I Want a Refund

June 19, 2019

“I want a refund.”

If you’ve been in business long enough, you’ve heard these four words.  And likely, you’re not too excited to hear them.

You’ve got the money in your bank account.  Maybe you’ve even begun to deliver the product or service.  Perhaps you’ve already incurred some expenses to deliver what was purchased.  And now they want their money back.  All of it.

Rather than working on what you do with the request, the better question is how can you eliminate them or at least reduce the refund requests you receive?  Is there a way to keep them from happening?


Refund requests happen because your customer has become frustrated.  Frustration happens because your customer believes there has been some unmet expectation.  The unmet expectation could occur because you promised something they didn’t receive or get fast enough.  It could happen because they believed something was to be delivered even though you didn’t make that commitment.

Your customers have expectations, expressed or not.

The source of the expectation can be found in several places.  Expectations happen because your customer made an emotional decision.  When the emotion wears away, there’s no logical foundation for their choice.

Perhaps a friend, colleague or spouse told them “that was stupid” after their purchase.  Emotional social validation of the purchase can trigger frustration.

Maybe they feel the product or service is too hard, beyond them after they’ve gotten a small taste.

Reduce or even eliminate the opportunity for frustration, and you’ll reduce or eliminate the request for a refund.

Try this…

Start your program or service rapidly after purchase.  If your program cannot start immediately, boost your communications to begin instantly.  Send some pre-program work for them to get started on.  Offer a bonus such as a consultation.

Engage rapidly.  The very first steps you take set the stage for what comes next from your customer.

Have you ever walked into a hotel room and the bed was yet to be made?  Or the bathroom hadn’t been cleaned?  You thought less of that hotel, didn’t you?  Perhaps you asked for a different room or even made a beeline to the desk to ask for a refund.

Your first impression wasn’t a good one.

Same holds true for your customers.

What is the first impression you make after the sale is made?  If you spend just a small amount of time boosting your first impression, refund requests could become a thing of the past.

Go forth and do great things,

Martha Hanlon and Chris Williams

Martha Hanlon and Chris Williams


P.S.  What more great tips and insights that propel your business?  You’ll find them in our new international best-selling book, Customertopia: How to Create an Easier, Simpler, More Profitable Business.

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