Good article on Customer Support

This was a timely read for me and my customer support assistant:

5 Things Customers Don’t Want to Hear…EVER

  1. “It’s our policy.”
  2. “It was in your contract.”
  3. “See our answer here [with link].”
  4. [Insert Lame Company Excuse Here]
  5. [Silence]

I think it is fine to send some a link to a page with a detailed answer as long as:
-You preface it with a line or two of text
-It’s relevant

You can try copying and pasting the text into your email, but that tends to mess up the formatting and lose any images.

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Number 4 (you need to read the article to see what it says) is particularly relevant to me. A core part of my product is sending SMS reminders and it is also the part that generates the most support calls. Customers are not interested in hearing that the receiver had their phone turned off, the telco blocked the call as spam or any of the multitude of other reasons that can stop a message being delivered. They just want to know why my system failed to send the message :frowning:

Pretty good, I do think if you only write ‘here read this [link]’ that’s not good, but am otherwise OK with sending link to more details than is reasonable to include in email.

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I disagree with at least 2 items.

A) Sending links. Others already said it. I see no point in sending me multiple tweets (WTF?) instead of a link to a properly designed page if it already has the answer. Another plus of the link is that it will remind the user that there is online documentation.

The article makes it sounds like we are all dying to hear the same questions again and again. We are not.

B) “It’s late 2013 and 72% of customers expect a response within the hour on Twitter from your brand after they complain. And it doesn’t really matter if it’s during business hours or not.”

Let me give you a newsflash (using the author’s terminology). Here in Europe we value life slightly more than money and it’s pretty normal for small businesses to not operate and respond outside of Mon - Fri 9 AM - 6 PM.

This article is probably OK for big companies with dedicated support staff. Not so useful for small bootstrapping business.