Google Makes a Key Duplication Kiosk the Largest “Locksmith” in the US – KeyMe’s Fake Google Business Listings
Google is suppose to be smart. They are a high-tech company solving high-tech problems, but once again, they have been beaten by an unscrupulous company. This company, KeyMe, has figured out how to trick Google Read more
Locksmith Claims of Superiority – Be Cautious When Hiring
“The best…,” ” #1…,” “99.9% Satisfaction” and other claims of superiority by service companies can be found all over Arizona. It can be a bit overwhelming to consumers looking for a service provider. For example, in Phoenix there are at least three locksmith companies claiming to be “#1,” and ACME Locksmith is one of them. There are numerous more claiming to be “the best”, “the fastest”, etc…. So how do you find out when you are being given true information or when someone is misleading you? After all, if a company is deceiving in their advertising, how will they do when it comes to service and billing?
Luckily, there are many methods you can use to check on claims made by various service companies.
Ask them how they arrived at their claim
Verify the information they give you
Check sites they don’t mention to verify reputation such as Google+ or Angie’s
Always ask a company making a claim how they arrived at it.
When a superiority claim is valid, the company will be able to site the source of that claim. Perhaps it’s an award they’v won or the results of a reader’s poll. When you call a service company, they should have the evidence for their claim at their fingertips and be able to point you to it.
For example, the basis for ACME Locksmith’s claim of being the “#1 Rated Phoenix Locksmith” comes from the number of 5-star-rated internet reviews found on service company review sites. Today we have over 500 5-star-rated customer reviews, nearly 4X that of the nearest competitor. What’s more, we can tie over 90% of these reviews to the customer we serviced. If you’ve seen our advertising you probably already understand that this is the source of our claim. Companies that focus on “truth in advertising” always state the basis of their claim. So if you see a company stating “99.9% Satisfaction” you should also see something like, “As based on XYZ’s reader pole.” Doing so provides transparency for the consumer.
Interestingly enough, most companies that make false claims don’t think them through. Locally, there was one company claiming that they were “Voted the best Locksmith since 1979.” We called them, mentioned the claim, and asked what it was all about. The person on the phone said, “I don’t know.” Now if you owned a company that was voted the best of anything since 1979 (over thirty years in a row) wouldn’t you want all of your employees to know about it? We then called the owner and asked him what he based his claim on. He told us bluntly, “I made it up.” He has since stopped making this claim, but recently we found him claiming to be the “#1 Locksmith in Phoenix”. He’s also claiming to have 5.0 star rating which also isn’t true. We asked about this too and he said, “Because a few customers have told us.” While I’m certain this company has had customers tell them they are great, it is not evidence of being #1 since the claim cannot be substantiated and verified by any real data. This company is violating the Better Business Bureau’s (BBB) and the Associated Locksmiths of America advertising policies. Do you want to hire them?
Verify the claim by checking what they told you.
If they said they won an award, search for it on the internet. If they said they have a 5.0 rating, ask them where and go look.
Check various service based websites for reviews of the company you are considering hiring.
Companies that make false claims often have negative reviews that will provide insight as to how they do business. Unfortunately, companies making false claims have also been known to write false reviews of their business, so careful examination is required. The BBB, Angie’s List, and Google+ do a good job at filtering out bad reviews. We’re not to fund of Yelp. We have a high rating there but their filter throws away a lot of real reviews and keeps some that are obviously questionable.
If in your research you discover a company making a claim that they can’t offer evidence for, and they are members of the BBB or their given trade organization, report them to these organizations. The companies will give them the chance to support their claim or be asked to stop making it. Either way, the consumer wins.
Another local locksmith using the “#1 Rated” claim told us when we called that they were number one because, “We think we are.” By following the above guidelines, you will have quickly realized that this was a false claim. Coincidentally, this company was not a member of the Better Business Bureau or their associated trade organization.
From simply asking, to just a bit of Internet research, you can always be sure that when you hire someone making a superiority claim you are getting a company that has a valid reason to make such a claim. Doing so protects you and helps ensure that the service you receive meets your expectations.
The story isn’t new, but the problem isn’t going away. In the past week ACME Locksmith was contacted by two news teams investigating locksmith scams.
In both cases the customers paid nearly $400 for services that should have cost comfortably under $100 by any reputable company.
How Can I Find a Good Locksmith?
1) Hire a locksmith that is registered as an Arizona Contractor. Arizona does not require locksmiths to be licensed so a company that will go through the process of getting licensed will be top notch. Plus, if there’s any concern, a complaint process is available. Arizona Registrar of Contractors
2) Hire a locksmith that has a physical lock shop you can walk into. This news story points out that the customer’s receipt has no contact information on it. No phone, no company name, no address…..She was lucky she remembered who she called. After getting quotes from several companies, many customers don’t remember which company they eventually hired. A shop guarantees you’ll always know the name and location should you have any problems with their service.
3) In times of stress, you won’t likely recall the above tips. So take five minutes now and get a good locksmith’s phone number in your phone. Should you ever need a locksmith, you’ll have one right away for quick service and quality work. If you’d like us, our number is (480) 380-2263.
What am I talking about? Those Google Adword campaigns. Adwords are the ads displayed by Google at the top and right side of an internet search. Advertisers pay Google every time those ads are clicked.
In our market, Phoenix Locksmiths, the price for those ads has been steadily climbing. Today, to get an ad placed just on the first page, it will cost a locksmith $24 per click! The top spot, the coveted position, will cost much more than that. And this is per click on the ad. Not all clicks result in booking business, so the true cost is much higher.
How do they plan to make this money back? By charging the customer 2-3X what a legitimate company would charge. Once they show up numerous, undisclosed charges are added to the bill and often the bill will total over $200 for a simple unlock (the national average among legitimate locksmiths is $65).
Sadly, this dubious business practice is rampant in the locksmith industry. Always get an exact quote before hiring any locksmith. Once they arrive onsite, if that price changes send them away.