Recently we have seen a lot of codes used to unlock our products being offered for discounted prices. Almost all of them are bought using stolen credit cards. These codes will all be blocked by our systems and you will have to try to get your money back from the seller, we are unable to assist in these matters. Do be very careful when you see a deal that is almost too good to be true, it probably is too good to be true.

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Mathijs Kok

Why do not always refund when the software does not run?

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The last few months I have been involved hands on with support a lot more than before and I found that more than a year ago the hardest issues end up with an unhappy customer and an unhappy Aerosoft. Our ‘issue solved’ rate is still way above industry average just as our ‘time to issue solved’ is 35% below industry average. But I do find it a worrisome trend and like to comment on it.

Let me sketch you a support issue.

The customer bought a product (let’s say the Airbus X A320/A321) and it crashed his simulator. We go through the most obvious causes but that does not solve the problem. The customer gets upset when we say that we simply do not know what causes his problem. An unhappy stalemate follows where the customer wants his money back because he claims the download software is faulty and we refuse because we know the software does not crash the sim.

See, we are 100% sure that if Windows is correctly installed, and FSX is correctly installed the software runs as we expect it to run. That it does not run on HIS system is because his system has something that makes it incompatible. It could be anything. From a windows system file that is broken, a DirectX file that is for another version of Windows, FSX files that are changed for non-standard ones by some freeware product, etc etc. As we have no way of knowing what happened solving these issues is very hard. Call Microsoft for any problem like this and they say to re-install Windows. And they are right, 90% of the problems are solved by that. But it’s not very customer friendly so we do try to solve the issue in often an exhausting series of checks. But more often than we hope the issue is just not solved.

We run a battery of tests on our product, from different versions of Windows, different languages (recently we added Chinese to that), different versions of FS etc. We are so good at this some of our competitors use our quality control facilities. And only when those test cause no problem will we release a product. So we just KNOW the software does not crash the simulator. It might crash YOUR simulator but not THE simulator. We know that if you wipe your disk, reinstall Windows, FSX and the product we are almost 100% sure it works (there still could be a hardware issue after all).

So I understand the frustration when something does not work. And I know like any software our products might contain bugs. But we are sure it ‘does work’. I hope that this ‘cri de coeur’ on behalf of my support staff gives you some insight in our point of view.

If you can proof the software is faulty (not bugs but as in ‘not running’, after all FSX has 77 described bugs and you run it on a version of Windows that has hundreds of known bugs) we’ll gladly refund. But please accept that if the software runs fine on tens of thousands of systems but not on yours it more or less has to be your system and not the software that causes the problems.

That said, if this happens to a customer who spend thousands at Aerosoft and is willing to work towards a solution and is as polite as we are, we will always solve the issue. We then refund or offer another product. Aerosoft exists because of repeat customers, we would be silly not to try to solve these issues.

If a customer just tells us the product does not work and wants his money back, we’ll dig in. If he replies in an impolite way to any of my customer support officers they have orders to hand it to me. They do not get paid enough to take shit, I do. But I will most likely show you this post.

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Very well said Mathijs!

And on top of what you just said here, there's no way for you to check wether the complaining customer speaks the truth. There might be cases where the software works perfectly fine, but still the customer complains saying it doesn't work only to get a refund and then keep the software for free. That's not how it's meant to be. If you give a refund once, they'll keep coming back for more. Therefor it's a wise decision not to refund. Pity for those where the software really doesn't work, but that's the way life is.

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The blame game goes both ways. Honesty and trust is a rare commodity, but I can honestly say that in most of these whiners cases I wouldn't trust them to be able to tie their own shoelaces.

Tshirt slogan:

"Always kick a man when he's down. It's your best opportunity to make damn sure he doesn't get up again"

Everyone has a right to complain. Everyone has a right to suffer when their complaint is bogus.

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Thank you for this :) The best post of the year I would say ;)

its still 5 month to go :)

and the reasons for posts like today's one, won't stop

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its still 5 month to go :)

and the reasons for posts like today's one, won't stop

Not sure I follow....

