What makes a good support website landing page?

We’ve all seen support landing pages that just do not work: they are cluttered, they advertise last month’s user group meeting, they hide important stuff like current case status several layers down. What would a good landing page do? It would:

  • Be easy to find, typically from a Support menu item on the main landing page and with an easy URL like support.organization.com.
  • Be task-oriented. Customers almost always visit the support page to (1) get an answer to a question and (2) download software. Do you know what your customers want from your site (not anecdotally, mind you, but from your web metrics)? And are the key tasks clearly accessible, near the top of the screen?
  • Minimize clicks. It’s not enough to be organized by tasks, the page should, as much as possible, allow the user to complete tasks without leaving the page. For instance, if you automatically display the list of open cases, a user can check if a recent update was made without lifting a finger.
  • Be usable on small devices. We talked about responsive and adaptive design last month: checking the site from a phone should not require intensive scrolling, or intensive squinting.
  • Automatically display relevant, fresh information. If the user logged in, show relevant (as determined by the profile) community threads, articles, announcements. Have a system to automatically refresh news.
  • Provide a customer-oriented experience. Users don’t care that training reports to another manager, or that marketing stores press releases in a different system. Show all user-relevant information together.

Does your support landing page “work”? If not, we can help.

And tell us your pet peeves about support pages.

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