When Brandon Jones, owner of Make Design Not War (MDNW), a Southern California Web design and development company, needed a customer support solution that would scale with his business, he wanted something simple and straightforward.
After testing four systems over a two-year period, he eventually selected Ticksy, a Web-based customer support app. MDNW began using the system in early 2012.
Developed by Altitude Marketing, Ticksy was engineered with simplicity in mind. The solution, priced at just five dollars per user per month, allows small businesses to field, assign, track, and follow up on customer service inquires submitted through the online portal. In addition, user questions can be turned into entries on public-facing FAQ pages. The portal can even be branded with MDNW's unique URLs and logo integration.
MDNW receives between 30 and 50 support tickets a day, which averages out to about 1,000 a month. Support tickets usually include one or two simple questions about how to install or use any of the company's more than 40 products.
MDNW also offers support via Twitter and the ThemeForest product pages, but it primarily tries to push customers to file support tickets through its Ticksy page. "The Web is literally the only place that we interact with our customers, so naturally it's vital that we have an effective way of offering support through the Web," Jones says.
Prior to Ticksy, MDNW rotated through a series of forum-esque solutions, which Jones says were developed mostly to function as bulletin boards, not support systems.
"What we needed was a simple ticket system that allowed our customers to quickly send us a question tied to a specific product with a screenshot and private log-in credentials," Jones says. "We didn't need the hundreds of features...and we didn't need something as simple and public as a bulletin board."
MDNW started with a free trial of Ticksy, and within two days, Jones moved all support to the new system.
For him, the implementation has been a total success.
"Ticksy was the first [customer service tool] that we found that felt like it was actually built with our particular problems in mind," Jones says.
With Ticksy, response time has gone from nearly five days down to less than two. In most cases, MDNW can now respond to tickets within 24 hours.
Resolution time is somewhat murkier to measure, but Jones estimates that the firm has gone from an average of four days to resolve an issue down to one or two in most cases.
In addition, many customers have been able to find answers to their questions on their own without having to involve MDNW's customer support staff. Now that we've had thousands of questions asked, the system has become searchable in a way that allows most question askers to self-solve through a quick search of previous tickets or by reading our FAQs," Jones reports.
MDNW can also take high-priority issues that come in through the Ticksy system and create FAQs on the fly if more than a couple of tickets come in within a given week on the same topic.
All that has freed up time and money, enabling MDNW's three-person support staff to work more effectively and efficiently. "We now use the time we previously spent on supporting our customers on developing new products, which is another huge competitive advantage for our business," Jones says.
MDNW was one of the first companies to adopt the Ticksy platform, discovering bugs and poor work flows and reporting them to Altitude Marketing. "We dealt with these by filing our own tickets with Ticksy developers who, in most cases, were able to fix or at least respond to most of our tickets in under twenty-four hours," Jones recalls.
Being an early adopter also meant that MDNW was able to influence product development, adding feature requests through the same ticket system. Most of those requests have become public features of the Ticksy product within the last year or so, according to Jones.
But despite those early snags, Jones has no regrets. "Customers were thrilled with the new work flow, and response times went down, as did our stress level when handling the task of support," he says.
Since implementing the Tickey trouble ticketing system from Altitude Marketing, Make Design Not War has seen:
- response time for trouble tickets drop from nearly five days to less than two;
- resolution time drop from four days to one or two days in most cases; and
- thousands of customer questions asked and answered through the system without having to involve call center reps.