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Trust a Trader, an opportunity or run away???

Discussion in 'Tradespeople' started by estwig, Jun 3, 2009.

  1. estwig

    estwig UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 11,001 Likes: 3,796
    I don't like trust a trader or any other kinda directory, YP, Thompson any of 'em, not for me, but......

    I have had 3 enquiries in the last couple of weeks, for garage and loft conversions from people who contacted trust a trader, looking for the aforementioned conversion work to be done. Only to be sent plumbers, decorators and a couple of muppets who couldn't dress them selves in the mornings. They were a bit annoyed about it.

    So is trust a trader just useless at sending the right people out??

    Has trust a trader got an ulterior motive in giving leads out to the wrong people, along the lines of, 'we have given you x number of leads, Mr Tradesman, not our fault you can't convert them'??

    Or is there an opportunity to fill gaps in the trades on their books???

    My money is on one of the first two questions, (I'm a cynical old b*st*rd) interested to hear if anyone else has any views or experience of trust a trader or similar directories??
  2. sas carpentry

    sas carpentry UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 69 Likes: 7
    I am a member of a few to mention but trust a trader is nothing but a money scam for the owners they charge tradesmen around £300 for a year member ship.
    There are plenty of free ones out there I get loads of leads from findagoodone.com and doesn't cost me a penny.
  3. maxine

    maxine UKBF Regular Moderator

    Posts: 6,538 Likes: 2,001
    I guess any ulterior motive is along the lines of a) revenue from the tradespeople and b) having loads of trade suppliers on their sites to respond to enquiries.

    I regularly get "special offers" of free leads coming through and can only assume they haven't got enough of a trade supplier quota already or wouldn't have to resort to giving them away for free.

    The other thing I am vary wary of is giving consumers a platform via the directory site to whinge and complain about things that are outside of the contract they enter into as perception and reputation is key and a lot of damage can be done with a few remarks out of context (remember that plumbing thread on streetslocal?)
  4. streetslocal

    streetslocal UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 3,055 Likes: 362
    Hi Maxine,
    The plumbing thread was a customer which had left a negative review.
    Reviews are a great way for honest business owners to actually generate new custom.
    Out of the whole streets local life time this one trader was the only one we have ever had an issue with.
    Reviews can benefit your business too many people do not realise this.
  5. maxine

    maxine UKBF Regular Moderator

    Posts: 6,538 Likes: 2,001

    Can't go back over all this again as I don't have the energy but key aspects from my point of view for any directory

    * Reviews can be great, yes, and there could be hundreds of them but the value wiped out in an instant by one allegedly "poor" review.
    * The "poor reviews" runs the risk of being an emotional view rather than a reflection of what has been agreed or breached contractually and having worked with consumers for years it's a path I personally would avoid. It can also potentially do harm if ever there was a case for mediation (proper/legal/construction/specialist type mediation before court action) where comments might be made by both parties inappropriately.
    * I do realise the power of reviews, testimonials, photos of work but just not on directories where there is the risk of an unfair slating for the trade company.

    It's just my personal view and one with a credit management and sales slant I'm afraid :)
  6. streetslocal

    streetslocal UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 3,055 Likes: 362
    So from your view point would you like the option to be able to choose if your listing shows reviews?
    For example the ability to turn them off?

    Our review system is currently under review as we speak so this is something we could look at offering.

    We are in the process of offering a sort results by ratings option for the user so this would encourage people to gain reviews but if they wanted to turn off reviews then obviously they would lose that benefit.
  7. maxine

    maxine UKBF Regular Moderator

    Posts: 6,538 Likes: 2,001
    Well at the danger of hijacking Eswig's thread :) ... I would not want to use the option of turning them off either if there are two options on the directory as otherwise it looks like you have something to hide.

