Search engines help consumers each day but they help merchants and marketers just as much. By looking at the specific way that consumers word their search engine queries marketers and companies serving consumers can learn what their potential customers are most concerned with. Home warranty companies would be wise to take notice of search engine queries such as this one:
“Are there any reliable home warranty companies?”
When a consumer words a search query that person oftentimes carefully chooses the words in order to obtain the best possible website results. If a consumer chooses to search for “reliable home warranty company” one might assume that the consumer wants to pinpoint a home warranty company with a great reputation among its customers. But when a consumer uses wording such as that show above then it’s probably safe to guess that the consumer has already developed a negative opinion (or at least suspicion) of the home warranty industry in general. The question for consumers and home warranty companies is how best to qualify the many results that can be found on Google and other search engines when searching for responses to this particular question.
Home warranties are great! Just ask me!
Many of the results on search engines would be glowingly positive if you searched for “are there any reliable home warranty companies”. You might notice home warranty companies and real estate professionals singing their respective praises of the home warranties they provide or recommend. From a skeptic’s perspective though these are not necessarily the easiest kinds of responses to accept. For home warranty companies the need to provide more than just the standard advertising language should be clear. Consumers searching with such pointed concerns will not likely be won over by a sales pitch.
Home warranties are all terrible! Just ask me!
Just as many of the results we could expect from our hypothetical search query would likely be very, very negative in their tone. Consumers, technicians, real estate professionals, consumer advocacy celebrities, and others can all be found touting their expert opinions about the lack of value in home warranty and home service contracts. But the more generalized the complaints are the less substantial they are in terms of helping a consumer seeking specific reasons for or against buying a home warranty. For home warranty companies these highly negative opinions might warrant some attempts at customer service or reputation management but at times even these efforts are not worthwhile because the party posting the negative information either can’t or won’t see a different point of view. In some cases the information may not even be the result of a real consumer experience and no amount of trying would change the writer’s position.
Home warranties and home service contracts are only as good as the companies that back them. Just ask everybody who knows anything about them.
This is probably the answer that search engine users would need to dig to find. Since this answer is less sensational and requires a lot of work on the part of the consumer it’s not one that you should expect to see too often. But it’s probably the best short answer to the question. The longer answer involves specifics such as the reputation of the company from the perspective of both customers and repair technicians. The people who purchase the home warranties or home service contracts and the people who provide the repair services are on opposite sides but in a way they are both customers of the home warranty companies. If you ask a reputable, local repair contractor about the home warranty companies he has worked with you may be surprised to find that he has a list of ones he won’t work with. Just as customers often report problems with their home warranty company so do repair technicians who the home warranty companies contract work out to. But the single best resource for getting honest and frank assessments of home warranty companies is a customer you know and trust. Friends, neighbors, and family members often have direct experience filing requests for repairs with a home warranty or home service contract company. Their stories may prove to be worth more than all the search engine results you can ever read.
He said, she said…
Sometimes the information you find for a search such as “are there any reliable home warranty companies” is so polarized to the positive or negative extremes that you are left to wonder which to believe. Though it’s not always the case that a consumer is to blame for not fully understanding the home warranty or home service contract it does happen. Fine print and legal language can be daunting to read and so off putting to some readers that they simply agree while ignoring what they’ve agreed to. If you are shopping for a home warranty it’s very important to do your homework about the company but it’s just as important to be 100% sure you understand and approve of the contract, even if it means running it by someone more experienced in reading this kind of document.
The good, the bad, and the ugly
If you are shopping for a home warranty or home service contract company remember that they’re not all created equal. Among the legitimate companies offering home warranty and home service contracts you will find ones that either don’t live up to their customers expectations or worse, ones that are outright frauds. Watch out for these companies and if you sense that you might be close to dealing with a company you don’t completely trust don’t ignore that intuition.