If you are not happy with the quality of service or product, it’s important to speak to the business directly. You can start the conversation with a manager or the business owner in person or by connecting with them online. Here are some tips you can use to communicate a complaint with a business effectively. 

Complaint Format: 

  • Many businesses have more than one way you can contact them like: email, direct message on social media, or online live chat.  
  • In your first message, include your full name, email address, the date, and a phone number, if appropriate. 

Complaint Content: 

  • Stick to the facts and be concise. Give a summary of what happened (in a timeline format, if appropriate) and note any verbal promises or guarantees made to you by the seller. 
  • Be constructive: state what you think a fair, realistic, and satisfactory resolution would look like. 
  • Tell the business when you expect a response back (give them a reasonable amount of time, such as one to two weeks). 

Sharing your complaint with the business: 

  • Send your message in a way that allows you to track your conversation with the business. This can be done through email read receipts or screenshots of direct messages.  


  • Be polite, professional, and non-threatening. 
  • Be prepared to supply supporting documents (such as receipts, contracts, warranties and guarantees) if needed in the process of coming to a resolution. Always hold on to the originals! 

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About Consumer Protection BC  

We are responsible for regulating specific sectors and certain consumer transactions in British Columbia. If your concern is captured under the laws we enforce, we will use the tools at our disposal to assist you. If we can’t help you directly, we will be happy to provide you with as much information as possible. Depending on your concern, another organization may be the ones to speak to; other times, court or legal assistance may be the best option. Explore our website at www.consumerprotectionbc.ca.