Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

User Voice Is Back, And In Force

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • User Voice Is Back, And In Force

    Hi all.. I didn't want this to go unnoticed, but Henry from 3dCart just posted about User Voice. I just checked on the changes, and they seem pretty significant - I was able to vote for a few more items that I felt are important to have. I hope that this is an opportunity for more people to participate, and get more great features added to 3d. Thank you.. here are the details:

    'Hi all,
    We just wanted to provide an update on some of the changes we’ve implemented with the UserVoice suggestion portal.

    Increased Presence
    As with these user forums, we’re trying to make our presence more well-known on the UserVoice portal. We’re making every attempt to review and update the ideas that are currently under moderation.

    There are quite a few ideas awaiting moderation, so this portion of the project may take some time, but what we’re basically trying to do is more or less organize the ideas in a more coherent way. This includes categorizing them, merging similar ideas, updating ideas with additional information (wherever applicable) and approving valid ideas for voting.
    Setting the Expectation
    When you first arrive to the 3dcart UserVoice forum, please take a moment to read the message we've posted at the top of the forum which is meant to set a realistic expectation of how requested features will be addressed.

    This short disclaimer is by no means intended to dissuade anyone from posting their ideas. We just want to make sure that ideas are submitted with anunderstanding that - no matter how talented our developers are - some things are simply not going to be possible (or feasible) to implement on a global user scale for various reasons.
    Categorization
    Another change we've made is the addition of categories for the submitted ideas. When posting a new idea, the UserVoice system will now ask you to place the idea in the most appropriate category of the categories available. This will help everyone have an easier time of searching for already submitted ideas as well as giving us a gauge of the more popular topics. If a category isn’t available for your specific idea, just choose the most appropriate. We can always create additional categories and transfer your idea as needed.

    Our aim is to have enough appropriate categories to choose from - without having too many categories available where it starts to get cumbersome.
    Voting Change
    But by far, the biggest change we’ve made is with the UserVoice voting system. Previously, UserVoice had a voting system that would give anyone a limited number of votes that could be used to create an idea as well as vote on existing ideas. As ideas were approved and completed (or declined), the users would get their votes back for more ideas.

    This limited vote function is actually an outdated feature of UserVoice and we’ve elected to replace it in favor of UV’s newer “Idea Supporter” system. Each user can now vote for as many ideas as they’d like. However, there is now only one vote per idea, per user.

    By creating an idea, you become a supporter of the idea automatically (since it’s yours). You can then vote for any other ideas that you see that you would also like to support. When you click on the “Vote” button for an idea, the button will change to the “Voted!” label. Clicking the vote button again will remove your support from the idea.

    This change serves to address concerns stated by users previously where they felt an idea was good, but had no votes left to give on it. It also prevents someone from devoting all of their allotted votes on a single idea in order to “push” it higher. Now, any idea is fair game for voting once per user, and we get a more realistic view of the demand for certain ideas.

    Keep in mind however that simply voting for every single idea can have negative effects. After all, if every idea has the same number of supporters, where would we begin? Therefore, please be honest with the support you give towards other’s ideas. You can always comment on an idea without actively giving your full support on it. But, if you feel a user’s idea is good enough that you would like to see it implemented for your store as well, then click “Vote” to list yourself as a supporter of the idea.
    In closing

    We hope you enjoy these changes to UserVoice and we’re looking forward to seeing an increased presence from us (and you) in the UserVoice portal.
    Thanks for your time!'

  • #2
    I think this is great -- however, how long does it take for a new idea to be "moderated"?? -- I submitted a couple suggestions over 2 months ago and they are still waiting moderation.
    Joe Arbogast
    http://www.birdsafestore.com

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Birdsafe

      I’m sorry it’'s taken so long to get your ideas moderated. Part One of our project with UserVoice was introducing the changes I posted about yesterday. Part Two is now going through the moderation queue to help clear it up and approve the submitted suggestions.

