How To Dramatically Reduce Refunds

No small business owner likes to have unhappy prospects or customers. And yet, there are quick, easy and simple ways to dramatically reduce customer dissatisfaction, requests for refunds as well as product returns.

Conducting a customer satisfaction survey is one of the easiest ways to reduce customer dissatisfaction while simultaneously increasing the length of time they buy from you. When done properly, this strategy can reduce "buyer's remorse" since it provides you with the unique opportunity to overcome any last minute objections the customer may have formulated in their mind post purchase… while offering you an additional opportunity to reinforce the benefits they will receive from your product or service.

Simultaneously, this strategy often results in your customers agreeing to provide you with the names of referrals as well as giving you riveting testimonials.

Here's the process to follow for best results. Call all customers who have recently purchased from you and ask them the following questions. "On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being excellent, how satisfied are you with your purchase?" Let them answer. You then follow up with this second question (no matter what their answer was). "Why did you answer that way?" Listen carefully to their response and record all the details. If they give you negative responses, never attempt to contradict their answers or engage them in an argument.

If they respond by saying, "My experience was horrific. I would rate it a 1 out of 10." Once they stop speaking, immediately acknowledge the problem (but don't agree with it). Instead, say "I can certainly understand why you would feel that way." Then look for opportunities to solve the problem to their satisfaction. If they reject your offers, then ask them, "what would you like to see happen at this point that would solve this problem to your satisfaction?" If you can accommodate their request, immediately offer to do so. If you can't, say "I don't think I can make that happen for you, but here's what I can do…" and give them your best alternative solution.

In many cases, this prevents them from requesting a refund… and it certainly reduces the chances for negative publicity. Remember that anyone can use social media these days to say anything about anyone. The last thing you want is for bad publicity to wind up online.

You can also create policies so if they respond on the low end of the survey scale they're immediately transferred to a senior manager. If they answer on the upper end of the survey scale, then the customer can be asked for their suggestion regarding additional ways the experience could be improved.

If they rate you on the survey with a 9 or 10, you can ask them to detail the positive experiences they encountered… and then be sure you ask them for a referral or a testimonial.

This isn't something you must undertake on your own. You can easily train your staff in this simple process. If refunds or returns are becoming a concern to you in your business, you might investigate the possibility of hiring someone to contact these customers on a part time basis. They could work from their home and this simple strategy could potentially cut your returns by 50%... possibly more.

This one simple tactic could help you to dramatically increase your customer satisfaction ratings, uncover hidden customer service issues you may be unaware of and help you acquire many more referrals and testimonials.