Ratepoint.com was a point of interest for me because I found it on many hosts that paid for spots in webhostingstuff.com’s top 25 list. As of earlier last Month they officially closed their doors in a rather perplexing manner. Their technologies were sold, but not their customer base. Something clearly went wrong. I knew about this early January and I thought it was a bit odd as the main page had not changed.
I meant to do this post before the end of January, but I was waiting on brainhost.com to actually answer my questions on my previous post, I wanted to make sure that the time I would spend on this blog would be dedicated to their response. Surprise, but I never got a response beyond the first two. Between issues of estate, house hunting, and work load I had all but forgotten about this site. It took being called a grumpy blogger by one of the sites I watch (check the previous post). Time really flies by when you don’t pay attention.
The other problem I had with ratepoint.com was what I considered a conflict of interest. After all what incentive does a company have to keep an account open with a large percentage of negative feedback? If a company gets too much negative feedback the natural inclination would be to cancel the service. I mean who would pay a company to house their negative feedback right?
I have heard from both ratepoint.com, the hosts that use them, and customers of the hosts.
Ratepoint.com gave me a mixed message. By phone they told me I would be able to delete the negative feedback. But their email contradicted that and said I would have to go through a series of steps.
Hosts that have used them have told me that the customer has to agree to delete the negative feedback. In other words those steps that were mentioned in the email. All of the hosts I have talked to also agree that there was room for abuse. By which I mean lots of fake positive feedback. Which a host would be willing to pay for.
Customers of some of these hosts that used ratepoint.com claimed that their negative reviews were deleted. While some hosts that I have been in communication tell me that it does not work that way, and in some cases the negative feedback is irreversible if not dealt with in a certain amount of time.
That is any company not just hosts could pay them to host the reviews.
Interestingly enough when I started nosing around for people that were having their negative feed back deleted, someone at ratepoint.com put their email on my mailing list. I suppose I will get to see if they are still accepting email next mail out I do.
I am a little baffled by the closing. The technologies part of the company was sold, but the customer base was abandoned. Something is not right here, especially when people are being referred to another company. They were not handed off to another company. I can only speculate that they were not running with a profit. Why not a gradual price increase? One thing I found prior to them shutting the site down was an address that creditors were suppose to contact. I can’t seem to find where I put the screen shot for this address and if I find it later I will post it. But the address pointed to some limonene company.
Here is the Message Ratepoint.com sent to their customers.
Important Message Regarding Discontinuation of RatePoint Services
RatePoint customers, partners, and friends:
As some of you may know, RatePoint’s assets and technologies are currently being acquired. Unfortunately this means that all RatePoint accounts will soon be closed. Effective February 2, 2012, all RatePoint services, including Reputation Management, Email Marketing, Surveys, and Product Reviews will be discontinued. Your ability to access your RatePoint account will end at this time.
However, we are happy to suggest a viable alternative to RatePoint. For customers that want to continue using a good reputation management platform, we highly recommend Customer Lobby. We’ve arranged for them to waive the activation fee, provide discounted rates, and import existing reviews for any RatePoint user! Please read this article (http://help.ratepoint.com/entries/20892482), call 866-718-9549, or contact email@example.com for more info.
We recommend removing all RatePoint widgets, buttons, seals, and signup boxes from your website as soon as possible, along with any links to any ratepoint.com sites. If you have any data you’d like to retrieve from your RatePoint account — such as contacts, business reviews, or product reviews — you should do that on or before the morning of February 2 at the very latest. After that time, you will be unable to retrieve your information.
For more information, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org or see the help articles below:
How do I export my contacts? (http://help.ratepoint.com/entries/20813106)
How do I export my Business Reviews? (http://help.ratepoint.com/entries/20813181)
How do I export my Product Reviews? (http://help.ratepoint.com/entries/20827157)
I’m a RatePoint partner. How does this effect me? (http://help.ratepoint.com/entries/20813831)
I prepaid annually for RatePoint; what do I do? (http://help.ratepoint.com/entries/20834948)
Thanks for your support; we wish you all the best.
Less than a month later Ratepoint.com would be taken off line. Sometime after I get a house I will have to re-reviews the hosts that I found using ratepoint.