Dealing with questions that can’t be answered is a part of life for many these days. Some people face them every day while others occasionally have to deal with unanswerable questions. Evading these is just impossible so let’s learn to deal with it.
Here in this blog let’s see how to respond to inappropriate questions that you don’t have a reply for. We give you suggestions based on customer support situations where every worded or spoken response makes an impact.
Let’s see what those suggestions are and using these you can also get appreciated for your support efforts and help a customer out with attracting the best review.
Table of Contents
1. Understanding the question
The most important thing in answering customers’ questions is to understand the asked question.
And, why is this important?
To offer perfect answers and help out the customer to get their query answered or get a reply that they wanted.
The clarity in the question will reflect the answers you provide determining the most important aspect that is customer rating and ensuring customer satisfaction.
Also, the safest way to deal with negative questions is if you have not understood any question try rephrasing it. Asking for it again might end up angering the customer and result in a bad rating.
2. Allocate response time
(Source: Detailing customer response time)
Though quick response times are appreciated in the customer support environment, it is also important for them to understand the question and offer replies.
A difficult question might need a little more time to think and respond accordingly as the customer awaiting the answer will need a detailed reply.
For instance: Even when a political leader or any sports team captain is presented with a question, it will be repeated or rephrased for clear understanding.
In the same way, questioned people or the person should take a second or two to respond for a suitable answer.
3. Respond to the part of a question
Don’t have the answer to the whole question asked by a customer?
No problem, answering customers’ questions with a response saying that the interest in the topic right now is great, but instead focusing on the part you readily have an answer for will be better.
This is a valid response as answering any part of the asked question can satisfy the customer.
On the other hand, informing the customer that a reply will be sent to them answering their questions to their email ID or via message will get you some time and might please the customer.
4. Shifting focus
Customer support will sometimes get questions that need answers about the future or technical information that can’t be given out.
So, if a customer asks about future updates or any technical information regarding security or equipment used, a reply as to why the information is of use to them now will shift the focus on customers.
Placing the focus on the customer for an answer lifts the load off the customer support executive answering different queries in a day.
5. Question Diversion
If you have no answer to the question right now, you can dissuade from a topic that is relevant and the answer is ready.
According to the Fast Company blog, the technique is called “Bridging” in which customer questions are recognized and responded to differently, by thanking them for showing interest and offering them an option to choose from FAQs.
6. Customer Control
Questions that involve too much waiting or high costs often get the customer frustrated or irritated leaving the customer support executive in confusion about how to respond to inappropriate questions.
Offering the customer control of the conversations by telling them you understand their frustration and asking them if you could share some information about the query can lower the tension.
With this shared information, the customer is presented with a solution or a fix for the query showing that you care about the customer’s problem and are keen on solving it.
7. Maintain your Tone of Voice
(Source: Preferred answers from Companies)
Learning how to decline to answer a question politely is a quality that every customer support executive wants to master. You would want to answer the questions with just a “Yes” or “No”, but doing so with perfect supporting texts will be better for maintaining a perfect tone.
Here is a solution that might work,
- First, appreciate the customer for his interest in the product.
- Tell them it is against the policy and the requested information can’t be shared now maintaining a formal tone.
- Let the customers know you are open to answering any other question.
8. Keep track of your body language
Body language plays a big role in maintaining a tone of voice. So eye contact and posture maintenance is important to avoid or answer questions on a live customer chat.
On the other hand, maintaining an impression saying you are ready to answer questions with a composed posture will help with the situation.
Showing that you are defending yourself for a question that you don’t want to answer will only lead to arguments and lead to negative reviews.
9. Answer only what is known
Answering a query or a request and dealing with difficult questions with what you know is better than not saying anything. Customers don’t like to be kept waiting or transferred to different departments for their answers.
At first, answering what you know and then transferring or bringing in the concerned person according to the request or query will get you appreciated and show the customer you care.
Also, practicing common questions with answers will be better and these queries are to be prepared according to related departments.
10. Transfer to the right department
Even if you can’t answer a concerned question or don’t have an answer, transfer it to the right department that will have answers to these questions.
Leaving the customer waiting for too long or transferring to departments that you think will be perfect for the queries will frustrate the customer.
Also, if you don’t know which department will be best for the customer, get the information and redirect them to the correct person for issue resolvement.
11. Maintain honesty
Honesty is one of the best ways to avoid being asked questions that are inappropriate.
Telling them your company’s policies doesn’t allow you to answer the questions asked by a customer.
Also, asking them for an email ID to keep them updated with future updates pertaining to their query might turn out to be beneficial.
With that, asking customers if they needed assistance with any other query and helping them out thoroughly will display the commitment toward customers.
12. Answering queries with perfect facts
If a customer’s query is not answered or not responded in a way that the customer approved, it’s better to respond by citing the product policy in place.
For instance, if a customer asks about a feature that will be added, a definite answer will be to tell them saying the corporate policy does not allow roadmaps to be discussed.
This will show the honesty of the company and will avoid further prodding of similar questions.
Automated tool for all your Customer Queries
Building customer conversations has never been easier than it is now, Kapture’s live chat offers canned replies for both customer support agents and customers.
Also, features like chat analytics & reports offer insights on customer chats and how the chats are performing for different businesses.
That’s not all, Kapture is the customer support automation platform that is powered by AI and machine learning capabilities made to perfectly ease processes at customer support.
About the Author
|Sunith Ramachandra says, “Content writing is all about using the right words for the right audience”. At Kapture he does exactly the same writing content to create conversations and conversions online.