Here are the five W’s of the BBB:

Who we are                                                                            

The BBB of  FORT BEND is one of nearly 200 Better Business Bureaus across the U.S. and Canada. We are a private, nonprofit, self-regulatory organization, dedicated to promoting fairness and honesty in the marketplace.

When and how we started

Back in 1906, the Coca-Cola Company was one of a number of companies hauled into court to answer charges of false advertising. A remark during the trial by Coca-Cola’s own attorney, “Why all advertising is exaggerated. Nobody really believes it.” led to the founding of what is known today as the Better Business Bureau.

Although the charges were eventually determined to be unfounded, truth in advertising became the crusade of Samuel C. Dobbs, Coca-Cola’s sales manager and later president. In 1912, the first Better Business Bureaus began operation as “Vigilance Committees” of Advertising Clubs, whose purpose was to correct abuses in advertising.

Now, more than 75 years later, truth in advertising remains a primary concern of the Better Business Bureau. But the nation’s present-day Bureaus offer many other services to advance the marketplace integrity upon which consumer trust is built.

What we do

The Better Business Bureau believes that a business community committed to ethical business practices, couples with an educated and informed public, are the keys to fairness and honesty in the marketplace. Although a number of the Bureau’s services and benefits are for members only, many are offered to the general public in the interest of education and information. Some of the Bureau’s direct services to businesses and consumers are these:Company reliability reports:  Providing information about individual companies, including customer experience with the company, the company’s response to Bureau requests for substantiation of its advertising claims, government actions, if any, against it, the Bureau’s complaint experience with the company, and whether the Bureau rates the company’s business record as satisfactory or unsatisfactory.

Charity reports:  Providing information about individual charities and other soliciting organizations, including whether the organization meets Bureau standards for charitable solicitations.

Complaint resolution:  Working to resolve individual business-customer disputes.

Arbitration:  Resolving automobile manufacturer/owner and other business/customer disputes that cannot be resolved through the Bureau’s complaint-resolution process.

Advertising Review:  Monitoring advertising and working to correct abuses of truth in advertising.

Scam Warnings:  Notifying members through the Bureau’s newsletter, and the public through media releases, about scams that come to the Bureau’s attention.

General subject information:  Offering reports and pamphlets on more than a hundred topics of interest to business members and consumers.Indirectly, the Bureau works closely with government agencies, prompting legal action when unlawful activity comes to the Bureau’s attention through file activity or by other means.

Why we’re important to you and your customer

The Bureau’s history of resolving marketplace problems and fostering sound business practices through self-regulation, rather than government regulation, gives the BBB name instant recognition. To the public, it’s a synonym for creditability. The BBB plaque and decal are an instant introduction of a member to the public, who, according to a Roper study, prefer to do business with a member over a non member. The result is business profit and customer satisfaction.

Where our operating funds come from

Better Business Bureaus are primarily supported by the dues of their business members. These business and professional people more than twelve thousand of them are committed to Bureau principles. Through their support, they gain access to member services proven to make a difference in their success.