Complaints are never nice to receive. It can really knock your confidence however you also need to look at it in a positive way. If you didn’t receive these complaints, then you would never know what to improve on. We all get them…a handful of clients that love a good moan but behind every complaint or moan there will be something you can improve on to make ourselves even better, even if it’s tiny.
How is best to handle your complaints?
Always respond as soon as possible.
When we are busy doing clients all day, it is very easy to think ‘I will reply to that later’ or be irritated and think they can wait for a reply. Then later never comes as life just gets busy. You want to make sure you reply as soon as possible. Always thank them for their review/feedback, apologise and respond with how you are going to fix the issue. Make sure your response is very friendly and coming from a place of care. Don’t get defensive, it won’t do you any favours.
The client is always right.
This isn’t always correct but we need to make them FEEL like they are all while delivering a little add in education. The client is right in the way they feel and how they felt their experience or treatment was carried out. They may lack the education you could have given them which also means that you can turn this complaint around. For example, a client emails to say she had lashes done two weeks ago. She hardly has any lashes remaining and her natural lashes are falling out. She isn’t happy that she paid £80 for this to happen. That is a complaint but it is also a lack of education. The aftercare needed to be explained in more depth and the process of the lash cycle. Your client would then understand that this is normal. You would respond to this, apologise that she isn’t happy, educate her on the process and offer to pop back for an infill. Totally up to you as the business owner if you want to do this for free, discount or full price.
Make sure you share with the team.
If you have a team, it’s always important to share back to them the reviews and feedback.
Some business owners avoid this as they don’t want to hurt the team member or knock their confidence. I completely understand and you should always have your team members back in the face of a complaint but you should always share with them what is happening and ways they can improve. We can only excel in our careers by learning and that’s by feedback.
Responding to a bad online review.
Nowadays there are so many more ways for clients to leave a review online through sources like Facebook and Google. We all have those heart dropping moments when a 1-star review pings up. Again, I would always reply to these, so other potential clients can see your customer service shining through and see that whatever experience the other client had, is now sorted. If you receive a review like this, I would first call or email the client to try and resolve it so then you can write back on the open review ‘Thank you so much for your review, I am glad we have now sorted this out’. If you can’t reach them, you can reply to the open review by saying ‘I am so sorry to hear this, we want to sort this ASAP but we can’t get through to you. Please could you give me a call’. Then to anyone looking at the reviews they can see how professional you are. A lot of the time, if you do resolve this with the client that’s complaining they will take the review down which is a bonus!
Good customer service is key when handling complaints. You can easily turn that bad review into a loyal happy customer if it is dealt with correctly. Someone that’s not happy is likely to tell five other people about their experience. A client that is happy is likely not to tell many people at all. We need to make sure we capture and support the unhappy clients to avoid spreading bad word-of-mouth.
I hope this helps. Reach out and let me know how you deal with customer complaints and if this article helped you. You can email firstname.lastname@example.org.