For most buyers in today’s marketplace, dealing with a new business can involve a period of developing trust and determining whether the company is an honest dealer or an unscrupulous moneymaker. Fortunately, there are numerous ways to make sure that your money isn’t being wasted on unnecessary items or on costly but unneeded services. Here are just a few ways that businesses try to shortchange their customers, and what you will need to consider when dealing with them. By following this advice, you can be sure that your money is safe during a business transaction. And that is good business!
Focusing on the Profit, Not the Customer
So why do some businesses not mention a deeper problem that should be addressed? According to this customer service trainer, “As some companies grow, they purposely change their shift from customer focused to bottom line focused.” A client with constant problems is something of a cash cow and will have to return multiple times a year for services they can’t fix on their own. But the opposite may also be true. By fixing a visible problem, a business can be quickly rid of a client who may need to return to fix a bigger (but less noticeable) issue in the future; in the end, the business gets a quick payday, but they will not have to deal with a client’s problems down the road. One way or the other, the business is profiting off of the specialist knowledge they are able to withhold from their customers.
Recommending Unnecessary Services
We’ve all been in a shop where employees are paid based on a competitive commission scheme in which the employee does not make money if they don’t sell you something immediately. It may surprise many of us that we didn’t actually need what a suspiciously over-enthused salesperson has spent the last 45 minutes convincing us that we can’t do without. In fact, a good business will try to provide a service or product that will solve a problem you are having, but a bad business will try to charge you for something that doesn’t actually help you in any way. Be sure to look for salespeople or company representatives who aren’t afraid to tell you that you look terrible in that new pair of jeans, or that your car doesn’t really need a flashy new set of tires when the ones you have are doing just fine. If someone won’t tell you what you don’t need for fear of losing a sale, they probably view you as a meal ticket rather than as a long-term client.
Only Fixing Problems You Can See
According to some auto shop specialists, “When looking for an auto body repair shop, make sure to choose a company that not only addresses visible damage, but also inspects your vehicle for hidden damage that may have occurred.” Whether it’s in dealing with a car mechanic, a plumber, a dentist, or a real estate developer, it is important to note that one way that unscrupulous businesses will try to make extra money off of you is by fixing the problems you can see while neglecting the problems you can’t.
Be Loyal to Those Who are Loyal to You
Remember that however “nice” a professional is being to you, you don’t owe them a sale. It is okay to question the logic of what a salesperson is telling you, for example. By recommending costly and unnecessary services, many businesses feel that they can “pull one over” on their customers since the general public is not trained on what to look for in solving a problem with their car or plumbing system. In the age of the Internet, fortunately, it’s possible to look up the kinds of reviews that a business is receiving from past customers. According to this business site, “84% [of consumers] trusted online reviews as much as personal recommendations.” It is also smart to get a second opinion from a similar business which can help you determine whether a proposed service is truly needed or is just a costly add-on with no inherent value.
For these reasons, knowing how to determine a business’s credibility is a crucial step in making sure that we’re not overspending on pointless services or neglecting problems we don’t have the knowledge to discover on our own. By using a bit of shrewdness and detective work, the process of solving a problem doesn’t have to be painful to our bank balance; sure, we can’t know everything about every subject in the world, but we can know how to determine the trustworthiness of the people we do business with.
Unfortunately, these situations do happen but it doesn’t have to be the end of the world for you. Protect yourself and your money by doing your research before deciding a business to support with your patronage. Expensive repairs and purchase are like investments and you want to make sure that the investment will pay off instead of fall flat. Check out this article about what you need to know regarding investments to get a leg up on your research.