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Customer Complaints: Handle With Care

Category: Business English Skills, Language Training | 2018-11-15

For better or worse, sometimes you just can’t please everyone. No matter how successful your business is, it’s more than likely that at some point you’ll have customer complaints.

When a complaint comes through, it’s important to not immediately go on the defensive. Yes, of course you care about your product and want your company to succeed. But a lot of the time, it’s the complaints that really help your company to change, grow, and do better.

So in the spirit of changing for the better, we thought we would give you some tips on how to handle customer complaints.

How to Handle Customer Complaints

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1. Listen

This may seem like a no brainer, but it’s so easy to immediately be on the defensive when someone complains to you about your product or company. It’s important to remember that the customer is not attacking you personally, and that they need someone to listen to their problem so that it can be solved. When you have a problem, don’t you want someone to listen to you, as well?

It can be a good idea to repeat the customer’s problem back to them so that you both know that the problem was understood.

2. Find a Solution ASAP

I used to work for a company that would take weeks to respond to customer complaint emails, which only served to make the problem worse rather than make it go away. When someone emails you or calls you to make a complaint, it’s best to start finding a solution or handling their issue as soon as possible.

Any delay in solving their problem will only make the customer angrier, and could even make the problem worse for your company if they decided to leave a bad review. Speed and efficiency is the name of the game when handling customer complaints!

3. Apologize, Don’t Blame

No one likes playing the blame game…especially your customers. Let’s say you have a product, and a customer was calling to say that the product doesn’t work the way it was advertised. Rest assured, they definitely don’t want to hear, “well you’re just not using it right.” This statement is both aggressive, and places the blame on the customer.

When someone gets in touch with a complaint, it’s usually best to just apologize and start finding a solution for their issue.

4. Get the Customer Involved

When taking down a customer complaint, it’s good practice to get them involved in a solution. This way the customer feels listened to, appreciated, and involved. Ask them what their ideal solution would be, and see if you can find a middle ground from there.

Some customers may want a replacement product, some may want a refund, and some may not want anything at all, but are just letting you know that they are unsatisfied. No matter what, try to find a way to compensate them for the inconvenience. Handling customer complaints in this way can help you retain loyal customers for years to come.

5. Record All Complaints

Perhaps one of the most important things to do when handling customer complaints is to record all complaints. This way, your company can see if there are any trends or common things that people complain about. They can then use this information to change the company for the better, and refine products along the way.

As difficult as it can be to handle customer complaints, they’re an important aspect in the growth of a company. A company can’t improve if it doesn’t know what to improve, so recording customer complaints can be useful to the overall health of a company.

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Putting it All Together

With these tips for customer complaints, you are now prepared to better handle your customer service. How do you handle customer complaints? Share your tips with us in the comments below!
And remember: If you would like to improve your Business English, sign up for our monthly newsletter. You will receive a 7-day FREE TRIAL of our online English course, where you will find more tips, articles and exclusive deals. Thanks for reading!

Cheers!

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