Getting a rejection is never easy. But when it comes to customers saying “no” to your business, it can actually be a positive thing. If a client turns you down, or a potential customer has doubts about whether your products or services are right for them, don’t dwell on the rejection. Instead, use customer objections as a way to improve your small business and learn how to do better.
If your small business has had a few customer objections and you aren’t sure how to deal with them, here are my top tips on how to respond and learn from them.
Listen to your customers
First of all, ask your customers why they didn’t think your product or service was right for them. Listen to any customer objections and really pay attention to what they’re saying. This can help you determine a few things, including:
- Is it a one-off incident or an ongoing issue that could be fixed?
- Could they be persuaded to change their mind or is it due to personal preferences?
- Are your prices too high or too low?
- Does your product or service need improvement or is it outdated?
- Are other customers experiencing the same thing?
The listening part of this is key! There’s no point asking for feedback if you aren’t going to take it on board. Listening to your customers also helps them to feel valued, so they’d be more likely to shop with you in the future – especially if you can offer a solution to their objection.
Find out more about how to respond to negative reviews.
Find a solution
Speaking of which, the next step in responding to customer objections is to look for a solution that will solve the problem. You may want to start by explaining why your product or service actually is right for the customer. Perhaps they haven’t understood exactly what you can offer, or need some reassurance that it will work for them.
If that doesn’t go far enough, it’s time to look for a solution that speaks directly to their concern. Do you only usually do in-person training but they’re located in a different country? Offer a Skype session instead. Are your prices too high for their budget? Offer a payment plan instead of a one-off purchase.
Of course, sometimes it isn’t possible to find a solution. Some customers just aren’t meant for you – and that’s fine! This will help you to determine exactly who your ideal audience is, what they want and what they need from you.
For example, don’t be tempted to lower your prices just because of one customer objection. This customer may be looking for a quick fix rather than an expert who can offer them quality work, so they’re not the right fit for you.
I have a whole post on how to compete on value rather than price – check it out here for more on this topic.
Learn from customer objections
Pay attention to customer objections and learn from them, as this can help you improve and grow your small business.
Don’t ignore customer objections and hope it won’t happen again – use the opportunity to address any concerns or issues head-on and learn what you could be doing better in the future. This could mean:
- Changing your marketing materials to respond to customer objections before they become an issue: It’s generally better to address the question before it even gets asked. Give people confidence in your products and services, and answer their any queries they might have as early in the buying process as possible.
- Improving your product or service: If you’ve had feedback that your product or service isn’t quite right, use this as an opportunity to ask customers why they don’t like it or what you could do differently to encourage them to purchase it. Just because a product or service has worked well in the past, doesn’t mean it will be successful forever. Embrace the customer objections and improve what you can offer.
- Providing great customer service: When responding to customer objections, you want to show customers that you care about them and want what’s best for them. If you genuinely believe your product or service is best for their needs, tell them exactly why this is. If it’s not quite right, accept this rather than being pushy and trying to sell to them anyway. Offer an alternative or a compromise if you can, to encourage them to become loyal customers on their own terms.
To read more about this topic, have a look at these:
7 Steps to Improve Your Customer Experience
After Sales Services: Why Your Marketing Shouldn’t Stop With Making the Sale
How to Respond To Negative Reviews – with Examples
Customer Reviews: 6 Ways to Use Them for Your Small Business Marketing