“Best Practices” not always best for customer satisfaction

cobot is a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) tool for managing coworking spaces. What is a “coworking space”? It is simply a workspace, typically in a commercial building, where freelancers, start-ups, and other lean businesses can rent/lease flexible space that is shared. The idea is that while telecommuting is a great and cost-effective idea, working from is not for everyone. Some people aren’t able to be as productive at home due to various distractions. For others, the lack of social interaction during the work day leads to negative results. Thus, the coworking concept was born to offer a bridge between working at a coffee house and a full-blown office space rental.

To help manage coworking environments, cobot’s tool simplifies things and creates a user friendly interface. Their service is tiered based upon the needs of the facility. To encourage adoption, the service offers a 30 day free trial. After the trial expires, potential customers are asked to choose a paid service. Unfortunately, one potential customer was turned off by the fact that cobot’s paid sign-up screen automatically selected a higher priced service than what the would-be customer required.

cobot’s response to the customer complaint shows class and should be a lesson for any company:

We adopted this “practice” from other SaaS sites we had seen, but never put too much thought into it. The problem is that we are quite obviously trying to trick people into buying a larger plan than they really need. What the hell? We’re trying to trick our own customers? That’s not what they signed up for.

So, without further ado: we’ve changed the page immediately. From now on it will automatically select the cheapest plan available for your space. I’m sorry we did this. We’ll be better.