Oftentimes, if there’s something I want to buy, or a service or even a job I want to check out, but am not too sure of it, I like to read reviews on it, both from experts and customers or employees. It’s good to read reviews, especially for big-ticket items or companies you may want to do business with that you don’t know as well.
Reviews can help you decide if buying the product, doing business with that company, or working for that employer is still what you want to do and, if so, they alert you to the possible pitfalls as well as letting you know about benefits that you may not have considered or known about.
Reviews can be among the most important factors to consider for business decisions of almost every kind.
Now, I’m not saying you should look for reviews for everything you want to buy or every company you want to do business with, only for those you are less familiar with. However, know that the quality of models under the same brand can sometimes vary, so reviews can still be helpful, even though you may be familiar with the brand in general.
What are good sources of reviews? Online, good sources are Amazon, Ebay, Edmonds, MSN Autos, Cnet, Glassdoor, Consumer Reports, and many others, too, which can be found using Google.
Amazon and Ebay are good sources for almost any product. And there are ratings for sellers, too. I really like the reviews on Amazon, because you can see them according to the most helpful, as well as the most recent. And access is free. Same with MSN Autos.
MSN Autos and Edmonds are good for vehicle reviews by both experts and consumers. Glassdoor is good for reviews of companies that you may want to work for. Cnet is good for electronics, and Consumer Reports covers just about all products.
Some of these require a membership, which may include fees, for more detailed access to reviews, or more than just a free trial period.
Reading reviews, particularly from users, has helped me to make many good purchasing and business decisions.
However, there is one thing to watch out for. Even though sites containing reviews will try hard to filter out false positive reviews and false negative reviews, some reviews will be fake. And they’re not always easy to spot.
I once applied for a job doing reviews and was told to review a doctor’s office. So I asked about visiting the office and was told I didn’t have to visit, all I had to do was to write a glowing review as if I had been a patient there! I turned down the job flat! But I know that others with less scruples are out there, writing false reviews!
My guess is that the reviews you can put the most trust in are those that list both positive and negative points.
Of course, the reviews you can trust the most as being, … unbiased?, will be from face to face meetings with actual people who own the product or have conducted business with that company or person. Before I purchased my Subaru in 2005, I’d read lots of positive reviews, but the best reviews on how good a Subaru was, were from two people who’d driven them during an ice storm in my area.
I knew both of these people owned and drove Subaru cars all the time, so I knew their accounts were not faked in any way. And, no, neither worked for Subaru or had company stock, so no reason to give me a false account.
So, if you’re not sure of your pending purchase or business decision, don’t rush in! Look for reviews first, especially from those people you know or just happen to run into face to face. You’ll be glad you did.
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And thanks for reading! 🙂