Make the easy stuff easy, please.
If the simple things are simple, I’m more willing to pay/struggle/wait for the more complex things.
My earbuds stopped working. I walked into Apple, signed in to the help desk, someone helped me within a minute (no joke), they even cut me off (politely) while I told the story of how my earbuds no longer worked, they replaced them. I was on my way.
It cost them, what, $29 retail? It’s under warranty. They were truly broken. I didn’t break them (well, they broke while I owned them). I’m sure they cost less than $5 to actually produce.
But another, ahem, lesser, company might make the whole process not so easy. I’d usually have to:
- Find my receipt.
- Realize I no longer have a receipt.
- Look for receipt.
- Get annoyed that I can’t find receipt.
- Re-organize office filing system so can find receipts better in the future.
- Accidentally come across receipt after having given up and was then looking for other ear buds that worked.
- Drive car and bring receipt to far away store with broken earbuds.
- Wait for available sales associate.
- Explain my situation a second time when the first time they thought I wanted new earbuds.
- Produce receipt.
- Wait for manager to approve said receipt.
- See if they have more earbuds in stock.
- Look at more products I don’t need to buy while waiting. Maybe a new filing cabinet for … receipts.
- Get new earbud replacements, but they’re not the same ones I have but maybe they work as they’re almost the same brand.
- Wait to see if they have the right model.
- Find floor model of correct model and debate whether or not I want 412 people’s ear wax in my earbuds. I don’t.
- Wait for another stock search.
- Express joy and gratitude as they find correct earbuds.
- Thank staff profusely.
- Arrive at cashier to pay for my free replacements.
- Wait for manager to explain that my free replacements are free, so she just needs to hit 13 keys in the right order to process such a transaction.
- Get a new receipt for my non-transaction.
Hmm, let’s chart how it went today at Apple.
- Walk into downtown Apple store.
- Tell guy with iPad near Genius Bar my Apple ID. With this, he sees I have an iPhone 6 that’s under warranty which means my earbuds are under warranty.
- He says there is no queue and I can go to the end of the Genius Bar and someone will help me there.
- Guy at Genius Bar sees my name and hears I need replacement earbuds, turns around to a cabinet and pulls them out and hands them to me.
- I test that they work on my iPhone.
- I fingernail sign his iPad.
- I walk out.
- I smile.
I even threw in that last one to try to make it a little more fair. 23 to 7 just was too brutal.
Yes, I’m an Apple fan, but I’m even more a fan of quality, customer service and, hmm, call it pride.
They just have their act together. It all works. Yes, it’s a closed system, it’s all Apple and almost only Apple. Things work together. There is one (or a small handful) earbud product, not 22. They will work with my iPhone. They were meant to.
If this tiny transaction is so easy, it’s going to make the bigger ones easier. If my laptop battery dies, I’m willing to pay for the repair. Oh wait, it did die, it was under warranty, they fixed it, in an hour, I walked out. I smiled.
It’s so simple and so hard at the same time.