Rating Vendors - What categories are important to you?

As I posted yesterday, we will soon be launching a new B2B vendor recommendation site called VendorCity.  When building any new company, there comes many moments where you make a quick decision on something and then put it behind you.  Sometimes you make the right decisions but most of the time, you need to come back and re-examine those early assumptions to make sure you are indeed on the right path.
At the heart of our business are vendor recommendations. They consist of two parts:user ratings over 5 categoriesthe story or textual recommendation
As mentioned in a blog posting I did today, it is critical that you the categories you select to be rated are easily understood.  You don`t want users scratching their heads when doing the ratings and you want to cover different areas so that people can select vendors based upon those things that are most important to them.
So, my question or challenge to you is...what 5 categories would you use to rate any vendor across just about any industry?  What useful but generic data points would be important to you?
Thanks and I look forward to any and all responses. 

Comments

  • jccameronjccameron subscriber Posts: 3
    First off, thanks for the suggestions and feedback.
    So, we had some limitations that we are working with.
    We need to have exactly 5 categories and the 5 category names had to be 15 characters or less. And, of course, they had to be relevant for all (or nearly all) industries and be fairly self-evident with as little overlap as possible.
    Our list is now:Quality of WorkCommunicationMeets DeadlinesValue for MoneyHire Again
    and those ratings, from 1-5, roll-up to an overall score.
    Thanks again and hope to see some of you in the system recommending your best vendors and inviting your clients to participate when we launch later this week or sometime next week.
  • jccameronjccameron subscriber Posts: 3
    Sheryl....design limitations.  We are launching next week (hopefully Tuesday before the holiday sets in) and our current design, for example, has a view vendor page that has the categories lined up horizontally all on the same line with the stars right below them.  If they are more than 15-16 characters, it wraps and throws off the great design. 
    When adding the recommendation, we have descriptions of what they mean so that shouldn`t be too much of a problem.
    --
    Craig, thanks for the feedback and you are correct.  It is currently designed for service providers and not product vendors.  This is something we will consider in the future...
  • jccameronjccameron subscriber Posts: 3
    Hi Sheryl,
    Your sign-up was indeed received...thanks! 
    We are launching our BETA very soon - probably early next week.  When we do, you`ll be one of the first to receive the invite.  Thanks so much for the interest!
  • jccameronjccameron subscriber Posts: 3
    So, the list above is great (except we renamed Meets Deadlines to Timeliness and gave it a good description).
    The next step is to look at the problem of product vendors - those that sell products of items of some kind and are not service providers.  Craig above mentioned this and used a few good examples.  Their "service" might be bad, but you are buying an item and not their time and effort.
    So, now we need to think about the categories appropriate when reviewing someone that sells yoiu a product.
    What do you think are 5 good categories for product vendors?  (Remember, some products are not actually delivered...they might be an online service...VendorCity would be a good example as would SalesForce.com).
    Thanks and I look forward to your feedback!
  • justryingtohelpjustryingtohelp subscriber Posts: 2
    I`m curious what are the different ways to make money from this site? Will the vendors pay a fee to be listed or will members pay to access the database?  
     
    I`m asking as I`ve been brainstorming a service provider idea for a specific industry. 
     
    I`d appreciate any feedback on this. 
     
    JC Congratulations on getting your business launched. 
  • jccameronjccameron subscriber Posts: 3
    Without going to far into it, yes, it will be a membership fee so that people and companies with specific vendor needs can pay a small amount to have access to verified and vetted recommendations and ratings of vendors who can service their company.
    There will be other sources of income but that`s the crux of the site.  A membership site that provides you with access to the best B2B vendors in your area.
  • justryingtohelpjustryingtohelp subscriber Posts: 2
    Very, cool. 
     
    I`m still thinking my thing through but I`m getting closer.   
     
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