Sooner or later, everyone who owns their own business is going to come across the nightmare to end all nightmares: the crazy buyer. These are buyers who, no matter what you do, just can’t be pleased. In a world where reputation is everything, one or two crazy buyers are enough to do serious damage to your reputation and business, so dealing with the difficult buyer is something all small business owners should plan for.
I have been lucky enough to have primarily buyers who remind me of why I got into the jewelry business in the first place. But every now and then, I get a buyer who just can’t be pleased. I’ve learned a few tips over the years for dealing with these people and have, thus far, managed to avoid any kind of negative feedback (knock on wood).
Are They Really Crazy?
Before you write your buyer off as crazy, stop, step back, and take a deep breath. Handmade jewelry is emotional work, and it can be devastating when someone is unhappy with one of your creations. So ask yourself: Am I being crazy or is the buyer? Repeat several times and wait until you’ve calmed down to respond.
The Buyer Really Is Always Right
If your buyer truly is crazy, odds are good that they are used to not getting what they want. They probably have negative interactions with sellers all the time because of their abrasive personality. This can work to your advantage! You have the opportunity to be the seller who finally gives the buyer what they want. So ask your buyer for a specific plan of action. Sometimes all a buyer wants is an apology or for a seller to listen. You may not even have to give a refund to make this person happy. Just give them a chance to express what they want.
No matter what you do, resist the urge to be ugly to your buyer. We have all had the miserable experience of dealing with horrible customer service representatives. Don’t be one of them!
Cut Your Losses
Sometimes, despite your best efforts, the buyer really is impossible to please. Don’t fixate. Do your best and then move on. One negative comment in a sea of glowing reviews will not destroy your business and should not destroy your self esteem.