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Websites, can you use them?


PettiGoat Junction

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I work for a company that is 3 in 1 and part of our business is selling joystick kits and accessories. I work in marketing, so I do all the ads, videos, speaking and writing, I pay attention to customer calls so I can improve things. I don't answer the phones unless its crazy busy but I have noticed that some farmers absolutely refuse to use the computer or more specifically, our website. Why? We have so many videos, pictures, links and more. I hear calls all the time "well I ordered this on the phone and I didn't think it would look like this"...well we did tell you to see our website and the videos first. Or "well I like talking to people on the phone"...I get that too but when there is only 3 people running, this causes shipping, packaging, taking videos and more to lag. And then we get nasty calls about how slow we are. We get calls about needing service help, but we send an entire book along with how to's and links to how to video's and website images, but its like some people enjoy to scream over the phone because they don't want to slow down and read. Its frustrating to say the least! Websites don't bite!! 

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“You can lead the horse to water but you can’t make him drink”. You might have the best product, service, and manuals in the world and there would still be people who wouldn’t pay attention enough to notice. That’s not personal, it’s just dealing with people and agriculture people in particular. 

Me personally, I use the web to find things and research them, then I call and ask any other questions.  I will watch videos but not if they are 10+ minutes long.  If the company doesn’t answer the phone then I don’t buy because in my mind they need to be willing to answer questions on the phone if they wish to sell me a product. I also would rather buy over the phone but that is not a deal breaker for me personally.
 

I sold things in a previous job and if you can unlock what works for a specific person you will have it made. BUT each person is different and requires varying levels of attention and salesmanship. 

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Nope, most websites don't bite, but being in customer service can.

BTDT.....GTT-S

Mike

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My dad is nearly 70 and has never been on the Internet. I suspect there are lots like him that are still farming. It doesn’t matter how great the website is, he doesn’t want on it and wouldn’t know how anyway. He’s never sent or received an email either. He just wants to do it the same way until he dies. He can deal with it, because me and my brother handle all of those aspects. He would have a hard time doing it if he had no one to help, which sounds like the customers you are describing. 

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I think to clarify here, you have a product or product line that farmers/agricultural people tend to buy, but then you are surprised that at least some of those folks act exactly like the stereotype we envision (i.e. older farmer)?

I guess I would suggest know your audience.  I know my dad hates buying things online and usually has me do it for him because he usually ends up with the wrong thing for various reasons.  I would say that a good percentage of all people over 50 are in that realm, but specifically farmers.

Also you say to watch a video, remember most folks out in the hinterlands don't have very fast internet, so that may take someone in the city 5-10 minutes, but it can take 2-3 times that long when you have slow internet, and honestly its hard to follow video clips when they are constantly buffering.  

I would say, put yourself in your customers shoes, before you condemn them for doing things they way they do.

Now at the same point, I also understand that everyone does need to evolve a little, and should read instructions before calling customer service.  And with respect to shipping times, well, that is highly questionable at best from anywhere, so they shouldn't get upset with you about that.

 

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I was wanting to buy a landy rock roller, trying and separate rocks out of some piles we have.  Found their number on there web site called no answer, Emailed them  They just keep asking what problem I was having . 
 I told them I had some questions and wanted to talk to someone before I pulled the trigger. 
They sent me there number didn’t work, Thay asked for mine  I sent it to them, they never called     Guess they don’t need to sell me one.

 

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6 hours ago, Sledgehammer said:

You can lead the horse to water but you can’t make him drink

Unless you hold their head under water and suck on their aaaa….never mind. 

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The ironic thing is it seems like the " newer younger generation " is just the opposite.........the less communication or effort put into talking  the better.

 

When I was working I'd take alot of pictures of projects and equipment. After my accident and I was on light duty my boss asked if I could make a hiring video to play on a monitor at a high school job fair.   The high schoolers would just stare at the monitor and not even acknowledged my boss was there, if he asked them a question they'd just respond with a dumb founded look or grunt. If someone was remotely interested in a labor intense landscaping job they'd ask my boss for a website, email, tik tok, or youtube channel they could ask questions on. It seems like more and more businesses are going on social media to advertise or even hire. 

When I need to buy something I like looking at it and holding it.

When I need parts unless it's in stock I order it online......why drive to the dealer stand in line, have someone look it up, order it, leave and come back 4 days later when I can order it online myself.

I worked at an atv accessory company for 4 years. I wanted to be a welder but the only opening they had was in customer service/tech support. I'll never want to do anything like that again.  Some guys would refuse to talk on the phone I'd have to email them back in fourth every little step vs on the phone I could've walked through the process in a minute. Usually 9/10 something broken was from a guy who didn't belong on an atv. I never ran so fast in my life on my last day of that position when I got the welding job.

 

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I cannot speak to your product or website. 99.9 percent of FAQ’s are aimed at knuckle dragging Neanderthals  who really have no business working with the product they are using. In my line of work we have a great big book that is the national standard for doing our work. You have to go through 4 years of school and log 8,000 hours in the field to prove you know how to use the book. It is astonishing to me how many people have made a career in this field who have no idea how to use the book. 
It is all In there, practically all the work is done for you, yet, they can’t handle it. 
 

Videos are cool, but only if they get to the point, most don’t. 
Personally I read available information in a website and then call. They want my money, they can answer the phone. That’s just me, i’m not old relative to many, and I can google things with the best of them, I want to talk to a person. 

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4 hours ago, searcyfarms said:

Dear mr pettigoat are you a farmer or have you ever been one? 

If you come back and read what people are saying maybe you might learn something maybe not? @PettiGoat Junction the reason for my question is this - walk a mile in a mans shoes - most are bi if not tri or more vocational - most work so much they hv very little time to watch videos we just need things when we need them be it parts, vaccines, supplies. We dont have computers at our desks and are lucky if we have phone signal so if we do happen to get a rainy day we are fixing broken things and not sitting at a computer or staring at a phone screen. I know its hard to imagine but we dont start at 9 and get off at 5 , we dont live in a box everything is negotiable from moment to moment from a cow calving to combine spinning a bearing - baler shreding a belt and there is of course the other jobs and family stuff that takes up our time. Dont be offended by our lack of studying your stuff on a website just answer when we call - we dont call to chit chat we need something. 

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I have to say a paper manual is way nicer than taking time to watch 3 6 minute videos to get things done. It is super frustrating when  signal is poor and slow and videos won't load. I am also going to point out that while I am reading a manual I do not notice the 6 minutes, while I am watching a video I am annoyed as **** thinking about the wasted time. It's the same time, just my perception of it.  Also, Customer Service and everyone writing instructions seems to have forgotten that people lose attention in under 5 minutes, boring 8 minute videos that take 6 minutes worth of nonsense to get to the point make me think all of these videos are a waste of my time. 

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I don’t like ordering online. I’m 53. I usually have my son do it for me. I’m old fashioned and don’t like it but that option is getting rammed down consumers throats and I understand that it is more efficient for the business. I do tend to do more business with places that have a phone number and a real live person that answers that phone. 
As soon as my generation is dead pettigoat will have customers that are what that business wants. Most young people are socially challenged and don’t do much face to face interaction 

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i hate talking on the phone, i am 77 years old hated the phone since i was old enough to know what it was, if i can't walk in and buy something i would rather do it online and i am not computer savvy.

pete

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10 hours ago, FoxrunFarms02 said:

from a guy who didn't belong on an atv

You mean.... you can't pull 2-14s with a Mule?? Who woulda thunk it??

Mike

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1 hour ago, DHF said:

i hate talking on the phone, i am 77 years old hated the phone since i was old enough to know what it was, if i can't walk in and buy something i would rather do it online and i am not computer savvy.

pete

That’s interesting. I would hate to think how my farm would suffer if I didn’t use the phone.

I had an electrician that wired a bin for me. He felt it was rude to leave a voicemail. He wanted to talk to the person not a voicemail. He wouldn’t answer his phone however and leaving a voicemail was the only way to let him know what you wanted because he wouldn’t stop working to answer the phone.
I only have hired him for that job and nothing since. He wired a bin 25 miles from where I lived . What a pain. You had to drive there to see if he was there and what the heck he was doing 

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13 minutes ago, tractorholic said:

That’s interesting. I would hate to think how my farm would suffer if I didn’t use the phone.

I had an electrician that wired a bin for me. He felt it was rude to leave a voicemail. He wanted to talk to the person not a voicemail. He wouldn’t answer his phone however and leaving a voicemail was the only way to let him know what you wanted because he wouldn’t stop working to answer the phone.
I only have hired him for that job and nothing since. He wired a bin 25 miles from where I lived . What a pain. You had to drive there to see if he was there and what the heck he was doing 

I can’t speak to him, but dad’s phone rings CONSTANTLY, it’s almost all business stuff, but sometimes it is hard to get anything done. I remind him it is ok not to answer. 

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I use all the online stuff; my work requires it for starters. Yesterday a seed salesman stopped by and showed me his 2024 catalogue and we talked about farming and red tractors for about half an hour. He departed with a handshake, and I told him I would consider his product for next year. That would have been hard to do online.🙂

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I can't add a lot to this particular situation.  But I will say that farmers are probably the best example of pushing the profit out of anything.  I see this currently happening in my area with agronomy sales.  Many farmers want to shop around and get the cheapest prices possible.  And then they get frustrated when local coop locations or agronomy retailers close and they can't get service.  Service costs money, when you try to take the margin out of everything there is no money left to provide the service.

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"Technology" is good WHEN IT WORKS. What's worse is the kids in school nowadays do their work on tablets and schools are starting to ask for more tax money to upgrade. When I was was in school we used the same books our parents used and it worked just fine. The next generation isn't gonna know anything else but doing things online. 

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I guess I have all kinds of issues.

I hate going to the website and looking at a "stock photo" of a part that may or may not resemble what I am actually looking for. A video will give a quick overview. I may have a specific question. Example. Video says "Set knife to anvil spacing." To what value? So... I call. Now granted, I'm looking at the thing but I shouldn't know more about the product than you...

 Just an example but I miss the JC Whitney catalog. Those hand sketched pictures were better than what we get now.

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1 hour ago, Dzldenny said:

Just an example but I miss the JC Whitney catalog. Those hand sketched pictures were better than what we get now.

Duluth Trading. 

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