Contributed by Jeff Kear – Founder of Planning Pod
I run a online business called Planning Pod that provides event management software. Here are two things we have learned as part of supporting our online software-as-a-service:
Tip #1 – Do provide more than one channel for support. We used to provide only email support to our customers. However, we constantly received complaints about not offering phone support. So this year we added phone support as well as support via Facebook and Twitter, and not only has our customer satisfaction jumped from 65% to 85% but our customer retention has also improved.
Tip #2 – Don’t let constant complainers affect how you serve your other customers. In many businesses, the majority of customer support requests are submitted by the same small group of customers who never seem to be satisfied no matter how hard you try to please them. Although their requests can sometimes be helpful in identifying ways to improve your product, often they try the patience of the support staff. Often the best way to manage these customers is to ask them politely to save up their questions and requests and email you once a month. If this doesn’t work, you can also institute a standing policy of only allowing a certain number of requests per customer per month.