Home » News » Agencies & People » Trustpilot reveals how its ‘star rating’ system really works for agents previous nextRegulation & LawTrustpilot reveals how its ‘star rating’ system really works for agentsReviews website tells The Advertising Standards Authority that newer reviews are given more weight than older ones.Nigel Lewis8th January 20204 Comments2,485 Views It has been revealed that estate agents who use Trustpilot to promote their businesses can ‘game’ the platform because the reviews company gives newer customer reviews greater weight when awarding an overall ‘out of five’ score.The policy has been revealed by the Advertising Standards Authority during its investigation into the new eMoov, which has been using links to its Trustpilot page to promote the business.Out of the 2,179 reviews on its Trustpilot page, only 80 have come from clients dealt with by the new incarnation of the online agent, while the rest were generated while it was operated by eMoov Ltd, which is currently in administration.The ASA has told a complainant about the use of old reviews that it has held ‘detailed talks’ with both Trustpilot and the agency.Aggregate scoreDuring these talks over the past six weeks, the ASA was told that the overall aggregate score award by Trustpilot was influenced unduly by the most recent reviews, rather than older ones.”We are therefore satisfied that there is not a source of concern here at the moment and so we are not investigating this further,” the ASA has said.But the complainant, Andrew Stanton, has claimed that the promotion of older Trustpilot reviews on eMoov’s recently-redesigned website could be misleading, and says he is not satisfied by the ASA’s reply.Stanton has told The Negotiator that he considers the ASA to have backtracked on its original ruling, and that he will be taking the matter further with the organisation.Read more about Trustpilot.online reviews Trustpilot Emoov January 8, 2020Nigel Lewis4 commentsDave Robertson, Trustpilot Trustpilot 14th January 2020 at 11:05 amTrustpilot was not approached for comment on the above article, so please find a comment from us here:The headline states there is some kind of revelation about how the TrustScore is calculated. It also implicitly suggests that we are trying to hide something about how Trustpilot works, which is absolutely not the case. Please find publically available information about how the TrustScore works here: https://support.trustpilot.com/hc/en-us/articles/201748946-TrustScore-explained-How-is-the-TrustScore-calculated- This information includes a specific section on “Timespan” of reviews posted.We have been fully cooperative with the ASA investigation into this [email protected] Bruce – thanks for your comment. To clarify, any business can use Trustpilot to invite, respond and report reviews for free and the majority do. Some businesses pay for further automation of their invites and also use our Review Insights tool, which provides instant insight into what people are saying about their service and to help them improve it.Log in to ReplyNigel Lewis, Online Editor, The Negotiator Online Editor, The Negotiator 14th January 2020 at 4:29 pmHi there Dave and thanks for comments. I have tried to contact Trustpilot in the past but have not received a response but more than happy to chase comment going forward if someone sends me an email at [email protected] The article was written to update our readers about the ongoing case and how it has shed some light on how review sites like yours work, information which the ASA thought important enough to pass on to the complainant involved. The article was also about that case specifically but also its potential wider meaning for those who use your service, both those reading the reviews and agents who use your platform. Hopefully agents will find your link useful too!Log in to ReplyRobin Bruce, HelpHound HelpHound 17th January 2020 at 1:43 [email protected] Robertson. It’s good to see you on here; perhaps you might address the point made in this article and my comment, specifically: why are Trustpilot allowing a new business (in all but name) to market itself on the basis of reviews of a now-defunct business?Log in to ReplyRobin Bruce, HelpHound HelpHound 8th January 2020 at 10:53 amIf anyone needed proof that consumers shouldn’t trust Trustpilot, here it is. Allowing reviews garnered by a defunct business to be used to promote a new one? There’s bending over backwards and then there’s acting in the interests of the paying business.On top of this there is the nature of what looks like Trustpilot’s pitch to businesses: you’ve got some negative reviews on our site (and a poor score as a result)? Don’t worry, join (and pay) and then your new reviews will soon dilute them (and boost the score you will undoubtedly be using in all your marketing).The serious question any business should be asking itself is ‘why should we be using any reviews solution other than Google?’ Consumers trust Google reviews, consumers always see Google reviews – in every search they make – so businesses should stick with Google (plus it’s free!). And consumers would do well to ask themselves why any business using an alternative review solution has chosen to do so.Log in to ReplyWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021
