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BBB Retention Rate Tops in US, Canada

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The Better Business Bureau of the Mahoning Valley has served our community since 1974 by advancing trust in the marketplace.

With more than 1,100 BBB accredited businesses in Columbiana, Mahoning and Trumbull counties, we strive to build productive, trustworthy relationships and, in turn, local businesses recognize the strategic importance of trust. In 2017, the BBB of the Mahoning Valley had the highest retention rate in the United States and Canada, retaining 92% of our members.

As a top resource for information, BBB records show the most inquired about industries in 2017 were roofing, flooring, construction, HVAC and auto transportation.

Consumers viewed more than 211,000 BBB business profiles and read 31,901 customer reviews. Our local BBB directory recorded over 1.9 million impressions from consumers looking to find a trustworthy business.

To delve deeper into how trust factors in marketplace transactions, BBB and Nielsen created the first BBB Trust Sentiment Index. This index measures consumer sentiment on first-time engagement with a business, and assesses how businesses build trust.

On a scale of zero (most skeptical) to 100 (most trusting), the overall trust sentiment in the United States was rated 67.5. This means there is an inclination among consumers to start with a trusting view when they engage with a business for the first time.

Understanding the factors that build and lose trust is critical to every business’ success and longevity.

According to the responses, the factors that serve the most to build trust in a company are honesty, integrity and ethics (17%); competitive prices (15%); reputation (13%); quality (11%) and customer service (10%).

BBB and Nielsen also found that the top factors that cause consumers to lose trust in a business are bad word-of-mouth reputation (21%); higher than expected prices (21%); poor online ratings and reviews (14%); no or hard-to-use customer service (13%) and poor handling of complaints (9%).

Another achievement last year was the launch in September of a new systemwide app. The BBB app makes finding a trustworthy business or service easier based on the user’s location. This new tool will help smartphone users make smarter decisions and keep them safer from scams. The BBB app is available for free in both iTunes and Google Play stores.

Also last year, the Torch Awards for Marketplace Trust were again presented in June. This enormously successful event was made possible through the underwriting of the BBB TrustBuilders: PNC Bank, Chemical Bank, Farmers National Bank, Huntington Bank, Home Savings Bank and Cortland Bank.

We applaud our Valley’s TrustBuilders for their work to create a healthier, more vibrant community. We recognize the TrustBuilders’ efforts to encourage economic development and homeownership. We are grateful for their beneficial partnerships with community-based organizations.

Four businesses – Butech Bliss, Rulli Brothers, Wm. Price Heating Company Inc. and CKC Cleaning Specialist – were honored with Torch Awards for their efforts to embody integrity. The Torch Award for Nonprofit Excellence was awarded to the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corp. and the Torch Award for Civic Leadership was given to Suzanne Fleming.

With support from Sweeney Auto Group and Farmers Trust Co., BBB also provided six high school seniors with $1,000 college scholarships. One of the key requirements to apply for a scholarship is for the students to write an essay on the meaning of ethics and integrity.

This year’s scholarships will be awarded June 14 at the 2018 Torch Awards at the Lake Club.

Editor’s Note: This story was published in The Business Journal’s Growth Report 2018. The 144-page edition features growth reports from more than 200 local businesses and organizations. It was published this week. If you are not a subscriber, CLICK HERE to purchase a copy or call Eileen Lovell at 330 744 5023 Ext. 1008.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.