Last Saturday night we made a triple pizza order - 1 regular BBQ Chicken and 2 Gourmets - cost $51.50.
We get a phone call from this snobish sounding lady complaining about one of the gourmet pizzas. She says she is a new customer just moved into the area and tried us on recommendation but was really upset that we didn’t put toppings on a pizza as per our menu. I made the order and immediately described to her the triple order. She claimed the pizza was basically a cheese pizza and nothing else. It has a white garlic base sauce, sundried tomato strips and marianted eggplant (which comes in strips), mozz cheese, marianted feta and shepsmilk cheese. It is a greek themed gourmet cheese pizza with the eggplant and sundried tomato to add more flavour and cut the cheese only effect. She claims it only had one piece of sundried tomato and a thin strip of eggplant on the whole pizza. I tired to explain that the sundried and the eggplant goes on first then the 3 cheeses as the former ingredients will burn if on top and that I made it and I can assure her that the correct amounts went on. She explodes and tells me not to treat her like an idiot and tell her different to what she sees. She then says she won’t be back and I say sorry you feel like that and hang up.
Next miute she is on the phone again going balistic about having processed meats on our pizzas. The BBQ chicken has cooked chicken and a very light sprinkle of ham, onion ad BBQ sauce. She goes right off claiming that at a minimum we should be using ham off the bone to which I reply that the ham we use is used by over 90% of pizza shops around the country. She gets even angrier and tells me that we are neglegent and putting peoples health at risk with the audacity of using processed meats. I tell her to take a reality check and put things into perspective, holding back from telling her to take her head out of her ar$e.
A few minutes later she storms into the shop with the 3 pizzas demanding her money back. We are packed with every table full of diners hoing into our pizzas and about 6 or 7 people waiting to pick up their orders. She says they are revolting pizzas and wants her money back. I motion my hand around the shop at the diners and people waiting and say that “gee they must be real bad”. Knowing I have lost this customer I politely give her money back and tell her that in the 6 years I have had the shop I had heard some real drivel but hers takes the cake. I suggest she take “our” money and visit other pizza shops around the area to she what ingredients they use and if all use ham off the bone I will give her double the money. She turns on her heel and lifts her head in the air and storms out without another word.
In this case she was a customer that I didn’t want to see again so ‘the customer is always right’ went out the window.
When we took the pizzas out the back all 3 of them were half gone (4 of 8 slices of each gone), the sundried tomatos were plainly visible (eggplant not as visible as they are in strips and are lightish in colour). Even our dishwasher saw the sundried tomatos strips.
I think where ever she came from previously may have been an ultimate gourmet pizza place that uses ham off the bone, and charge accordingly, but she is now in an area where all outlets uses similar style ham to ours and don’t charge exobitant prices ($51.50 for 3 large pizzas, 2 of the gourmets is average price here for our type of independent quality outlets).
Thought I’d just blow some steam and let you know that even here we have some nutters
As a bye note this night we did a record takings for a Saturday night exclipsing the next best back in the pre GFC days by around $300, and taking more that we did on the busy Friday night. And we backed it up on Sunday with 40% up on average sales for Sundays.
Gee our pizzas must be real bad.
Didn’t even get a chance
Word of mouth of hers has no concern for me, sorry but true.
During the day we had a stand in the shopping centre we are for a special family fun day. We had numerous people come up to us and say how great our pizzas are and that they tell everyone.
We also had heaps of people come to the shop that night for the first time from meeting us at the stand and tasting our pizzas we were sampling. I counted 10 new ones that night alone from whom I spoke with earlier in the day who said they hadn’t been to us before. One came back on Sunday claiming we had the best pizzas they had ever tasted so losing one was made up by many more new ones.
And why offer her a refund when there was absolutely nothing wrong with the pizzas. She was just a stuck up bullying bitch .
Just to answer your question: Because that’s the kind of enlightened service you have been known for here over the years. You take the initiative to make the customer happy and take the power in the argument by offering to make them satisfied or at least cared for.
That said . . . I can really, really feel the satisfaction you got telling her off. I have a couple customers over the years that just needed a good telling-off. Take the good with the bad repercussions on those. You and I both know you needed that “win” over a totally irrational and disrespectful customer Needed that little self congratulatory smile . . . it’s a sinful pleasure that is needed now and again. Dave, if you didn’t really need that shot in the arm, I would suspect you would have offered to remake or replace the pizzas if she brought them in for you to see what was done wrong. It would have choked swallowing the pride . . . but the commitment to customers and service is what sets you apart from so many others. Yup . . .the customer started off spoiling for a fight and went rude/angry/belligerent way too early in the complaint call. You got the skills to turn that around when you want to . . . and sometimes we just don’t want to.
Sure you had a chance. You said you tried to explain to her (why she was wrong) - instead of trying to explain that to her - you could have stopped the whole thing right there by saying “I’m sorry you didn’t like the pizzas, and if you will bring them back so I can show them to my crew I’ll be more than happy to give you your money back.”
To answer your “why offer a refund” question - the reason is simple - to avoid all of the drama that you went through that resulted in giving her a refund anyway.
Understand - I hear you that this customer was lost anyway. And who cares - I understand. All I’m saying there is no way it was worth having her screaming in your store.
Your just letting off steam…keep doin what you do best!
BTW…we have been raising pigs behind our place for years now…we let the customers just go pick their pig…there has only been one occassion I have pushed a customer in the mud bath. But we have the freshest meats in town… :mrgreen: