If you’re developing an app for iOS or Android, you’ll need to consider application support.
Application support can be delivered in-house or outsourced to an app development company and describes ensuring your operational processes run smoothly and ensure users, employees, and clients can access your application without issues.
More often than not, application support is broken down into two categories: technical support, which involves maintaining your digital presence, such as your mobile apps and servers, and human support, including helping users and staff understand how to use your application.
Technical and human support play an essential role in the running and success of your app. Naturally, the larger your organisation and the more popular your app, the more technical and human support officers you’ll need. For startups, small businesses, and firms experimenting with apps, technical support can be outsourced to a marketing agency. Human support can be delivered through in-app videos and support documents. Still, as demand for your app grows, the chances are your application support needs will, too.
Delivering good application support
Good application support requires strong technical knowledge and an understanding of the inner workings of your app. App developers, like the team at Zudu, offer application support services for businesses of all shapes and sizes, allowing brands to focus on customer-facing support requests – working collaboratively is often the most effective way to offer support.
Some of the duties and responsibilities of an application support officer include
- Assessing problems with your app or web app and deploying fixes, prioritising issues based on their importance, and helping customers find solutions to issues
- Identifying, assessing, and resolving issues with apps, such as bugs
- Troubleshooting issues to determine the cause of app crashes, and glitches: a good application support officer will review operating systems, hardware, and more to determine the root cause of a problem, and alert app developers and engineers
- Coordinating between teams: Application support involves coordinating between teams and departments, so issues are logged, and jobs are completed
- On-call support: Some companies invest in on-call app support, where they can speak directly with a developer or application support specialist when issues arise
- Writing reports: A good application support team will keep records of issues, solutions, downtime, and more, and data can be reviewed to assess the performance
Offering human support on your app
Although it’s wise to leave the technical aspects of your application to the experts, most brands can deliver good human support on their apps without much knowledge.
The most important element is being available and easily accessible: build a dedicated support tab or button in your app so users can find your knowledge base and live chat functionality.
To save your customer representatives time and to avoid unnecessary training, it’s worth writing support documents and scripts that can be deployed when users run into issues creating an account and accessing your software. Some commonly-asked questions include:
- I’ve locked myself out of my account – how do I reset my password?
- How do I change the email address on my account?
- How can I transfer app data from one device to another?
- How can I manage my app subscription and pause my plan?
- I have made a mistake with my order: can you help me?
Having pre-prepared answers to common questions about your app can speed up response times and, in many cases, allow customers to resolve issues on their own without the need for a third party to get involved.
Get into the psyche of your customer and identify common issues and questions. Where possible, you can pre-empt these questions during onboarding.
Make bug reports easy
In an ideal world, your app would be perfect and offer a first-class service every time. But the truth is that no app is ever perfect. They require continuous work and tweaks as Apple and Google change their operating systems and manufacturers release new models.
That’s why it’s vital to make bug reports easy. Some in-app feedback SDKs allow users to submit feedback by shaking their phones, triggering a feedback form.
According to one report, such SDKs can increase user feedback by a whopping 750%, helping developers collect more data on app usage and ensuring you’re offering the best service to users.
As well as making bug reporting easy, it’s worth rewarding customers for their feedback.
You might want to gamify this process by adding ‘beta tester’ or ‘bug squasher’ badges to their profiles or mention them in the release notes of your next app update. Doing so will make users feel involved and like their contributions are valued and making a genuine difference.
Don’t stop testing
Continuous testing ensures you catch issues before they are found by users.
By testing your app at every stage of the development lifecycle, you can evaluate the quality of your app at every stage. In a continuous app development process, a release candidate will continually move from development to testing to deployment. Regularly updating your app and keeping on top of any issues will eliminate embarrassing faux pas and keep your app’s users happy.
In rare cases where an issue has been identified but cannot be immediately resolved, it’s worth letting users know. Adding a banner to your customer support channels or app status page will show customers that you’re always thinking about their needs and are proactive.
At Zudu, we’re proud to offer dedicated support services as part of our app development. Get in touch with the team today on 01382 690080 to find out more about working with us and arrange a consultation.