Even your toughest customers can be turned around at least 99 percent of the time. But it can sometimes take a while to get there. By following these tips you’ll have more of a chance to get your angry customers to become happy customers, or at the very least happy former customers that have nothing bad to say about you.
1. Answer Questions Fast – When anyone sends a question of concern to you, it’s imperative that you answer them fast. Especially in today’s time of "quick everything", if you take longer than 24 to 48 hours to answer your customer they’re going to get angrier.
2. Make It Simple to Contact You – Your customers should be able to contact you in multiple ways. If you sell expensive items, offering a customer service phone number is important. You can contract with a service inexpensively. In addition, offer an online help desk, email customer support, and ticketing systems to make it easy for them to contact you.
3. Listen More – Open your ears and listen to what your customer is saying. It can be difficult sometimes not to be offended. But, the best way to ensure that your customer is happy is to listen to what they say and repeat back to them what they said when you do talk. However, talk less than you think you should. Often your customer will tell you the solution if you’re listening.
4. Provide Customer Training – If your products need additional training, provide that to your customers in all the formats that will work best for them. Text, video, and even live webinars are great ways to help your customers get the most from your offerings.
5. Be Empathetic – It’s always better to put yourself in their shoes when you can. If you can’t see things from someone else’s perspective, it will be very difficult for you to help them. Everything you do is supposed to be from your customers’ perspective. Empathy will go a long way toward helping you do the right thing by your customers.
6. Reflect Calmness – If your customer is irate and even yelling at you, the best thing you can do is not take it personally. This behavior is more about them than about you. Try to listen between the lines to find a solution that will work for them.
7. Learn Elements of Conflict Resolution – Acknowledge the problem, keep your emotions neutral, focus on the problem, seek common ground, and be patient, but know how to decide without wavering.
8. Set Expectations – Obviously, there are limitations to what you can do to please a customer. But, you need to set expectations from the start that the solution is someplace in between two solid points. This is a good way to start any negotiation.
9. Offer Solutions Plus – When you’ve listened enough, and you’ve decided upon a likely solution, offer the solution to them and sweeten the deal just a little bit so that they can’t refuse. You want them to feel like a winner.
10. Know When to Let Go – Sadly, there are times when a customer is too irate and too unreasonable to do much to please them. In this case, you can offer a full refund and if necessary to repay any losses, if that is something that is possible.
Your most outspoken customers can be very helpful to you. Listen carefully to their problems and concerns. You may have other customers who are less easily offended or outspoken but who feel the same way. You can improve your products and services exponentially just by paying attention to your loudest customers.
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