How to Deal with Angry Customers: 12+ Tips that Always Work
- 15 Sep 2023
How to Deal with Angry Customers: 12+ Tips that Always Work
Within a Cloud Contact Center where hundreds, if not thousands, of tickets flow in, managing angry customers isn’t a simple task.
Successfully navigating these situations, however, plays a critical role in fostering customer loyalty and reducing friction.
Dealing with Angry Customers
Imagine you’re a customer support agent in a bustling Cloud Contact Center. The phone rings, and on the other end is a disgruntled customer, venting about an unresolved issue they’ve faced multiple times. The pressure is on to pacify them and find a solution, all while maintaining the image and reputation of your company.
To sail smoothly through the stormy waters of customer complaints, we must take a look at what makes a customer angry in the first place.
What Makes a Customer Angry?
Every customer is different, with unique preferences and pain points. However, there are some common threads that seem to ignite frustration among the majority.
Understanding these can give agents a proactive edge in tackling issues even before they escalate. Here are some typical triggers:
- Unresolved issues: When a customer faces the same problem repeatedly without a clear resolution, it can lead to mounting frustration.
- Long wait times: We’ve all been here — nobody enjoys waiting, especially when they need immediate assistance. For customers seeking urgent support, prolonged waiting periods can heighten their agitation.
- Miscommunication: When promises don’t match deliverables, it’s a recipe for disappointment. Miscommunication can stem from ambiguous terms, misinformation, or even language barriers, leading to a mismatch in expectations.
- Feeling undervalued: Every customer, regardless of the size of their purchase or the frequency of their engagement, wants to feel important and valued. If they sense indifference or a lack of respect, it can rapidly sour their experience.
Understanding these triggers and the underlying concerns of your angry customer is a crucial step toward resolution.
How to deal with angry customers: 12 tips
Now that we’ve covered why your customers might be angry to begin with, we must take a look at how to resolve their frustrations.
Fortunately, there are time-tested and proven methods for dealing with upset customers that can turn a negative customer experience into a positive customer experience.
Tip #1: Listen Actively The foremost step is to listen. More than a solution, sometimes the customer just wants to be heard. Let them share their grievances without interruptions. For example, say, “I apologize and understand your concern. Please tell me more about your issue, so I can best help you.”
Tip #2: Empathize with Their Situation Show genuine concern for their issues. A simple statement like, “I’ve been there,” or, “I can imagine that was frustrating,” can bridge the gap between the company and the customer.
Tip #3: Stay Calm and Professional No matter how heated the situation, maintain your cool. Responding with calm reassures the customer. Instead of saying, “You’re wrong,” you might say, “Let’s find out what went wrong.”
Tip #4: Use Positive Language Focus on what can be done rather than what cannot. Instead of “We can’t immediately process your refund,” say, “We will process your refund within 48 hours.”
Tip #5: Offer Solutions, Not Blame Shifting the blame doesn’t help. Focus on finding a viable solution for the customer. Offer them a workaround if an immediate solution isn’t available.
Tip #6: Apologize Sincerely An honest apology can go a long way. “I’m truly sorry for the inconvenience you’ve faced,” conveys empathy and acknowledgment.
Tip #7: Offer Follow-Up Check-ins After resolving an issue, make a note to follow up with the customer after a day or two. This shows proactive concern and might prevent future grievances.
Tip #8: Stay Informed Know your product or service inside out. If you’re unsure about something, tell the customer, “Give me a moment. I’ll find out for you.”
Tip #9: Offer Alternative Solutions If a direct solution isn’t possible, offer alternatives. “Although X isn’t available right now, may I suggest trying Y?”
Tip #10: Stay Patient and Don’t Take Offense It’s essential to remember that the customer isn’t angry with you, but with the situation. Patience can help in understanding the core issue better.
Tip #11: Seek Feedback Post-resolution, request feedback. Simply asking “Is there anything else I can help you with?” or “How can we serve you better next time?” can provide key insights.
Tip #12: Document the Interaction Ensure that every interaction is logged and available for review down the line. This will help in future communications and will serve as a reference for recurrent issues.
More tips for dealing with angry customers
Bonus Tip #1: Avoid Over-Promising It’s crucial to set realistic expectations. If you cannot guarantee a resolution within a specific timeframe, don’t promise it. Instead, give a timeframe you’re sure you can meet, and if possible, try to exceed that expectation.
Bonus Tip #2: Use Their Name Personalize the conversation by using the customer’s name during the interaction. This small touch can make the conversation feel more human and let the customer know they’re not just another ticket number.
Bonus Tip #3: Continuous Training The world of customer service is constantly evolving. Regularly train your team on new tools, techniques, and soft skills. This ensures they’re always prepared with the latest knowledge to handle a variety of situations.
Reduce Customer Friction to Create Loyalty
Resolving a customer’s issue promptly can transform their experience from frustrating to fantastic. It’s all about the approach and perspective. A satisfied customer not only sticks around but also becomes a brand ambassador, spreading positive word-of-mouth.
Dealing with angry customers can be challenging, but with the correct approach, it can be turned into an opportunity to cultivate customer loyalty. Patience, empathy, and a problem-solving mindset can provide even the most irate customer with a positive customer experience.
Looking to level-up your customer service motion? Our cloud contact center offers a simple workspace for customer service teams that seamlessly combines your customer conversations with your existing systems.
Set up some time with us to share your business needs and get started with a free trial.
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