AS Michaelmas term hits its stride, swathes of fresh-looking university sports teams are taking shape. Every year clubs face the daunting task of trialling, selecting, cohering and competing in a far shorter period of time than at any other university. One wonders sometimes how Oxford’s legions of competitors do as well, nationally, as they do. Balancing the multiple commitments of work and life and compressing the experiences of their peers into eight week terms, our captains and coaches somehow continue to produce teams that take on the best that student sport in this country has to offer – and win. As the Sports Federation collates nominees for its prestigious awards ceremony, it’s now that the teams and individuals that have set their sporting scene alight get the recognition they deserve. The most high-profile amongst these are the Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year gong; draped in BUSA gold medals, international honours, Varsity winning credentials and receiving the approbation of their nominating club committees, this section of our sporting demographic is special indeed. The question of who is to succeed Jonathan Blackledge as Sportsman of the Year is a pressing one. Blackledge sets a daunting precedent, having won the award for two years running. This athlete and cross-country runner won BUSA and non-student national competitions over the same distance and won the domestic Premier League with his club. Such a plethora of individual and team achievements was necessary for him to edge the other nominees to the prize for two consecutive years.This year, the cycling and fencing clubs have provided the bulk of the nominees and again the field is strong, but it’s among the women that the competition looks fiercest. Last year’s victor, sprinter Martine Bomb, is again nominated after another sensational season on the domestic and international circuit and her club-mate Frances Smithson (06/07 Athletics Blues captain and competitor in high jump/triple jump/100m relay events) also looks a strong contender.Smithson’s individual prowess at BUSA, Varsity and in the AAAs matches speaks for itself but her club recognises in her a personal fortitude and captain’s zeal. As the closest ever Varsity victory was sealed this year, the team nominated her for this award as testament to the gamut of achievements, individual and motivational, which can combine to make a potential Sportswoman of the Year. Elsewhere in this category, the nominations have thrown up another interesting pairing as former housemates Beth Wild and Hannah Bowe also vie for recognition. They played alongside one another for the women’s hockey Blues and were both key players in this squad, nominated for “Team of the Year”. Bowe has managed to rack up a succession of senior international caps for Ireland in a string of high-profile games. As well as being selected among the best of the Irish best, she helped mastermind the girls’ BUSA Premier League victory and the subsequent run that saw Oxford placed in the top 4 of students nationally, scored in Varsity and even flew home to Ireland play for her local Gaelic football side in their national final! Bowe described her senior call-up after a gruelling trialling period as “a welcome relief – in hindsight what I did as regards training, travel and two or three tutes a week while still insisting on having a social life was probably a bit absurd but I was lucky enough to reap the benefits.” Beth Wild was among the top scorers during the same campaign and is also feted for her achievements in cricket – she has been part of the England squad for a number of years and is known for her prodigious batting on the Oxford women’s side. She is also the first female member of the Oxford UCCE setup but relishes being in a minority, saying “the setup in Oxford has been brilliant, very supportive, and challenging, since I constantly have to test my skills against the boys – this can ultimately only be a benefit for my game.”The juxtaposition of the Athletics club’s internationally-acclaimed starlet and its inspiring captain, plus that of two friends who formed the most devastating Oxford hockey partnership in years, makes for an exciting contest. Rachel Hughes of the cycling club (multiple BUSA-medallist, record-holder and last year’s runner up to Bomb), Rebecca Bayliss of judo (1st Dan black belt, British Judo and BUSA silver medallist, reformist club President) and Justine Aw of fencing (top 8 BUSA, winner of national senior Slough Open) make up a scintillating panel of nominees. Nearly 300 guests at this year’s Sports Federation Ball will be privy to the identity of the winner on 22nd November, which will surely be tough to decide, given the relative merits of all the contenders.
