Your phone rings…
[Caller ID: Better Business Bureau]
Voice: Hi there. This is your Better Business Bureau®, and we’re calling because we’ve determined that your business may qualify for BBB Accreditation…
You start to picture it:
Your Business: Accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
If you’re considering BBB Accreditation, you might be imagining this moment; it’s one that resonates with current Accredited Business owners. On one hand, it’s a rush to receive such a call. On the other, there’s a flood of questions that come with this news.
One of those whoppers: Why does BBB Accreditation matter to my business?
The simple answer? Because trust matters. It matters to your consumers, your partners, your financial institutions, your community…but here’s who it matters to most:
BBB’s mission to be the leader in advancing marketplace trust starts with you and is sustained by the relationships you’ve built with your consumers (ever since you first started learning about how to start a business). The accreditation process strengthens those bonds. It involves wrangling and verifying all the trust you’ve earned so it can be broadcast to the millions seeking your products or services every year. In a nutshell, that’s why accreditation matters. But that’s the simple answer.
Here's a sample of just some of the services BBB provides to Accredited Businesses:
- Do you need help with exposure, marketing, or social media presence? BBB can help with that.
- Would you like to see your business rank higher in Google search results? BBB has a team for that.
- Need help with arbitration or mediation services? That’s a big one, and BBB steps up to the plate for you there, too.
And what, exactly, are the requirements for accreditation? Glad you asked: When you apply, you’ll be asked to show evidence of how your business fulfills BBB’s Accreditation Standards. Keep in mind: This process is conducted by humans, not search engines. It’s always about the facts. It’s always unbiased, and the endgame is always about advancing marketplace trust.
Keep reading to learn not only why BBB Accreditation matters, but also how your local Great West + Pacific BBB offers countless benefits that make one heckuva jumbo-sized jetpack to bolster your business.
Trust Matters to Your Customers
More than 192 million BBB site visits last year would seem to indicate that trust matters, and for Accredited Businesses, that all starts with the BBB Seal. In 2020, 82 percent of consumers reported “that trust sets the foundation for the purchase of goods and services.” The BBB Seal represents that trust, and consumers recognize, respect, and trust it because it’s earned.
When you’re accredited, it’s a representation of your ethical business practices synchronizing with BBB’s 8 Standards for Trust. Think of them as the scout badges you’ve earned on your path to becoming an Accredited Business:
- Build trust
- Advertise honestly
- Tell the truth
- Be transparent
- Honor promises
- Be responsive
- Safeguard your customers’ privacy
- Embody integrity
The BBB Seal is basically all those merit badges wrapped up into one. As an Accredited Business, you gain exclusive rights to display the seal on everything from your front door to your company car; from your website to your TikTok videos.
When you display The BBB torch, it’s your own personal bat-signal representing the code of ethics you abide by for your community, your customers, your co-workers, and even your competitors. And just like so many torchbearers of yore – shoutout to Muhammad Ali – when you carry the BBB flame, people pay attention.
Your Online Presence Matters
In 2021, the BBB Business Directory averaged 16,000 hits per month. On the BBB site, consumers can view each business’s BBB rating and filter their results by “Accredited Businesses.” Guess how often they opt to do so? According to a recent survey by IABBB: 87 percent of the time.
But even without the filter, a regular check of the directory displays the BBB Seal next to Accredited Businesses; they stand out from the competition with the help of the trusty torch symbol.
The Dynamic Seal
The BBB Seal is strong on its own, no doubt. But for Accredited Businesses, the Dynamic Seal wields an even mightier power online. It contains a backlink that immediately ties your business to BBB’s online presence.
When you display the seal on your website, it can have a direct impact on your web traffic and your Google search results because of your affiliation with BBB (recognized as an authority in marketplace trust in Google’s eyes). In other words, your business rises above your competitors when consumers are searching for your industry online.
File this under “How to Make Your Accreditation Matter Even More.” For Accredited Businesses, the online directory is a portal for potential customers to visit your BBB Profile, a landing page where you can share your story, website, contact information, images, videos, and more. Sure, you might already have a profile on LinkedIn, but are new consumers discovering your business there?
SEO and Analytics Impact
Just like the BBB Dynamic Seal, modern search engine optimization (SEO) practices also play a part in lifting your ranking for Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs). BBB focuses on keywords and analytics to ensure its review pages are optimized to attract web traffic.
Additionally, BBB’s Marketing Solutions Team is always ready to lend its SEO and Google Display Advertising expertise to help Accredited Businesses increase the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns and overall online presence.
This is a huge perk. A BBB production team is available to you to produce a video profile of your business – for free. In the video, you’ll have the chance to explain how your business aligns with BBB, what makes you unique in your industry, and anything else that highlights your general amazingness.
And the kicker? This would usually cost anywhere from $300-$500. Plus, BBB handles all the shooting and editing. At the end of the day, the video is yours – you own the rights. Unleash it anywhere you choose!
