customer complaints

How to handle customer complaints : In Company

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Angry emails, negative online reviews, awkward in-person encounters, negative tweets, or unwanted phone calls may be one form of customer complaint.

Customer complaints result from your product, staff, or service failing to meet expectations. Even though handling customer complaints is difficult and uncomfortable, it is an indispensable part of the business.

If your business relies on word-of-mouth marketing and customer service, you need a process for sourcing, hearing, responding to, and fixing customer complaints.

customer complaints

As part of this post, we’ll provide a step-by-step process for responding to customer reviews and complaints, tips for gathering customer feedback, and best practices for resolving the problem.

With HubSpot’s free Review Response Templates, you can develop a strategy for responding to online customer complaints sincerely and consistently. You can access the prompts for free by clicking here.

It is possible to receive a complaint from a customer through different channels, such as Google Reviews, a phone call, or even a handwritten letter. To resolve each issue, a different level of frustration will be expressed, and a unique solution will be required. However, developing and relying on a roadmap to respond to these complaints is a necessary first step. This approach should be customized for every customer interaction from there customer complaints.

1. The customer complaint should be listened to or read.

When you receive a customer complaint, you should first listen to the issue and focus on what the customer is experiencing. Whether it’s a price increase, a dissatisfying meal, or a service outage, your customer is expressing frustration.

While it may be tempting to ignore online reviews, give the same time and attention to customers who provide feedback digitally as you would to in-person customers. Respond promptly and thoughtfully to online complaints as soon as you receive them.

Complaints rarely exist in a vacuum; if one customer brings you this complaint, several others keep quiet about it.

Give your full attention and empathy to a customer’s complaint.

2. Give the criticism some time to sink in.

Some feedback can hit hard. Acknowledging that you let a customer down isn’t easy, but getting to the bottom of the problem is essential to resolving the issue.

Getting this feedback online – such as through a review or social media – gives you time to understand where the customer is coming from. Take this opportunity to reflect on what you did wrong. Additionally, you can use this extra time to speak with your employees and investigate what happened. This is if you served this customer directly or were absent when the incident occurred.

It’s difficult to process criticism in real time, like over the phone or in person. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes sooner rather than later. Prioritize fixing the issue, which can only be accomplished by listening carefully to the complaint and digesting its meaning.

3. Determine what action you will take to address the problem.

By setting up an action plan for commonly occurring customer complaints, you’ll know how to resolve the issue immediately after listening to the details.

It’s common for complaints to come out of the left field, and you’re trying to figure out what to do. Be honest with your customers if you need time to think about the right action. Let them know you need time to figure out how to make it up to them and offer a timeline for when you’ll get back to them – or better yet, ask them what they require and see if you can accommodate their request.

4. Thank the customer for their feedback.

It would be best if you always said “thank you for letting me know” when responding to a complaint. We’ve mentioned this a few times, but it’s crucial – most customers who complain want to be heard.

No matter how uncomfortable the customer’s comments make you at the moment, it would be best if you still thanked them for their insight. Feedback can radically improve your customer service because it contains valuable information.

5. Reiterate your apology and understanding.

After thanking the customer, apologize for what happened and express empathy by explaining your understanding of the situation. Doing this will show your customer that you’ve listened to or read their complaint carefully. In addition, restating the issue can help you avoid misinterpretations.

Let’s say an account manager for an eCommerce platform receives an email from her client that his online payment system has temporarily gone down. This is how the response should begin:

Throughout this response, the company thanks the customer for sharing feedback. It apologizes for the issue, explains what led to the situation, and shows an understanding of how the issue affected the customer. As a result, the customer should understand that his account representative values his business and appreciates his feedback.

6. Outline your plan for resolving the issue.

Whenever a customer’s experience is unsatisfactory, you should apologize and explain how you will resolve the issue. It is unlikely that this issue would have been handled well if the example above had ended after those two paragraphs. A proper response to a customer complaint is complete with an explanation of what happens next.

Resolving customer complaints has become commonplace today. Offer your customers a gift certificate as an incentive to give your business another chance. You will be able to win back customers by providing them with a better experience customer complaints.

The product team has made this problem their new priority, so it to not occur again. Our team identified the cause of the issue quickly and will work to prevent a similar outage from happening again.

As a result, we would like to make this right. I was able to waive your software fees for this month and next. I would be happy to assist you if you still await a credit in your account within 3-5 business days. This compensates for the loss your business suffered during the outage.

7. Offer follow-up information and thank the customer again.

Your customer should feel satisfied with the resolution of the issue if you have followed the steps up until now.Follow up with follow-up information or instructions if the customer needs to contact you again.Online reviews contain much less back-and-forth discussion (if any) than complaints made via email, phone, social media, or in person. When leaving a negative online review, consider leaving the name, number, and email address of the person to contact. This is so the customer can follow up with the right person.To offer a solution, you may need more time. Provide your contact information and let the customer know when you will follow up.

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