TELUS overhauls its content to improve customer support

Whether providing mobile devices and services to Canada, or Internet, landline, and television services to home owners in the western provinces of the country, TELUS has a reputation for superior customer service. But when they realized customers were getting stymied in the “Support” section of the website, they looked to CSI for help.

Too much content, not enough governance

Product manager Samantha Bahrini said that that data analytics made it clear that customers couldn’t find the information they needed. “There was also a lot of negative feedback on the articles,” she admitted. “But we didn’t know why.”

To make matters worse, Bahrini said there was also a governance problem. There were multiple content creators involved in the process, she said. “There was no clarity around how the content was getting created. Or vetted. Or evaluated afterwards.”

Tim Hassed is the director of the online customer experience for TELUS. He knew there was a “massive volume” of support content (there were 679 pages in the section). He also knew that the problem wasn’t going to be solved with a new information architecture or edited articles.

“It’s everything,” Hassed said. “The structure, the navigation, the actual content elements. And then the words and the content on the page itself.”

A new content team champions organized, revised content

The digital team at TELUS works within an agile framework, and an earlier version simply presented the same content in a new design.

“We didn’t move the needle at all on the key performance indicators that we had established,” said Bahrini. “It made it easier for people to get to articles, but it just exposed the content problem more.”

An early CSI recommendation was to label that section of the website “Support”. Previously it had been named “Get help”.

We conducted a content audit, which identified some 450 pages that could be removed from the site. The remaining pages were then edited for accuracy, voice, and tone, and worked into new content structures we developed. Each of those articles was then tagged using a taxonomy we developed to provide a hierarchy for the support articles and make them easier for customers to find.

During this time, we were able to test the governance framework that we proposed, which involved the creation of a formal content team as part of TELUS digital. We also established new, consistent processes to be used in the creation and maintenance of content.

Customers exploring more, stakeholders satisfied

Bahrini said that when the first batch of reworked content was released, there was an instant impact. Rather than looking at one support article and leaving the TELUS website, customers were now exploring further, reading related articles that were suggested based on the taxonomy.

There’s a reduction in customer interactions, Bahrini said. There was a 50% reduction in the number of customers visiting the “Contact us” page after visiting an article in the support section.

And more than 70% of the customers directed from “Contact us” to the support section do not return to the contact page, indicating they’ve solved their problem.

The governance model that we helped establish is also a success. “It’s been fantastic,” said Hassed. “The governance piece is in place and it’s working well.”

The content team is meeting regularly with the product team to talk about upcoming releases, and each product owner now has real-time access to the performance of their content within their portfolio. “Everything’s been really clearly laid out,” said Bahrini, “from content creation to measurement.”