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Seal Of Approval

Does your business get the thumbs-up from the BBB?

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This story appears in the May 1998 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

As online commerce increases in use and popularity, the Councilof Better Bureaus (BBB) has introduced a program thatauthorizes Web sites to display a BBBOnLine seal. To obtainauthorization, companies must be a member of their local BBB,provide about ownership and , submit to anon-site inspection, have a satisfactory complaint-handling recordfrom the BBB, vow to respond quickly to consumer complaints, andagree to arbitration to resolve any issues regarding their onlinepractices.

Customers who visit one of the Web sites can click on the sealto verify that the company is a legitimate participant in theprogram. The seal is linked to a participation report, whichprovides additional information about the company. Ifparticipation cannot be confirmed, the customer receives a"not confirmed" message and BBBOnLine is sent anautomatic e-mail message so the site can be investigated.

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