When my customer first ordered from me, she went back and forth on numbers and price. Finally paid her deposit when I stuck to my guns on the price. A week after that (one week before pick up the items) she reduced the number of cupcakes she wanted by 15%. I happy did this. Three days before pick up, she was going back and forth on colours, flavours etc. I ended up offering to put macarons on the cake, and a ganache drizzle, and only charged her for half the number I used.
On pick up, she was happy. However the day after the event, she sent me an email saying "The cupcakes were definitely over cooked very dry and bland and the top cake was so dense and hard and bland. My husband said its like eating a brick. If this was done at a cake shop i would ve brought it back and they would ve given me a refund or even given me half the money back."
I'm pretty gutted as I know this cake wasn't dry (we ate the offcuts, hubby couldn't stop eating them) and the cupcakes were great (we kept the spares for ourselves).
She's asked me to taste the top cake/cupcakes to "see if I'm capable of eating it" but, to be honest, I don't want to. I have the confidence in my baking, I know the cake was good. I don't want to offer a refund at all... but will listen to your advice.
What do you think?
Sounds like you went above and beyond to accommodate your customer. If you kept the trimmings from the cake and some leftover cupcakes and they were not dry then it sounds like customer is just trying to get half the money back. I am sorry that you had to go through this. Unfortunately, there are plenty of bad customers out there that try this. You shouldn't have to refund anything to these people. Let's see what others think.
Thanks hun, appreciate that. I'm interested to hear what others think also.
Also wondering how to respond to her... :(
I wouldn't respond at all. Obvoiusly she wants (half of) her money back, she wrote you that. If that's not want you think she should get, then just leave it. It makes no sense to dispute with her. Waste of time. And I'm sure you don't want her as a customer anyway...
Ok, so she just called me and basically yelled at me for 30mins!!
Sorry this happened. Firstly, I would never take abuse over the phone. If someone is raising their voice to you, I would give them a warning - 'please calm down or I will end the call' - and if they don't, just hang up. If it was in a store and she behaved like that then she would probably be removed by security so you do not have to accept it.
As for a refund, I would quote the terms and conditions which in my case state that the cake has to be returned, uneaten, for a refund and will only be refunded if if does not meet my standards. I specify that personal perception of taste is subjective. If you don't have something like that then I suggest you add it but for now, if you have explained your policy then just leave it. As for bad mouthing your business, I would block her on facebook if you can so save yourself a headache and just let it lie. If, as I suspect, she is really just out for a free cake then bad mouthing you will just be an empty threat. Generally i've found that it's only people who have really had a bad experience with a company who will make the effort to tell people about it! I too have had a lousy week so will be thinking of you and hope you feel better soon! x
Thanks so much. I'm sorry you've had a lousy week also, it can only get better, right? xx
In the end, I emailed her and offered a 50% refund off the top cake, she responded I want 100%, I responded I am offering 50% and she said process whatever credit you like, I'm over it. ...! lol, so I guess no credit!!!! haha.
I'll put T&C's on my paperwork now, thanks, that's good advice.
I should have just hung up after giving her a warning, my young daughter was in the room and could hear her on the phone, she was very upset with her also. This whole thing has left a bad taste in my mouth. I'm a sensitive person, stuff like this really gets me down. I'll allow myself tonight to wallow then tomorrow it's onward and upward...
You absolutely have the right to hang up on someone if they're being nasty and won't shut up.
If you get a customer like that who argues about the price from the beginning, trust your inner psycho radar and don't take the order. People who start off complaining don't stop.
Sorry that this happened, but take it as a learning moment and do your best to prevent it from happening again.
Like costumeczar said, when a customer argues from the get-go, you have 2 choices--stand your ground and take the order on your terms, or terminate the conversation nicely and put them on your "no cake for you" list should they ever call again.
Set a cut off time for any "free changes"--number of items, colors, pick up date, drop off time, EVERYTHING!! If they come in with changes within the time frame [x days before delivery] CHARGE THEM!! Yes, for every change. Tell them in advance about this and stick to your guns. If they fight, refund the deposit and send them on their way.
No refunds without immediate return of goods--and I mean within hours. And, even then, it's up to your discretion. PERIOD.
You're driving the bus. If they don't like the route, then they can get off and find another way to get their cake.