How to Respond to Negative Customer Feedback

We all want positive feedback, but sometimes we don’t get it. Receiving negative feedback isn’t necessarily a bad thing since only 1 out of 26 unhappy customers complain and the rest churn. So, it’s certainly better to receive negative feedback than have an unhappy customer go to a competitor without telling you there’s a problem. Knowing about the problem or issue provides the opportunity to rectify the situation and retain the customer.

Don’t Avoid Negative Feedback

Ask for all sorts of feedback—it’s the only way you can improve. Plus, it’s what your customers want–to form a partnership with you that creates value for them. The best way to stay on top of continuously changing customer requirements is to communicate and request feedback during each interaction. Conducting Voice of Customer (VOC) surveys on a routine basis is critical as well to ensure you’re receiving feedback from all stakeholders, providing a more complete picture of the overall health of your accounts.

Make sure you Understand

When presented with feedback, especially negative feedback, pay close attention to word choices, tone of voice, and body language. Read between the lines to discern what’s being said and not said. Rephrase what you heard to confirm understanding. Then dig deeper by asking open-ended clarifying questions to get details and a better grasp on the situation. Find out what’s behind the negative feedback such as changes within your client’s business or their goals. The more you know, the better equipped you’ll be to address the issue and continue providing value to the customer.

Identify with your Customer

Once you have a greater understanding of the feedback and its background, put yourself in your customer’s shoes and show empathy. Be sensitive to how they must feel and how their negative experience may have impacted them. Feeling that you not only understand what they have told you, but how they feel, will be reassuring to them while making them feel valued.

Take Responsibility and Take Action

Don’t pass the buck by playing the blame game. Take responsibility for the issue and commit to resolving it by making a plan. Once you have a strategy in place, communicate it across your entire team to ensure you’re all on the same page. This allows all team members to adjust accordingly and provide a consistent customer experience during future interactions while preventing a recurrence of the problem.

Follow up

Once you have a plan in place, be sure to share your corrective action plan with the customer. Then, follow up routinely to keep them abreast of your progress and to gather updated feedback. Make any necessary adjustments to your plan based on continuous feedback from the customer until they confirm the problem has been resolved to their satisfaction.

Document Changes

Always update your account plan in Kapta, capturing changes you’re making based on feedback received from your key accounts. This is essential so you can continue to track your progress within each account while making sure nobody drops the ball. This also facilitates input from and communication with your entire team making it possible to provide the best customer experience and results.

Repeat Frequently

Request feedback from your customers on a routine basis during every interaction and through VOC surveys. All feedback is a gift enabling you to continually strengthen your partnership with your key accounts and provide the value they desire.

Need help gathering and addressing feedback from your key accounts? Kapta includes tools like VOC surveys and facilitates internal communication with your team, simplifying the process. Schedule a demo today.


Content Writer at Kapta