Archive for the ‘customer experience management’ Category

Top 50 Blogs and Feeds for Technical Communicators

February 15, 2011

Both my career and personal life is undergoing many dramatic changes. So I was not able to update anything over here after Jan 14th. On a pleasant surprise, I got an email from indoition.com stating that my blog too listed in the elite list. I am giving the URL so that  it will be easy to catchup other useful technical communication blogs. *ahem my blog  comes as forth from the top (of course there is no particular numbered list, number matters you know 🙂 )

Here we go:

Top 50 blogs and feeds

My First Video Movie on Technical Writing

November 29, 2010

Xtranormal.com is a website that gives an option to convert your text into a movie, that too free of cost(ok, ok)..You just need to choose your actors(max 2) and type your script, the site will take care of camera shots and recording. I have created a movie on the multiple roles that Technical Writers play in a development environment. Here is the link:

http://www.xtranormal.com/watch/7859593

Note: You can embed the video directly by publishing it in YouTube.

User Assistance

October 4, 2010

One fine day I logged on to my payroll information site to check some information. I have to select a Date using a Calendar function. For example if I wanted to select 28th October 2010, I need to click several times to get the corresponding month and the date as 28th displayed on the screen.

Here is the catch. I am using Internet Explorer 7.0 version. That website has some script error resulting Calendar function didn’t pop-up. So I was clueless how to enter or select the date. Without selecting the date, I can’t process my request.

I called my colleague to get some idea on that. Yes, my assumption is correct; he too came across the same error. And the solution that he gave was too funny. “Close the session and log-on after an hour”.  🙂

Why can’t I directly type-in the date that I wish to..?

Enter Date:  __________  (in DD/mm/yy format for ex: 31/03/10)

See the above example; I have a User Assistance on the screen itself. Do I need a calendar function here..? I don’t think so.

Note: By the way after an hour, I was able to enter the date and processed my request.  🙂

Gazopa – Upload images and search similar images

August 31, 2010

Let us assume you want to know the birth place of Tom Cruise. What you will do..? You will Google it and explore those information related pages. This is the normal way of using Google – using key words for information searching.

Now let us assume you have a picture of an unknown person and you are interested in knowing his/her name and other details. How will you use Google..? I have thought of suggesting Google to do some research on this area.

Now let us assume you got an image, say a Close button and you would like to see a similar image of bigger/smaller size without using keyword search. That is rather than using “Close Button small in size” keywords in the Google search tab, you would upload the reference image and view similar images – big or small, red or blue. How does it sound..?

Yes, it is possible.  

  1. Go to http://gazopa.com
  2. Click the Upload tab and browse the image from your system and hit the Enter button in your keyboard (by the way, there is no Submit button for this purpose, just saying).

You will see a lot of pages with similar images of your reference image. But this technique doesn’t works out for human faces (or at least in my case). 🙂

Also you can give an image URL to search for similar images  or

If you are good at drawing, test your hands by drawing an image and upload to see similar images.

I think it will be quite useful for graphic/UI designers and lone technical authors who are jack of all trades (but master of none like me). 🙂

Customer Feedback

August 5, 2010

 

Getting customers’ feedback is inevitable for any business. When it comes to documentation, majority of the clients (readers) are reluctant to give their feedback.  

Is that help system sounds jejune for them..? Are they really accessing it..?

Any Tech author will be curious to hear about his help system, Is that useful to the clients? Does the client get the answer for their queries..? Which page or topic is accessed by the people more frequently?  And so on.

One quick way to get the user access statistics is embedding a piece of HTML or JavaScript code in your site. Many online statistical tools are available like http://sitemeter.com or http://histats.com.

But if you want to get the feedback in a professional way, you can create a user feedback form or if you have RoboHelp Office Pro, you can use the logging and tracking feature – says Neil Perlin in his article on RoboHelp in the adobe.com.

He further adds that RoboHelp Office Pro has set of reports in seven categories of information:

  • Unanswered Questions: Questions that users’ type but to which they don’t find an answer.
  • Frequently Asked Questions: Questions that users ask most often about.
  • Areas Requiring Help: Areas that user ask questions about most often.
  • Frequently Viewed Content: Topics that users view most often.
  • Usage Statistics: Information about when users access the material. This might indicate a need for more server capacity in response to user complaints about slow access at 9 AM, for example.
  • Question Trends: The number of answered versus unanswered questions over time.
  • Errors: Various help system errors.

Quite interesting. By the way, recently I included “Rate this” widget in the site, just curious to hear from you.  🙂

Customer Experience Management (CEM)

July 29, 2010

 Scenario:

U.S.airways came across a unique problem. Though many of their customers logged in their site, checked for flights, fare etc didn’t proceed to book their tickets. In short, there is a huge dip in U.S.airways business. Web Metrics results were quite interesting.

Many of their customers entered the flight numbers wrongly, so the site was unable to process their request. Annoyed customers changed their mind and as a result no business for U.S.airways.

When they corrected this error (?), (maybe an auto-popup flight number field instead of a text box), U.S.airways found almost 100 percent rise in their business.

So unless you don’t know how your clients use your website, you can’t say that whatever you have developed is user-friendly. The feature which sounds simple for you may be annoying for the clients.

This is referred as Customer Experience Management (CEM). There are many vendors deploy CEM for their clients (of course not in free of cost).

I am planning to explore the web metrics and post few more in this space.


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