Predict Actions and Change the Web Site

College Board Logo
When I was doing research for another article. I came across an article that talked about an interesting aspect of The College Board‘s web site. For those of you that remember, The College Board is the organization that designs and manages the SAT, the popular college entrance exam, Advanced Placement (AP) exams, and a host of other academic testing and related services. For the SAT, which the organization is probably the best known for, they do something interesting with their web site.

Firstly, the day before a particular test date, the SAT posts about “test center closings” that could affect where particular students take their exam. A link to a page with information is posted clearly on their homepage. This is nothing out of the ordinary, though – all smart organizations and companies place links they know are particularly relevant to visitors on their homepage.

What The College Board does that s most interesting is this: in the area where students login to print their admission ticket, view scores, etc., The College Board posts something along the lines of “Good luck on your SAT! Go here to print your admission ticket and go here to read what you bring to the test center.” This is added a day or two before the scheduled test date and is shown right when students login. It’s a simple message that makes the process a lot less confusing and stressful for students who are almost certain to be stressing out on the Friday before their Saturday morning exam.

All types of companies can use this same idea and implement it into their systems. Do you expect payment for invoices and bills by the 1st of the month? If so, around the 25th or so of the previous month, place a prominent link in your customer center saying “Now is a perfect time to pay your monthly bill.” It’ll direct customers to where they need to go in order to pay their bill. If you are having a conference or event at your office that people have to pre-register for, place a prominent link on your web site that attendees can click on to confirm their registration and print out directions.

The specific uses and applications of the idea vary from company to company. The most important point is that it’s a great idea and a crucial thing to do. Successful companies and organizations use technology, especially their web sites, to make their customers’ lives easier and more efficient, while at the same time, ensuring the maximum level of efficiency possible for themselves.

One Response to “Predict Actions and Change the Web Site”

  1. Service Untitled » Scanning Documents Makes for Better Service - customer service and customer service experience blog said:

    May 05, 08 at 11:02 pm

    […] Remember my post about The College Board on Friday? They utilize document scanning as well. The essays that the millions of test takers do every couple of weeks for the SAT? They are scanned in and read by readers throughout the country. It’s infinitely more efficient than sending the essays to readers or than bringing everyone together to read the essays. Duke University (which I wrote about not that long ago as well) is investing in document scanning to make their admissions process more manageable. Both of these organizations have to deal with a lot of paper, so document scanning makes a lot of sense. Educational institutions, hospitals, HR departments, law firms, etc. all deal with a lot of paper and can benefit from document scanning. […]