Ten things not to learn from Big Tech on customer support
TEN things every #SaaS founder should NOT be learning from the #BigTech & other popular apps. The bigger firms have great tech stacks and scale, but their DNA was never created for supporting individual consumers – they may have a good heart, but their size makes it impossible for them to care for a single consumer. #saasboomi #not_to_be_learned
1️⃣ Don’t publish contact details, no phone numbers & definitely no email.
2️⃣ Have support forums answered by the community. Give them stars (save $$$). No usable Search, better a broken one. The genuinely interested can use Quora and Reddit, with no liability to the product owners for the accuracy of the answers.
3️⃣ Access to the accounts or plans page should be allowed only after a valid credit card is given.
4️⃣ Self-service pages to cancel or downgrade plans should be disabled or broken. Better make it go on a loop asking for payment details.
5️⃣ Outsource Level1, with no access for them to tickets solved by the higher levels (L2/L3). Please don’t allow them to contact the engineering teams, their time is precious to waste talking to customers.
6️⃣ L1 need not read customer complaints. Train to ask for the unnecessary – Repro recordings, Network log, config details. The objective is to have most customers drop out.
7️⃣ Cancellation should be allowed only by your agent through chat or phone calls. Always cross-sell when a customer comes for cancellation. Don’t realise it is now too late to retain the customer.
8️⃣ When answering, the L1 should make sure the customer is made to feel it is their fault. And never reply in writing about any fixes that you are not sure of, deliver them only by phone calls.
9️⃣ Settings page should be having large banners for upselling plans. If already on the highest plan for individuals, upsell Team plans.
🔟 Always, charge the credit card first and then communicate. Never remind the customer beforehand of the renewal.
Five ways how Customer Service has got changed:
In the last half a century the MBAs & business managers trained in large American corporations have transformed how Customer Service are run in every large business worldwide:
1️⃣Everything is a Ticket,
3️⃣Quantity & Speed vs Quality,
4️⃣Dehumanize (remove the customer from customer service),
The post is meant to be taken on a lighter note and a caution for budding SaaS founders about the pitfalls to watch out for. Revenue and investments are not to be the only purpose of a startup. Genuine customer care can make a startup, a great company. The intention of this post is to summarise my experience in recent weeks of contacting the customer support of half-a-dozen large SaaS products during my usage as a customer. I don’t wish to name the companies, as my experience may not indicate an entire company. I love many of the products they have built.