      If you’ll indulge me a moment, I’d like to take some time to address why ideas were (and are) taking so long, and hopefully give some further insight to the reasoning behind the changes we’ve made…

      Setting the Expectation
      When you first arrive to the 3dcart UserVoice forum, please take a moment to read the message we've posted at the top of the forum which is meant to set a realistic expectation of how requested features will be addressed.
      When we first introduced UserVoice a few years ago, the intent was to offer an area for users where suggestions could be made in regards to global features that could be added to 3dcart as a whole.

      Unfortunately, we didn’t have the presence of mind to set a proper expectation for users as to how suggestions would be handled and addressed, so we had a few interesting things happen.

      Obviously there are some suggestions that only work for the one user. But aside from those, there were also suggestions that frankly made no sense at all. Perhaps they made sense to the user when they posted it, but upon review, there seemed to be no added benefit at all to the suggestion. To give an example, there was once an idea posted asking us to allow the ability of having store customers assigned to multiple customer pricing groups. In other words, customer John Doe could belong to one pricing group where he might enjoy a 10% discount and also belong to another group where he might enjoy 20% off his purchases. At first glance, one would expect John Doe to always purchase with the 20% off group. Perhaps there was a sound reasoning behind the request but the way it was written, the suggestion made no sense (we’ve since asked for clarification from the poster - still waiting on reply).

      Then, there were suggestions posted for features that already existed in the software. Sometimes the poster simply didn’t know we had the feature already, and sometimes the poster was simply referring to the feature by a different name than what we know it as. A recent example that comes to mind is a suggestion to allow merchants to select which attributes of the product are on the CSV export file to make editing easier. We have this already in the software as a “Custom Export Set” so we just pointed the user in the right direction.

      Another thing we noticed were suggestions being made for features that would absolutely require custom programming. Perhaps the suggestion required database manipulation, or maybe adding the feature would conflict with other existing features. Rather than requesting a custom programming quote, the poster would instead opt to post it as a suggestion in the hopes that the feature would eventually be added globally. This is perfectly fine, but sooner or later, the nasty “I can’t believe this is taking so long” comments would start coming in. Many times not from the original poster either.

      These are only a few examples, but the point is that for every great idea/suggestion, there were about 5 to 7 “head scratchers” mixed in there that had to be researched… For these reasons we added the disclaimer to the top of the UserVoice page in the hopes that it will help set a realistic expectation.

      Categorization
      Another change we've made is the addition of categories for the submitted ideas. When posting a new idea, the UserVoice system will now ask you to place the idea in the most appropriate category of the categories available.
      So the next thing we knew, we had several suggestions awaiting moderation. Each had to be researched. And there was no breakdown of what each entailed. So for this reason we added the categories to help organize it all. It’s not only intended to help users see what else has been suggested – but also allow us to group things a bit more efficiently. It also helps us merge multiple ideas that are basically the same because they’re easier to spot in their own respective categories.

      Voting Change
      But by far, the biggest change we’ve made is with the UserVoice voting system.
      This change was the most needed and is so far my favorite.

      As mentioned, some posted ideas were only beneficial to one merchant. And as mentioned in my previous posting, users had a finite amount of votes to add to suggestions. Unfortunately, and on more than one occasion, we’ve caught some users cheating the system by signing on with multiple email addresses for the sole purpose of inflating their own votes. Suddenly, an idea that would only benefit one user out thousands, had over 100 votes! It would take time to research these as well. Usually the dead giveaway was all of the votes coming in roughly at the same time from the same IP (one guy even used his domain for each separate email), but the point is, this took time to research and correct the votes to be more realistic.

      So the voting change was made to address this as well. One vote per idea per user. Can they still cheat the system? Sure, by voting for everything. But as I mentioned yesterday, that actually has a negative effect in the regard that – if everything is voted as popular; then nothing really is. So to use the forum properly, we’re trusting everyone to vote/support only the ideas that they agree with.

