Some companies are notorious for being difficult to work with. After you have a bad experience, it can be difficult to actually get a resolution that you can work with. Today's blog is going to be all about getting the refunds that companies promise you, but often don't actually want to give out.
The Incident That Sparked This Blog Post
Last week I ordered flowers for my mother for Mother's Day with my sister at From You Flowers. We picked their A Fine Day For Mom bouquet, and when it arrived, it looked nothing like what we paid for, as you can see by the tweet I sent on Twitter.
I already had a number of issues with From Your Flowers, and we had issues in the past with them when we got a Valentine's Day candy basket from them once (the local florist messed up yet again and gave her far less candy than what we paid for.)
Calling them wasn't helpful, so I @'d them. #sorrynotsorry
They tweeted me to DM them with the order number, which I did. They gave me a 100% refund on the order.
Later when I checked out their Facebook page, someone commented that the best their customer service had offered them was a 40% discount. To which I commented, they offer a 100% customer service satisfaction guarantee, don't let them lowball you. Somehow that comment thread ended up deleted...
It's not in a companies best interest for everyone to know about their customer satisfaction guarantees, even though they have it. SO, today's blog is going to help you stand up for yourself in this modern, information age.
Know Your Rights (And The Language To Convey Your Rights)
Before you make a decision to call and get a refund, know the rights the company says you have. Understand their refund policy and how they describe it. Use that language on the calls or emails with them so you can be sure that you are getting the money you deserve. Don't step down until they give you the resolution you deserve according to their policy.
Did you know if your products are late on Amazon Prime, you can get a free month of Amazon Prime? Most people don't know this, you can literally get a free month of Prime every time a Prime order takes longer than two days! That can save you so much money, so don't hesitate to use that to your advantage. You can learn more about their shipping guarantees here.
Did you also know that Amazon has an A-Z Guarantee that gives you money back up to $2,500 if you have a negative shipping or purchasing experience with a third party seller or while using Amazon Pay on another site? It's true! Click here to learn more about that guarantee.
Using their language back at them is important, otherwise it's easy for them to slip around you and decide not to give your money back. So. check out their policies and make sure that you are letting them know that you know what you are entitled to.
Avoid The Phone
My momma is a genius at getting her money back over the phone. Me, not so much.
I can hear someone telling me something I know is bullshit, but I either get to flustered to make coherent sense, or I am just not great at conveying my displeasure over the phone. In a lot of ways, I am too nice on the phone. I will give up right before I know I can make a break through.
So, I don't use the phone to call companies, and I don't think that most millennials should. We aren't exactly the pinnacle of having an actual conversation, so we should use that to our advantage.
Stop trying to make customer service phone calls happen, they aren't going to happen. Instead...
Create A Paper Trail Using Emails & Chats
I LOVE LOVE LOVE when companies offer email and chat customer service. I know that I can always create a paper trail and know exactly what's going on at any minute. It also gives me some time to collect myself and give out the perfect response each time.
Most customer service chats allow you to send yourself a copy of the transcript after the conversation ends, make sure that you turn that feature on.
Use the language we talked about earlier to get the refunds you deserve. Study the language they use and mimic it in your own way when you chat with them. Don't be so robotic, digest the information in your own way so that the customer service rep knows you understand what you are entitled to in the situation.
Use A Social Media Site That You Control
If you decide to go the social media route, use a social media site that you can control. Companies are notorious for deleting Facebook comments. Instead of a Facebook comment, leave a review if they have those available on their Facebook page.
All in all, a site like Twitter would be a great site to go to because you can @ the company and they can't delete your comment. They can report it as spam, but that likely won't happen.
Be sure to include the appropriate accounts. Some sites have two Twitter accounts, one for general social media usage and one for support. If I find both usernames, I like to include them both.
Usually you will get a reply that's pretty copy/pasted, but you can DM them for a more unique to you response after they tell you to direct message them.
Once you get you intended resolution, you can decide to delete the tweet. I do, depending on the website. For From You Flowers, I decided to keep the tweet up because what I got was so dramatically different from what I paid for. I wanted other potential customers to continue to see my post on Twitter.
No matter how you got customer service attention, you need to follow up with whatever they happened to say your resolution was.
Let the company rest a few days after you chat with a customer service agent, then make sure that whatever resolution you agreed upon actually happened. Check your bank statements and be sure that you got the money back. Check the company website to make sure that you got that free credit.
In general, just be on top of it.
It's easy to say, "yes, you have earned your discount, here you go," and not follow through on any promises. You need to be ready to remind the customer service department and check up on promised updates.
So, there you have it. My definitive guide to actually getting the discounts and refunds you deserve. Company policies are there for a reason. Don't let companies run over you and treat you with disrespect. Stand up for yourself by knowing your rights and the proper channels to take to get to those results. Don't be a an asshat, but don't let companies walk over you either. Be rational, use facts, and you will be good to go!