More than 2 million consumers and businesses turned to Better Business Bureau serving Eastern North Carolina in 2013.
Locally, BBB’s website has Business Reviews on more than 67,000 companies. Business Reviews typically contain a business’s general background and contact information, the name of the owner or principal,the date established, a summary of the company complaint history within the current three-year reporting period, and if the company is accredited with BBB.Requests for BBB Business Reviews in our service area topped 2.3 million, which is a 21% increase from 2012. Inquiries about used car dealerships topped the list of requests with more than 58,000, followed by inquiries about home builders.
BBB can assist consumers with complaints that involve unsatisfactory installation or service, unfulfilled written contracts, misrepresentation leading to purchase, misleading advertising, ineffective guarantees or warranties, defective merchandise, or non-delivery of goods. BBB handles complaints against both accredited and non-accredited businesses. Complaints filed against companies in our 33 counties increased by nearly 2% to 8,783 in 2013. Complaints against wholesale computer manufactures again led the list of industries with the most complaints for the year.
BBB serving Eastern NC is engaged in a continuous and extensive information program with regular press releases,scam alerts and appearances on broadcast news programs. BBB spoke to business organizations, civic and senior groups, and military installations in 2013,reaching more than 2,000 consumers. In an effort to reach out to the Hispanic community, BBB hired Marisol Silva as its Hispanic Community Liaison in 2013.Silva worked directly with the Spanish-speaking media and participated in a variety of community events in an effort to keep Latino consumers informed about common scams and BBB services that are available to that community.
Businesses earning Accreditation grew to 3,306, which is a 4.6% increase over 2012. Accreditation by BBB is offered by invitation only to companies that, at minimum, meet BBB’s accreditation standards, have demonstrated sound business practices and have been in business for at least one year. BBB Accredited Businesses must adhere to BBB’s “Standards for Trust,” a comprehensive set of policies, procedures and best practices representing trustworthiness in the marketplace.
In 2013, BBB serving Eastern NC started the Charity Seal program and currently has four participating charities. The Charity Seal provides a clear and easy means for potential donors to find out if a charity meets the comprehensive BBB Standards for Charity Accountability established by the BBB Wise Giving Alliance.
Lastly, BBB challenged more than 200 local ads that did not comply with the BBB Code of Advertising.
For additional information, visit bbb.org.