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Great post Mathijs, we deal with the same scenarios daily at work, we provide IT equipment for a major government contract. I think the age old saying of never workings with animals or kids needs amending to working with governments too! The number of times we as a company are pushed into replacing a perfectly good computer system for no reason what so ever you wouldn't believe.

The blame game goes both ways. Honesty and trust is a rare commodity, but I can honestly say that in most of these whiners cases I wouldn't trust them to be able to tie their own shoelaces.

Tshirt slogan:

"Always kick a man when he's down. It's your best opportunity to make damn sure he doesn't get up again"

Everyone has a right to complain. Everyone has a right to suffer when their complaint is bogus.

I have that t-shirt :lol: on the back it says, if you can read this, the bitch fell off :lol:

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Very well said Mathijs!

And on top of what you just said here, there's no way for you to check wether the complaining customer speaks the truth. There might be cases where the software works perfectly fine, but still the customer complains saying it doesn't work only to get a refund and then keep the software for free. That's not how it's meant to be. If you give a refund once, they'll keep coming back for more. Therefor it's a wise decision not to refund. Pity for those where the software really doesn't work, but that's the way life is.

It is our experience that the vast majority of customers are just fine and honest people and they are not out to mess with us.

Do note that we guarantee the software runs, but only when the hardware and OS (and simulator) are not faulty. We are able to sort out close to 97% of support calls and our support department has a 88% satisfaction rate, that's way above industry average, so there are only a handful of issues that are 'unsolvable'. Of course they are not unsolvable but the users decides that it is not worthwhile to do a clean install. That's something we can understand very well, but not reason for a refund.

This happens a few times every month, so it's rare, but as it always leads to unhappy customers and an unhappy support officer. That's why I wanted to spend some time on it.

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Mathijs,

in all respect, allow me to disagree on this policy. I also work at a software company, and we deal with unhappy customers every day. It's enterprise software and everything is more expensive than most things I will ever buy in my life, but still it's users using software, and sometimes we just don't get it to work.

If I were you, I would favor a "the customer is always right" attitude. After all, if a customer has spent say 29 Euros on a product, and after days and nights of trying to get it working, he has to give up, he has the right to be unhappy. You are right - chances are that it's his fault, that his system is broken and he should reinstall. But still - he wants to use the product, and he can't.

I would refund him -- and book it on the advertising budget. How much does a company like Aerosoft spend on winning a new customer through marketing and advertising? Industry standard is a three digit figure of dollars per new customer. On the other hand, if you revers the purchase of an unhappy customer, what you lose is close to zero (you just have misinvested your production and support cost on this particular case, but these are lost anyway), while the customer regains his purchase price. These value of this refund is tiny for your as a company, but significant for the customer.

If now this customer reports about his positive experience and "can do attitude" of Aerosoft in just one single forum, it will help form an image of your company that is orders of magnitude more valuable than the 29 bucks you didn't earn.

As your polica says, of course I wouldn't refund obvious scammers or people who report a bug, don't cooperate to find the cause, and get impolite at your staff. But everyone who legitimately can't use your product, I'd refund, no matter if you think it's his machine's fault. Rather reverse 29 bucks of revenue and buy the opportunity to position yourself as a premium service company, than playing hardball on these 29 bucks and make another unhappy customer.

Let me give you small example. We used to shop at a local store in our town who sells premium food - organic, imported, special, what-have-you. We left about 30 € there each weekend, 50 € on a good day because we bought much of our "Delicatessen" there, and we spend a lot of money on good food.

Once we had to return a cheese because it had started to get moldy. Not only did the shop assistant start to discuss with us if we had been storing it the right way -- after a long discussion, they gave us a new piece, but charged us with EUR 1,- because it was somewhat larger than the piece we had bought.

This was 7 years ago, and we have never entered the shop again since that day. We drive into the next town to buy our stuff, even if its inconvenient and expensive. Even at a conservative rate, they have lost 10.000 € worth of business with us (7 years, 45 weekends, 30 € each) that we would have spent in the recent 7 years -- just because they were bitchy about our complaint one single freaking time. Our complaint was rightful. Even if it hadn't been -- smile through your teeth, give them a new piece of cheese, put an apple for the little kid on top, and say thank you. It's not that hard, it costs you 3 € and you win a lifetime customer. Just don't piss of your regulars if you are a premium food seller in a small town.

