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How to reward a customer or a prospect who reports a bug?


#1

I’m trying to come up with valid options to do if a customer or prospect reports a bug in my software.
Currently I have two items only are popping in my mind:

  1. Discounts for products/services.
  2. Free month of products/services.

What would you suggest to add to this list?

Any ideas are highly welcomed.


#2

I wouldn’t (and I don’t). Reward them by fixing actual bugs and implementing actually useful features as soon as you can.


#3

Why don’t you do it? Do you see some issues here?


#4

Logistics. I want to interact with the customer as little as possible. Preferable in a fully automated fashion. Only then I can scale to hundreds and eventually thousands of customers.


#5

+1

There are always bugs in the software, and encouraging the users to look for them instead of hopefully not noticing them and ignoring them sounds counter-productive.

Also, bugs differ in impact, and you’d have to come up with an impact-based price table, and deal with users who disagree how the bugs found by them are priced.

That’s a whole new business to run on a side!

For the prize money you pay to customers and lost on wasted time, it makes much more sense to hire a skilled QA team somewhere offshore. They will find you the bugs in heaps and at a fraction of the cost, IMHO.


#6

Yeah, it’s difficult to argue with what maximus and rfctr said, but let’s assume the issue is really severe so it prevents the user from using a service which he/she paid for? Say the user paid for 1 month and the service hasn’t been fully working for 1-2 weeks due some long-to-fix bug related to the specific client. I agree that the developer already spent the money for the bugfix, but it seems reasonable to provide some bounty for the client, isn’t it?


#7

That is not a reward situation, but a reimbursement one. A user has paid, the user cannot use due to developer fault, the user gets the money back (full or pro-rated).

We may differ in the word semantics, but IMHO a reward is granted for a dedicated activity (bug hunting in this case), and not for accidental stumbled upon.


#8

I only reward them when they ask for something - provide with free updates or services. In rare cases, send money.
But the main reward is that the bug report is taken into account and the bug is fixed.


#9

You should have SLA that states what happens if the service is inaccessible. It should also list exceptions when you are not responsible.