With the very name of it, the term customer complaints reflect something wrong or negative. It is quite right to an extent, but you can change the game by simply changing your approach towards it. Once you start looking at customer complaints as an opportunity to grow and improve, you will no more feel afraid of the term customer complaints.
It is rightly said that “Imagine your customer is your best friend—listen to their concerns, be a shoulder to lean on and then shift the focus from what went wrong to how you can help make it right.”
First of all, you must understand those unsatisfied/unhappy customers are an inevitable part of any business regardless of the efforts you put in to deliver the highest quality products. You cannot skip complaints management if you want to improve and continuously make your customers loyal and raving fans.
In addition to your approach, you need to upgrade the traditional tools and techniques for handling complaints. Manual systems are no more effective and efficient enough in managing customer complaints in a timely and compliant manner. As we advance, we will look at 11 effective tips on managing customer complaints in this post.
1. Keep your team ready with answers to common complaints
Quick resolutions to customer complaints often help you retain your business reputation. All you need to do is create a well-organized, easily accessible database of the quality issues and their respective resolutions, especially for the ubiquitous ones. It will increase your customer success team’s productivity and satisfaction that all the reported events are timely taken care of. It reflects your commitment to excellent customer services, increasing their loyalty towards your brand.
“If you build a great experience, customers tell each other about that. Word of mouth is very powerful.” Says Jeff Bezos, CEO & President of Amazon.com.
2. Provide the relevant details move to your customer across channels
The rising demand for omnichannel support has made it even more challenging to provide excellent customer service across multiple companies’ channels. And, customers don’t care about such difficulties. They only need timely support and resolution for the complaints they have reported. If they have to report the same complaint for more than three times, they will not likely come back or recommend your brand to anyone.
This is why; the enterprise must implement a cloud-based complaints management system that would enable their customer success team to store, manage, and access their customer data from a centralized database, making communication better and effective.
3. Keep track of common customer complaints
This is never a case that only one customer experiences a quality issue, and no other customer ever reports about it. If there is an issue with the product and services, multiple customers face the same. You must have a complaint system to track all the similar complaints and their trends to ensure your customers’ best resolution. You may identify some common issues that you can record in a database for consistent quality resolution every time.
All you need to do is provide your customer success team an effective complaint management system to manage the angry customers in a timely and best possible manner.
4. Understand the customer type
Every business must understand that they cannot have a one-size-fits-all strategy for their customers. Every customer is unique; so are their requirements in terms of quality as well as complaints resolution. You must understand the type of customer you are dealing with and the specific situation. There are cases where your customer might be expecting a simple apology or a refund for the services charge they haven’t used.
The organization may implement a training management system to train its customer success team to handle different customer types, including the most difficult ones. It reflects that you are customer-oriented.
5. Make sure you talk to customers in the right tone of voice
It often becomes challenging to stay calm and retain the normal tone of voice, especially when handling difficult customers who aren’t ready to listen. It’s tricky to balance but once achieved, you will deliver a good customer experience. The solution is straightforward – just imagine yourself in the customer’s place, as they say, put yourself in their shoes, and then you will know their pain. Even simple responses like “I Understand” or “We regret that you have such experience” can do wonders for your brand.
Have reasonable control over the language you use with your customer even if it is their fault, and you can easily make a big difference.
6. Listen carefully to respond, not react
It is a human tendency to react quickly without even listening and understanding what another person is trying to convey. And, it’s a strict no-no in customer service because your customers are already upset. All they want is to be heard. Don’t quickly suggest anything. Take time to thoroughly understand the issue and repeat the issue once to confirm that you understood what they are trying to convey.
You must remember the classic relationship advice that “Listen Before You Respond’ every time you talk to your angry customers so that they feel heard and acknowledged for the issues they have faced.
7. Admit the Mistakes
You are likely to receive complaints that are beyond your control. That’s where many businesses fail to meet customer expectations. As we have already discussed above, sometimes your customers just want to feel heard and acknowledged. If you tell your customers that they are right and are sorry that they felt disappointed, it will ensure that you care for your customers and look forward to improving.
You must understand every customer feedback is crucial for your business improvement. Unless you know where you can get better, you won’t be able to work towards it.
8. Communicate effectively
The more clearly you will communicate with your customers, the more likely you win their confidence and loyalty. Always tell your customers how much time it may take to resolve a particular issue, whether you will determine the same or some other team will take care of it. It will help your customers set some realistic expectations from your side. Even if the resolution takes longer, communicate it to your customer. Some of them may try to understand the situation while some may not.
What is important here is that you are doing best to communicate honestly with your customers and do everything it takes to provide the best resolution to your customers.
9. Give customers the best possible solution
Once you understand the customer complaint, follow up with the relevant teams, and even investigate the best solution. All that matters to the customers is that you heard them and come back with a reasonable solution. It is not possible to live up to their expectations every time. But when you put in best efforts to find a resolution, you are giving your customers to trust your brand for excellent service and the best possible solution for their complaint.
Focus on finding the best resolution, and customer satisfaction will automatically follow.
10. Don’t hesitate to go the extra mile to resolve the complaint
You follow up on the complaint resolution, and you may need to go the extra mile to find the best possible solution. It’s not the time to think. If you have the capacity, act on it. Exceeding your customer expectation often pays off well because your customers are likely to recommend you for the positive experience they had. For example – you can offer them future discounts or specialized offers, and much more.
The key to maintaining a brand’s reputation lies in the customer experience.
11. Implement A New Age Complaints Management Software
We have already discussed the use of next-generation complaints management software at different stages of handling and managing customers complaints. You can invest in a comprehensive, cloud-based complaints management system that can help create a centralized database of customer data and complaints. It will increase the complaint trends’ visibility and traceability to make informed decisions to achieve the organization’s operational excellence. You can easily find software that will make complaints management easy and make regulatory reporting and submissions simpler than ever.
Hope these tips help you address customer issues more effectively than ever. Once you will have a streamlined and standardized complaints management process, you can significantly improve your process, product, and service quality while complying to applicable regulatory standards.
Do you have a powerful complaints management system in place, yet?
The Bottom Line
Effective management of customer complaints and regulatory reporting is an inevitable part of every regulated industry. Hence, you must have a standardized complaints management process that can help turning customer complaints into excellent opportunities to grow. You can utilize powerful complaints management software like Qualityze to make things simple and straightforward.
For more information, you can get in touch with the Qualityze customer success team on 1-877-207-8616 or write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will be right there for you.