Are you making it easy for your customers, or are you making them jump through hoops?
I have the wonderful ability to work virtually â€” my office is wherever I have my Mac and an Internet connection. The Internet being the Internet, one can easily get distracted. So, to stay focused on work, part of my morning ritual is to check my email (personal and business), Facebook, pay bills, etc. â€” stuff I donâ€™t want distracting me throughout the day. I work with an amazing team and for some pretty awesome clients, and I want to be able to focus as best I can during the day.
So when I received an email saying my daughterâ€™s gaming discount subscription was about to expire, I decided not to put off renewing it, and went right to the site (from a link in the email) to take care of it, thinking it would be a more efficient use of my time.
On the site, I look and look. I see how many points my daughter has, various other gaming magazine offers, and look for where I can renew her subscription. Surely, after this email to renew my subscription, I’d be directed to a big button that says, Renew Your Subscription Now! Nope.
I re-read the email closely. Ah, there’s the message, buried: “Go into the store and renew.â€
WHAT?! They emailed me! They linked me to their website! And they won’t let me SPEND MY MONEY WITH THEM in a way that is easy for me? (Sorry, I donâ€™t mean to yell.)Â I want to write: “Dear GameStop, I live nearly 40 miles from your nearest store â€” yes, the middle of nowhere â€” can you please make it easy for me to give you my money?â€
GameStop isnâ€™t the only one guilty of this. I encounter this frequently online â€”even when Iâ€™m trying to pay bills. Why is it so difficult to pay for the services I receive?
So hereâ€™s the big question: Are you making it easy for your clients to do business with you, or are you making them jump through hoops?
Now, you might be thinking that since you yourself don’t have an ecommerce site, this doesn’t apply. But not so fast, Spanky!Â Your site has a purpose. Are you making it easy for the people coming to your site to do what they what to do?Â Are you leading visitors through your site in such a way that they will do what you want them to do?
One of the things I have the privilege of doing is working with our clients, applying Persona Architecture to their websites and other marketing efforts. Persona Architecture is the process of recognizing that not everybody prefers to do things the same way as you do (or your website developer does).
Itâ€™s vital not simply to know the demographics of your clients, but also the temperaments of your clients, and make sure youâ€™re meeting the needs of all of them, in the way they prefer.
For example, if I were an extroverted spontaneous type, I would probably jump at the chance to go into GameStop and renew my subscription.Â Lots of games, great gaming conversation, woo-hoo!Â Iâ€™m so there!
Conversely, if I were a busy introverted competitive type, Iâ€™d likely want to renew the subscription and be done with it.Â (In reality, I am a humanistic, which means I will go into the store to renew the subscription because it will make my daughter happy, which will in turn make me happy, but as someone who can easily function as the other temperaments as well, the introverted competitive in me will not be happy that this task is not already completed.)
Here are a few things to make it easy for your clients (and for you):
- Recognize that you know your product or service so well that you are â€œinside the bottle,â€ and that your clients and visitors do not have the same perspective as you. Climb out of the bottle and try to look at it from their point of view.
- Ask a friend or colleague who has a different temperament than you to go to your site with the intent to do “whatever it is people come to your site to do.” Could they do it easily? If not, ask them what would make it easy for them.
- Check with your customer service staff to find out what your customers are saying, and fix what they say is broken. After all, they are the ones on the front lines hearing from your customers.
- Recognize that not everyone prefers to do something on your site the same you would prefer to do it.
Itâ€™s frustrating when our preferences arenâ€™t being met on a website that has our attention.
I would love to hear of a time when a site wonderfully met or exceeded your expectations! Please share so that we can all learn and improve!
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