The 10 Steps Needed for Putting Customer Complaints into Action
Customer complaints are the building blocks that reinforce a business. They are an avenue for a business to right the wrongs that customers pick out and boost customer service. Therefore, they need to be treated seriously. Any business that’s focused on growth cannot afford to disregard its customer complaints.
Here are the steps to follow when handling customer complaints;
Don’t Allow the Discussion to Go Personal
In business, professionalism is always the core. Good customer service is attributed to courtesy and treating customers with respect. Some businesses are known to handle customer complaints rather shallowly. Customer complaints, however personal they may appear, are always a test of humility. So never allow the protests to trigger you against the customer and reply in a way that can be viewed as unprofessional.
Avoid Exchanging Words with the Customer
Arguments in a professional setting never solve a problem. In business, the customer is always held in high esteem. At any time, avoid a back and forth battle of words with the customer even if they are wrong. Acknowledge their concerns, address how you will avoid the problem happening in the future and leave it at that. That will go down as professional. In a duel versus a customer about the business, the customer will always win, so avoid making them angry.
Apologize to them before Responding
When a customer airs complaints, it’s advisable to apologize to them before responding. Use words like ‘I am sorry’ to make them feel that their issue is not petty. Customers want to feel honored and acknowledged. Failing to apologize to them before responding makes them feel under attack. They may even seek to complain on third party platforms if they feel that the business is not appropriately acknowledging their complaint.
Collect the Facts of their Complains
Although many staff members and other businesspeople think that customer complaints are nothing but baseless claims, it is wise to find out the truth before assigning blame to anyone. There very well may be a legitimate reason why the customer puts forth the complaint, and the faster it is looked into, the better for the business.
Enquire the Customer Preferences
In searching for a solution to a customer’s complaint, it’s always good to check with the customer what they prefer. If the complaint was about insufficiency or loopholes in some areas, the management should take the complaint as constructive criticism and build on it. They should esteem to accommodate the customers’ preferences in their business if it’s feasible. If the complaint is based on product quality or fulfillment mistakes, the solution may be as easy as issuing a refund, sending a replacement, or offering a discount.
Offer to Address the Complaint
After a customer has taken their time to explain their concern to you, you must promise them that something will be done. Customers who point out weaknesses tend to have a soft spot for the business and have probably seen where you could improve. Therefore, assure them something will be done to address their concerns. Being proactive about customer complaints shows both current and future customers that you care about their satisfaction.
Do More than they Asked
Whenever you address a customer complaint, it is always good for the business to use that opportunity and do more than they asked. This makes them even more satisfied with how you take their input. Going the extra mile shows that you are flexible as a business to accommodate your customer’s contributions. It also helps boost and widen your business for the better.
Note Down the Customer Details
Recording the customer details after they raise a concern is a smart move. This enables you to reach out later to the customer and assess if they are comfortable with the solution offered to their concern. It is also an avenue to thank them for their input. Such gestures are appealing to customers and make them feel like part of the business.
Record the Concern and the Solution
It is vital for business purposes to record the customer concerns and what the business did to address the problem. This is for referencing and assessment of the customer service that you offer as a business. Tracking things like common customer questions or complaints can aid with future employee training, and it can show you where you can improve.
Follow Up with the Customer
Following up with the customer is a professional way to involve them more in the business. Customers who have a business keeping in contact and appreciating their input are invaluable assets to the business. They form a partnership with the business that profits the business favorably. Customer recommendations to other prospective customers are always better and more influential than any other form of marketing.
Customer complaints in the business world are delicate blocks that need a lot of diplomacy in handling them. If properly managed, they can be a big boost to the business. They are capable of transforming customer service in the business. However, if mishandled, they can be a disaster in waiting for the business. All business owners should esteem to handle customer complaints positively.