Why does aMember make it so difficult to get support?

Discussion in 'aMember Pro v.4' started by homer, Jun 14, 2012.

  1. homer

    homer New Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2012
    Messages:
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    I've been trying to install aMember 4.x and I get an error:

    "There is a license problem with aMember Pro as described in the following error message:
    License error - license domain does not match your domain"

    But it's the right domain! And it even says so in the boxes provided on that page!

    I later discover I need to go to http://www.amember.com/amember/member and "set" the domain there (I think). The page says at the top that you can input the domain name for the licence, but there's nowhere to input that. Oh wait, if you scroll right down it's hidden there! Not very clever!

    I enter that, wait a day for updating and I still get the same error message that the license doesn't match my domain. So I try to get support. But it seems I'm not allowed to create a support ticket.

    In the support pages the login button doesn't work. Also it asks me to login even when I'm logged in. After a lot of messing around it appears that I need to register another account to open a support ticket. But when I try to register for the helpdesk I get an error saying an account already existing with that email address.

    So I can't start a support ticket. The support page said yesterday that support was closed and I needed to wait 9 hours for the European office to open. So I waited 9 hours and it's open ... but there's no way to contact it as there's no number provided! So what's the point of the timer countdown?

    I came here to the forum to find other instances of the same new user problems but there aren't any threads. Maybe aMember deletes them as it's bad PR.

    HOW DOES ONE GET SUPPORT IN AMEMBER?
    flyinjs likes this.
  2. alex

    alex Administrator Staff Member

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    I am sorry for issue with logging-in to support area. Please e-mail directly to support@cgi-central.net in such case - it goes to the same helpdesk system.

    Regarding the license problem, looks like you installed a development license (which allows to run aMember on localhost, dev, 127.0.0.1). Please login as the system suggest you and insert your license. I just sent your license key by PM.
  3. homer

    homer New Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2012
    Messages:
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    Thanks for your quick reply. That works now.

    >> looks like you installed a development license
    Yes, I did. But as I wasn't getting any response from you to emails I went ahead and bought a copy of amember. It would help if your error screen was more explicit with the problem rather than saying there's a problem and then displaying all the input details which suggest there is no problem. If there are two licences to the account then display them to the user! I wasn't even aware that there were two... which led to much frustration.

    >>looks like you installed a development license (which allows to run aMember on localhost, dev, 127.0.0.1)
    I wasn't privy to that information or to the fact that the developer licence required me to run the software locally. It would have saved much time had I known. Why don't you add this note to the error page (or even to the developer licence email you send out)?

    The login problem - some screens accepting that I'm logged in and other screens asking me to log in - is still something I suggest you address. As is the issue with the login link not working and the link saying "sign in" when I'm already signed in. If I click the "sign in" link it automatically changes to sign out. All very buggy and I hope not indicative of what I'm going to experience with the aMember software itself.

    The "aMember Pro Support Center" screen I'm getting now does allow for the creation of a ticket but it didn't before. It shouldn't take an experienced webmaster and developer several hours to try to raise a support ticket! (though I appreciate the problem may not be one that other users are seeing).

    Thanks, again, for your quick response to my forum post.
  4. alex

    alex Administrator Staff Member

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    Homer, thank you, we will add more comment to make these things clear.

    What about support center login problem, I will work on it personally tomorrow. For now, try to clean up cookies for ".amember.com" domain and you will be able to login. It would help a lot if you remember where and how did you login first time, and what happened later.
    Say you logged-in to the forum, and checked "Remember login" option. Then closed your browser for a couple of days, and then when you get back to amember.com you mentioned that support center problem. Something like this? I will try all combinations tomorrow, but if you remember what happened it will help.

    Sorry for all the troubles.

    Regarding the e-mails: we answer all tickets. Check in the spam folder for messages from support@cgi-central.net - most likely you will find our messaage there. If not, feel free to use my personal e-mail I pm'ed to you.
  5. homer

    homer New Member

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    >>It would help a lot if you remember where and how did you login first time, and what happened later.

