Hi, buddy. I have the support forum for all my themes. But the is some issues:
1). The users still ask quesion on my item page or via email, sometime he/she has asked the same question on support forum, item page or sending email.
2). If someone has purchased one of my item, he can login my support forum, then can view and ask quesion for other items.
Do I need to close the support forum?
Use mail auto responder and tell to visit the forum.
I have a same problem here.
Now I’m working on new support forum on BBPress with desired features and close it from public. And I’ll get only support there and spread out messages to people who asks me about things other ways than our support forum
The only reason to use dedicated forum is a search. But Vanilla search method is really sucks!
I just started planning to use a dedicated support forum.
Guess a mail auto-responder is a good idea to get people to the forum.
Also i think if you reply in the comment section a couple of times that they need to ask questions on the forum, most of the new ones will read your replies and go the the forum immediatly.
But i have no experience with it yet, it’s just an assumption i make…
I don’t see much problem with #2 but if you do not want to give access to all of the forums, you can play around with envato API to find out which of your item ID user has bought, then at the time of signup you can give access to the user only to the specific forum based.
If you are so concerned about the privacy of the support questions, then remember if you provide support on Themeforest, every one can see it, and if you reply to all of the support questions to: “I won’t reply here, send me email”, it will not only irritate your current customers, but also give a bad expression to the potential buyers as they will assume that your support is bad.
I’m about to add a new input box on my forum that asks if they have submitted their question elsewhere. Ask for an existing email support ticket ID number or ask if they have posted the question on the item comment page.
It will also say something like “if you haven’t already asked via email/item discussion then PLEASE DONT. Only ask your question here on the forums”.
Also you can watch the comment count on your items, and post a message at the very top of each comment page (like this example) with a BIG link directing people to your support forum.
You will always get people asking the same thing via email, forum, item page, twitter, facebook etc… just answer them once and say “replied via forum” to their other requests.
We only use forum. Buyers asking for support via profile form / item comments / twitter get autoresponder/canned response:
Only official support channel is forum [link]
If you invest time and resources in a dedicated forum, you must also redirect all the questions there and avoid any other channel or else it’s useless.
Ours is public (read only), this way most buyers can search and find existing answers without being forced to register.