If you've ever bought something from IKEA then you know what I'm going to talk about. Everything you purchase comes with very clean, easy-to-read instructions. It doesn't matter how simple the product is or how basic the installation might be. Everything gets picture-by-picture steps how to build their product.

IKEA's Idea

Stop and think for a minute. Why does IKEA do provide instruction like that? I think it's for several reasons. First, they are a Swedish company and they are selling to a global market, so often times language barriers might make text based instruction difficult. Secondly, by placing instructions with every product, no matter how insignificant, they reduce the number of support queries they'll have to handle. Lastly, by providing instructions with every piece of furniture they demonstrate to their customer the importance they place not just on the product, but also on the customer's time and level of satisfaction. If I get frustrated trying to put something together (admit it, you've felt that way too) I look for something to blame. If I can blame IKEA then I will, and suddenly my satisfaction level with IKEA is reduced.

 

Don't Hate

Quite honestly, it's a no-brainer. If the end goal is for the customer to LOVE the product, and LOVE the company, why not make it as painless a process as humanly possible? If providing a single instruction page with pictures will give that feeling then it's well worth the time and energy spent in creating it and placing it with every product.

Apply It

If you develop software for others to use then it's critical to keep these points in mind. Think like IKEA. If you want your clients to LOVE your software, and LOVE your company then take the time to write good documentation. Make your instruction manual a part of your product. Don't make your FAQ's or your knowledgebase an after-thought. By spending time creating good documentation for even the most simple of tasks you show the client that you care about their experience, their time, and their money. And you can cut down on your support time with good documentation.

It's Not For You

Lastly, IKEA knows how to build their products, they don't need instructions to follow. Similarly, you wrote your software. You know how it works and you don't need step-by-step details. But your clients may not. You're writing documentation for them. Don't forget that.

Here at CRMery we have an extensive FAQ section, we have a support forum available to all members, and an in-depth knowledgebase available to all of our clients. We used pictures everywhere possible and videos to help demonstrate how to accomplish things within our CRM. We want our documentation to be beautiful and intuitive. Ready to find out how we support you? Become a member today!

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