jecasc - 8:32 pm on Nov 29, 2011 (gmt 0)
I had the same problem and I solved the problem like this:
1. I looked through customer emails and checked for questions and problems that came up again and again.
Then I looked at the underlying reasons for the problems.
For example one problem was that customers forgot the password, requested a new one on my website and then claimed the new password did not work. I solved this problem by removing the letters 0,O,I,l from automatically generated passwords. Since then, not one email about passwords not working.
I got lots of emails asking if I would send to specific countries, despite the fact that it said "delivery to all EU countries" on my website. Especially our friends from across the English Channel seem to be not really sure if they are an EU member or not. I got rid of the problem by listing all countries speratly.
For other questions where this approach did not work I generated a FAQ section and placed a link to the FAQ on the contact form. "You have a question? Please check our FAQ before submitting."
If the FAQ do not work for you you can even do it a little more sophisticated: Create a contact form using a dropdown menu where customers can select a "subject" for their email. If they select "Question about shipping costs" automatically display the shipping costs or a link to the shipping costs, below the subject line.
2. I don't use an email program but a ticket system for customer service. All emails that are submitted with the contact form or are sent to my email address go into the ticket system and automatically create a new ticket.
That's a big time safer even if you are a small company and complaining about a "full inbox" actually means you got five or six emails on a day.
- All your emails and replys to your emails are displayed on one page. You see the whole conversation and not only the last email. Especially good if you do not work alone.
- You can see all previous tickets from the customer on one mouseclick.
- You can easily create predefined answers for questions that are asked very often and insert them with one click.
- You can add notes to tickets