Have you ever taken the scenic route when using a website? If you have, it probably wasn’t on purpose.
The concept doesn’t really apply to the web. Every click is expected to take you closer to your the goal. Getting to the destination is the only objective when traversing a web site.
Wouldn’t it be great if the paths that we take most often were a little bit shorter, a bit better marked, and a bit more direct?
On a website, that’s entirely possible.
With this in mind, we’ve started adding some mechanisms that provide shortcuts, such as popular downloads and the downloads search tool on the Support Home Page and Support Mega Menu.
Since we made some changes in March, we’ve seen some fantastic evidence about how users navigate to downloads. Before, 77% of users went through the top page of the Software Downloads Product Navigator to drill down and find the model, release and ultimately download. Now, 49% are starting on the top page, which means 51% are starting deeper in the Product Navigator structure.
In short, more people are starting closer to their destination-- it takes less time and fewer clicks to get there. As a result, the average time to select and start to download software was nearly cut in half from a year ago.
Shorter trips means the opportunity for errors is reduced. And the metrics indicate that 5-9% more users are successfully completing downloads compared to last year.
This is all due to shortcuts. The enhancements to the site allow users to either go directly to the destination, or send the user deep in the product navigator, by-passing layers of product categories and sub-categories.
There are three things that contribute to deeper entry into the product navigator: 1) the download search, 2) popular downloads links and 3) the download link on each product support page (series pages).
Download search was available before we started making changes, as was the download link on Series pages, however, both were somewhat challenging to find. The design changes elevated the search to the Support Mega Menu and the Support Home Page.
Popular downloads links on the Support Mega Menu and the Support Home Page are likely helping. But a big contributor has been the Downloads Search on the mega menu and the tab on the support home page.
Another big contributor is the advent of overlays for the product categories on the Support Home Page, which are driving more people to the Series pages.
From the Series pages, users can click the download link and land deep in the product navigator. This avoids drilling down through the product navigation. Based on our metrics, it looks like quite a few users have already found this shortcut.
At Cisco, we are focused upon internally and externally sharing social media best practices and lessons learned from individuals who have successfully integrated social media into their day job. We recently sat down with one such social practitioner, Jennifer Halim, a subject matter expert (SME) on the Customer Support Team, to learn more about how she incorporates social media into her job at Cisco.
Jennifer joined the Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC) in 2007 and focuses on security products in Australia. In 2010, she became a Technical Account Manager with ScanSafe, Cisco’s cloud-based web security service. Even after the move, she managed to keep up to date with the technology that she used in her previous role by actively participating on the Cisco Support Community. With over 322,000 registered users and 11 years of history, the Cisco Support Community is a platform on which technical experts and Cisco customers can interact with each other by asking and answering questions in the discussion forums, commenting on blogs, rating videos, and more. While spending an average of one to three hours per day contributing to the discussion forums regarding Cisco Security products, she participates completely out of her own will during after business hours. Through her engagements on this website, Jennifer states that she is constantly learning from other contributors to the community, and she enjoys the satisfaction of being able to help customers by answering their questions and resolving their issues.
Community participants like Jennifer who have responded to customers have contributed to Cisco’s $80 million in annual cost savings that is attributed to the Cisco Support Community and is a conservative estimate based on TAC case deflection. Based on the number of customer cases resolved, Jennifer has been one of the top contributors since she joined the community in 2010.
How does she manage to integrate her Support Community activities into her day job?
Read More »
Tags: ambassador, Australia, best practices, Cisco, Cisco Supporty Community, Customer Support, forums, lessons learned, ScanSafe, security, social media, TAC, Technical Assistance Center
This past weekend, we made a subtle change to the product navigation in the “mega menus” available from the top of the pages on Cisco.com.
Notice the change? Feedback welcome!
Tags: navigation, webexperience
Have you ever woken up in the morning with sweat rolling down your face? With the holidays right around the corner, if you’re one of those people that find holiday shopping stressful, you know what I’m talking about…So does Ernie.
Meet Ernie (in image below). He has had some trouble sleeping lately and when he finally does fall asleep, his dreams are consumed by nightmares. Nightmares about 10 social media practices. Check them out below. Read More »
Tags: best practices, fun, funny, how to, social media, what not to
You may have noticed updates in various areas of Cisco.com over the last few months. For instance, the new Cloud area, or the updates to our support menus and navigation. Even though in our team we normally work all electronically, we decided to keep a running set of improvements, components and templates on one of our walls. It’s nice to see all of the red “Delivered” labels!
We’ll be writing about some of the specifics here in coming weeks.
Tags: cisco.com, webexperience