Despite being discouraging, customer complaints can constitute constructive feedback. If managed well, nine out of ten times, you’ll be able to keep your clients even after a serious complaint.
Swift complaint resolution is important as
– Gaining new customers is typically more expensive and difficult than satisfying existing ones
– Negative news spread at a quicker pace than positive news (a dissatisfied client will tell 10 friends, a satisfied one 2 or less)
– Fighting negative publicity is time consuming and expensive
Establish some best practices about handling complains:
Empower your front-line employees to understand the situation and try to find a solution. Use scenario planning to practice ways to handle difficult situations and de-escalate the situation.
Provide empathy training for front-liners to listen, acknowledge and attempt to resolve the issue objectively, without finger pointing and blaming.
Establish escalation process and how to deal with exceptions, as needed. Emphasize the imperative to resolve the situation promptly, before hard-earned reputation is impacted. Empower them to act as a single point of contact until the issue is resolved.
Provide the customer with as many details as possible about the steps being taken to remedy the situation, as well as an estimated timeline for completion. If possible, provide several options to the customer on how to proceed.
After a solution is provided, check ad confirm that it is acceptable and offer additional assistance.
Make sure to put in place necessary mechanisms to efficiently deal with complaints in person, by phone email or social media channels.