Review From Customer - Did I Say The Right Thing?

Business By MissCakeCrazy Updated 2 Aug 2011 , 8:03am by JanH

MissCakeCrazy Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 12:31pm
post #1 of 15

I did a lemon cake short notice for a customer and she got back to me by text saying"'Everyone said that the cake was beautifully decorated and we appreciated the effort you west to. The finishing was definitiely of a professional standard. However I regret to say, the sponge was very dissapointing, it was very dense and had an odd texture; it was burnt on the outside; it didn't taste very much like a lemon drizzle cake. Again I am sorry to say, few actually finishied their slice - most of it was wasted. For this reason I must insist on a partial refund,I feel 50% would be appropriate."

I have just relped back saying

"Hello, I got your text message. I am sorry that my lemon cake was not what you expected. This is a luscious lemon cake receipe which has a lemon syrup poured into it as soon as it comes out of the oven which is why you found it a dense cake. As the syrup was poured, you may get some parts of the cake more moist then other parts. This was not a typical sponge cake as you mentioned in your text. I am afraid this is how the cake is meant to be. I tried it myself when I cut the dome off the top and it tasted how it should be. I have done this cake various times including a wedding cake and the customers loved it. I also checked if there was burnt bits of the cake but there wasn't. The edges where all soft, not hard. I am afraid I will not be able to refund you for these reasons."


I am really confident that there was nothing wrong with the cake and I think they are just trying to get their money back. I have heard of these type of customers.

14 replies
luckylibra Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 12:54pm
post #2 of 15

Off topic but I do not understand why customers communicate by text.. I would only conduct business by phone or email and if it were an issue which I would want to document the contact most certainly would be email. Were you surprised they sent you a text with their complaint? Does that happen frequently? Just curious

cakesnglass Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 1:02pm
post #3 of 15

Perfect response. There are those few out there that are never satisfied, I wonder if they eat their whole plate of food at a restaurant and then request a refund??? I once made a cake for a friends friend, she called me to say the cake was sour and brought back a tiny piece of cake to show me, turns out I had friends at that party and a man spilled his beer next to the cake, it soaked right in. Don't allow one bad egg affect your business..

Bluehue Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 1:32pm
post #4 of 15

Good response - glad to see you are standing by your tried and true recipe... and not caving in because the customer thinks the cake should be otherwise... did she not know what she was ordering icon_confused.gif


Quote:
Originally Posted by luckylibra

Off topic but I do not understand why customers communicate by text.. I would only conduct business by phone or email and if it were an issue which I would want to document the contact most certainly would be email. Were you surprised they sent you a text with their complaint? Does that happen frequently? Just curious
This is the first thing that struck me - as I had the same thoughts - i wouldn't respond to a text message i would wait for the customer to phone and dicuss the problem.
Sending a text tells me that the customer is

1. hiding behind the phone....iykwim

2. thinks you might have answers to her complaint - but she doesn't want to hear them .......which in this case is very evident.

If one is so concerned - then one should speak to the supplier....

Bluehue


LKing12 Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 1:53pm
post #5 of 15

This response is going in my customer file! Thanks...

dldbrou Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 2:14pm
post #6 of 15

I would insist that she bring back the uneaten cake to prove it was burnt.

southerncross Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 2:36pm
post #7 of 15

I think your response was spot on. Your cake sounds gorgeous and given the care you give to decorating (as evident in your photos) I have confidence that you give the same care to your recipes. Good on you for sticking by your guns.

MissCakeCrazy Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 8:38pm
post #8 of 15

About why she text in the first place, she paid online and credited by account twice so I let her know first thing in the morning and asked her for her account details to sent the credit back. She sent me the account details, then some time later she sent me another text with her complaint.

For the future, what wording can I use in my invoice / contract to say that a refund will not be given unless there are obvious faults in the cake?

AnnieCahill Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 10:54pm
post #9 of 15

I would definitely include something which states that the cake must be returned if they are complaining about the flavor, texture, doneness, etc.

cakestyles Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 11:29pm
post #10 of 15

It really bothers me that so many people are resorting to text messaging and e-mail nowadays instead of a phone call. I guess it's easier to complain or ask for a refund when you don't actually have to speak to the other person.


I like your response.

I don't have anything in my contract about refunds or returns since I don't want them to think that's an option. lol

It's a "can of worms" I don't want opened. KWIM?

KoryAK Posted 1 Aug 2011 , 11:48pm
post #11 of 15

I like your response. I stand my by recipes too (scratch and some ppl are expecting box and come back saying it's "dry" when that is not the case - just different) and always ask them to bring some back in so I can see if there is really something wrong (I am not perfect) or if it is a difference of tastes. Then they feel like they are being heard.

creativethoughts Posted 2 Aug 2011 , 12:03am
post #12 of 15

Maybe she just needed some extra money? It sounds weird, I know, but some people are just that way. I had a "friend" (notice the quotes) give me a knife as a present for Christmas because his mother had bought him a new one. Not long after that he quit his job at the knife place he had been working out. Over a year maybe even 2 years later (we no longer see each other for a lot of reasons one of them being his wife who was also a "friend" and things that happened between us) he sends me a message saying that his old work is asking for all of his stuff back and he needs to give the knife back. I was like o_O , you quit almost 2 years ago and there only NOW asking for it back?

