How we rank for
The price criteria encompasses any financial charges that a customer may experience when doing business with a company. For credit monitoring, companies are scored based off of the following information:
- Monthly Price
- Fee for First Credit Score
Each time a customer requests services from a company, a contract between the two parties is created. When available, we thoroughly examine the fine print of these contracts and share the information that customers need to know, such as the term length of the contract or the contract cancellation fee. For credit monitoring, companies are scored based off of the following information:
- Refresh Rate
Best Company determines the number of states in which a company’s services are available. This is one measure we use to determine a company’s ability to provide consistent service to its customer base. Companies that operate in more states will receive a higher score than companies that only operate in a few.
6% Time in Business
“Time in business” gives customers an idea of a company’s ability to establish itself and improve its product or service quality over time. Older companies have generally demonstrated greater sustainability, and are typically more reliable than more recent companies—and will therefore receive a higher score.
6% Size of Company
The size of a company can be a good indicator of its overall profitability and success; companies with more employees or facilities are typically more reliable. We understand that what is considered a “large company” for one industry may be considered “small” by another industry. Consequently, each company will be held to an industry-specific standard that rewards companies that operate with a larger employee base relative to its own industry.
This criterion is related to a company’s activity and the accuracy of its profile on our site. To get credit for this criteria, a representative of the company verifies to Best Company that the information about their company listed on our site is correct. Additionally, the company agrees to help us gather a minimum of 20 new reviews per month to be featured exclusively on bestcompany.com. These reviews are gathered either through our site or through our proprietary review acquisition process. Either way, each review undergoes a validation process by Best Company’s integrity team to ensure reviews on our site are verified and legitimate. We feel strongly that the information we feature on bestcompany.com must be accurate. A company that fails to increase their review count by at least 20 reviews each month is marked as “not active” and the company’s overall score is reduced accordingly.
This criterion is related to the company’s ability to service customers. Over time, as we learn more about each company and the industry, we are privy to details the general public may, or may not, be privy to. This information could include the financial stability, legal standing, or business practices of said company. Each company listed on our site is initially given full credit for this criteria. However, if we deem a company’s ability to service customers becomes compromised, we reserve the right to deduct points from their viability score.
60% User Score
Here at Best Company, we believe a company is only as good as what its customers say about it; feedback from real customers is crucial to understanding how a company truly operates. For this reason, we have allocated more than half of a company’s overall rating to verified customer reviews. The customer reviews score is broken down into three metrics:
- The average user score
- Total number of reviews
- Total number of reviews in the last 12 months
These three metrics not only help us understand what customers are saying, but they also help us determine a company’s relevance and to how many people—all of which are critical to understanding the value of a company in the eyes of the customer.
Note: this is different from the “User Score” that is displayed on each company profile, which is simply the average of all user scores published for a given profile, and is independent from a company’s overall score.
User Review Moderation
In order to prevent false and misleading user reviews, Best Company employs a Review Moderation Team specifically assigned to vet all user reviews for all companies listed on the site. This team follows a very specific and strict moderation process that has been designed to gauge the validity of each and every user review submitted to our site.
The Flag System
This moderation process involves a “flag” system, where a flag is assessed for each negative attribute associated with a user review. Too many flags result in a rejection of a user review. Some of the things our moderation staff looks for and assigns potential flags to include the following:
- Email address verification of the user
- IP address duplication and region check
- User review semantic verification
- Is the user an employee of the organization?
- Is the user associated with a competitor of the organization?
- Foul language of any kind
- Relevance of the content pertaining to the company and the review
As you can probably tell, we take our user review moderation process very seriously. We believe accuracy and authenticity are critical when it comes to user reviews, and are constantly finding new ways to make our user moderation process better. Please note that while we do our best to manually moderate each and every user review, mistakes can occasionally be made; however, we are dedicated to resolving any errors in our process and delivering you better data so you can make a better decision.