Better Business Bureau (BBB) St. Louis remained a steady advocate for marketplace trust in 2022, serving consumers across Eastern and Southwest Missouri and Southern Illinois nearly 21.4 million times, a 37.9% increase from 2021.

Our results reflect the dedication of BBB staff members and volunteers who serve consumers and businesses across the region, including from regional offices in Cape Girardeau, Mo., Columbia, Mo., Springfield, Mo., and Quincy, Ill. As we continue to rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic instability surrounding it, we stand ready to provide BBB Business Profiles and Charity Reviews, help companies and customers resolve disputes and provide standards for business practices, and other valuable services that promote marketplace trust.

Technology allows BBB to provide many of its services online, around the clock. At nearly 5.9 million visits from consumers in the St. Louis region last year. An additional 7.9 million consumers interacted with BBB electronically through newsletters and social media, and thousands telephoned to speak with BBB specialists. Businesses earning BBB Accreditation totaled 8,715 at year’s end, with 428 of those businesses in the Cape Girardeau region.

Requests to check out a company through BBB Business Profiles topped 3.2 million. Inquiries about vehicle service contract companies led the list of requests at 377,805, followed by inquiries about roofing contractors and general contractors.

When consumers call or check BBB’s website, they can learn whether businesses received customer complaints, and if so, how they satisfied their customers. BBB Business Profiles display a rating from A+ to F, tell how long a company has been in business and give contact information and details such as products or services a company offers.

Many consumers requested further information from BBB Accredited Businesses through BBB’s Get A Quote service, which reached 53,377 last year. BBB Customer Reviews posted on numbered 18,498.

Local consumers reported 956 potential scams to BBB Scam Tracker last year. BBB received 14,696 complaints filed against companies in Eastern and Southwest Missouri and Southern Illinois, and 80% of complaints were resolved. 

Complaints against vehicle service contract companies led the list of business categories with the most complaints in BBB St. Louis’ service area. The second highest number of complaints were against businesses providing auto repair. 

Accredited Charities meeting BBB’s 20 Standards of Charity Accountability numbered 302 at year’s end.  

BBB challenged 130 local ad claims that appeared to be in violation of BBB’s Code of Advertising Standards or state or federal laws and regulations. Companies were requested to cease using the ads, modify them or offer substantiation to support their claims.  

BBB issued 126 press releases, including 30 warning the public of substandard business practices uncovered in some of the 355 investigations conducted by BBB St. Louis. Other releases advised consumers on consumer tips on various topics.  

Through BBB’s International Investigations Initiative, BBB released an in-depth investigative study covering payday loan scams. Updates also were released for previous studies on government grant scams, online purchase scams and online puppy scams.

News coverage of releases and studies reached an estimated 226 million people. 

BBB experts made 85 presentations on marketplace ethics topics to various groups last year. “In Pursuit of Ethics,” BBB’s free ethics education program for high schools, had a total enrollment of 149 schools at the end of 2021. 

Consumers can check out businesses or charities by calling 888-996-3887 or at 

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