8 Tough Customer Service Challenges And How To Solve Them

The fact is that 54% of customers now have higher expectations for customer service. Particularly among consumers ages from 18-34, where this stat jumps to 66%. Consequently, more than ever, those in customer service roles need to be on top of their game to attract more customers and help grow a loyal following. However, we all know that it isn’t as simple as applying traditional solutions- so in this short article, we’ll break down 8 customer service challenges and then how to solve them. 

8 Tough Customer Service Challenges And How To Solve Them

1. Not having the information to answer a customer’s query.

The first customer service challenge is quite common, so we already advise that anyone who works in a customer service role should have impeccable product knowledge. However, sometimes it’s possible to get caught off-guard and without the correct information to hand.

The fundamental solution to this predicament is to avoid being unclear in your response. Hence, if you don’t know the answer – that’s okay, just acknowledge the difficulty of the question to the customer and advise them that you’ll need some of their patience while you find the solution.

2. Simultaneously serving multiple customers.

The second customer service challenge centres around simultaneously serving customers, quickly becoming messy for those who tend to panic. However, the key solution to this challenge is simply communicating with customers that you may take longer, and they may have to wait for a solution. Most customers are willing to compromise, understand and wait their turn – but don’t take this for granted. Ultimately, you need to work quickly to ensure you’re not leaving customers alone for a long time.

3. Customers want a discount you can’t give.

Discounts can be a great way to promote a campaign and quickly draw in new customers. However, it also seriously devalues your brand, product or services in your customers’ eyes. For this reason, you need to use them sparingly to ensure a feeling of exclusivity. Furthermore, suppose customers are enquiring about receiving a past promotion. In that case, the worst thing you can do is say no. Instead, you should be flexible and find another perk of the same perceived value if possible to offer.

4. Dealing with a service outage or a crisis.

Emergencies happen; it’s inevitable, and usually, there’s nothing you can do if there’s a service outage. However, you can control how you handle and command the situation. Therefore, the solution is to follow a crisis communication plan, which advises employees precisely what to do and when. It’s imperative to apologise to customers and stay in constant contact with periodic updates to reassure them that everything possible is happening to resolve the situation as quickly as possible.

5. Customers want a feature you can’t or won’t add.

It’s great when customers love what you do best; however, it’s always hard to say no to these loyal customers when they request something you can’t provide.

Therefore dealing with this particular challenge requires tact, a positive tone and the ability to formulate an alternative solution or offer.

6. Firing challenging customers.

It’s sad but true; sometimes, you need to fire challenging customers. The negatives start to outweigh the benefits when employees spend too much sweat, tears and coffee on challenging customers.

So, how do you tactfully deal with this sensitive issue? The thing is, there is no benchmark standard for this sort of thing. Instead, it purely depends on what behaviour your business is willing to accept from customers and sticking to those rules. For example, most businesses do not tolerate:

  • Abusive language.
  • Threats of a smear campaign on review sites unless their demands are met.
  • Customers threatening to prompt unjust chargebacks.

7. Dealing with case escalation and queue optimisation.

When dealing with the challenge of case escalation, businesses often find that creating a swift resolution process is key to receiving complex cases quicker. More so, because most cases can be solved quickly and easily by referring the customer to a FAQ or chatbot, critical cases have higher customer satisfaction.

8. Dealing with disgruntled or angry customers.

Here’s a startling statistic: 79% of consumers who shared complaints about poor customer experience online had their complaints ignored- no wonder customers seem angry! For this reason, your customers are coming to you when they’re angry because they don’t feel seen or valued.

Therefore, the best solution to this well-known customer service challenge is to calm the customer down by empathising with them. Then, you can use what Disney follows to handle service failures: the H.E.A.R.D technique (Hear, Empathise, Apologise, Resolve, Diagnose.)

Also read:

Deliver Outstanding Customer Experiences with Superior Service Training

Superior Service equips participants with the knowledge and application skills to have a positive attitude, go beyond basic customer service, and exceed customers’ expectations with exceptional service.

Participants will learn how to solve the most demanding customer service challenges and use service as a differentiator through highly interactive and industry-specific activities, group discussions, role plays, case studies, engaging videos, and Q&A sessions.

Customer Service Excellence Training Booklet
Scroll to Top