Are your customers satisfied? Undeniably, customer satisfaction is on top of every entrepreneur’s priority list. They actively respond to queries, address concerns, and put every effort into providing the best customer experience. However, dealing with customers isn’t as simple as it sounds. Sometimes, even businesses with an incredible reputation have disputes and arguments problems with angry and difficult customers.
You might come across customers complaining about the product’s quality and demanding their money back. Similarly, there would be impatient people who want product delivery within an hour of their purchase. Instead of getting annoyed by such behavior, entrepreneurs must learn how to deal with fussy customers. You can recruit customer service representatives, quality managers, and most importantly, improve business communication.
You have to ensure customer data is readily available and employees can discuss the issue with each other to find a solution. Here we are also highlighting six communication strategies to help you deal with difficult customers.
- Strengthen Your Communication System
Most entrepreneurs forward the complaints to the customer service department and think they have completed their job. Although sales representatives have to cater to customers, many tasks are beyond their reach. In case of refunds and exchanges requested by customers, the accountants verify if the return will be possible. Similarly, if a customer posts a negative review, representatives have to reach out to the marketing department for damage control.
Unsurprisingly, all this won’t be possible unless the business has open lines of communication. You have to ensure employees can update other departments quickly and resolve the issue. However, instead of relying on WhatsApp or other social forums, you can depend on GetVoIP for strengthening your communication system. It would provide multiple line extensions, HD voice, and video conferencing services. Thus, all departments will be up-to-date with prevailing customer complaints, helping them find the best possible ways to tackle customers.
- Practice Reflective Listening
Unsurprisingly, listening is the most crucial element of communication. Reflective listening requires you to comprehend what the customer is up to by interpreting their body language and words. Hence, don’t argue with the customers. For instance, if the customer is furious because you aren’t offering a discount and he/she has a limited budget, understand the situation.
Then, respond by showing the feeling that you heard the customer. Perhaps, you could repeat what they said to ensure you have understood the sentiment. As you listen, it lets you build rapport with customers. However, never promise to find a solution or help them out until you are one hundred percent sure. The goal of reflective listening is to make your customer feel valued and heard to reduce their frustration.
- Crawl into the Beginner’s Mind
In communication, a beginner’s mind is a strategy to approach every situation as if you were a beginner. With this thinking method, you begin every conversation with a ‘don’t know’ mind that keeps you from prejudging customers or their situation. Likewise, it eliminates the ‘should’ part’ such as the customer should have read the email about discount validity. These statements put the mind on the defensive side and jeopardize the credibility of the conversation before it starts.
Moreover, the Zen mind also encourages people to let go of being an expert. Indeed, you know everything about your products and services. However, it would help if you understood that every customer is different when it comes to customer service. You have to acknowledge the problem with an open mind and start working towards a solution.
- Negotiate with Respect
Sometimes, the clients are rude, disrespectful, and demanding, but it doesn’t mean you have to behave the same way. You must train your staff to handle customers with respect and politely. Try to analyze and understand where the customer is coming from and maintain your professionalism during the conversation. After all, you have to make every possible effort to tone down the customer’s anger instead of infuriating it.
If the business is at fault, politely admit your mistake, apologize, and promise a fair resolution. Otherwise, you can point out the client’s mistake but remember to treat them with dignity. Also, you have to encourage them to say what solution they expect and reach a middle ground. Above all, you have to show customers that they can trust you and do business again in the future. For this, keep reminding the client of the value he/she brings to the company to maintain a healthy relationship.
- Present A Solution
Once you have understood customers’ concerns, you can present different solutions to resolve their problems. Try to explain to them the steps you are taking to solve their grievances—one way to do this by creating a timeline for your customer. You can list out every step you will take and the time required to resolve the problem. In addition to keeping the customers informed, it would strengthen their trust in the company.
Moreover, if you know what will make the client happy, take action straight away. For instance, if the customer wants samples before the deadline, pay your employees overtime and get the work done. However, if the client isn’t content with your offered solution, ask them to identify their preferences. In case their requested resolution isn’t possible, offer to work on another solution together.
- Set A Time to Follow-Up
Some customers agree on a solution, but their grievances don’t finish. Well, dealing with such customers over the phone won’t be possible. Hence, sync up with your manager and file an internal request with the product team to follow up with the client. Also, inform the customer why you can’t handle the issue over the phone and set a meeting. It would give customers enough time to cool down while letting them seek guidance from others about how to proceed.
However, if it seems evident that satisfying the customer will take days and still result in negative referrals, compromise in their favor. It might lead to some upfront costs, but you will get more time to nurture productive customer relationships and boost the business’s profitability.
Every business owner must keep the communication lines open for all its stakeholders – employees and customers. After all, you can’t avoid demanding customers, but you can handle them smartly with the right set of communication strategies. You have to actively listen to their concerns, tap into their mind, and present solutions for resolving the issue. Most importantly, you have to deal with clients in a way that puts your business in a positive light.