In a perfect world, all of our customers would always be happy—so happy that they would tell all of their friends about our business and keep us loaded to the brim with satisfied customers.
But the world doesn’t work like that. Every now and then, even businesses with stellar customer service and a very high success rate gets a disgruntled customer for some reason or another. The trick to making sure this anger is short-lived is in knowing how to handle these types of customers.
Even if you are 100% certain a customer is in the wrong, you must always live by the clichéd motto of “The customer is always right.”
In the event that you run into an angry customer, try out these strategies to turn them into a happy customer.
Take Them Seriously: This goes for those of you that are sure you’re 100% right. Hear them out. This way, you understand their problem and when it turns out you were really only 99% certain, you can work together to resolve that 1%.
Treat Them With Respect: If you fail to treat an irate customer with respect, they will probably grow even angrier. Always lead the conversation with comments similar to “I certainly understand your frustration.” Under no circumstances should you ever turn the situation around on them, trying to place blame.
Offer Solutions: Your angry customer isn’t looking for someone to console them or clam them down. No, they want action. They want solutions. After you explain your own solutions to the problem, ask them what they’d like to see in order to have their problem resolved. Work with them instead of cowering in fear or worrying about losing the customer.
Follow Up: After you’ve worked together to resolve the issue, give them a few days to cool off. Then follow up with an e-mail or phone call to make sure they are fully satisfied. Take this opportunity to apologize once again and let them know that you appreciate their business.
A happy customer means referrals are on the way. Angry customers that have been reformed to happy customers are often the best people to sing your praises as they have seen your problem solving skills and the extent of your customer service.