Product assembly is a moment of truth.
For some customers, this is no issue. For others, its a potential exercise in frustration. If the assembly process doesn’t go well, the product may be returned and that customer may never buy another product from your company again.
Hayneedle is an online home furnishings retailer. Many of their products require assembly. The instructions provided by the manufacturer often leave a lot to be desired.
The company solves this challenge using simple video. Here’s how they do it and how you can do it too.
Let’s say a customer purchases this Orbelle Contemporary Solid Wood Toddler Bed:
Image source: Hayneedle website
There’s a little bit of assembly required. The written instructions from Orbelle can be a bit confusing to most customers. (See the instruction booklet here.)
Here’s a screen shot:
This may seem simple to you, given your innate mechanical ability and savant-like grasp of obscure terms like “mattress base mullion,” but think like a typical customer.
When I was a customer service manager, I once had to walk a customer through how to operate a music box!
“Now, turn that key to the right a few times. To the right. The other way. Yes, now let it go. The key, let go of the key. Yes, that’s it. Do you hear the music?“
Fortunately, Hayneedle provides a video explaining the assembly instructions.
This simple video is very clear and makes the assembly process look much easier!
Notice there’s nothing fancy going on. You can shoot similar videos using basic equipment, even your smart phone. There are just a few keys:
- Make sure the person on camera speaks clearly and slowly.
- Get enough lighting so everything is well-lit.
- Zoom in on detail work so it’s easy for your audience to see.
Applications & Benefits
Video like this can be a great self-service option for customers. It can help your company in a few ways:
- Reduce customer contacts
- Reduce product returns
- Improve repeat business
Keep in mind that many customers don’t complain about a poor experience. They simply give up and take their business somewhere else.
These videos also give your customer service agents another tool to help customers. Verbally walking customers through instructions over the phone is difficult and time consuming.
Much better to direct customers to the video, which provides a clear visual reference. Customers can also stop, rewind, and re-start the video to review key parts.
There is one thing that Hayneedle can do a little better. The video link isn’t always obvious. Let’s look at the product page for that toddler bed again:
Customers may not see the link to the video, or they may not realize that it’s a product assembly video. And, you won’t see the videos mentioned if you go to Hayneedle’s customer help page.
You’ll make your videos even more useful if you can put them right where customers go looking for them.
This could mean your help center, your product page, or even your customer contact page. Better yet, put a conspicuous link in all three places since you never know how your customers will navigate in search of help.