      Increased Presence
      As with these user forums, we’re trying to make our presence more well-known on the UserVoice portal. We’re making every attempt to review and update the ideas that are currently under moderation.
      Of course there are other factors than what I've mentioned here, but as you can see, the researching and filtering is one of biggest reasons behind the delay. Over the years all of these combined issues culminated in a hodge-podge of suggestions with no form or structure, bad votes, and misuse which turned UserVoice into a bit of a mess. Kind of like that one closet in the house that is in desperate need of organizing, and you promise you’ll get to it this weekend, but oh look, the game is on… I’ll do it after 3rd quarter…

      That’s all on us and we’re making progress in getting that addressed. We’re currently going through each of the suggestions in the moderation queue to get them sorted out. There are a few hundred though, so please bear with us. After all, the only fair way to moderate these is to go through each.

      Thanks again for your time, and I’ll keep an eye out for your suggestions in the moderation queue to see if I can speed them along.
      Last edited by 3dcart-Henry; 08-18-2015, 10:23 AM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks Henry - -didn't mean to sound un-appreciative of staff efforts -- far from the case -- these Forums and User Voice (and staff's participation in them) was one of the factors involved in my decision to move to 3dCart. I fully understand that the forums are "user forums" and other users are sometimes the quickest and easiest ways to get answers, as many of them (now myself included) probably have faced the same issue at one point or another as I may be currently dealing with, and rather than burden the support staff with the question, it can often be answered here more quickly and frees up staff to work on other issues. I firmly believe that if I can help make the support process more efficient, it's better for everyone in the long run. Thanks again --
        Joe Arbogast
        http://www.birdsafestore.com

        Comment


        • #5
          My pleasure Birdsafe and thank you for the feedback!

          I love that users can get quick and accurate help from each other and that's one of my favorite things about this forum. But don't ever feel that you're a burden to the support staff! That's their job! Their title is "Customer Support" and if any agent ever makes you feel like you're being a burden, you let me know and I'll get it to their supervisor. In fact, don't even bother with a PM, post it right here in the forums! We take customer support very seriously and we'll take all efforts to correct it. I personally came from a support background and I can tell you that helping customers with their questions (no matter the level of difficulty) goes a LONG way towards "on the job training." It teaches one troubleshooting, communication, and rapport building skills FAR better than any training class. So you're never ever a burden in any way, shape or form.

          Incidentally, I didn't think your question sounded un-appreciative at all! :)

          I really apologize if my response made you feel that way or seemed as a cop out on my part to just offer excuses. Neither was my aim. I just wanted to be honest and upfront with everyone why UserVoice became the mess it did (and boy, what a mess!), and what we're doing to (hopefully) fix it.

          It's been posted several times in other threads how merchants stopped using UserVoice because it seemed we did as well. There's definitely a small level of truth to that. We didn't stop using it per se, but like the closet cleaning analogy I mentioned, we didn't have a set plan for it. So I can definitely see why it got as bad as it did. Now we have a plan for it. :)

          Yeah there's a lot of work to still do on UserVoice, but that's our fault. Ultimately the burden is on us to get it fixed and back to what it was intended to be.
          We want the same positive vibe we've got going on here in the forums to translate over to UserVoice as well so hopefully these efforts will work out!

          Thanks again for the feedback!

          Comment


          • #6
            Thank you 3dcart-Henry! I am so glad that I posted your comments from yesterday here. I believe that this thread will help motivate people to make suggestions.. and even if 1 / 100 is deemed worthy (hopefully, mine about more restrictive shipping options for free shipping are one of those .. ha ha .. shameless plug), then I know the software will only continue to get better, and quickly. As said several times, with each post I see from 3d staff here, my confidence increases. Now, the next step, is to see the actions meet the words, and I am already seeing that occur too. Again, many thanks. Here is to v7! (and I am sure that support has seen that there are some significant concerns that need to be addressed there before release). Andrew

            Comment


            • #7
              If there was an idea that was declined by 3dcart staff a couple years ago, and we think that idea still has merit and may be worth reconsideration, should we post the idea? Or, will it be declined again because it was already declined at some point?
              - Dean P. e-commerce and small business consulting

              Comment


              • #8
                Hi DeanP

                I vote (pun intended) for posting it again! :)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Good to hear this is getting some attention now.

                  Comment

                  Working...
                  X