Take the 2-minute tour ×
User Experience Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for user experience researchers and experts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

The question title says it all, but to elaborate ... I have a "Who We Are" page with individual team member bios, and I have a "Contact Us" page. I want to give users the option of contacting our company via a general form (on the "Contact Us" page), or reaching certain individuals by providing their email addresses.

The individual emails seem to make logical sense on the "Who We Are" page, at the end of each person's bio. However, in terms of navigation I worry that this is bad practice, and that the "Contact Us" page really ought to be a one-stop destination, with no confusion about where to go for that task.

I'm thinking about linking to the "Contact" page from the bios section, something like, "To reach these individuals by email, go here." But I'd love to get the input of wiser community members.

share|improve this question
    
By convention, a contact us page is expected to give formal contact details for the organisation. There isn't an expectation that this page provides a directory of all staff and their contact details. If you feel that information is necessary or useful, then a link from the contact us page should suffice. I haven't got any citations, so I've left a comment rather than an answer. –  Racheet Jul 15 '13 at 15:39
    
Thanks for your 2 cents, @Racheet! –  in_flight Jul 15 '13 at 16:00
add comment

3 Answers

up vote 0 down vote accepted

"Contact Us" invites to dialog. And it is a common real life experience to communicate with a person face to face, not anonymous or turned back. So it gives the feel of personality, care of customer and human-like behaviour. So it could bring good user experience to reach certain person fron "Contact Us" page.

But personal conversation will work well under some conditions:

  • Limited to 3-5 number of team members. More individuals make choice harder for customers.
  • Each team member has clear responsibility. It should be clear to customers which member communicate to. It is not a problem if two persons have the same responsibility.
  • Each team member should be rather public and famous person. This motivates customer to touch them (like a rock-star fans).
  • Questions specificity. The expected questions should fit into team members' responsibility.

It also good to make cross-links from bios to contact us and in turn from contact us to a member's bio.

"Who we are" assumes more browsing behaviour, while "Contact us" is more shaped to a user activity.

And don't forget to place team member photos at "Contact Us" page!

share|improve this answer
    
Thanks, Alexey, for your thoughts and insight. I'm going to heed some of your advice here and mark this as the accepted answer. –  in_flight Jul 16 '13 at 14:39
add comment

'Contact Us' and 'Who We Are' are visited for different goals. Visiting 'Contact Us' results in asking some question with expectation of answer by qualified person. One of the tasks of 'Contact Us' form is to give you preliminary idea of who need to receive request from the form. So some categorization of requests takes place usually. In your case, you can modify categorization part of your form with short description of persons competence, e.g.:

  • John Doe Sr. (Sales requests)
  • John Doe Jr. (Technical Support)
  • etc.

Then you can use user's selection in your back-end to forward message to appropriate email.

share|improve this answer
add comment

I don't think it is, though there is a difference between general 'contact us' widgets and routes directly to specific members of staff.

One thing you can do with multiple site contacts is use them as widgets on relevant pages. So each page on the site can optionally have a site contact added and that contact is the person in the organisation who is most expert about the subject matter on that page. Create a box somewhere in the wireframe with a phone number, email, little contact form, name, job title and a picture too.

This is useful for both the user and the business because it cuts a link out of the interaction for the user and redirects contacts to appropriate members of staff automatically. You might even see fewer users using the contact us form if this is done well.

share|improve this answer
    
That's a really interesting idea, Colin. Thanks for the input! –  in_flight Jul 16 '13 at 14:34
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.