How to get the best support for your Shopify theme
Posted: Jan 04 2017 / Richard Bairstow / We are Underground
We have all had experiences both good and bad, we have been blown away by how far some people go to help and we have also been let down by the inability of others to give some answers.
In all walks of life everybody at some stage needs help with something, whether we like it or not but how we ask for that help can very easily define what the outcome will be.
A toddler making noises and pointing at something tells us that they want something or want to draw our attention towards it. At school children put their hands up and wait for acknowledgement, when asking for directions we tell people where we would like to go and when shopping for clothing we ask do you have this in size XYZ.
Granted even in these situations you can be disappointed by the outcome, the person or even your own expectations but remember that everyone can have a bad day and we never really do know what is happening in that persons life so why not cut them some slack and ask were we human and could we have done better in asking for help. Did we ask the right questions?
These examples are all of course in person and in situations where there is a pretty clear direction as to what we want to know. What happens when communicating by email? There is no tone of voice, there is nothing that you can point at and there is nothing in your hands that we can see. You still need support so how do you get it and when you do did it help or was it not quite what you expected?
Are you the problem?Our support team will handle approximately 200 questions a day - spread over numerous support tickets.
Some customers will send us a single email with 1 question and then we will hear from them again in several weeks time, others send us lists of 20 questions in order to try and cover multiple bases at one, some customers are new and some are returning.
When you purchase a Shopify theme from Underground the support for the life time of that theme is free so we do hear from thousands of customers who have been using the same theme for many years, updating versions to the most recent periodically.
The biggest problem that we have on so many occasions however is a lack of information and at times the general approach taken.
In order to get the best support you need to think about how your question is going to be read and what information might be needed in order to expedite getting your query or support problem resolved. Information is king - the more that you give the more dialed in we can be and hopefully the better the response will be.
lets start with some specifics
1. Which theme are you using
2. What is the URL of your website
3. How can we help.
2 Pieces of key information allow us to know which theme you use and a website address that we can use to visit the site... We are then have something visual that we can refer to.
But the work isn't done yet, it can all go south from here, armed with little or no information there isn't a great deal we can do to help straight away. To give you an example here is an something that we received recently.
"your theme is broken on mobile"
We had the website address, we knew the theme and we knew that something was going wrong on mobile, unfortunately this customer had emailed us out of office hours and did not receive a response until the following morning. Of course we looked but couldn't see a specific issue and so had to ask for more details - how frustrating is it to wait for an answer to be asked for more information instead? Lost time, potential for lost sales and a whole lot of stress which could have been bypassed with a sentence describing the problem, 6 words on this occasion were simply not enough.
We asked for more information, we were told that the mobile menu wouldn't open on a product page, we checked and asked if any edits had been made within theme templates to be informed that nobody has touched the code and so we asked for temporary admin access to take a look at what was happening.
In 90% of email cases we can and will supply a first time fix. We know the traits, traps, choke points and more confusing areas that do result in a support ticket being created.
Running a support team gives great oversight. We do see everything, there are some who accuse us of plotting the downfall of their empire, there are others who have since we have forged great partnerships with and many more who trust us to be able to get them out of a jam, give theme some solid answers or at the very least point them in the right direction.
The true value really does give us a view of where many merchants struggle, which parts of the theme do they like, which they do not and what can we do to improve things for the next generation of themes and customers.
We are here to help
We really are, that is why the support that you receive is free. We might not always be able to give all of the answers. Many would like more than we can give but in the most part we know that our customers like us, are happy with the support levels, will come back for more and would most importantly recommend us to a friend. Give us the information, be nice and you will reap the benefits.