Personal recommendation of support documents

Earlier today Daniel posted this idea:

Prioritize fre­quently asked ques­tions on an exter­nal fac­ing doc­u­men­ta­tion site based on how often the ques­tions get asked in sup­port tick­ets. Show the num­ber of times a given ques­tion was asked this month as a way of indi­cat­ing to the cus­tomer that the answer prob­a­bly already solves their question.

It gave me a quick idea to jot down: per­sonal rec­om­men­da­tions for sup­port docs. The idea would be to take some­thing akin to the Like but­ton on Facebook or WordPress.com but turn it into a way for users to say “This doc answered my question.”

Really low fric­tion inter­ac­tion is the goal. One click should reg­is­ter whether it helped the user and then dis­play their Gravatar next to the doc to show that it worked for them. In a way this would be turn­ing the vet­ting of doc­u­men­ta­tion into a user-facing feature.

The data would be pub­lic. Having a pub­licly dis­played list of those users whom the doc has helped may con­vince future users that the answers are found in docs. Sort of a “Oh look, it worked for these 150 peo­ple, maybe it’ll work for me” scenario.

To take it to the next level you could aggre­gate a list of vet­ted docs for each user. This way they could look back and see which ones they’ve found answers in before. Maybe they have a repeat ques­tion and you just saved them half an hour of searching.

2 thoughts on “Personal recommendation of support documents

  1. Let’s do it. I think there should be a “This worked for me” vs. “This didn’t work for me” dis­tinc­tion though. The lat­ter is use­ful feed­back for us.

    • Totally. It’s two types of feed­back. The for­mer is use­ful to the pub­lic while the lat­ter is use­ful inter­nally. Surface dif­fer­ent infor­ma­tion in dif­fer­ent locations.

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