First, always listen to the customer. If complaints are handled poorly, customers may withdraw their business and encourage others to do the same. Therefore, it is paramount for any business or entrepreneur to learn how to manage customer complaints like a pro.
Why Customer Complaints Matter
Complaints happen every day. When a customer complains, it is usually for a good reason or genuine concern. It’s wrong to assume that just because someone is frustrated or behaving wildly, his or her argument has no merit. Complaints, even angry ones, can contain insight — it’s your job to manage the complaint.
Good businesses and entrepreneurs must learn to see complaints as an opportunity to build strong, lasting relationships with customers and improve their customer service. When managing customer complaint, you don’t even need to provide a solution, it’s all about being willing to solve the problem.
Always Stay Calm and Cool
You are the professional. If your customer comes to you with a problem, just understand he is angry and frustrated because he did not get delivered on a promise. Just say you’re sorry. Even when the customer is being unreasonable, apologize outright and ask how you might help resolve the issue.
Inquiring how you may be able to further assist shows that you are ready and willing to address anything else the customer needs. If you come across a lost cause, keep it friendly, keep it professional, and keep it cool.
Treat Customers with Genuine Respect
Customers need to be treated with respect. The day you stop talking to them like regular people is the day you lose touch and relevance. After that, you start losing customers and eventually the business.
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So don’t talk to them stiff, remember that it is a conversation. However, also avoid the flipside, which is pandering through pleasantry. Hence, always be consistently helpful and unquestionably genuine. Acknowledge that you completely understand your customer’s concerns and won’t be brushing them off.
In the case of an unhappy customer, a speedy response goes from nice to necessary—complaints are a different beast that benefit from being resolved as soon as possible. Complaining customers want a resolution yesterday. Make responding to them a priority.
Record, Organize and Address Customer Complaints
Give your team a meaningful way to make note of meaningful complaints. Customer complaints are not always a sign that something is wrong. You need to give importance to every message that customers send. Oftentimes, a negative experience can be salvaged and turned into an opportunity.
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Multiple messages from multiple customers with recurring concerns is the beginning of a narrative. The volume of a certain complaint only raises the red flag; you’ll have to carefully decide what to do next. Being able to record, organize and address customer complaints is key to improving your business.
Offer a Solution and Follow Up
Offer a solution to their problem. In this regard, always focus on what you can do as opposed to what you cannot. There is always a solution. It may not be exactly what they are asking for, but if you focus on what you can do versus denying them their requested remedy you have still offered a solution and often merely having another option is sufficient to remedy the situation.
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Making a promise you cannot commit to will only set you back. Remember, when offering a solution, be courteous and respectful. Let the customer know you are willing to take ownership of the issue, even if it was out of your control. Take charge of the situation and let the customer know what you are going to do to solve the problem.
Make sure to follow-up with them to make sure that they are satisfied with the solution and that you have taken care of their concern. If you can manage customer complaints like a pro, even a small gesture can turn the interaction from disaster to a great customer experience.
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