06 Aug ‘Contact Us’ pages. Stop playing hard to get.
On some level, when a company offers me a form or an e-mail address as a way to get in touch, I feel slightly snubbed. Why so bloody aloof? Why keep me at arm’s length? I’m an alright person. My needs are not wholly unreasonable. I just want a few answers to a few questions that I can’t find the answer to on the website.
I feel pretty strongly about ‘Contact Us’ pages. They should be welcoming and encouraging. After a first date with someone you really quite like you wouldn’t ask them to leave a message so that you can pick it up at your earliest convenience. Surely you’d make yourself as available as possible. In fact if you really liked them you’d be waiting by the phone, e-mail, text and Skype! After all, this is the critical phase of what could turn out to be lovely long term relationship. Every move matters.
Here comes the trumpet blowing.
On one of the sites we’ve recently been working on we’ve been improving that all important ‘Contact Us’ page. Built on Word Press, it’s not as big and elaborate as a lot of the sites we work on but it doesn’t mean you can’t do things well. We think the end result is human, welcoming and super encouraging to ‘get in touch’. Like most of our website development work it all starts with a sketch and a conversation with the client and then (and only then) do we move into wire framing, information architecture and the techie build. I do the doodles and Pete and his team work their magic on design and build.
The final solution.
Here’s what we decided;
- Introduce the lovely staff. Include images and links to find out more about them.
- Offer four different ways to get in touch – telephone, e-mail, Skype and a call back form.
- Reassure that there is no question too silly and that the staff speak good English.
- Be upfront about response turnaround times, call rates and office hours.
- Wrap it all up in a bunch of useful content and information. Flickr, YouTube, downloadable brochures, weather and the location.
- Offer the option to sign up to hear from them again and win a holiday.
We also worked with the client to set up appropriate telephony and route calls via Skype so the customer only pays for a national rate call. Here’s the end product. You can let us know what you think and what we’ve missed by leaving a comment below. Thoughts welcome!