Having an Ally Matters
Legal Services/Arbitration/Mediation Services
Even for Accredited Businesses, legal disputes happen. This happens in many industries, especially for private contractors, mechanics, builders, painters and more; these professionals want to maintain a solid track record of trust as their work is often performed onsite in someone’s home.
Many of these ABs have felt the value of being accredited when using BBB’s Exclusive Services, a great example of how BBB has your back if your business finds itself in need of assistance to resolve a legal dispute outside of litigation, through mediation or arbitration.
In the community’s eyes, this allows a business to show itself as accountable and responsive. And, for Accredited Businesses, the cost of these services balances out to hundreds of dollars a year, as opposed to thousands – a number that can balloon quickly without the BBB umbrella.
BBB Investigations and Scam Tracker
The BBB Scam Tracker℠ tool is not only for consumers; it’s for businesses, too. If your ethical behavior is questioned because of someone else’s illegal activities, you can report it. The tracker creates a heat map to warn others, and filing the report sets the wheels in motion to investigate the fraud or scheme at hand.
Having a Seat at the Table Matters
Your business is part of a community. When you do business in your community, you’re growing relationships with everyone in it. And when you’re an example of business integrity, you’re a cornerstone of your community, one whose voice is respected.
Chambers of commerce and industry associations are also integral to the community with their knowledge of the latest business trends, technologies, and improvement opportunities. Accredited Business owners are always invited to collaborate when BBB is forging these partnerships.
These important relationships are made stronger through reciprocal agreements, which allow BBB to experience, understand, and collaborate with local businesses better, while sharing its own resources and expertise on conducting business practices ethically, and with integrity.
BBB is always looking for community opportunities and collaborators for events like networking get-togethers, career fairs, educational events, webinars, and trade shows. These activities are excellent opportunities for Accredited Businesses to connect to both current and potential customers.
BBB Advisory Committees
BBB Great West + Pacific works to assemble advisory committees made up of a select group of Accredited Business owners, esteemed entrepreneurs, board members, BBB Torch award winners and more to tap into specific community industries throughout the region.
Assembling these knowledge squads allows BBB to create new products and processes to address pain points, industry trends, and local happenings in its pursuit of the best practices and tools of the trade to tackle them all. BBB Great West + Pacific currently hosts quarterly advisory committees in Alaska, Boise, Hawaii, Portland, Western Washington (and coming soon to Denver and Montana).
Growing Your Business Matters
Modern business practices can introduce many advertising challenges, which is why BBB has a Marketing Solutions team. Don’t miss out on this boon of services:
- BBB.org Directory Advertising (One Accredited Business touted an 80:1 return with this service.)
- Billboard Advertising (Most billboards cost less than a penny per every 1,000 that see your ad.)
- Google Display Advertising (One Accredited Business saw their web traffic increase by 50 percent after an ad launch.)
- Logo Design (It’s true! BBB will even design a custom logo for your business.)
Although these services come at an additional cost, the rate is far more manageable for Accredited Businesses than if you were to go it alone. Also, the Marketing Solutions team is made up of seasoned pros with the skills to identify the unique services needed to give you the edge in your specific industry.
Hiring Top Talent
Are you hiring? It’s not always easy for jobseekers to glean if you act with integrity from a job listing, but the BBB Seal can tip the scales in your favor to attract prospects with similar values to your own.
Reviews are crucial to shaping your reputation with customers. BBB’s Review Services are provided to vet and verify these reviews before they’re posted. This process gives you the chance to respond or even challenge a review – a far cry from the countless sites allowing trigger-happy users to post a review without the element of accountability.
Good businesses are always learning, and BBB is committed to fostering those educational experiences. BBB webinars are designed to educate Accredited Businesses on a wide range of topics that apply to many industries. Special guests are often featured to provide their own unique insights into the subject at hand for these events. Stay tuned to BBB’s Online Events Page to see what’s on the horizon.
Accredited Businesses are always encouraged to reach out to the PR and Communications Team to schedule one of its curated presentations. These are opportunities for your team to gain new knowledge based on exploring topics from individual Accredited Businesses, BBB advisory committees, monitoring current news stories, and keeping pace with modern market trends.
Get a Quote Feature
Customers use BBB’s Get a Quote tool because they know they’re ready to engage with a trusted business. These are leads – ones that could convert to sales quickly. These requests are forwarded to your inbox with the language “SALES LEAD from your Better Business Bureau.” Of course, any sales lead matters, but as mentioned earlier, these customers are the result of you being accredited; they’re lining up for you.
Talk about weight. All Accredited Businesses have the chance to be recognized for going above and beyond with BBB’s annual Torch Awards. Every year, a small group of outstanding businesses and organizations in the Great West + Pacific region are recognized and celebrated for their commitment to ethical and trustworthy service in the community. It’s a blast, an honor, and the ultimate reminder as to why your business matters.
…Back to That Phone Call
Your Better Business Bureau representative checks in…
Voice: Are you still there?
You: I am and thank you for all this information! What’s the next step in becoming an Accredited Business?
Voice: Glad you asked. Let’s get started.
Is your business accredited by Better Business Bureau? Start your application today at: