Is there anybody out there?
As a SaaS based test management software provider we face a few challenges, which are a result of the distance between us, as the vendor, and the customers out there.
In distance we refer to the real actual distance, which is in many cases simply the other side of the world, but we also refer to the relationship potential gap. Unlike offline sellers, and many online sellers of different types, it is not uncommon that we see new customers showing up on the system, without any previous direct contact.
Even with those who make some kind of initial contact, usually to get some help or information before making a purchase decision, the possible relationship is limited. Now, a good vendor, would like to know the customers, have some kind of a relationship with them, be able to communicate and send them important messages, be it general or specific to them.
There’s no need to say much about why it’s important to know your customers, to be able to communicate with them, learn their needs, and give them a community feeling. For us, one of the most important benefits of the dialog we have with customers, is the ideas we get for improving Testuff. We don’t want to guess what is it that our customers need, what is missing and what feature would help them most. We want to get it directly from them.
How to do it is the real challenge.
What we have learned in several years of operation, is that there a many small things we can do to tackle these challenges.
What we try to do is to essentially stay close to our customers as much as we can.
- We are working hard to provide a great personal service, listening to our customers, helping them and understanding their needs. We avoid as much as possible automatic emails of all kinds, making our team work harder, for the benefit of the users. The emails we get are written by someone, not a machine, why shouldn’t the response be the same?
- Providing 24/7 support for all customers around the globe is crucial. Serving users on their own time zone, giving them the feeling of a “local” service.
- Our offices are on the web… it doesn’t matter where our team members sit. What matters is however what they do for the customers and how. Since we have customers from Australia, through Asia, across Europe and all the way to the Americas, it is obviously not important where our people are located. Each customer should get the service and the “local” treatment.
- Now, each customer is different from the other. Each comes from a different culture, and has his own preferences for communication with vendors. Some are very formal, some less, some don’t want to be bothered, some are very friendly and don’t mind exchanging many emails. We try, as much as possible, to learn and listen to the ‘tone’, and give each customer the service, as they want it.
- One thing goes without saying – ‘getting closer’ doesn’t mean spamming customers with never-ending marketing and sales emails. This is one common preference for all.
- We are also storing our customer data in locations that are geographically close to them. This means better response time, higher availability and better performance around the world.
We Grow, You Enjoy
We have successfully added yet another Data Centre, located in Europe. A new member of our data centre family. This addition supports our mission to improve our customer software testing experience, and … getting closer to our customers :-)
As we continue to grow, we wanted to give our European users an opportunity to enjoy this new data centre, and for a limited time we are offering a special promotion.
Check it out.