Customer Experience News & Trends

Customers lie: Spot and handle 5 common fibs

Most customers are honest. Some will lie — with little or no ill intentions — but you need to watch for this.

Big or little, white or gray, lies roll off customers’ tongues every day.

While most are on the little and white side, some customers will try to get something they don’t deserve or wiggle out of something they should do or should have done with a lie, experts agree.

Here are the most common — and what you should do when faced with them.

  1. It’s fine.” When customers say this, it almost always means they don’t want to tell you something is wrong because they don’t want to offend. Respond with, “We want our customers to have an exceptional experience, not just a fine one. Please tell me what can be better.”
  2. “I’ll get back to you on this.” When there’s hesitancy in their voices, it’s not likely customers will follow up with you on the issue, question or potential sale. In that case, offer to make the next contact so you’re sure it will happen.
  3. “I know I did it.” Most people don’t like to admit they let something slip through the cracks, especially when the consequences affect them negatively. When this happens, rely on the facts you have in your database and get them focused on what needs to be done now to avoid the most (or any) negative consequences.
  4. “I followed the instructions exactly.” Very few go “by the book.” Usually customers think they followed instructions to the T, but really they did the minimum. Rather than point out mistakes made or steps missed, offer to walk them through the process again.
  5. “I never …” or “I always …” Absolutes are rarely true. So when sentences start this way, be wary that a lie will follow. Then direct the conversation around the absolute proven information that you can agree on — anything that’s documented.

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