Saturday, April 10, 2010

How not to keep your customers

In my last post, I wrote about providing the right amount of information, which is subjective when reviewing content, but becomes much clearer when using the content, i.e. in context.

For the past 2 days I've been trying to renew my Norton Internet Security subscription, with no luck. The Express Renewal option didn't make it clear when my credit card would (or would not) be charged. Since I wanted to apply a discount code, this was problematic. Say what you want about Ticketmaster, at least they make it clear whether your credit card will be charged as you proceed through their ticket purchase workflow. Norton's Express Renewal workflow provided too little information.

I went directly to the Norton web site so that I could renew my subscription and apply the discount code. I ended up on a purchase page that let me apply the code, but didn't let me complete the purchase. Maybe there was a problem with their site, maybe there was a problem with my purchase- regardless, I was not given any indication or error message that would help me give my money to Norton (Symantec)- again, too little information.

I then tried the Contact Us page and was faced with a lengthy form to complete in order to chat or even send an email (assuming I wouldn't mind waiting 48 hours for their response). Suddenly Norton decided I needed to provide them with too much information, to figure out what the problem was.

So what's the cost of not have the right amount of information? In my case, it's $50-60 that Norton lost because I couldn't complete the simplest transaction on their site.

After close to a (frustrating) hour trying to renew my Norton subscription, I went to the McAfee site and completed my purchase (including discount) in under 10 minutes.

Sorry Norton- now I'm a McAfee customer.

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