I'd guess in a limited marketspace like flight simming, similar principles apply. Even for those who spend less than Thousands of Euros on your products.

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Deleted some topics and reopened the topic.

Wohnlich, I do see your point of view but it is just not (always) possible. Adobe does not refund when Photoshop crashes, Microsoft does not refund when FSX won't start (they would tell you to re-install Windows as that's their default answer). They do so for the same reason as we do, the software is basically okay. We'll try to assist the customer in getting it to run but most of the time that's all we can do. Of course if it's a very good customer we'll try to get a solution.

Refunding and putting it on the marketing budget would make that department very pissed off. And I also fear a lot of people would abuse our good service. Keep in mind we are mainly discussing downloads here. It's not a product you can return to the shop and get a refund. We got no way to see if the customer is indeed not able to run it.

Just this morning I was handling a customer for whom the Airbus X A320/A321 would not run. I asked him if he had done any modification for FSX.cfg and he gave me a whole list. There was stuff there that was only valid for the original FSX and a lot of stuff that he hoovered up from the internet, just stupid stuff and utter nonsense. For sure I made his FSX slower. But he insisted it was spot on and would not reset the cfg. Why would we have to refund that customer? He tweaked his FSX so it would not run our software. We only guarantee it runs on a clean FSX, what else can we do.

Lastly, keep in mind it is a sales condition the customer agrees to. If you do not accept do not buy, or buy a boxed copy in a store that accepts returns (not many do these days).

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Hello all,

First I want to start by apologizing for my very bad English.

In what follows I am forced to use an automatic translator.


Regarding me and experience with your business the biggest complaint that I can do is that you make no difference between a former client for years that once a refund request and customers with bad intentions permanently are never satisfied.

I ask support three times this year and I asked for a refund one time, nearby while I buy Aerosoft products for very long time (First in 2006).

I never ask for help with an Aerosoft product in the future.

Why??

I'm a Aerosoft customer with:

-36 Aerosoft addons on Simmarket

-39 Aerosoft addons on Aerosoft Shop

-Add Boxeds

You cannot ask a me who has hundreds of addons to reinstall everything for a technical problem.
This is counterproductive and ridiculous for a scenery who's price is 25€.

I appreciate your work (Plane and Scenery), but for support after purchase I prefer to avoid.

Thanks to read me.

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And now, Mathijs, after you deleted another one of my posts, I'm leaving the Aerosoft forums ...

Thanks a lot to all the nice people around here; looking forward to see you all in some other place soon!

Olli,

First, we have hidden your earlier post (as well as a few others) because it was just fueling the fire.

Some members in that thread was throwing insults and we simply do not accept this kind of behavior.

We accept civil discussions but that was clearly not the case(and for sure we do not want our members offending each other) and so we stopped it.

Second, Mathijs was not the one who deleted your later post, a deputy did. (Mathijs is not around the next week or so).

We did not mean to offend you in any way by hiding your post. I understand you are not satisfied with the moderating as there were offensive post above yours that you deemed inappropriate but were not deleted. We have now deleted those.

You have been helpful to the Airbus (and of cause other) Forums and we appreciate that, we hope that you understand our position and hope to have you back in the forums.

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Thanks for explaining, Emanuel, this thread now looks way better after you've worked your way through it again.

My apologies, Mathijs, in case you took offence at my wrongly directed (but somehow founded tongue.png ) criticism.

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Hello all,

First I want to start by apologizing for my very bad English.

In what follows I am forced to use an automatic translator.

Regarding me and experience with your business the biggest complaint that I can do is that you make no difference between a former client for years that once a refund request and customers with bad intentions permanently are never satisfied.

I ask support three times this year and I asked for a refund one time, nearby while I buy Aerosoft products for very long time (First in 2006).

I never ask for help with an Aerosoft product in the future.

Why??

I'm a Aerosoft customer with:

-36 Aerosoft addons on Simmarket

-39 Aerosoft addons on Aerosoft Shop

-Add Boxeds

You cannot ask a me who has hundreds of addons to reinstall everything for a technical problem.

This is counterproductive and ridiculous for a scenery who's price is 25€.

I appreciate your work (Plane and Scenery), but for support after purchase I prefer to avoid.

Thanks to read me.

You may or not know me as a developer, but I am a developer of the Airbus (Extended) X, now that you mentioned this, I thought that I will give my 2 cents.

I think that you must recognise that we sell hundreds/thousands of copies of diferent products with a very low return rate or techincal problem. One thing I often tell the support staff who send me enquires about support problem is that to check and check again if the customer didnt do anything wrong. 50% of the time, the customer actually did not perform the required steps correctly, other 35% customer found the fault with his hardware and the other 15% get resolved other ways.
Now I am not saying that our products are PERFECT and customer is always at fault, but its IMPOSSIBLE to guarantee it work on all systems with such variety of hardware/software. The only way we could maybe ever guarantee that the software is at fault is when customers all use Iphone for FSX. That is ONE hardware standard for the product, not a variety.
Lastly, one of the sales term you agreed to when buying the product is that the product is non-refundable for a number of reasons. IF you get a refund, it is COMPLETELY out of goodwill of aerosoft.
Now, I understand it can be completely frustrating for a customer who spend money and then the product dont work, but you must also understand we sold you a WORKING product, but it is not working on YOUR system for a variety of reasons and I think its the same for all other software companies - Microsoft, Adobe as Mathijs has mentioned above.

Disclaimer: This is my Point of View and is NOT representative of Aerosoft

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You cannot ask a me who has hundreds of addons to reinstall everything for a technical problem.

This is counterproductive and ridiculous for a scenery who's price is 25€.

I fully agree, but the fact remains the problem is most likely not our software but your setup. I still do not see why we should pay for that. Let's do an analogy. You fill your petrol car with diesel and it will not run. Would you ask the petrol station to refund the diesel?

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+1 :excellenttext_s:

I fully agree, but the fact remains the problem is most likely not our software but your setup. I still do not see why we should pay for that. Let's do an analogy. You fill your petrol car with diesel and it will not run. Would you ask the petrol station to refund the diesel?

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Hello,

The problem is most likely not our software but your setup.

How do you know if it is my setup or not?
You do not know what product(s) I'm referring.

I fully agree.

It may be time to consider the issues.
In private or in public, it's like you want.
Now we can consider the responses made ​​by the support for me.

+1 :excellenttext_s:

Please Mr Kok, take your "analogy" for you, it's good for your Fan Club, not for me.

With respect.

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Hello,

How do you know if it is my setup or not?

You do not know what product(s) I'm referring.

It may be time to consider the issues.

In private or in public, it's like you want.

Now we can consider the responses made ​​by the support for me.

(...)

With respect.

In public, pls: Tell us what addon you're referring to, and I' (we')ll tell you whether it works perfectly on my (our) system(s).

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jmd, the product actually does not matter much. If the product works for thousands of people and not on a particular customers system I think I am correct to assume it's the system and not the product. In the past we have seen a few issues with our software that would not work on some version of Windows (Korean most of the time) and of course those were either fixed or refunded.

I do not understand what follows in your post. Consider what issues and public or private? And what responses from support? What's incorrect in my analogy? My fan club? I did not know I had one. You obviously have a problem with me and I am sorry about that. However that does not change our point of view and your mail certainly does not contain any arguments against it.

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jmd, the product actually does not matter much. If the product works for thousands of people and not on a particular customers system I think I am correct to assume it's the system and not the product. In the past we have seen a few issues with our software that would not work on some version of Windows (Korean most of the time) and of course those were either fixed or refunded.

I do not understand what follows in your post. Consider what issues and public or private? And what responses from support? What's incorrect in my analogy? My fan club? I did not know I had one. You obviously have a problem with me and I am sorry about that. However that does not change our point of view and your mail certainly does not contain any arguments against it.

