When Joyce received a defective product from an online shopping site, she was completely taken aback. It was supposed to be a birthday gift for her nephew. The day after the delivery, she decided to raise her grievances to the customer relations of the shopping site.
The point of sharing this story is to emphasize the fact that customers are the driving force for the success of any business. While running your business, it is quite possible that you will encounter many upset consumers like Joyce. Are you clueless about strategies to turn their frustration into satisfaction? Read this post to know effective ways to deal with an unhappy customer.
1. Listening is an art to appease your consumers
The most significant thing about placating an upset consumer is to listen to him/her. This way, you’ll gain a clear idea of the consumer’s problems. Read the feedback carefully and feel free to ask questions if you need clarity.
It’s also important for you to know that their feedback will ultimately benefit your business. Utilize it as an opportunity to nurture your connection with your customer. It’s pivotal that you listen to them so that you can focus on solving their problem.
Recommended for you: How Customer Segmentation Can Enhance Your Marketing Strategy.
2. Learn to read between the lines
Sometimes a consumer is able to articulate his/her displeasure properly. However, more often than not, they fail to do so.
For instance, if they’re conveying their disappointment about your return policy, it probably isn’t because of the loss of a couple of dollars or pounds. Rather, it has more to do with feeling cheated and a stark lack of trust in your services.
You have to decipher what they’re writing and what they actually mean. Only then you will be able to address the particular pain point.
3. Offer sincere apologies
While maintaining a relationship, people need to decide if they want to be right or happy. The same principle applies to your customers as well.
In this case, you have two choices. You can completely hold your ground and tell the consumers that they’ve made a mistake, or you can check to see if you went wrong and sincerely apologize for it. You might find that there’s some issue from your end that the customer didn’t take kindly. That’s what compelled them to raise their grievances.
Don’t just offer a generic apology. Determine where you went wrong, admit it, and present a heartfelt apology. People want to feel acknowledged and heard. So, no matter how trivial the issue might be, an earnest apology can go the longest way.
4. Don’t make it personal
Always try to stay calm, because the consumer’s behavior will be influenced by the way you use your language. Don’t be defensive while conversing with the clients, as this will likely result in further conflict. You need to understand that their frustration isn’t aimed at you.
When you genuinely apologize for their inconvenience and empathize with them, they will appreciate it and notice that you’re making a sincere effort to placate them. Ultimately, be confident that you are treading in the positive direction to a resolution and retaining a happier consumer.
5. Let the power of empathy take over
See to it that you put yourself in your customer’s shoes to understand their predicament. By having a sense of empathy for your customer’s situation, you will automatically be able to decide how to respond to your customer’s concern.
Empathy plays a pivotal role in everyday relationships, and the same is applicable to business-customer relationships as well.
6. Don’t forget to thank them
You must thank them for giving you the chance to make things right. Your customers need to be assured that it is alright to complain about something they feel is not meeting their expectations.
In fact, you should treat raising grievances and complaining to be a simple process that might be dealt over text, phone, email, in person, or through some other methods of communication.
7. Provide effective solutions to solve their issues
When you have sufficient idea about the issues that your consumers are talking about, only then will you be able to come up with ways to solve their problems. You can provide a suggestion to the client, and if it fails to satisfy him/her, then try offering another one.
Another alternative approach is to ask them directly what they expect you to do. Even if you are unable to provide what they are asking for, you can talk about the alternatives. Ultimately, by having a one-on-one conversation with the consumers, you can motivate them to keep their faith in you.
8. Acknowledge that your consumers are individuals
Irrespective of whether there is an issue or not, always treat your clients as an individual. Address them by their names, and show that you are aware of their details through your previous interactions with them. There are amazing advantages that personalized experience can offer.
One small perk of personalization is that the transaction rates boost at least six times with personalized emails. Another benefit is customer loyalty, which springs from receiving a great experience.
Providing a personalized experience is not only a matter of being courteous, but it also makes your customer feel important. In addition, they will also see you as another human being, instead of a nameless entity from an elusive organization.
9. Act immediately
Living in the world ruled by instant gratification, it’s really easy for consumers to share their concerns through social media and various review sites. What happens when you don’t address those claims? They’re going to continue to increase, and end up haunting the reputation of your business in the days to come.
So, the moment you are aware of an issue, take proper action. You can inform the consumers that you’re looking into the matter and will get back to them at the earliest. Such responses indicate that you’re not ignoring them.
10. Make yourself accessible to your consumers
Now, this doesn’t indicate that you have to be available at your consumer’s service 24×7. However, it’s important that your customers are able to reach you when they need your support. So, you need to make sure that the clients have more than one way to get in touch with you.
Your consumer’s happiness is your priority. After all, the prosperity of your business relies on them.
You may also like: Best Ways to Anticipate Customer Needs (Infographic).
Wrapping it up
Dealing with an upset consumer is never simple. You need to let your client voice his/her concern and show your empathy and patience. Doing this will help the consumers to understand that there’s a human being on the other side of the computer screen or phone, and you can alter their negative perception into satisfaction.
This article is written by Gracie Anderson. Gracie is a Senior Marketing Manager at a reputed firm in Australia. She has been in this field for close to a decade and she is a ghostwriter at MyAssignmenthelp.com by choice. She has acquired her degree from the University of West Australia.
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