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How do the big shops treat already replied stupid questions ?

tracking number, delivery time, account

     
12:08 am on Feb 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

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How do the big shops treat already replied stupid questions ?



Hello,


Do you have customers who keep asking information that is already in their account ? Like tracking number and delivery time, etc... ?

Do you reply them or do you expect that they check former messages that you sent on which everything is written ?

It is so boring that I am going to set a NO-REPLY@mysite.com address.

How can someone be so stupid in 2013 that he keeps asking details that are at the same place on any shop: his account !

Sorry, I got really bored today and the only thing that helps me is when I know how much money I make thanks to these stupid people (if they were not so much maybe they wouldn't buy on my shop that is more expensive than others hahahaha).



Thanks for reading.
2:04 am on Feb 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Are you talking about emailed questions? I have an answer for each general question on different web pages. My reply is boilerplate, and I insert the url of the web page, and hit 'send'.

If you have them on the phone, I dunno. Put them on hold for 10 minutes? j/k
3:23 am on Feb 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Do you reply them or do you expect that they check former messages that you sent on which everything is written ?

If they checked former messages, they wouldn't be asking all over again would they?

To take your subject line at face value: Big businesses often have semi-automated responders that pick out key words or phrases from the e-mail and send a stock reply. So if the email contains the word "delivery" the business cranks out a reply that gives the delivery method and expected time.

This is infuriating-- to put it politely-- when the e-mail comes from an intelligent human* who is asking a more specific question. It doesn't become much less infuriating when the last line is something like "If this does not answer your question..." --and then the customer's follow-up email is fed into the self-same computer. But I guess that's a different thread.

If you're big enough that you can't function without automated replies, you can start the auto-response with something like "This is an automated reply. Your letter has not yet been read by a human." with some further blah-blah about how long to wait for the follow-up answer, if any. And then your humans (you personally?) can decide which questions need individual answers.


* Like everyone here, duh.
6:38 pm on Feb 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

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We're not large by any means, but I worked as a CSR for a huge (non ecommerce) company in a previous life and I would recommend a couple things:

1. Change your "receipt" email to give an auto-response that it is unmonitored and to visit www.acmewidgets.com/faq for answers to common questions. Make sure your customer service contact info is on the FAQ in case their inquiry isn't answered...but perhaps don't include it in the auto-response.

2. Create a warchest of prepared responses. Make templates for common inquiries where you simply insert/replace whatever is applicable for that customer/enduser. In Outlook, you can set these up as a "signature" and just insert whichever one(s) best-fit the scenario.
7:05 pm on Feb 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

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>>>How do the big shops treat already replied stupid questions ?

Do you want your customers to get the type of service that the big shops give them?

If you reverse your attitude and actively welcome this type of communication, you may find you generate some extremely loyal clients.

Further, the problem you're experiencing may not be repeated requests for info, but it may be a general distrust of your company, i.e. they're checking up on you. IF so, giving them over the top service will lead to reduced service emails, once you've gained their trust.

BTW, my testimonials on my website are full of people talking about how we answer calls and provide service after they've not had that service at our competitors. If it helps, try looking at these people as 'people who are giving you their money'.
5:13 pm on Feb 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Never underestimate the stupidity of the public.

I have had people phone me to ask me my address (The only place that the phone number is displayed is beside the address)
I have had people send emails to a "donotreply" address.
When telling people that sending an email to a special address would automatically register them for a newsletter they email that address to say "no thank you".
As editor of a music magazine I have lost count of the number of times that I am sent gig listings missing such useful trivia as the date or the venue.

Of course a lot of people aks the "stupid" question in the hope of getting a different answer to the one in the FAQ.

A friend of mine, working as a bouncer, once came up with the classic response to a customer at a sell out gig - "which part of the word FULL don't you understand sir?"
5:58 pm on Feb 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

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+1 Wheel


How do the big shops treat already replied stupid questions ?


With a smile and unfailing courtesy
10:42 pm on Feb 4, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Do you want your customers to get the type of service that the big shops give them?