    I think a rating system such as neutral or good could be an option and the neutral is where a statement such as "issue pending" is given rather than a whole load of allegations. If the complaint is upheld after a proper process then maybe a red light with an objective outline of the complaint. What makes me nervous is that people cast judgement very quickly, look at the debates on this forum alone for example around trades issues. Perhaps if the site was operated under Trustmark or other governing body as part of consumer/OFT/trading standards it might be different. Maybe you can get some ideas from here http://www.justice.gov.uk/civil/procrules_fin/contents/protocols/prot_ced.htm

    It might also be a bit more balanced to have a customer review system too :) (only kidding but the idea is fun!)
  8. Yourlocaltrades

    Yourlocaltrades UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 436 Likes: 32
    I need to keep my comments to myself then!

    All i will say is this, its trial and error!
  9. david williams

    david williams Guest

    Posts: 1 Likes: 0
    all of these so called job sites for tradesmen are only intrested in makeing money out of people looking for work .i have in the past subscribed to several of them all a waste of time and money.they all say they only have a few tradesmen in each area,but on phoning several leads supplied by them people complain of too many tradesmen phoning them.also most of the people who use them are only looking for a cheap job as they know there will be many tradesmen chasing to few jobs. so my advice would be to ask for a list of satisfied tradesmen that you can contact to see how well they preformed for them
  10. sas carpentry

    sas carpentry UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 69 Likes: 7
    I've been a member for two years now very good and give you a 6 months free,I've gained a lot of business from them,much better than trust a trader!

    The good thing about www.findagoodone.com is the customer gets to choose who they want to go with,they don't charge you for requesting customer details,and the customer calls you!
    Then the customer leaves feedback on work done!

    Great site the only reason I'm banging on about them is because I've earned a few pound out of them.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2009
  11. Electric Zone

    Electric Zone UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 1 Likes: 0
    I have been a member of trust a trader for over a year. And I am amazed at the two posted comments.

    Trust a trader financially for the trader is around £50 pm, paid on a yearly subsciption for my trade. For this I have received a large proportion of my work [30%]. When you consider that yell is £200-£300 for basic lineage with no results. local papers are £100pm, for what I have found is best to be described as random customers who do not have a pc.

    All the other web sites are if you consider the quarterly and job charges are far more excessive. My figures show that 10% of my work last year was through another web site, the total cost was around £600 to gain this work.

    For the customer, it is the only site that actually checks that the qualifications and affiliated organisations are genuine, all the others complete NO checks. Ratings are also check on registration at random from previous custom.

    With regard to the issues, the customer approaches the trader and covers what is required, NO ONE IS SENT OUT.

    As we all know, the most important advertising is word of mouth.

    The rating system although a best friend can be also be a worst enemy, which is why on a personal level I want to increase the word of mouth custom to above 60%.

  12. Lee Jones Jnr

    Lee Jones Jnr UKBF Contributor Free Member

    Posts: 3,751 Likes: 737
    I have never heard of TAT before, but mybuilder.com is free and a good way to find tradesman if you need work doing or work if you are a tradesman, as people put jobs to tender and you can quote online.
  13. estwig

    estwig UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 11,001 Likes: 3,796
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2009
    • Thanks Thanks x 4
  14. DotNetWebs

    DotNetWebs UKBF Regular Full Member

    Posts: 5,006 Likes: 994
    I know this is an old thread that has been bumped but this is the conclusion we came to when thinking about adding a reviews sections to Visit Horsham.

    In the end we decided to create and integrate a Facebook application that uses the Facebook 'Like' system.

    It's a simple 'positive or neutral only system' and is less open to 'fake' reviews (as people are using their 'real' identity).

    It's still in the early stages but, as you can see from our home page, has positive benefits from those collecting a lot of 'Likes' (i.e the top 3 are automatically featured on the home page).


  15. maxine

    maxine UKBF Regular Moderator

    Posts: 6,538 Likes: 2,001
    Just had a look - what a good idea and great that you have the top 3 featured automatically :)

    Hopefully things like that and the twitter recommend system etc will cause these trade directories to die a natural death eventually :)

    (I shall have to find a way to use the facebook "likes" now)
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2009
  16. smecouriers

    smecouriers UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 22 Likes: 3
    Hello all ive just joined this forum to commemnt on this thread a few of you on here have'nt a clue what your talking about.

