Returns, How To Handle Them, And Save The Sale

When someone returns something (that you will refund on)....

The first thing I tell them is that I will refund their money. That sets their mind at ease, so I can find out what the problem is. Starting off by saying " We don't give refunds" is the beginning of an argument. I've had people bring back machines the next day simply because the vacuum cleaner bag was way too full, and the vacuum stopped picking up dirt. Had I started off saying " We don't give refunds" , we never would have found out that the problem is very simple to solve. Solving problems is always more profitable than arguing.

Also, try to let the customer leave happy. Every person is either the Hero or Victim of the story. Let them be the Hero. If you argue to prove a point, they leave unhappy. The only way for them to get even with you, is to tell anyone who will listen, that you are evil, and they were your victim. A hundred of those kind of stories about you can sink your business. I've seen it happen. Ads won't work then, nothing will.

Assure the customer that they can get a refund, try to solve the problem, and make the customer happy. That's what successful companies do. And that's one of the reasons they became successful.

The reason you want to assure the customer that they can get a refund is that it takes all the pent up frustration out of them. When they know that you are going to satisfy them, even if it means giving a full refund, they are much more open to solving any real problems.

Claude Whitacre is the author of the book The Unfair Advantage Small Business Advertising Manual. Claude speaks on small business advertising and retail marketing.

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