The Surprising Thing You Must Do To Get Your Customer Service Complaints Heard

If you're finding yourself more dissatisfied with your purchases since the onset of the pandemic, you are not alone. From trouble with returns to delayed shipping and more, customer complaints have been on the uptick this year, according to the aptly named 2020 National Customer Rage Study. The findings, which were released by Customer Care Measurement & Consulting in collaboration with the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University and Kraft Heinz, revealed that 66 percent of consumers experienced a product or service problem in the last 12 months, up from 56% in 2017 (via The Wall Street Journal). What's more, almost half of those posting complaints on social media did not get a response.

"Customers draw the conclusion that their time complaining is not worthwhile when they believe they are not being heard," said Adrian Paul, VP of customer and product support at Honeywell Automation and Control Solutions, in an interview for Arizona State University. However, Paul points out that receiving a prompt, effective response provides companies with a "tremendous opportunity," making it beneficial to their bottom lines to keep customers loyal.

The smart action you can take to voice your complaint

If your appeals through social media aren't getting a response, pick up the phone and start dialing. Instead of selecting customer service when you get the automated attendant, try opting for a different department, such as accounts or new customers."This may get you talking to a real person who will be able to help you," writes consumer affairs expert Miles Brignall in The Guardian. He adds, "don't forget to be polite and never swear, however frustrated you have become. Call [center] workers will try to help those they like."

Once you do get a person on the phone, don't be shy about clearly stating your expectations. According to the customer rage study, 43 percent of respondents were satisfied with a monetary solution, 50 percent found peace with non-financial compensation such empathy or an explanation, and 60 percent reported being more satisfied with customer service when they got both (via The Wall Street Journal).