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​What to do if you don't get good customer service.

What good customer service looks like

Under the Fair Trading Act, sales staff must tell you if something is wrong with a product or service, or if it is not what you need. Other legal requirements apply for some business types, eg financial services and registered motor vehicle traders.

It is also reasonable to expect sales people to:

  • be polite
  • answer questions about what they are selling
  • help you understand if the product or service is right for your needs
  • give you time to make a decision.

If things go wrong

If the level of customer service is less than what seems reasonable, you can either leave or try to resolve it with the staff member or their manager.

Be polite and as clear as possible about what you want, or what has gone wrong. Many customer service issues are caused by miscommunication or making assumptions. Make sure everyone has the same understanding of the issue and how you would like it resolved.

If you can't get an outcome you are happy with, you might want to make a complaint and/or write a review.

How to complain


Writing a review

If you get great service — or service you are not happy with — you might want to write a review. Reviews are generally posted online, but you could also give it to the business you are reviewing.

It's a good idea to include:

  • what you would or wouldn't recommend — try to be balanced and add information that could be valuable to other consumers in the same position
  • information specific to what happened when you were there
  • any steps the business took to put it right.

If you have negative feedback, it's a good idea to tell the business first to give them a chance to apologise or put it right.