    It's not just the first time. It still happens. If I go to Firefox now I can't even login to your forum as neither the Log In button nor the red "sign in" link at the top of the page work. They are supposed to load this page: http://www.amember.com/forum/login/ but they don't do anything. I had to use a different browser to log back in and make this post. So it does look like a cookie problem.

    >>Check in the spam folder for messages ... If not, feel free to use my personal e-mail

    It wouldn't be in the spam folder as I had already whitelisted your personal email address which is what you and I exchanged a few email on in the past. It was because you weren't replying to your personal email address about the trial / reviewer copy that I went and bought a copy of aMember.

    But thanks again for your quick replies in this forum thread. Please let me know when you've solved your cookie problems.
  6. alex

    alex Administrator Staff Member

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    Could you please try to login into helpdesk now? The problem must be resolved.
  7. homer

    homer New Member

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    Thanks, Alex.
  8. baduist

    baduist Member

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    Apr 13, 2012
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    I must say that support is just the worst I've ever seen.

    On the forum it takes about 2-5 days to get a response which is in 90% of the cases the most lazy response possible like "What version?" (Seriously? why not provide the answers to popular version incase people need the info in the future??)

    Then once you answer, you need to wait another 2-5 days to get a super lazy half-assed 1-line response that is more often than not just unhelpful. That's of course, assuming you even got an answer.

    The docs are even worse - incorrect and out of date, and lacking tons of information.

    Email/helpdesk support is just like the forums - wait days for 1-line responses as if they are doing you a favor, and often just quote or send you to the useless docs wiki.

    It doesn't have to be like this.

    Just look at the s2member forum to see how helpful support can be - long answers, with tons of information (more than you need, incase someone else runs into the problem in the future), they even helped me customize the installation.

    I'm not related to s2m in anyway, I moved from s2member to aMember because their affiliate solutions are too complicated, and now I'm stuck with aMember which is a much better system I must say, but almost useless with this level of support (I'm not spoiled, I'm losing SALES on this!)

    I guess I'll have to find some other solution.

    At this point it seems like it would be easier and quicker to just customize s2member to include of all amember's features than getting proper support from amember.
  9. alexander

    alexander Administrator Staff Member

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    I'm sorry for delay with that issue and for last reply from our staff in helpdesk. Of course they should take more attention to the issue in this situation.
    I will take your ticket personally and will fix and update it in a few minutes.
  10. robw

    robw CGI-Central Partner

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
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    I can see the frustration, baduist - and at times recently I've felt it too. But as a long time customer of aMember (since 2007) I can tell you this is not typical - though there is occasionally a highly vocal exception in the forum.

    The issue is that v4 of aMember is a completely re-imagined product written to modern coding standards and this has effectively wiped out everything that has gone before. And it's only been out of beta a few months.

    The development team have a lot to manage: making v4 fully featured, fixing bugs, writing documentation, porting plugins, as well as supporting people in the forums who want everything from basic install help, customisations etc etc.

    It's taken me quite some time to get my head around the new version and I suspect many of the other forum regulars are in the same boat. Especially as many people are still on v3.

    But as time goes on, and we all get more familiar 'under the hood' - no doubt the level of valuable v4 based help in the forums will increase.

    Cheers
    Rob
  11. alex

    alex Administrator Staff Member

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    Dear baduist,as Alexander said, I am sorry for slow responses in helpdesk!

    Regarding forum responses - unfortunately, most real problems are hard to solve via forum, that is why we recommend to use helpdesk, and we unfortunately cannot guarantee quick forum responses
  12. memphisroar

    memphisroar New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2010
    Messages:
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    I've never had a problem with support from aMember's staff. I completely understand that, if I don't provide the proper information for them to help solve my problem, their response/support capabilities are limited. I also understand that it's quite the task to go back and forth between code updates, version fixes, etc and dealing with poorly worded and probably many times lacking-in-detail requests for help.

