FAQ vs. Contact us: a good example

Published on the 2 May 2011

As a user, it is hard to resist calling the company when you have a specific question. Why bother reading the whole FAQ looking for the answer, when it is so easy to call someone and directly ask for it? For the companies, answering quickly to any request is a must for the conversion, but this can be compromised by the number of requests. So the question is: how to make sure the phone contacts are really not answered by the FAQ, and try to reduce the number of personalized information requests? ING Direct is a very successful online bank, and has managed to find a good balance, in my point of view.

I was looking for a very specific information on the website, and tried browsing the FAQ, but the answer I was looking for wasn’t detailed. So I really had to contact them by email. On the Contact us page, the user has to choose the topic of his question, and the good idea we are looking at is to directly suggest related links to the FAQ just below. Then, the question is the opposite: why bother writing an email or placing a phone call, when my question is in the list, and I may be just one click away from the answer I am looking for? Well done.