Your clients are your company’s lifeblood.Your business would never develop if they didn’t approve of it, which is why customer service is so critical.People are becoming more vocal about their experiences with businesses — whether good or negative – than ever before, due to the internet and social media.Unfortunately, customer-centric firms will receive a consumer complaint at some point, regardless of how well they serve their customers or how effectively they manage their organization.
Given that only one out of every 26 disgruntled customers complains to the company, and that an unhappy customer will tell roughly 15 people about their unpleasant experience, you’ve probably already lost some revenue due to angry consumers without even realizing it.
Nobody enjoys dealing with consumer complaints, but they may also be an opportunity for you and your company to shine. This is your chance to develop a consumer that will be happy and loyal for the rest of their lives. Although providing excellent customer service should always be a priority, if you do receive a client complaint, here are ten recommendations on how to address it.
- Stay Calm
Even if it’s difficult, you must remain calm when dealing with a consumer complaint. This can be difficult, especially since your company is likely a source of great pride for you. However, don’t take the complaint personally; it isn’t a smear campaign. A consumer complaint will frequently reveal an area in your organization where you might improve. Furthermore, getting irritated, losing your cool, or yelling at a customer is never a good thing. If you tackle the challenge with a calm mindset, you’ll be more likely to make good progress and meet your customer’s needs.
When a customer comes to you with a complaint, it usually implies they want to be heard. Even if your concern appears insignificant to you, it is obvious to them that it is important to them since they have taken the effort to contact you. People do occasionally complain just because they are having a bad day, but keep in mind that we all have bad days, and you never know what is going on in their lives.
When it comes to your customers, active listening tactics can and should be applied all of the time. Don’t assume you know what the consumer wants or needs, and don’t dismiss their concerns as insignificant. Pay attention to what they’re saying and hear them out. Frustrated people may find it difficult to convey their problems or what they require from you to make them happy. Allowing your customer to speak will allow him or her to relax. Listening to your consumers and allowing them to vent can often fix a problem.
- Be Kind
Most of the time, remaining courteous and sympathetic can help to defuse anger and irritation. You can inform your consumer right away that you appreciate them reaching out to you about their issues and that you want to know how they’re feeling. From the start, a comment like this shows your consumer that you genuinely care and are willing to listen. You’re well on your way to finding a reasonable settlement to a client’s issue when they realize you care.
- Acknowledge the Issue
After you’ve listened to them out, acknowledge the issue and reiterate it to them. Paraphrasing what your consumer has stated and saying it back to them shows that you have listened and that you are aware of the issue. Recognizing the issue does not imply that you agree with the customer’s point of view; rather, it indicates that you understand and appreciate their viewpoint. You can say things like, “I appreciate this must be quite annoying for you,” or “If I understand you correctly…” before paraphrasing the issue.
- Apologies and Thank Them
Although it will be difficult, swallowing your ego and apologizing for your customer’s bad experience will put you miles ahead of the competition. Apologizing, like acknowledging, does not imply that you agree with the consumer or that you accept responsibility.
Thanking your consumer for reaching out with their problem may seem paradoxical, but it will demonstrate that you’re always looking for ways to improve your company. It demonstrates that you understand their perspective and are prepared to help them solve their situation.
- Ask Question
After you’ve listened to your customer’s complaint and given him or her time to cool down, it’s your responsibility to take the initiative and get all of the information. Now is the moment to begin asking questions for clarification calmly. Begin a true dialogue with your customer. You’ll have gained your customer’s trust by being courteous, listening, acknowledging, and apologizing.
It is critical, however, that you do not ask questions that have previously been answered by your consumer. Making someone repeat themselves can exacerbate emotions and give the impression that you weren’t paying attention in the first place.
- Make It Speedy
Once you’ve gathered all of the data you’ll need, it’s time to come up with a solution that will please everyone, including your consumer. Your consumer will be happier and you will be able to breathe a sigh of relief if you can discover a sensible solution that everyone can agree on quickly.
It’s critical to be adaptable in this situation. While it’s critical to adhere to your company’s regulations and guidelines, it’s equally critical to be able to go above and beyond for your consumers. Never propose a solution that you are unable to implement, as this will just set you back. Perhaps a small gift card or a discount on future purchases will be enough to calm things down. You might also offer to replace the item for free or upgrade their membership or purchase in the future.
Allow your employee’s ample discretion to make decisions on their own when trying to discover a solution. Passing an angry customer up a chain of command may exacerbate the problem, therefore it’s best to avoid it wherever feasible.
- Document their responses
Complaints frequently contain unspoken suggestions for improving your product or service. Keeping track of them might help you spot weaknesses, difficulties, and patterns. It could be a product flaw that has to be addressed right away. Perhaps it’s a complaint about a specific campaign that your marketing department can investigate. In any case, keep track of any consumer complaints about future references.
You can bring up the concerns in monthly and annual meetings to get ideas on how to deal with the problem now that they’ve been documented.
- Follow Up
Following up with your irate customer after you’ve found a solution for them may be the last thing on your mind, but after all that hard work, it’s the icing on the cake for them. It lets them know that their issues are on your mind, and it’s another method of demonstrating your attention.
Apologize once more and confirm that you’ve taken care of everything they required during this follow-up. If the consumer is satisfied at this point, there’s a strong chance they’ll use your services again, and they’ll tell their friends and family about you and how great your customer service is.
- Come out from behind the screen
Just because the internet has made it easier to give virtual customer support doesn’t mean you should constantly connect with customers through live chat or email. If you provide a service, such as a site building, copywriting, or social media consulting, having a video conversation with your consumers can be beneficial.
Although video conferencing might not have the same impact as face-to-face interaction, it still allows you to express emotions and nonverbal indications. This is a wonderful method to demonstrate that you truly want to assist and resolve the issue that led to the complaint.
With video conferencing programs like Zoom or Skype, you can simply put a face to a communication.
How to handle customer complaints the right way?
Some individuals will dislike what you create. That’s how much it costs to ship something out into the world. There’s a good probability you’ll have polarising reactions to your product if it’s excellent enough.
However, by planning ahead of time, maintaining optimal positivity ratios, and framing feedback as transient, particular, and external, you may empower yourself with strategies to deal with negative feedback and turn it into devoted consumers.