Dear Mr Kok,

I'll try to respond to your interogations of best possible.

My disagreement with after-sales service and you matches the requests number 53419/54404, 38834 and 52101:

-Request #53419/54404(Norilsk),the service offers me the refund provided if I reinstall FSX + addons.I had confirmed lie and say that this rule not the problem, but I preferred to consider my interlocutor as Manager and tell him that I wouldn't do that(2 or 3 days time work).It my explained that it was the procedure, then I ask to transfer my request to a Manager and I think that there is no been done because I had no reply at this time.

conclusion of service:"This request has been deemed solved Jul 22"

-Request #38834(Toulouse),response from the service "I have flown around the FSX version of Toulouse and cant see any flashing."I found myself the bad BGL.Maybe if the support had done the work in my stead they found the soluce for me and make a patch for over clients too.The bug is on the latest version of LFBO

conclusion of service:"This request has been deemed solved Mar 09"

-Request #52101(Kastellorizo)Service response "we'll forward this to the developers for a upcoming update." More than six months after I still await the update.

conclusion of service:This request has been deemed solved Jun 21

I inform you that all my requests are sent with screenshots so that you can identify the problem more easily and allows to justify my queries.

I can assure you that I have no problem with you personally or anyone at Aerosoft.

I believe that your products are good and some like the Catalina, twin Otter, the Dimona and Hughes are must haves.

As regards me your support is unnecessary and represents a waste of time, but I agree that other customers are definitely satisfied.

Fans club(my own definition) are of people who intervene without even understanding a discussion with an obvious bias and who are more and more on the forums and who feel attacked, as were do not share their views but there is not relevant to this discussion.

Despite my very bad English, I hope I was clear

Regard.

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I am the manager of the support department(s) and have checked all these tickets and I think all of them were dealt with professionally and correctly. That you do not like the conclusions does not mean the support is not correct. We got a 86% customer satisfaction on our support, way above industry standard.

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As a consumer I do expect the product to work without having to go through hours and hours of clearing off disks and re installing them! To all thous who have had no problems. Good for you I am glad that you have not had to go through all the trouble that myself and others have gone through! I Have spent 20-25 hours and three different windows reloads and 2 different computers and it still does not work! It looks like a great program and I enjoy the 20-25 minuets that I get to use it before I have a fatal error and it crashes. To your point on the response time it doesn't surprise me at all that you are behind your competitors. 3-4 days is not expectable and is well below my expectations! The online shop that I bought it from told me that they did like your product but that your support left much to be desired. I have had two emails asking me to rate the response. It asks if I was satisfied or unsatisfied with the help. I said not satisfied, and it says"unfortunately that means the ticket can no longer be rated". I was shocked that it didn't let me rate it when I said I was unhappy and thought maybe it was a glitch but the second time ticket asked I knew it was no glitch. ( I got a screen capture, along with the other 50 I have from my sim. crashing). You don't have to look far on the forum where people are asking for help and you see the moderator jump in and scold them for asking a question that has supposedly been answered in another part of the forum. They get upset if you comment was in their opinion not exactly on topic. They they rudely claim that you are hijacking the thread. (asking about this problem under the topic of "Major problems with the newA320/A321 V1.15. Seemed at the time to be a good place to see why this program was crashing. The moderator then said you should search the forum to see if the topic has been answered, then tell you to start your own topic if you want to make a comment or ask a question! I have seen the moderator turn around and chastise a person for doing so if there has all ready somewhere been a similar subject in the past. Many of the moderators have huge ego,s and all they want to do is to tell you that you did something wrong, or asked a stupid question when they could have taken less time to just point you in the right direction or give you any help! Your only as good as your support is! In the end it doesn't matter if you dig your heals in or not because if you buy it with most credible credit card they will refund you your money if it doesn't work or you are unhappy regardless if the developer agrees to or not and so will paypal. I suggest that you spend less time trying to spread your propaganda and find out why this program is not compatible with many peoples windows\computers and try to make it more stable and improve your customer service. Also speed up the time it takes to respond to your customers. For the record I don't want my money back and would like nothing more then to get this program working! I have thousands of hour Flying the Airbus A320 along with many other aircraft and find this software to be a very realistic. I commend the developer in that area. I would like the company which I work for to adopt this program as a training aid but am not about to put my neck on the line to recommend it with lack of support that I have received so far from Aerosoft. I hope that you can somehow find a way for this software to not be so unstable.