    First off'' do you even know how a trade exchange or other kinds of exchanges work, i dont think you do and if someone sings the praises of any exchange then of course you assume they must either work for or own the exchange.

    I'm a courier owner driver and have been for years and i couldnt survive without being a member of some exchanges point being when i drive from darlington to london to drop your urgent delivery off it means i've got to come back empty but if im a member of an exchange i post a return journey & wgat time i'l be clear in london or wherever, on the exchange from my mobile fone, once ive done that the site will then send email aerts to all members in london notifying them that i;m in a small van what time i'll be there and where i;m heading back to & if any jobs are posted on the site enroute back to darlington then i'l receive a text alert then i fone them up and get a load back. theres a lot pf sub-contracting work goes on between the members of these exchanges.

    I'm not member of a building exchange and dont know how they work but to brand all these exchanges as rubbish makes my blood boil some exchanges are crap you should never join any exchange and expect it to be the sole source of your work, you should never join any exchange that doesnt allow its members to network and sub contract between member to member, or put restrictions on how many members are notified for each job posted, all exchanges should have sms text and email notifications. if you join a site that looks like its held together by paper clips then it probably is and you can't winge about it, and then come on here and say things like you cant wait till they've all gone bust.

    Some of these sites like trades 4 work dot com & courier eexchange dot com and mtvan dot com cost upwards of 20 or 30 grand each to have built the technology behind them is mind boggling. if i get just one job a year from any of these exchanges it covers my subscription for a year and then theres profit on top.

    It makes me think when i read these threads on here and see the same ones constantly pulling every exchange mentioned to bits that they have ulterior motives.
    I don't know maybe you own an exchange ???

    Here is a tip thats always talked about on all the forums on all courier sites and its always a newbie that its pointed at.

    Don't just join and expect the work to come flooding into you. if your contact details are even slightly incorrect then you will not get job alerts
    if you dont post your availability onto the site then how will anyone know your available for work in a certain area. How will the site know to send you alerts for jobs in the area you are currently working or delivering to if you have'nt posted it on the site. but most important of all chat on the forum by doing this other members are getting to know you.

    Its called networking and thats what a good site gives you the opportunity to do.

    Yeah there are typos on here ya think i care :D

    Anyway rant over
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  17. *Lexxy*

    *Lexxy* UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 1,189 Likes: 251
    genuine question, why would actual members of these exchanges/directories be searching for posts/links etc on the net so they can give us their feedback?

    i'm a member of various groups but i've never gone trawling the net actively looking to put my feedback about them out there. if it comes up in conversation, yes i'll give my thoughts, but to go looking for somewhere to post, just seems a bit odd to me...
  18. smecouriers

    smecouriers UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 22 Likes: 3
    your another paranoid nut do you really think i come on here to search for threads ??? i come on here just to have a look around to see if theres anything happenning in the courier world but there never is. but the reason i came on and joined was to find out about radio advertising. and to answer this thread, anyway why have you came on why have you answered this thread

    2 can play this game well come on why have you specijicaly posted a question as to why i posted a reply

    This is supposed to be a business forum for members to find info
    not to rip all and sundry to pieces
    i for example hate telemarketers but it doesnt mean i would come on here and start ripping into them
  19. *Lexxy*

    *Lexxy* UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 1,189 Likes: 251
    like i've already said, i find it odd that 2 new posters very 1st posts are to praise something like this. you've said you've been visiting for ages & only just posted, fair enough.

    i have no idea why you feel the need to use phrases like "your another paranoid nut, 2 can play this game, rip all & sundry to pieces".

    perhaps forums might not be the place for you if you react like this to an honest question?
  20. smecouriers

    smecouriers UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 22 Likes: 3
    because its true ive been coming on here for about 2 year and having a look around i couldnt be bothered to register until today but i needed some info on advertising while i was here i thought i'l post on this thread.

    The reason i use i used thoe terms is because they ring true
    people have ulterior motives on here;
    i'l answer another 1 of your questions as well
    the reason i'll defend certain exchages is because the more work posted on them means more work and less empty load space for us.

    instead tittle tattling on a forum maybe your time would be better spent doing some networking of your own.

    right im off to do some work