Angie Hicks' first job out of college compiling lists of plumbers, roofers, and electricians in the Columbus, Ohio-area after college. She went on to become the founder and namesake of Angie's List.
Angie's List is not going anywhere any time soon and as long as it's around, the debate over its usefulness in the remodeling industry will continue. Based on reader comments, it appears to be a "yes" or "no" type of debate—you are either for it or against it. In the three months since REMODELING wrote about Angie's List and the love-hate relationship contractors have with it, controversy, strong opinion, and passion continue to surface in discussion about the site.
A reader recently felt compelled to write a letter to the editor sharing his experience with the website and how the people at Angie's List could, in his opinion, care less about contractors (check out the discussion in the comments below in the article too). Another contractor recently had a court date set for his lawsuit against a former customer over negative reviews posted on both Angie's List and Yelp that he claimed hurt his business.
There are a couple of issues contractors and remodelers have with Angie's List. The biggest issue that contractors seem to have with the website is that it charges them a fair amount of money to advertise with them, but yet does little to drive leads.
Somewhat tied to this another issue that remodelers argue about: how difficult it can be to get rid of negative reviews. One or two negative reviews can wreak havoc on one's ability to generate leads, and appear in searches on the sites—regardless of the number of positive reviews you've garnered. Some have argued that the amount of money spent on advertising influences how easily those bad reviews go away.
Then there's the discussion about how to best go about handling the reviews.
With all this talk of advertising connected to visibility of reviews, one has to wonder what Angie's List is doing to police itself and its content? The answer is usually to hire an auditor. Angie's List hires one to analyze its reviews annually. They use the auditor to ensure that reviews are "a fair, impartial, and trustworthy resource."
What are your thoughts on the news that Angie's List uses an auditor annually to review it's reviews? Does that change your views of the website? Let us know by commenting or join the discussion in the comments field below the aforementioned letter to the editor.