It’s the information age, today we have huge amounts of knowledge literally at our fingertips. Billions of websites touting everything from dating and social websites to skyscraper construction. Finding information or physical goods and services is more accessible now than any other time in history. Navigating all this information can be a trying process. Where do you start? What websites can you trust to provide accurate information? How do differentiate between legitimate websites and “scam” websites? No matter what service or product you’re looking for, looking in the right places and getting accurate information is critical.
Looking for any type of services, whether it’s a plumber or roof contractor, fortunately is relatively easy, if you know where to look. Many companies have popped up in recent years to fill the consumers need to check out contractors in any field and be sure that the people they are hiring will get the job done right. In the earlier years of the World Wide Web (what the Internet is technically called) many contractors figured out you could make a webpage and put just about anything on it and people would take your word for it, and they did. Back then, people weren’t as “tech savvy” as they are now (even today’s techno-impaired folk have been exposed to so much, especially with the popularization of smart phones and tablets, they would seem like geniuses to people back in the ’90’s). So, many did not know that there was no fact-checking or consumer review entities verifying a company’s claims and many people were ripped off or stuck with substandard work
As the Internet matured, these companies have spent years building up trust with the public, and have greatly improved the odds of hiring the right person for the job. Rather than sifting through hundreds of websites, calling hundreds of reference numbers and researching each company one by one, all the information you need is condensed into just a few websites. Customer-centric companies, like Atlanta Roofing, love these websites, if anything, because they allow a customer to see how a company actually is, how it treats it’s customers and what quality of work to expect. Customers love them because it takes a lot of hard work out of their hands, and knowing they can trust the information they find, they can rest assured that they have the information they need to make an informed decision.
So, where to start? If you have a company in mind, start with Google. Just pop their name into the search box and click search. What do you see? Do you see their website? What about third party sites? You should be seeing links to consumer sites that discuss the company, maybe Ad’s by the company and their competitors, links to their website, and plenty of consumer websites rating or presenting customer reviews of the company. If you cannot find out all you need to know from “Googling” the company name in the first page, that should raise a red flag. Why doesn’t this company have a website? Why do they not appear in the major review sites? Established, reputable companies have nothing to hide, not having an Internet presence is something that is suspect these days.
When looking through website results, you should notice companies with information on the company, with reviews, yet point to a third party site. These are usually the consumer review sites that I was referring to earlier. Companies like Yelp, Angie’s List, the Better Business Bureau, Kudzu, CitySearch, and Home Reports are companies that should be popping up in the results, if they are not take the time to visit these directly and search for the company you are researching. These are all trusted names in the business and simply going through these should give you a wealth of information to determine if the company you are researching is right for you.
We always say, “Do Your Homework!”, because it’s critical, there is too much information readily available to allow yourself to be scammed or hire a substandard contractor. Do your research, hire a professional with a great reputation and track record, there is no sense in settling for anything less.