You never know but good for you standing by your cake!

scp1127 Posted 2 Aug 2011 , 6:43am
post #13 of 15

I have a satisfaction guaranteed policy. In the policy, the proper procedure for problems are addressed. They must check the box at checkout before they proceed. If the cake is mediocre, it will be eaten, so that is not a valid way to prove that the cake was good.

Oh no Blue, I don't agree. A standard message that I was wrong as a customer would infuriate me. Without seeing the cake, I would never dismiss a customer complaint. I would also not text her a message stating that you were not at fault without digging deeper. This type of response will get you amuch more impassioned bad review to all of her friends than just trying to work with her.

My site has detailed descriptions of the taste of my cakes. If a customer does not like my cake, then it is my fault for not describing it correctly. In those cases, I would look at the complaint, find what I did wrong, and correct it... with the customer and with the description. I have never had a complaint, but I am proactive.

If I was at a restaurant and the food was bad or not as described, the entree is either taken off the bill, another is offered, or both.

Problems with customers are our opportunity to shine in marketing and PR. The unhappy customer has the ability to hurt us or to be our biggest vocal advocate. Even if she was completely lying, making her happy, with an alternate cake flavor, will cause her to have to tell the story about the great cake lady.

Bluehue Posted 2 Aug 2011 , 7:41am
post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by scp1127

I have a satisfaction guaranteed policy. In the policy, the proper procedure for problems are addressed. They must check the box at checkout before they proceed. If the cake is mediocre, it will be eaten, so that is not a valid way to prove that the cake was good.

Oh no Blue, I don't agree. A standard message that I was wrong as a customer would infuriate me.
For a start i would be infuriated that a customer with a problem didn't think it important enough to pick up the phone and discuss it with me...
I think it very poor of the customer to state that the cake was inedible - yet thought the best way to handle the problem was via a text.
I find it difficult to believe that there was in fact a problem with the cake -
As i stated in my first post - seems as tho the customer was hiding behind the phone - so to speak.


I also mentioned in my first post - "Did the customer not undestand what type of cake she was getting"?


Without seeing the cake, I would never dismiss a customer complaint.

True - but texting in the first instance is rather lame...
If it was that bad then the said customer should have taken some of the cake back -

Off topic - i had sleeves of a new leather hacket taken up last week -
DH picked it up on the way home from work..
I took one look and phoned the dry cleaners/alterations place and said how unhappy i was with their workmanship - and that i shall be returning with my jacket the following morning.
$170.00 they charged me - if i had the time i could have sat and done a much better job -
Point being - i could have text and said - arghhhhh its horrid - but i took the time to phone and then returned with jacket the next day and resolved the problem.

Its not rocket science...........


I totally understand customer service - both in the giving and the recieving and i will be the first to scream blue bloody murder if i don't get it - so i go that extra yard with each and every order to ensure that my customers are satisfied.
Again - its not rocket science.

I still feel that the customer the OP spoke about wasnot telling the truth - ..............just my opinion.

Blue



I would also not text her a message stating that you were not at fault without digging deeper. This type of response will get you amuch more impassioned bad review to all of her friends than just trying to work with her.

My site has detailed descriptions of the taste of my cakes. If a customer does not like my cake, then it is my fault for not describing it correctly. In those cases, I would look at the complaint, find what I did wrong, and correct it... with the customer and with the description. I have never had a complaint, but I am proactive.

If I was at a restaurant and the food was bad or not as described, the entree is either taken off the bill, another is offered, or both.

Problems with customers are our opportunity to shine in marketing and PR. The unhappy customer has the ability to hurt us or to be our biggest vocal advocate. Even if she was completely lying, making her happy, with an alternate cake flavor, will cause her to have to tell the story about the great cake lady.


JanH Posted 2 Aug 2011 , 8:03am
post #15 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackie

Ladies and Gentlemen of CakeCentral:

Over the last month or so there has been an unsettling increase in the volume and frequency of petty bickering in the forums.

This behavior is completely unacceptable and against the spirit of Cake Central.

The moderators and administrators are fed up with trying to keep up with this ugliness and trying to keep the peace.

Quite frankly, Heath and I are disgusted with the behavior of a handful of members and we are putting an end to it.

Consider this message fair notice to everyone. The leniency is over. We are going to start banning any member we feel is starting problems, provoking others, making snide remarks, or insulting other members.

I don't care if we have to ban 1000 users if that is what it takes to get this community back to focusing on cakes instead of inter-personal drama.

We are all supposed to be here to talk politely about cake, support each other, and lend a helping hand.

If you don't agree with someone, by all means.... disagree, but do it respectfully.

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If you find yourself unable to write a post, PM, or response in a constructive, encouraging or supportive way then you need to walk away.

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Focus on what you share in common, learn from what makes you different, support each other through struggles, and celebrate each others' success.




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