many conversations I had with their past clients. It has been illuminating and fun. The homeowners have enthusiastically embraced the opportunity to provide a review through an unbiased platform. Any constructive information has been presented clearly, but mostly it has been the pride in the renovated homes, and the desire to support their contractors in securing more work, that has been a pleasure to share. The many comments I have received have made it very clear to me that consumers wish to participate in a review process, and welcome this opportunity in the construction industry.