Three weeks ago, I was working with 25 sales leaders of a large financial services corporation. We were discussing workflow and how to create an effective task management system. Seeing that they were all furiously taking notes, I told them they could instead download a free eBook I’d put together with screenshots and step-by-step instructions on how to use Microsoft Outlook Tasks correctly (text the word PRODUCTIVITY to 41411). They excitedly pulled out their phones and followed the instructions. So far so good.
About two minutes later, a man furrows his brows in confusion, looks over at his neighbor’s cell phone, and starts whispering to her. At the break, I wander over to see what the problem is. He shows me his cell phone. He successfully opted in and confirmed the autoresponder. Check. He clicked the URL he received back. Check. On that page, he found the Outlook eBook box and filled in his name and email. Here’s where it got interesting. He couldn’t find the “Subscribe” box to submit his request.
Now, I happen to know it’s to the right of the box. However, on HIS phone, it was displaying off the screen. Of course, he had no idea to scoot the screen over (apparently he wasn’t clairvoyant), so he couldn’t figure out where to click! I scrolled over and showed him where to click.
Now comes the funny part. Not seeing the correct Subscribe button initially, he clicked other ones further down the page and inadvertently signed up for several other things! I tried not to laugh as multiple emails from me appeared in his inbox from me with the other resources he accidentally requested—along with the Outlook ebook. Sheesh, finally.
This was a great lesson for me! As a productivity company, my goal of course is not to slow customers down and frustrate them! I thanked him for sharing his experience and promised to fix it to make it easier for other people in the future (which of course doesn’t help him any). After the class, I immediately emailed my IT guy to move the Subscribe box below the email box, so it would show up on a mobile phone held vertically. Duh—most people don’t hold their phones horizontally.
Are you seeing your offerings through your customer’s eyes? Are the processes you’re asking them to go through inefficient and frustrating? Enroll a friend or family member to subscribe to any offer you’re putting out there, on multiple devices, browsers, screens, and resolutions, and then talk with you about the experience. Don’t waste anyone’s time when attempting to provide value—that’s a bit counterproductive.