How Do You Deal With Complaints?

Business By Jcake2 Updated 17 Sep 2009 , 1:33am by backermeister

Jcake2 Posted 16 Sep 2009 , 3:27pm
post #1 of 9

For bakery owners out there, how do you deal with complaints?

Say a flavor was wrong on a 5 tier cake, how would you handle this situation?

I have a customer wanting a refund in cash the amount of servings that cake would have served. So, they are wanting rougly $120 refund on a $750 cake for 1 flavor.

I get few complaints, but when I do, I am torn between store credit or cash refunds. Grant it, store credit is the way to go.

But you can't fold every time you have a complaint.

how do you guys handl them?

thanks

8 replies
bbmom Posted 16 Sep 2009 , 3:39pm
post #2 of 9

hmmm...I'm not an owner but if its in writing and you gave them the wrong flavor ,its your fault and the refund on the affected servings seems pretty reasonable to me. I'd offer store credit first and if they resist then cash...assuming their check/credit has already cleared.

Jcake2 Posted 16 Sep 2009 , 3:52pm
post #3 of 9

Thats the thing. The flavors were done over the phone the week before the wedding. We normally have the bride come in, but they waited till the last minute.

They told us Carrot Cake, but they wanted Cheesecake Carrot Cake. Honest mistake on both parts. He liked carrot cake, she like cheesecake carrot.....we had Carrot Cake on the wedding order.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bbmom

hmmm...I'm not an owner but if its in writing and you gave them the wrong flavor ,its your fault and the refund on the affected servings seems pretty reasonable to me. I'd offer store credit first and if they resist then cash...assuming their check/credit has already cleared.


bbmom Posted 16 Sep 2009 , 3:54pm
post #4 of 9

I'd try to push the store credit then, but maybe someone who owns a bakery will chime in.

dailey Posted 16 Sep 2009 , 3:59pm
post #5 of 9

i'm a little confused. so they asked for carrot and got carrot, right? why did they think they were getting carrot cheesecake?

backermeister Posted 16 Sep 2009 , 4:02pm
post #6 of 9

I recommend trying the store credit route first because she isn't complaining about the whole cake just a small portion. It's a good possibility that she will be a repeat customer. Maybe you could offer her an anniversary cake in the flavors that were missed. I had this happen to me at my wedding as well but never bothered with complaining about it cause the cake was still fine. Unfortunately from a contractual standpoint you are holding the short end of the stick. Hope it all works out ok. icon_smile.gif

valerieb52 Posted 16 Sep 2009 , 4:35pm
post #7 of 9

I am always about doing my best, but we do make mistakes. I think being fair would be giving her a good faith cake and explaining that by her not coming in, as requested to make sure you were both on the same page compromised communication, because she would have to had signed a contract which had the flavors clearly posted. I do not feel she deserves a full refund...50% is fair. If she is asking for a full refund, which I feel is unreasonable, she is NOT coming back. So leave her with a taste of cheesecake/carrotcake in her mouth and call it a lesson learned and do not take phone orders for wedding cake changes over the phone. I would amend my cake orders with no changes after the contract is signed, unless they came in in a timely manner (2 weeks prior for example), in person and pay for changes. We breathe. We are human. Learn and move forward.

indydebi Posted 16 Sep 2009 , 6:36pm
post #8 of 9

If you did everything over the phone, did the customer get a confirmation via mail or email? Everything should always be confirmed in writing somehow.

I find this customer being very fair, though. Look at how many stories are on here where the customer would have wanted the whole $750 because ONE cake was wrong. In the grand scheme of things, $120 is not a lot for good PR for a bride who is being pretty reasonable. I'd give them the refund.

Then I'd review my confirmation practices. thumbs_up.gif

backermeister Posted 17 Sep 2009 , 1:33am
post #9 of 9

True. Even with a phone order you should confirm with an email, fax or if there is time snail mail. This allows for error corrections or if everyone is in agreement then a signature or reply of acceptance from your customer is always the way to go, especially from a legal standpoint. I guess I've just seen too many caterers and such get burned due to lack of or poor contracts on all of the court shows being broadcast.

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