More than a third of Quiznos’ sandwich shops in the UK have closed in the past year, due to the current financial crisis, leaving the company a long way short of its ambitious plan to open 200 franchise stores.According to British Baker’s Top 50 Bakery Retailers poll, the US franchise chain, which sells made-to-order ’sub’ sandwiches, had 29 outlets in the UK in January, but only 17 are currently listed on the Quiznos website. A spokeswoman for the company confirmed that there had been store closures. “A lot of it is due to the financial crisis,” she said. “There is an internal strategy that we are putting in place to address the current situation.”In 2007, Quiznos had outlined plans to open around 200 franchised stores across the UK by 2012. The company said that it was looking to open stores in prime locations on the high street.Set up in 1981 in Denver, Quiznos has over 5,000 franchised stores in the US, as well as operations in 20 other countries. The UK business was started in 2001 by father-and-son team Kazem and Michael Najafi.Rival sub sandwich chain Subway plans to reach 2,010 outlets by the year 2010. It currently has over 1,200 stores in the UK.
It’s go time! New account activity peaks spring through fall, so now is the time to put your acquisition strategies in place. Our client data shows a consistent national trend each year with new account openings. The new account activity increases in early spring, the momentum created by tax returns and nicer weather. A second peak occurs between June and September, followed by the lowest period of activity in November and December. Right now, we’re experiencing the first spike in activity, so it’s time to make sure systems are in place and strategies are aligned to get more than your fair share of new accounts.Each new member who enters your branch is a great opportunity. This visit may be the most time you ever get to spend with them, so make it count. It’s time to audit the experience of a new member.Roadmap/New Account ProcessHow is the time being spent? Is there a roadmap to the conversation to ensure a good conversation flow and that all key areas are covered? WorkflowAre employees leaving the member to scan, copy and print? Are there any efficiencies you can add to reduce time on processes?New Account PersonnelIt can be tempting to rush through the process. Remember the member drove to your location to open the account – they are seeking a financial advisor, not somebody who cursorily completes the paperwork. Is the employee confident and knowledgeable? Do they ask questions to identify and understand the member’s needs so they can offer solutions? Are they offering to assist with moving direct deposits and automatic payments? Consider having a member of management open a new account on a regular basis to examine the process and determine if there could be an improvement in the member experience.It is during and after the account opening that you set yourself apart from the competition. The onboarding process is key in building the relationship with the member. How can you impress members during this critical time in your new relationship?Open Communication ChannelsEstablish communication channels with the new member. How do they prefer future communication? Do they prefer a phone call, email, text, or mail? Young adults greatly prefer to send a text rather than to pick up the phone. If that option is available, it can facilitate drastically better communication. More mature members may prefer a phone call. If this is the case, which number and what time of the day is a good time to reach them? Let the member know to expect future contact so it is expected.Send thank you notes shortly after account opening. Have the relationship manager who opened the account write a personal note and mention something specific that was discussed during the new account process so the member feels valued and remembered.OnboardingHaving an onboarding strategy is just as important as having an acquisition strategy. If the new account isn’t activated, you haven’t become their primary financial institution. Onboarding starts with moving direct deposits over. Offer to assist the member with this process and changing any automatic payments over to the new account. Check the member’s new account to see if there is debit card activity during the first 10 to 14 days. If there is no activity, the new account personnel should verify the member’s new debit card was received and see if they need any additional assistance during a follow-up call.Switch kits just don’t work. If the member uses automatic payments instead of bill pay, offer to get the actual forms they need for automatic withdrawals instead of a generic one. It’s a good idea to have the major utility companies’ forms on hand to better assist with the process. Follow UpFollow up with a thank you note, phone call, and letter from management. This personal connection makes the member feel that their business is valued and appreciated.Make note of future sales opportunities from your new account interview and follow up with the member. If the member mentioned they had a CD maturing in early July, contact the member in late June with your rates and other investment options. If the member mentioned they have a child needing a new car in the fall, contact them in late July with auto loan rates. This kind of attention will set you apart from your competitors. Members want to know they are important to you.Ask for referrals. Don’t forget to ask these new members to refer their friends, family, and colleagues. If you’ve provided exceptional service to your members, they won’t hesitate to make referrals. Focusing on all the little steps makes a big difference in getting the relationship and retaining memberships. To maximize the opportunities during peak new account opening seasons, act now to ensure you have all the processes in place. It’s go time!For assistance with digital referral programs, onboarding processes, and activation strategies around new and existing accounts, contact Velocity Solutions. 38SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Cindy J Draper Cindy J. Draper is a Retail DDA Strategist and Director of Training at Velocity Solutions. Cindy has over 20 years of experience in the banking industry. She has worked her … Web: myvelocity.com Details
Joint cooperation, synergy in the destination, communication and incentive for quality will make the tourism of the City of Požega and Požega-Slavonia County more competitive and stronger, said the Mayor of Požega Darko Puljašić, adding: “Alone, each for himself, we can do nothing. The city of Požega as the center of the county can offer tourists two days at best. If they don’t go to Kutjevo, Lipik, Velika, Kaptol, we haven’t done anything. We must be able to offer tourists who come to Slavonia seven days of activities and diversity. We need the help of experts in destination management. We low each other’s competition already support. The Ministry of Tourism supports this project and we are the first to have a finished project. ” “The IQM Destination Požega project aims to set a standard for managing a destination in the true sense of the word, but also to create new economic values in the destination”Point out the authors of the project Đurđica Šimičić and Anamarija Cicarelli and add that the project was conceived in 3 phases through 2-3 years of implementation, and the beginning is planned in the spring of 2019. Yesterday, a presentation of the IQM Destination Požega project was held in the City Hall of the City of Požega, which was attended by the mayors, mayors and representatives of the tourist boards of the Požega-Slavonia County. The project holders are the City of Požega, the Tourist Board of the City of Požega and the Tourist Board of Požega-Slavonia County, and the partners are the City of Lipik, Pakrac, Pleternica, Kutjevo and Velika and their tourist boards whose tourist stakeholders such as accommodation, camps, private accommodation, restaurants, Family farms, associations, travel agencies, utilities, educational institutions and attractions to actively participate in the project. NEW VISUAL IDENTITY OF THE CITY OF POŽEGA – HILLS & VALLEYS PRESENTED The goal of IQM- Integrated Quality Management, a project related to destination quality management which aims to bring together and connect the best tourism stakeholders in the destination. Požega-Slavonia County is the first destination in Slavonia to start together such a quality management project in the destination. RELATED NEWS: The emphasis is on innovation, creativity and connection that in the IQM Destination Požega project connects private and public partnership in the destination and the environment, with all partners that affect the quality of tourism. Cooperation with national (Ministry of Tourism, Croatian National Tourist Board, Croatian Chamber of Commerce) and international institutions (EC, UNWTO), as well as all destination entities is encouraged in order to exchange knowledge and experience. The integrated quality system in the destination, conceptually set in this way, aims to implement quality in the City of Požega and Požega-Slavonia County that encourages controlled progress in products and services in the destination. By implementing this project, we are trying to solve the uniformity of service quality and offer in the destination.
A spokeswoman for local Mauritian environmental group Eco-Sud called for the autopsy results to be released publicly and said the group wanted to be present during the autopsy “to better understand why the dolphins died,” but was still waiting for a response from authorities.The spill came from the Japanese-owned MV Wakashio, which ran aground on July 25 and began to spill oil about a week later. The ship was scuttled Monday.The full impact of the spill is still unfolding, scientists say, and the damage could impact Mauritius and its tourism-dependent economy for decades.The wildlife at risk include the critically endangered Pink Pigeon, endemic to the island, the seagrasses, clownfish and mangrove forests, whose roots serve as nurseries for fish.The Mauritius Marine Conservation Society said 15 kilometers of coastline have been affected by the spill and it is moving towards the Blue Bay Marine park, home to 38 types of coral and 78 species of fish. Topics : Seventeen dead dolphins washed up on Mauritius’s shore on Wednesday, a government official told Reuters, a month after an oil spill from a Japanese ship that ran aground caused a major ecological disaster in the area.”The dead dolphins had several wounds and blood around their jaws, no trace of oil however. The ones that survived, around ten, seemed very fatigued and could barely swim,” said Jasvin Sok Appadu from the fisheries ministry.The dead dolphins have been taken to the Albion Fisheries Research Centre for an autopsy, Appadu said. Results are expected on Wednesday night.
Topics : Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s campaign said on Thursday it would launch an in-person voter-canvassing operation in several battleground states, shifting tactics in the final weeks of a race upended by the coronavirus pandemic.Some of Biden’s Democratic allies have expressed concern the campaign has been too cautious about getting boots on the ground for voter mobilization in the states that will decide the Nov. 3 election.The campaign had put safety first in light of the pandemic, choosing to forgo door-knocking in favor of remote contacts even though President Donald Trump’s campaign has been running an extensive in-person effort. Some Biden supporters in Florida – a huge prize with 29 electoral votes – also have been uneasy about the campaign’s quiet presence there, particularly with recent polling in the state showing Trump making gains with crucial Latino voting groups. On his first campaign trip of the year to the state last month, Biden barely interacted with voters.”We need to door-knock,” said Jose Parra, a Florida-based strategist who heads the Hispanic-focused communications group Prospero Latino. “Even if it only manages to move 10,000 votes, that could be the difference in a state as close as Florida.”Both Florida and North Carolina are among states that will see an expanded voter-canvassing operation in coming weeks, according to a person familiar with the matter.Ramping up scheduleThe Biden campaign maintained that its remote outreach was engaging voters and had already resumed dropping pamphlets at homes.Biden has consistently led Trump in national opinion polls, although the race is closer in the battleground states. Other indicators show Biden and Democrats generating momentum as voters begin to cast early and mail-in ballots.A Reuters/Ipsos poll in late September found 82% of registered Democrats and 81% of registered Republicans were “completely certain” they would vote, eliminating a traditional enthusiasm gap favoring Republicans.Spurred by opposition to Trump, a record-breaking surge of fundraising by Biden has also buoyed Democratic hopes for November. In August, Biden and the national Democratic Party outraised Trump and the Republicans by $364.5 million to $210 million, translating into a blitz of television advertising.Biden has begun to crank up his campaign schedule. The former vice president last week made his first trip of the general election to North Carolina, where polls show a dead heat with Trump, who racked up five visits there in a month’s time between late August and late September.Biden and his wife, Jill, took a train trip through Ohio and western Pennsylvania on Wednesday after the debate in Cleveland, the kind of multi-stop battleground-state tour that some of his backers had pushed.Trump’s campaign, which for months has knocked on doors and hosted large rallies, often over the objections of local elected officials and public health experts, said its rival’s efforts were too little, too late.”You can’t just parachute in a month before the election and hope to make up ground,” Trump campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh said. But in coming days, the Biden team will send several hundred volunteers to Nevada, Michigan, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania to focus on contacting voters who may be difficult to reach by phone or computer, with plans to expand the effort to more states ahead of the election.”We’re now expanding on our strategy in a targeted way that puts the safety of communities first and foremost and helps us mobilize voters who are harder to reach by phone now that we’re in the final stretch,” said Biden’s campaign manager, Jen O’Malley Dillon, who had dismissed criticism of Democratic field organizing.Democratic allies worried the lack of an in-person ground game could be a misstep given the close margins in several battleground states that helped the Republican Trump narrowly defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton in 2016.”Trump’s running a full-blown get-out-the-damn-vote operation and the Democrats are doing a virtual get-out-the-vote effort by Zoom,” said Brad Crone, an independent political consultant in North Carolina. “There’s a world of difference.”
