We here at BoaterRated.com have achieved a milestone. As you know, the site is still relatively new and undiscovered, but we had a boater and an equipment supplier find us last week!
We saw a review go up for a business that is not yet a BoaterRated Partner Business (for some unknown reason!), and it was not, shall we say, complimentary. The reviewer had placed an order, received the product, and found it unsuitable for the purpose. He tried to resolve the situation, but was disregarded by the service department at the supplier. So, as we hoped, he documented the series of events on BoaterRated, advising his fellow travelers on the Virtual Dockside to avoid this business. This is as much a purpose of BoaterRated.com as singing the praises of a service or product supplier is, making it a good source for boaters to both find good providers and avoid poor ones.
Within hours, I get an email from the provider seeking to resolve this. Well, enrolling in the Partner Business Program is a start, thought I, but I informed her that I would ask if the reviewer is open to their contact to try and resolve the issues. As always, until I’m told otherwise by the author the review stands. That the business contacted us quickly is a lesson in effective online reputation management, which we promote for businesses enrolled (for free!) in the Partner Business Program. This provider is already sensitive to customer service.
I contacted the reviewer by email and asked if he would allow me to give the provider his contact information. He agreed, I did, and he emailed me back in a day asking me to pull the review as the provider has responded that they would work to fix things. I entered a “placeholder” review that could easily be reversed if the customer was NOT happy, and told the boater that I’d pull it when he specifically told me to and all would probably appreciate it if he wrote a followup review extolling the customer service focus of this specific provider.
The boater submitted a favorable review the following day. His situation was made right, the provider has said they are taking steps to ensure this kind of thing never comes up again, we pulled the poor review for good and posted the latest one, and all seem to be quite happy.
This is most certainly a milestone for us. Our goal is to provide a platform for disputes such as this to be brought to light and resolved amicably. Boaters spend a lot of time and money enjoying their passion, service providers spend a lot of time and money to make that passion easier to enjoy. Anything that can make that equation easier seems that it would be useful, and we have one under our belt.
With many more to come. Come join us on the Virtual Dockside and enjoy your boating passion more!