Best of luck in all regards

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As a consumer I do expect the product to work without having to go through hours and hours of clearing off disks and re installing them! To all thous who have had no problems. Good for you I am glad that you have not had to go through all the trouble that myself and others have gone through! I Have spent 20-25 hours and three different windows reloads and 2 different computers and it still does not work! It looks like a great program and I enjoy the 20-25 minuets that I get to use it before I have a fatal error and it crashes. To your point on the response time it doesn't surprise me at all that you are behind your competitors. 3-4 days is not expectable and is well below my expectations! The online shop that I bought it from told me that they did like your product but that your support left much to be desired. I have had two emails asking me to rate the response. It asks if I was satisfied or unsatisfied with the help. I said not satisfied, and it says"unfortunately that means the ticket can no longer be rated". I was shocked that it didn't let me rate it when I said I was unhappy and thought maybe it was a glitch but the second time ticket asked I knew it was no glitch. ( I got a screen capture, along with the other 50 I have from my sim. crashing). You don't have to look far on the forum where people are asking for help and you see the moderator jump in and scold them for asking a question that has supposedly been answered in another part of the forum. They get upset if you comment was in their opinion not exactly on topic. They they rudely claim that you are hijacking the thread. (asking about this problem under the topic of "Major problems with the newA320/A321 V1.15. Seemed at the time to be a good place to see why this program was crashing. The moderator then said you should search the forum to see if the topic has been answered, then tell you to start your own topic if you want to make a comment or ask a question! I have seen the moderator turn around and chastise a person for doing so if there has all ready somewhere been a similar subject in the past. Many of the moderators have huge ego,s and all they want to do is to tell you that you did something wrong, or asked a stupid question when they could have taken less time to just point you in the right direction or give you any help! Your only as good as your support is! In the end it doesn't matter if you dig your heals in or not because if you buy it with most credible credit card they will refund you your money if it doesn't work or you are unhappy regardless if the developer agrees to or not and so will paypal. I suggest that you spend less time trying to spread your propaganda and find out why this program is not compatible with many peoples windows\computers and try to make it more stable and improve your customer service. Also speed up the time it takes to respond to your customers. For the record I don't want my money back and would like nothing more then to get this program working! I have thousands of hour Flying the Airbus A320 along with many other aircraft and find this software to be a very realistic. I commend the developer in that area. I would like the company which I work for to adopt this program as a training aid but am not about to put my neck on the line to recommend it with lack of support that I have received so far from Aerosoft. I hope that you can somehow find a way for this software to not be so unstable.

Best of luck in all regards

What shop was that? I clearly need to talk to them. If you also give me the ticket numbers I will check them out.

And if you sell a complex add-on there will always be problems.But I have NEVER seen any system where our add-ons did not work after we fixed Windows and FSX. If those two are okay and not messed up the add-on will work. And that is all any company can ever claim. But no matter what you do there will always be around 5% of unhappy customers, you clearly are one of those and that's sad.

I like to point out that if you have your CC refunded the CC company will check it out (not all, but it does happen). They come to us and let us explain what happened and why we did not refund. Basically they ask us to proof the software is not crashing. We then show them how many tens of thousands of copies we sold and that's clearly proof enough the problem is NOT in the software. You still get your refund but we won't sell anything to you obviously. You can also find that your financial rating is affected, certainly in the US this might be an issue.

If you want to use the add-on as a professional training tool you are not allowed to do so, we sell professional versions for that, when needed with special service contracts. For some contract we even install complete replacement machines etc. For a $35 add-on this does not apply though, lol.

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Would like to have some feedback from MCOA320.

Suggested some help, but do not know if it has been succesful or not...

Regards

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