Most businesses aim to please. They put customers first and do whatever it takes to make them happy.
Some companies have found that being unethical and treating customers like garbage is actually better for business. At the very least, it ups their Google ranking.
One company, DecorMyEyes, is downright scary to customers. When one user tried to cancel her order, she received a scathing email. According to the New York Times, DecorMyEyes wrote her: “Listen, b*tch, I know your address. I’m one bridge over.”
Other customers had similar experiences and reported them on review sites.
“!!!!!ROBBERY!!!!” One exclaims.
“Terrible service and a rip off. They must have blind primates doing the work!” says another.
Those are just two of the nicer reviews. While most business owners would be horrified, the DecorMyEyes founder, Stanley Borker, is thrilled. Here’s why:
“”Hello, My name is Stanley with DecorMyEyes.com,” the founder writes to all the negative commenters on an open forum. “I just wanted to let you guys know that the more replies you people post, the more business and the more hits and sales I get. My goal is NEGATIVE advertisement.”
Negative actions should have negative consequences, but this founder is laughing all the way to the bank thanks to high Google rankings. But surely the world’s most powerful search engine, Google, could separate scams like DecorMyEyes from genuine businesses.
Apparently not until last week when the issue came to light. Since then, Google has solved the issue:
“We were horrified to read about Ms. Rodriguez’s dreadful experience. Even though our initial analysis pointed to this being an edge case and not a widespread problem in our search results, we immediately convened a team that looked carefully at the issue. That team developed an initial algorithmic solution, implemented it, and the solution is already live. I am here to tell you that being bad is, and hopefully will always be, bad for business in Google’s search results.”
Still, Borker defends his strategy. “The customer is always right — not here, you understand?” Borker tells New York Times. “I hate that phrase — the customer is always right. Why is the merchant always wrong? Can the customer ever be wrong? Is that not possible?”
His strategy is unethical yet slightly brilliant. He tricked the most powerful company in the world. It is a shock and awe strategy that Google, until recently, wasn’t stopping.
Although effective, abusing customers isn’t a strategy that’s likely to catch on. Constantly fending off unhappy customers is gruelling, a major time-suck, and at the very least, it must weigh on your conscience.
For the full article, head over to the New York Times >>