    I, for one, appreciate the support I've gotten here in the past. I know every situation is different, but I do think it's fair to give props when props are due.
  13. 1mdsurf

    1mdsurf Guest

    Joined:
    May 17, 2012
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    I have to agree that this is some of the worst support I have EVER seen for a product. Here is the biggest problems with support and I hope they look at this list and tackle these issues

    No live chat
    No contact phone number
    Horrible documentation
    Slow responses to tickets
    Slow responses to forum posts

    I mean c'mon, this is pretty ridiculous. I run a wide variety of internet businesses using a large number of differnt companies and am amazed this company is still in business. It just baffels me that they have no immediate way to contact a support representatitive (live chat/phone number), not only is this hurting their current customer base ( I will absolutly never use them again) but I'm sure its not helping sales as I bet a lot of potential customers would like to speak to someone before purchasing this product.

    Custom service should always be a top priority but even more so in an online business because of how easy it is to find alternative and because this is often the limited interaction you get with your customers so you should make it as pleasant as possible. If they don't work on improving this I don't have bright hopes for the future.
  14. thelady100

    thelady100 aMember Pro Customer

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2012
    Messages:
    48
    I have had some problems and got a bit frustrated too in the past, but there have been some very good staff that have helped me out. As Alex mentions, be sure to go through the Help desk. I have also found that if I create a video that I upload (unlisted) to YouTube and then provide the Help desk with the link, then they can see EXACTLY what my problem is and the problem gets resolved much more quickly (a picture is worth a thousand words). Also, you can be sure to ask for Live help through Skype (set up your request through Help Desk), and set up a time that way. I've had help that way before, and it resolved most of my questions. Hope that helps you a bit.

    As Robw mentions above, Version 4 is very new and apparently quite different from Version 3, and continues to get better and better so I'm sure it's taking a lot of their time. It can't be easy to try to do everything. One thing though that I've mentioned is that Amember needs to create some videos, and eventually, they should create an area of FAQ so that they don't have to keep answering the same questions over and over separately. I'm sure they have that in their plans. We're just caught in a new era of Version 4 Amember.
  15. alex

    alex Administrator Staff Member

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    I appreciate your feedback. We have finished steps to improve our support and I hope it will be visible soon.
    All the problems you are describing are because we are on different side of the Earth :)

    What about horrible documentation, we are also working on this, video tutorials will be published soon.
    mihkel likes this.
  16. nytix2

    nytix2 aMember Pro Customer

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2003
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    Alex - Some users want professional 24/7 support, you should consider supplying it.
    Of course there will be a cost associated with it, say $1000.00 per year. I would consider paying that.
    Of course, you will need to employ someone stateside so they can be responsive to your biggest market, the USA
    Otherwise, the product is a bargain. Bring on the professional support!
  17. memphisroar

    memphisroar New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2010
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    Where can you find a trained and reliable custom service rep for $1,000 a year? If they are out there, please point them in my direction because I'd LOVE to hire someone like that.
  18. bilbong30

    bilbong30 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2011
    Messages:
    5
    I think he is under the impression like me that multiple people would likely sign up for that service. I bet there are thousands of sites running amember. So the revenue Amember would be getting wouldn't be 1000 per year but $1000 x however many people sign up for it. I am sure the revenue from it could employ someone in the states to handle this.
  19. viraladmin

    viraladmin New Member

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    Jul 8, 2012
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    I won't speculate what amember makes or has made. I will say however my experience tells me that every piece of advice you get from a paying customer should be taken under serious consideration. I know first hand a friend of mine who bypassed this service because he could not personally speak with a rep. pre sales.

    I think it would be a very wise decision to test a service dedicated to customer service. See if your conversation rates increase from it. (look into specialtyansweringservice they offer two week free trial)
  20. shotoshi

    shotoshi Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2008
    Messages:
    38
    I'm finding it hard right now in getting answers to some of my ideas as I'm not currently an AM customer, but would like to be.

    I put this down to the time of year as I'm sure Alex and crew are probably (wisely) on a well deserved vacation somewhere exotic :)

    Btw, I have also noticed it's difficult to get logged in to the forum. On the AM homepage it shows me as being logged in, or rather it gives me the option to logout.

    But when I click the forum link it is asking me to login. When I click log in, it doesn't work. I have to logout from the homepage but when I click the forum link after logging out on the homepage it shows me as now being logged in. Very annoying!

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