The principle of caveat emptor or “buyer beware” still applies as much today as it has since the dawn of commerce. In today’s society, consumer rights have become even more important to protect buyers from businesses that would seek to take advantage of customers through deception or fraud.
Each year, on the 15th of March is World Consumer Rights Day. It aims to raise global awareness about consumer rights and needs. “Celebrating the day is a chance to demand that the rights of all consumers are respected and protected, and to protest against market abuses and social injustices which undermine those rights,” according to Consumers International.
Show customers you value their rights
If you own a business, it’s a day you shouldn’t miss. Consumer rights should be top of mind every day. You can take this occasion to review what you can do and improve. Meanwhile, you can go above and beyond to respect consumer rights, meet their needs, and instill higher levels of trust and loyalty.
Here are five simple and smart ways to show your customers you respect their rights and value their business.
Offer multiple payment options
People appreciate a money-back guarantee. It’s easier to demonstrate this opportunity when you partner with third-party payment providers. Buyers feel more secure when they make transactions with reputable middlemen they know and trust. So if your online business is new, a reliable payments platform can make your business appear more trustworthy.
People may have concerns about your business, but if you are available to talk about them right away, those concerns won’t turn into complaints. That’s why live chat technology can prevent problems before they happen.
Arnas Stuopelis, Chairman of the Board of hosting provider Hostinger, says: “When people bump into problems, they might overthink them and see it bigger than it really is. That’s why it’s important to be available for them the moment they need help. The solution might be one answer away. Live support shows the caring side of your business. It boosts your credibility, and lowers chances of customer rights violations.”
Make options clear
There are certain things all businesses must provide. People have a right to cancel or return their orders within a specified time, set by a companies policies. Every online business should be open and transparent about policies, processes, and outcomes.
Some dishonest companies create such a complicated website layout that it becomes almost impossible to find the right information about a cancelation or return of goods. Technically, they are not doing anything illegal. The options are listed on the website. They are just impossible to find. To avoid this scenario, be clear about consumer rights and display all options prominently.
Apologize for inconveniences
Misunderstandings do happen. Not all of them end up being consumer rights violations, but despite the size of the issue, apologize for the inconvenience. Even if the problems come from third-party suppliers and vendors in the supply chain, your business is where the buck stops. So instead of excuses, apologize and share information on how you will resolve the issue.
Remember: The customer is not always right
Even though you want to provide the best customer experience possible, you shouldn’t ignore the fact that the customer is not always right. Instead of ignoring the miscommunication, you should try to educate and inform. In this case, your approach is crucial.
Take a tone that is understanding and avoid lecturing customers. Say that you are happy to help and try to educate instead of arguing about the misunderstanding. It might be a tricky thing to do. But if you go through it, you’ll have one less unreasonable client and get an educated one instead.
Ensure your daily business practices are attentive to customer rights. On World Consumers Rights Day and beyond it’s a great opportunity to review and update your approach to those rights.
Business tips are shared on behalf of Hostinger, a professional web hosting provider that delivers free and premium web hosting services.
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