Service Code: Netflix’s other neat idea

We all know what Netflix is by now, so I won’t bother starting with that. Movies, ques, blah blah blah.

But I found something new about their site last night that is such a brilliant idea, I’m surprised other websites with a lot of Customer Service call volume haven’t adopted it: Online Service Codes.

Here’s how it works – you have  a problem with Netflix for whatever reason. You’re logged into their site, and you click the “contact us” link on their page. What you get is something that looks like this:

Netflix knows most people come to the “contact us” page because they have a problem. A lot of companies hide their customer service phone number on their site because they don’t want to hear from customers with a problem. Netflix seems to understand they need to be available to their customers if they want to keep them.

So they have a link to their customer service phone number plainly visible on the contact page. (Beneath the two other links for most common problems of course – still need to try to keep the call volume down!) But when you click on the CS number, you also get a wait time for your call, so you can try again later if it’s bad, and a service code.

This service code is what really has me jazzed. When you call in, rather than go through the standard giving of name, customer ID, address, phone number, secret question… you simply give this number while on hold, waiting for the operator. Since you can only get this code while logged in, the system generates a code that verifies you, and gets the operator into your account.

Simple! So why isn’t everyone using this? Why am I still trying to remember the Arizona state bird or my first girlfriend’s last name whenever I have password trouble with Bank of America?

Looking around, I see other write ups on Netflix’ service code dating back two years, so it isn’t exactly new technology – but it does seem to still be relegated only to Netflix. If anyone else is using it, either they aren’t big enough to notice or they aren’t bragging about it.

Still, it’s damn smart and I wish all companies with call centers were using it.


    1. Thanks for this – I love the snark behind the slide, “Lots of companies have nice sounding value statements.” IE, lots of companies are full of crap LOL.

  1. I just moved 50 miles and had to go through the whole hooking my life up in LA with internet, water & power, etc…. And with that usually comes talking to employees of these companies in depth at least once. Some twice or more. I must say that times have changed. I received a lot of poor customer service from ALL the companies I’ve dealt with with the exception being “NETFLIX”. No complaints here! There wasn’t but a couple minutes wait time when my other half had to trouble shoot something that kept popping up on our screen. I knew it had to be something we did on our end, but my other half wasn’t gonna think he could have screwed up. The customer service people were patient and listened and were good about not offending us with comments that really meant we were total idiots ( oh we sure can be when it comes to the internet, & PC’s) Anyway just a two thumbs up for “NETFLIX” comment I had to add here. I gotta get back to my movie now. Have a great day.

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