Back in the day, when shopping for any type of service, you opened up the Yellow Pages, selected a company, and hoped for the best. Today, we have pages of online information that can help us make an educated choice. There is a company’s own website, articles, background checks, and of course, online reviews, to help us select the best company or vendor for a specific job. Whether it be a plumber, painter, or a San Antonio DJ for your wedding, the methods on interpreting reviews are rather similar.
Determine the validity of the reviews by asking these questions:
- Are the reviews on a reputable independent site? Reviews on a company’s website will obviously be favored.
- Are there too many perfect reviews? A company that has a hundred 5-star perfect reviews has probably skewed that result. They may have fought very hard to remove any bad reviews that were posted.
- What is the tone and grammar from review to review? If you notice similar verbiage or language, then it may be possible that the same person wrote multiple reviews.
Make sure that you are evaluating a review from someone that actually used the service. If someone gave a company a low score because the person that answered the phone on an initial call was rude, and that customer never even used their service, that review should not carry the same weight as someone that actually did.
How old is the review? Sort the reviews chronologically to make sure that you are looking at current content. How someone did 2-3 years ago is not as valuable as how they did last weekend. Employees, procedures, and even ownership can change within a company.
Lastly, compare reviews of the same company over multiple platforms. If you read a review on WeddingWire, see how they fare on the Knot. If you’re looking on Yelp, be sure to also check their Google or Facebook reviews.
Happy shopping….oh, and be sure to write a review on the service that you receive so it can help the next person looking for the same service!