Dealing with criticism can be hard, especially when it’s coming from an impossible-to-please customer and it’s targeted towards the business you’ve worked so hard on growing.
As you face the anger of someone who’s yet to spend a penny but has already found a hundred and one things to moan about, all those sleepless nights spent crunching numbers suddenly seem to count for nothing.
And then there’s the fear that, should you not manage to placate them, you’re going to find yourself and business the subject of a viral, annoyed review – that’s all it takes to destroy your hard-earned reputation and send sales spiralling downwards.
That’s why we’re sharing a few top tips on how to make the most of good and bad customer feedback. Take a look.
Source your own feedback
Let’s face it, unsatisfied customers tend to be much more vocal than happy ones. To get a balanced snapshot of what everyone thinks of your business, the negative and the positive together, get out there and ask them.
Use questback software from Precision Feedback to create surveys and send them out to past customers. Once you’ve got their honest opinions, you’ll have a much clearer sense of what needs work and what’s going down well with your current setup.
Even if you think someone’s being unreasonable in their complaint, always respond in a polite and timely manner. As well as only increasing their frustration, leaving an unhappy customer hanging only makes you look unprofessional.
Make them feel heard by asking questions (it’s also a good way of getting more information out of them about exactly what went wrong) and then make amends. Whether that’s by apologising, offering a refund or giving a discount is entirely up to you.
Share complaints with the whole team
We get that working in customer service can be tough at times, and it’s tempting to downplay problems, but being honest with your team of employees is key to making sure those same situations are avoided in future.
Encourage everyone to take note of any feedback they receive and schedule monthly meetings to go through them all. Having a friendly, relaxed chat about what’s been going on is a great way of blowing off steam and figuring out a solution to any common issues at the same time.
Train other staff
Although we’re sure you try your hardest, you can’t be there to deal with customers 24/7. For peace of mind that everything is running as smoothly as possible in your absence, come up with a strict complaint handling process and train all staff in how to implement it.
As well as putting your fears to rest, having advice and a structured procedure to follow will also help your employees feel more confident when faced with complaints.
Do you have any other top tips on making the most of customer feedback? Leave a comment and let us know.