This is a shameless post about how using FullStory made doing support a whole lot easier. When I joined FullStory a few months ago, I mostly thought of it as a product tool, but after using it every day, it’s already changed how I approach support. Without further ado, let’s look at a few examples of how I upped my support game with FullStory.

Let’s reproduce that bug with session replay.

Consider this ticket:

Hey Support,

Whenever we are using Fullstory in relation to one of our pages, we are unable to get any sessions after 25 to load without going through the url and changing from page 0 to 1-x.

In one of my first support tickets, the customer was reporting a bug, but I was unsure how to reproduce it. With FullStory, I pulled up their most recent session, where I got to actually see what the user was doing. As a bonus, I got a full dose of empathy to go along with the steps to reproduce the bug.

Empathy is where you see the product improve. It’s one thing to have the steps to reproduce the bug, but it’s something else entirely to be able to watch the customer experience pain and be able to easily share that experience with those who shape the product.

Without FullStory, if I need to reproduce a bug, the best I can hope for is a set of instructions on how to make a good bug report. If I’m lucky I might get a screencast as well. FullStory is so much easier. I don’t need to ask for reproduction steps. I just watch their session.

You’re Doing it wrong.

Here's another one:

I wish I could send you a screenshot, but search isn’t working if all. I can’t find sessions where “Has visited page” has path /thank_you.

This was a classic case of “is it us or is it them?” By watching the session, I was able to clearly see that the customer was using the word “param” when they really meant “path”. This helped us fix their immediate issue quickly and point them in the right direction.

In the bigger picture, this gets us to ask the question about whether we’re using the right language in our app. Should our customers need to know the difference between “path” and “param”? Can we do better there?

Without FullStory, there would have been more back and forth with the customer before I really understood their problem, likely having to ask for screenshots and the like. Being able to see what they were doing in the app eliminates a lot of unnecessary communication.

Check out these docs.

Hey FullStory,

We were getting an error using FS.Identify. I thought I had fixed it but it’s still not working.

Could someone guide me on how to properly handle this?

When I pulled up this ticket, my first thought was to point them towards documentation. However, when I watched their FullStory session, I could see they had already read through the documentation I was about to recommend. This forced me to slow down and re-think how I planned to approach the issue. I was able to ask much more thoughtful questions about what was broken, which led to a faster resolution with the customer.

Without FullStory, I’m forced to recommend specific documentation without knowing if the customer has read it. I might use language like “In case you haven’t seen it….”, but I risk the customer losing face if they’ve already spent considerable time with that documentation. It’s much better if I know if they’ve read the docs so I can adjust my answer accordingly.

Uh oh: we need to email everyone about this bug.

Shortly after I joined FullStory, we shipped a significant bug in our recording snippet. What this means is that for the customers with the buggy snippet, their entire experience of FullStory would have been broken. We fixed the bug in short order, but it was crucial that we reach out to everyone affected by the bug so they could update their sites to use the new snippet.

Using FullStory, we created a search to see who had clicked into the snippet box, that is, who had clicked into that box and potentially downloaded the snippet. From there, we were able to export a list of users — with their email addresses — to a CSV and quickly email only those affected by the bug that they needed to update their site.

If we weren’t using FullStory, we’d have to either wait for the support emails to come in or use a less precise method to guess at who to contact. Knowing exactly who was affected by the bug gives us a much better way to communicate with our customers.

FullStory, your friendly auditor.

One more:

Hello, I’m not sure why my account is cancelled?

With this ticket, since the customer writing in wasn’t the one that had cancelled the account, we didn’t have a direct way to see why it was cancelled. However, since we’re capturing the company ID when the recording is made, I was able to search for all users in their company and cross that with those who had visiting the billing page. Very quickly I was able to find the exact session where a different user on the account had cancelled.

Without FullStory, the best I could hope for is internal auditing tools to know when a user flipped a setting on their account. This of course is largely dependent on how thorough the tools are. With FullStory, you don’t have to worry about setting up tools because it’s recording all changes to all settings.

Adding empathy to feature requests.

Question:

Hi there — is there a way to view only live sessions?

When I watched the customer’s most recent recording, I was able to tell very quickly that they were putting together a session of customers who were currently in the trial phase of the product. I had a lightbulb moment. “Of course you might want to see which customers are thinking about purchasing and are using your product right now”. I walked away with a lot more perspective than I would have had I simply asked for more context via email.

Without FullStory, it’s easy to get into the habit with feature requests to simply defer to some default “Sorry, that’s not available right now” copy and then move on. And that’s probably what I would have done had it not been for FullStory. Being able to watch the customer struggle within the app gave a lot more context to their request.

Such support. So game.

In a perfect world, products don’t have bugs and customers never need to reach out to support. But that’s not the world we’re in. At least with FullStory, we’re able to more deeply and rapidly understand the customer experience so we can provide more precise and helpful support to our customers.