According to research firm Gartner, 65 percent of self-service interactions currently escalate beyond the Web to an agent. In other words, a customer has come to your website and is unable to complete his or her transaction, and thus needs to call your organization for help.

Assuming this statistic is accurate, I’m dumbfounded. The whole purpose of self-service applications is, well, to allow one to serve oneself…without the need for human intervention.

Amazon, of course, has this down to a science. In all my years of using Amazon (and it must be easily over a decade now) I’ve never once had to pick up the phone to call them. And I’ve probably only contacted them twice in all that time via email. It simply works.

Are your self-service pages working? Are you sure? Do you keep track of metrics to measure their effectiveness (e.g., tracking all incoming calls and marking those that involved someone trying to do something on your website)?

If it’s a self-service page, only the website and the customer should be involved. How do you rate?