If you reverse your attitude and actively welcome this type of communication, you may find you generate some extremely loyal clients.


Exactly. Offering a legitimate personal email back is one of the few competitive advantages a small biz can offer over a huge corp. I can't tell you how many times I've had someone ask for a tracking number and then say "thanks for the response! BTW, do you guys have xxx?"

Regardless you will always get people asking obvious questions, especially tracking numbers. More over, the customer isn't really stupid for asking for a question that is 'in their account'. How do they know they have an account on your website? If they're a new user, are they going to be familiar with your interface (or worse, what about if they're a new internet user in general!). And the questions go on. I hate to criticize, but if you're singling out a particular segment of your customers and calling them stupid it's likely at some point along the customer relationship line this attitude has been conveyed to your customers which hurts your business.
1:47 am on Feb 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

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My customers mostly are teenagers and they deserve to be called stupid because they DO NOT EVEN READ THE MESSAGES THAT WE SEND.

I wonder if I should quit being polite and should just write the minimum just as:

(no need to say helllo)


Connect to your account:

Tracking number:

Delivery time:



Any "complicated" sentence (with a verb) is too much to read for them it seems !
8:31 am on Feb 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

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I would suggest posting screen shots of each step, give the basic instructions that you suggest but link each to the appropriate screen shot.

Some people are plain dumb, some are just inexperienced, some just make a point of being difficult.
12:55 pm on Feb 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Although some people are dumb, inexperienced and difficult, to be fair (and I'm not saying this is the case here), but so are some websites.

The past few months I've seen a redesign project go completely wrong because it was led by a corporate dogsbody with no real experience, and built by an agency who were too small to deal with a project of that size. Net result, 40% traffic drop and almost 1 million lost in sales over a few months.

Sometimes it's worthwhile taking a step back from your site / company and look at the process objectively (or hire someone else to do so). A simple change like moving the phone number to a more prominent location can save your time and money.
2:22 pm on Feb 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

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And get some proper UAT testing. Its a step that is often skipped or squeezed out to meet timescales but it really is needed.
3:48 pm on Feb 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

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@oliondor
I understand your frustration, we go through the exact same thing. People do not like to read.

Black Friday was really bad for us.
We had a 50% off entire store sale and we still had people asking if certain items were included or if this applies to international people.

The list goes on.
These our customers though and we would not be here if it was not for them.

Fortunately, my business has been very successful and now I'm in a position to hire customer service representatives.
It is their job to deal with it and provide great customer service regardless how dumb the question is.
11:51 pm on Feb 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

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We had a 50% off entire store sale and we still had people asking if certain items were included or if this applies to international people.

That is a perfectly reasonable question. Stores always have exceptions, whether it be "things that require special shipping" or "alcohol and dairy products" or "products that are already reduced" or ... et cetera. And sometimes it's taken for granted that the customer already understands these exceptions.

Better to have a customer ask about something you think is obvious than to have them make assumptions about something they think is obvious.
10:09 pm on Feb 6, 2013 (gmt 0)

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I thought the word "entire" would cover it.
How could we have worded it better?
10:43 pm on Feb 6, 2013 (gmt 0)

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I thought the word "entire" would cover it.
How could we have worded it better?

Maybe something like this:

50% off entire store*

*YES, everything in the store, NO EXCEPTIONS! Everything in the store is 50% off!


[that's not a joke. If you don't think it needs to be that clear, or explicit, or repetitive, taker a few minutes and browse some on and off line ads.

There are almost always an * or two listing the exceptions to "everything/storewide/etc"]
11:44 pm on Feb 6, 2013 (gmt 0)

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I don't think it's possible to be 100% stupid proof. Dealing with silly customers is just part of the game. Had a guy email me yesterday to tell me he received his stuff, then whined a bit about the fact that we had not deposited his check yet. He... "couldn't balance his checkbook". Yes that's right... Someone actually complaining about the fact we had NOT taken his money.