The €7bn Dutch pension fund of steel manufacturer Tata Steel has raised the risk profile of its investments by increasing its stake in equity, credit and property at the expense of fixed income.The fund said its decision was based on the risk appetite of its participants, as well as on the new financial assessment framework (nFTK), which now allowed for smoothing out any rights discounts over a ten-year period.According to its 2015 annual report, it increased the strategic equity allocation by 5 percentage points to 40%, while expanding its credit portfolio from 6% to 10% of fund assets.At the same time, it increased its combined holdings of real estate and infrastructure from 7% to 10%. As a consequence of the new long-term investment strategy, however, the pension fund’s required funding target rose from 118% to 121%.The pension fund also introduced a dynamic interest hedge of 60% of its nominal liabilities.Drawn on a graduated calculation for interest rates of less than 3%, however, the current hedge is no more than 35%.Pensioenfonds Hoogovens reported an overall result of 2.6% during 2015.It said equity had returned 6%, with stock in Europe and Asia-Pacific yielding 8% and 22%, respectively.It attributed the 3% result on US equity chiefly to the dollar appreciating against the euro.The scheme cited the large proportion of commodities-related companies in the US market as the main cause for the 5% loss on US high yield credit.In contrast, the same asset class generated 1% in Europe.The pension fund posted results of 19.6% on infrastructure, 5.7% on property and a loss of 2.6% on fixed income.It added that it had reduced the number of board members, and had appointed an independent chairman as well as independent internal supervisors in order to increase its efficiency.Additionally, the fund has also set up a department for board support.The steelworks’ scheme said it had spent 0.28% of its assets on asset management and 0.08% on transactions, respectively. Costs for pensions administration were €181 per participant.
Secular stagnation could pose a risk to the UK’s financial stability as a result of actions being taken to close funding gaps in defined benefit (DB) schemes, according to staff at the Bank of England.Writing in a blog for staff of the central bank, Frank Eich, who works in the bank’s international surveillance division, and Jumana Saleheen, head of division in the financial stability directorate, argued that a prolonged period of weak growth and low interest rates could increase funding shortfalls at UK DB schemes by pushing up liabilities.While the direct effects would be limited, financial stability could be affected indirectly by an intensified “search for yield” as pension funds seek higher returns to close funding gaps, according to Eich and Salaheen.This could drive prices higher in infrastructure or commercial real estate, they said. The shift to generally less generous defined contribution (DC) pension provision could also push up asset prices if individuals react to this also by looking for yield, for example by buying property.Eich and Salaheen also argued that the search for yield could be affected by corporates’ investment capacity, if they are forced to inject cash into pension schemes.“Of course this does not mean that the money would no longer be available for investment,” they wrote. “What it does mean though is that the pension scheme rather than the corporate sponsor would invest the available funds, potentially pursuing a different asset mix.”Despite these concerns, Eich and Saleheen said individual cases of large deficits were unlikely to pose a financial stability risk to the UK.“The normal course of events would be for a UK corporate sponsor to agree with the Pensions Regulator on how to close a funding gap over time,” wrote Eich and Saleheen. “Closing this gap might affect dividend payments or wage settlements but should in practice pose few financial stability risks.”They added that financial stability was unlikely to be affected if a corporate sponsor went into administration. In most cases, its pension scheme would be taken on by the Pension Protection Fund (PPF). The only time a financial stability risk would appear, the authors said, would be if the sponsor “is itself a financial company whose demise might pose financial stability risks or we are in the midst of a wider economic and financial crisis”.In its February inflation report the Bank of England said aggregate investment growth had not been materially affected by companies’ DB pension fund deficits.In its recent green paper on the sustainability of DB schemes the UK government suggested fears of an “affordability crisis” were overblown, as evidence was “far from being conclusive, and should be considered with caution”.This has been criticised, or at least questioned, by some, and welcomed by others.The blog post by Eich and Saleheen can be found here.
Malaysian shipping group MISC Berhad (MISC) has received a time charter contract from Idemitsu Kosan (IKC) for the provision of a floating, storage and offloading (FSO) vessel in Vietnam. Secured through Malaysia Vietnam Offshore Terminal (L) Limited (MVOT), its 51%-owned joint-venture with PetroVietnam Technical Services Corporation (PTSC), the contract represents the expansion of MISC’s footprint in providing offshore solutions in the ASEAN region.The contract, secured through an international competitive bidding process, is valued at around USD 176 million. Under the deal, MVOT will be responsible for the engineering, procurement, construction, installation, commissioning, lease and operations of the FSO.Upon its conversion, the FSO will be deployed for the Sao Vang and Dai Nguyet Development Project in Blocks 05-1b and 05-1c, offshore Vietnam and it will be leased for a duration of seven years. The contract and the charter is expected to commence by mid-2020.