Your customers have questions

Hey you, you there. Yeah, YOU

Do you ever find yourself with a question that you think is obvious and simple to answer?

Maybe you’re at the store, shopping for jeans and you really don’t know what you’re supposed to be paying attention to or what’s in style. Or, as happens to me sometimes, maybe you find yourself in the “these jeans are so expensive we don’t put a price on them” section and you’re scratching your head, wondering, “How much do these cost?”

Simple question right?

Easy for the merchant to answer right?

The interesting thing about this situation is this: if you can’t find someone to answer that question in a couple of minutes, you’re most likely going to just walk right out of the store. From “curious about the price of these fancy-ass jeans” to “F-it, I don’t have time for this,” in just moments.

Not a good outcome for the merchant.

A person’s time is valuable and making someone feel like they’re wasting it is the surest way to lose their business and loyalty. For most customers, not being able to ask a simple question and get a solid answer is exactly the same thing as making them feel like you’ve wasted their time.

Are you able to hear your customer’s questions?

Now, we work with a lot of app developers so we often think about this when it comes to consumers of applications. If you’re an app developer, take a moment to think about YOUR customers.

They have questions too:

  • Why’d you build something the way that you have?
  • When can they expect an update?
  • Why isn’t something working the way that they think it should work?

As an app developer, it’s important to recognize that your apps might make sense to you, but they don’t always make sense to your customers. In order to make sure they don’t just quit the app and leave your icon dormant on one of their screens, you need to get better at answering their questions. Give them reasons to stick around, to trust you, to understand why your app works the way that it does.

Listen to them, find out what they expect, what they determine to be confusing and identify what you can work on.

So, do you recognize that your customers have questions? Great!

Now, what are you going to do in order to hear their questions?

Yeah, loaded question Smile. If you’re an iOS app developer who wants to listen to their customers, be sure to try out the Apptentive framework – drop it into your iOS apps and manage customer questions and feedback online, through our developer communications portal. You’ll be learning from your customers in no time and keeping more folks in the store (although we recommend making the price a bit more obvious…).

You don’t have to take our word for it though

Some other smart people talking about customer questions:

Robi Ganguly Updated: April 4th, 2011
  • LE

    “Simple question right?
    Easy for the merchant to answer right?”

    Maybe this is obvious, and you are planning to do it already, but it seems as if your idea would be perfect to extend to the physical world. You should design and adapt it to take advantage of this exact situation.

    I’m in a store. I have a question. Or I have a suggestion or complaint. How can I make them aware of that w/o having to interact with a “clerk”? Seems like you could sell a SAAS that could be integrated into any app that is developed in any situation not just what you have described.

    • Robi Ganguly

      LE – this is a great suggestion and we definitely would love to help solve this problem in the future. Right now we’re super focused on the problems facing app developers and making sure we’re building incredible tools and services for them but we’ll watch this space and see how it evolves. Maybe we’ll get there some day – it really would make our lives much easier wouldn’t it :)?