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Frequently Asked Questions

If you have a question that is not covered here please contact our Membership team on 0800 458 1234 who will be delighted to help.

Why Checkatrade?

Isn't this just advertising?

Checkatrade is not simply an advertising platform. It is not a fire and forget marketing campaign or a set of glossy free-ads. It is a means of establishing your reputation through word of mouth - amplified through Checkatrade's continual marketing on this web site and in printed guides.

Checkatrade is a partnership between the trades and their customers. Checkatrade bring together the public, who are looking for tradespeople they can trust, with trades and service providers who uphold and operate to the Checkatrade standard. Customers supply feedback about the trades to Checkatrade - proving their credibility to other potential customers.

I've heard it all before - what makes Checkatrade so special?

We have all heard sales people make claims that simply cannot be true. Sales people can be very seductive and spin all manner of tales. We don't want you just to take our word for it - read what other people say about us. Read the testimonials from other trade members.

Even better, call up any of our members and ask them yourself how Checkatrade has affected their business. No one else would dare suggest this - that's what makes us special!

Most of my work already comes via recommendation - why should I join?

If most of your work comes from recommendations then you are exactly the type of business we are looking for. We want people who are proud of their reputation and who know it works for them as the best form of advertising. If you are not getting work by recommendation, we would be asking why.

Checkatrade membership means word of mouth - through a megaphone! Recommendations are not just passed among friends. They are shared with the general public, time after time after time. You can build up a record of customer opinions that will cover all areas of your work, in all of your locations, and stretch back for as long as you have been a member. So you can be as good as all of your jobs, not just your last one.

What's more, you don't have to maintain files of references or example sites. Your Checkatrade membership and feedback reports will do this for you, with the credibility and trust of the Checkatrade brand.

I've got too much work and I'm booked up for months - why should I join?

You have obviously built up a successful business by valuing the customer, doing good work, and marketing yourself well. The majority of our members join primarily for the credibility, and we can maximise this for your continued success. We can help you stay ahead of your competitors by providing another reason for customers to choose you first. Through Checkatrade you can take more of the jobs that are most profitable or enjoyable, and we can help you get them more efficiently and effectively - it is likely that your advertising spend will be cut as you focus on word of mouth recommendation.

I'm just starting out - is Checkatrade right for me?

This depends on how much experience you have in your line of work. Our vetting process requires you to have a minimum period of experience in your trade. If you are an experienced tradesperson and are now starting your own business, Checkatrade will help give you the kick-start you are looking for. We can advise you on how best to utilise your membership, give you marketing options, and help you build your brand by publishing your customers' feedback.

Do you cover where I work?

Checkatrade operates across the UK. If you browse our listings of current members you will find that most of our members are based in the south of England. This is because Checkatrade has grown from a local reference service to cover an entire region. However our system does work nationwide.

Members across the country can get the same benefits from the enhanced credibility of being continually monitored.

If you found Checkatrade on the Internet, then so can your customers. And if you are one of the first few in your area to get the Checkatrade advantage then you will really stand out from the competition. Our surveys have shown that being able to demonstrate your credibility through Checkatrade membership increases your quote conversion rate from an average of five out of ten to eight out of ten. That's a potential 60% increase in work!

How does it work?

Does the vetting process mean a lot of hassle for me?

Our vetting process has to be comprehensive to ensure that we only allow top flight businesses to become members - we have to uphold the customer's trust in us. However, we realise it is not the most profitable or exciting exercise for you, so we do the vast majority of the work.

All applicants are pre-screened and told that they will interviewed, vetted and monitored. This alone deters a lot of trades who know that they have a substandard service. We ensure that the trades and services know we are a consumer information service and that we have to remain unbiased. Our procedures for handling negative comments and complaints are clearly explained here.

Our trained staff will assess your suitability and will then arrange an interview. To pass our vetting procedure and to become a member of Checkatrade we require:

In addition we look at length of experience and your company history as well as VAT and company legal status.

How will you monitor me?

We believe the best people to monitor our members are the customers. This means our members supply each one of their customers with a Checkatrade “Reputation Report”.

This card allows the customer the opportunity to give comments and scores in five different areas of workmanship and service. The customer completes the card and posts it back to Checkatrade - no stamp required. The customer can also leave feedback online. This information stream shows what the public think about how our trades and services perform.

Customers' names and addresses are never published, and we do not publish anonymous feedback. We protect our members against rogue consumers or deliberate anti-competitive behaviour. Each month we aim to spot check and verify 30% - 40% of feedback received.

How important are the Reputation Report Cards?

The Reputation Report cards are very important for the Checkatrade process and provide vital benefits for you:

What happens if a customer complains about me?

We would never publish a negative comment or scores lower than 5, without contacting you first. The severity of the complaint determines how the complaint is dealt with. Should we receive complaints of a serious nature, the consumer will be asked to complete the 'Customer Comment Form' and this activates our complaints procedure which is overseen by one of our experienced customer services staff.

You will then have the following options:

What about customers who complain with no valid reason?

You will always be given the opportunity to resolve the complaint first, if this is not possible you will be able to provide a right of reply with your version of events that will be displayed on the website with the customer's comments. We will not publish anonymous feedback to protect against hoax feedback.

Trade Associations

What makes you different from a Guild or Federation?

To our knowledge most Guilds and Federations are orientated towards providing a service for the trades. Here at Checkatrade we understand that for a service like ours to work it has to be focused first on the consumer. We believe that if you give the consumer what they want and do it well, they will repay you. This principle has been proved time and time again by our members.

Most trade association memberships involve a one-off or perhaps an annual check on their members. We monitor our members continually through feedback. We give the consumer confidence to employ a tradesperson, and that generates work. We estimate that customers reward our members with a total value of £55.5 million worth of work every month. Our consumer-first philosophy works!

I'm already registered with Fensa, Gas Safe, NICEIC. What else can you offer me?

Checkatrade is a marketing platform that not only brings credibility but also causes your phone to ring with new quality customers.

When was the last time your phone rang just because you were Fensa, Gas Safe or NICEIC registered?

Checkatrade helps to distinguish you from the rest.

Joining Checkatrade

What will it cost?

Before you can judge the cost you have to know what you are getting.

Work out the value of a Checkatrade membership to your business, and then you can look at the cost.

The benefits of Checkatrade membership start at just over £10 a week (plus VAT). Can you afford not to join?

Contact our Membership team on 0800 458 1234 or enquire online to find out more.

Do I have to pay up front?

We know cashflow is an issue when running a small business, so to help you we can take your membership fees by Direct Debit.

How do I find out more?

To get a full picture of the benefits of Checkatrade membership and what it would mean for your business, please call our Membership team on 0800 458 1234 who will be happy to answer any further questions, or complete our online enquiry form to request a call back.