Customer complaints are inevitable no matter how much focus you place on customer service. While you may be tempted to turn a blind eye, each complaint must be dealt with completely. If you ignore a complaint, you are telling your customers that their feedback doesn’t matter.
To avoid frustration and increase customer loyalty, we suggest implementing the following tips when dealing with customer complaints.
Keep Your Cool
It’s not easy to smile when faced with criticism, but an emotional or angry response will only exacerbate the problem. Don’t take it personally. To the customer, this complaint is a big deal. Give them the VIP treatment. Listen to their problem and assure them you will do your best to remedy the situation
Offer an Apology
Once a customer has stated their grievance and you have listened intently, offer a sincere apology even if you are not the one at fault. Sometimes a simple apology is all it takes to soothe an irritated customer. Don’t blame another employee or the customer, just say “I’m sorry about that.”
The customer probably doesn’t want to hear an excuse, but you are entitled to briefly explain the situation and what caused the issue before you offer a solution. You may politely ask the customer what their desired outcome is and help them to achieve that outcome. If that means they get a refund, voucher, or other perks, do what you can to make that happen.
Show a Sense of Urgency
Time is of the essence. Work to solve the issue as quickly as possible. The customer is already upset, and they’ll be further irritated if you put their issue on the back burner. Make responding to them a priority.
If appropriate, follow up with the customer to ensure the issue was resolved and that they are satisfied. Ask if there is anything else they need help with and allow them to reach out to you for further assistance. Some possible responses are:
- “Is there anything else I can do for you?”
- “Are you all set?”
- “Let me know if you need anything else.”
Know When to Quit
Don’t spend time and effort on a lost cause. If a customer wants to cancel their account, nothing makes the process more unpleasant for them than facing friction. Arguing with them will only ensure they do not return.
If they already have a foot out the door, you’re better off letting them leave without any further hard feelings. If there is no way to resolve the issue or fulfill their need, let them go.
Keep records of customer complaints that your business receives. By documenting the initial problem to the final solution, you can take steps to improve customer service.
Remedy Customer Complaints with Podium
Request a demo to see how Podium’s cloud-based solution can help you use text messages to invite all of your customers to review your business. Podium’s efficient, mobile process can help your business build a strong online presence on the sites that matter most. This will, in turn, improve local SEO and ultimately boost revenues.