5 Acronyms that Product Documentation Loves
Move over poets: the quest for love these days is being led by business pundits who extol the virtues of loving careers, loving colleagues, and loving customers. Of course, all of this love is a good thing. After all, readers of a certain vintage will recall the Beatles saying that all you need is love, and those whose tastes or age run more contemporary may remember that Beyoncé is crazy in love — and things seem to be working out nicely for her.
However, there’s another layer-of-love that many businesses are overlooking, but should certainly tap into so they can “let the moon to their eye like a big pizza pie”: the love between their product documentation and five acronyms that reign supreme across the sales, marketing and support worlds: CES, NPS, SEO, CSS and FCR.
- Customer Effort Score (CES)
CES captures how much effort that, on average, customers must spend to accomplish a task. Reducing CES is the driving force behind the omnichannel strategy in the retail and e-commerce space, which strives to make the end-to-end purchase experience as seamless as possible. However, the approach is also applicable – and frankly, necessary – for creating, distributing and updating product documentation, or else customers come across content that is inconsistent, inaccurate and difficult to access. Those are the raw ingredients for plummeting CES, and an invitation for a company’s most profitable customers to exit the buyer’s journey and never turn back.
- Net Promoter Score (NPS)
NPS measures the percentage of customers on the roster who would recommend a company to their professional and personal network (e.g. colleagues, friends, family members, fellow members of their LinkedIn group, etc.). Simply put: companies need to get as many customers as possible in the promoter category, and as few as possible in the detractor category. Clearly, great product documentation is part of this agenda, since content that is findable, relevant, accessible, consistent and compelling boosts loyalty and generates brand ambassadors: both of which are the building blocks of market and class-leading NPS.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
With over 3.5 billion searches a day, Google is the starting point for most customers when they hunt for the kind of answers and information contained in product documentation (e.g. what something does, how it works, best practices, troubleshooting, integrations, etc.). If customers can’t quickly and easily find what they want – or just as bad, if they come across PDFs, which as we’ve pointed out are anti-SEO – then instead of an asset, search visibility will be a liability for companies, and a win for their competitors who are sparking more SEO+product documentation love.
- Customer Self-Serve (CSS)
A survey by digital marketer Steven Van Belleghem found that 56 percent of customers want self-service options when conducting pre-sales research, and 48 percent want self-service options when addressing post-sales issues. In the same light, the Aspect Consumer Experience Index found that 65 percent of customers feel good about a company when they can answer a question or solve a problem on their own. Unfortunately, these warm and fuzzy feelings can quickly turn to frustration and ire when product documentation isn’t part of the CSS strategy – and customers are forced to send an email or pick up the phone. Instead of being crazy in love, customers will be crooning along with the Righteous Brothers as they “lose that loving feeling”.
- First Call Resolution (FCR)
We’ve noted that many customers prefer or insist upon great self-serve support options. But there are times when self-serve can’t answer certain questions (often because customers aren’t quite sure what they should be asking). What’s more, some customers simply want to connect with a support agent from the outset. This is good news for companies that use product documentation to turn their support agents into superheroes by: automatically notifying them when new content is available, delivering content recommendations in real-time based on customer profile data, and enabling them to send content to customers in a variety of customer love-inspiring ways (e.g. email link, text message link, watermarked PDF, branded microsite, etc.). Conversely, it’s bad news for companies that, unintentionally but inevitably, position their support agents to over-promise and under-deliver when it comes to FCR.
From Acronyms to the Bottom-Line
As we all know, it’s easy to get lost in a sea of acronyms (and if you doubt this, then IMO we can discuss your POV at EOD or COB — and don’t forget to LOL or ROTFL from time to time IRL, because TBH YOLO).
But the five acronyms in this spotlight aren’t buzzwords or meme fodder. They’re fundamental performance drivers across sales, marketing and support. Companies that use the right product documentation platform, and support it with smart policies and sufficient resources, will find themselves with plenty of reasons to treasure their bottom-line like a love song. Those that don’t will, alas, be searching for ways to mend a broken heart.
Zoomin’s multi-touchpoint publishing solution helps companies turn their product content into a strategic asset instead of a necessary expense – and measurably increase CES, NPS, SEO, CSS and FCR. Learn more by launching your guided demo now (and the sooner the better, since some of your customers existing the buyer’s journey due to product documentation issues won’t BRB!).