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Product/Category Best Practices. By JD Pahre. Where we are headed today. Do I use Products or Categories or both? How many top level and subs do I use? Could a question overlap several categories? Number of Answers per each prod or cat “Other” and “General”

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where we are headed today
Where we are headed today
  • Do I use Products or Categories or both?
  • How many top level and subs do I use?
  • Could a question overlap several categories?
  • Number of Answers per each prod or cat
  • “Other” and “General”
  • Naming convention and Weight of prods/cats in searching
  • Questions
products or categories or both
Products or Categories or Both?
  • My Motto : Less is Best
  • Most people are confused already
    • I am not good at making decisions
    • I am not super confident in my navigation abilities
    • I am not a risk taker
    • I do not spend all day on the internet
    • I am not comfortable with lots of choices
    • Just show me where to go
    • What did you say, I am confused already…
  • We can all make 1 good decision…but 2 in a row? 3?
  • What about Categories that change as a result of the product I select? Is this a good option?
  • I like some of my Categories..get rid of them?
how many should i use
How many should I use?

Less is Best (Did you forget that already?)

If you can get 15 or less Good

If you can get 10 or less Great

If you can get 6 or less on level 1 PERFECT!

Then for Subs the same holds true

I know what you are thinking…There is no way. I have way too many products to ever get that few.

how many continued
How many?..... Continued
  • Then….maybe you need to think higher up, think bigger, think more broadly
    • Software
    • Hardware
    • Phone
  • Remember, your customers are not as smart as you wish they were. Make it so simple and short, they cannot make a bad decision
  • If you have 3 levels of subs, let them know they can only go 1 deep if they need to. (Message Bases change)
  • Examples:
overlap into several categories
Overlap into several Categories
  • Most common problem with Categories I see
  • Customer has an issue, it can be categorized into many of the existing categories.
  • Examples:
    • Errors
    • Troubleshooting
    • Installation and Upgrades
    • Connection issues
    • Technical Support
    • Customer Service
    • Support
    • Billing, Account, Bill Pay
    • Technical Issues
  • Check incoming incidents for possible high level Topics
  • Use incoming Incidents to see if Prod/Cats are working
  • Check with colleagues, test around
examples of overlap
Examples of Overlap*i it

good examples
Good Examples
others and general
Others and General
  • Above is about the only effective use I have seen
  • Try to avoid these if at all possible
  • There may be a case when you need it-be careful
  • Why would you choose General or Other?
  • What problems does this cause?
    • People always use it
    • Reporting is a mess
    • It loses it’s meaning
    • All answers have to be associated to one of these
    • It becomes your worst nightmare
how many answers should i have
How many Answers should I have?

We recommend at least 1 Answer for every Prod/Cat combination. (this is the bare minimum)

Your Keyword Searches Report will tell you the answer to this question.

Your agents should be telling you the answer

The number of incidents you get should tell you

name of prod cat does matter
Name of Prod/Cat does matter
  • The Prod and Cat names are included in the search
  • By default each word is worth 50 points!!
    • This is equal to the keywords box
    • Higher than the summary
    • 20 more than the Question
    • 12 times higher than the Answer itself
  • In many cases you may want to exclude the name of the Product or Category
  • You may also want to reduce the score of 50 to the minimum of 4
  • Smart Assistant also looks at this weighting
best practices review
Best Practices Review
  • 1 Menu
  • 6 items or less level 1
  • 1 Answer per Prod/Cat combination
  • Avoid Overlap
  • Avoid “General” “Others” if possible
  • Remember the weighting
    • Exclude if needed
    • Change weighting if needed
  • Check incoming incidents for Prod/Cat relevance