Classrooms VS Private Message VS Live Chat VS SiteSupport
There are many ways to get help with your online business here in Wealthy Affiliate. In fact, that's one of the best reasons to be a member.
Free hosting, top notch training, and website building tools aside - getting access to an enthusiastic group of online entrepreneurs building the same type of business as you is incredible.
Support from this community is a huge reason I stuck around during my first year (2010), and didn't give up.
With so many ways to get assistance, I wanted to show the best way to leverage each one. There are advantages and disadvantages to each!
- Pros: Fast responses, real time discussion & troubleshooting, fun
- Cons: There may not be an "expert" around to help, busy times can be hard to grab someones attention
Live chat is the fastest way to get help. Hop on by clicking the "Live Chat" tab the left side of the dashboard, or you can just go to the WA dashboard home page and you'll see the chat scrolling.
Chances are, if you hop in during a busy time, there will be 4 or 5 people who are just chomping at the bit to help. I sometimes hop in to help someone out, but am beat out by multiple other answers.
If you have a pressing question that needs an immediate answer in order for you to move on to the next step, get an instant answer here.
The downside is that you may hop in when the people in chat don't know the answer to your question. Also, when chat gets busy, it moves fast. If you are shy, this can be intimidating, or you may feel ignored if you don't get an answer right away.
My best advice here is to just try again!
- Pros: Get quality answers from multiple experts, read answers on your own time, everyone benefits from your question now that it's searchable in WA.
- Cons: Takes time to get an answer, if you don't have a big network in WA, you won't get as many answers.
If live chat doesn't work out, or you don't have time to fix the problem right now, classrooms are great.
I like to use classrooms because my question can "stew" for a couple days. People that follow me can chime in over the next 2-5 days, and I can even get some good answers weeks or months later.
Plus, answers tend to be more in-depth and thoughtful than in live chat, where you just get a quick 1-sentence response or a training link.
Related Webinar: Getting the Most out of WA Classrooms
Lastly, the question is now searchable in WA (and Google), so all other members will be able to read the question and gain knowledge from the answers. Everyone benefits!
The downside to classrooms is that you have to wait for people to respond. If you need to fix this problem immediately, waiting for a day or two doesn't sound very fun. Also, if you don't have many followers in WA, you may get just 1-2 answers instead of 10+.
Following people, making connections, and being social in Wealthy Affiliate certainly has some benefits!
Related Blog Post: Why Follow People or Have Them Follow Me?
Related Blog Post: Can You Share Your Website Link Inside WA?
Private Message (PM)
- Pros: 1-on-1 coaching from experts, personalized answers, can discuss private questions
- Cons: Takes longer to get response, may get no response
Private Messages are a great way to connect with other people in the community in a more 1-on-1 setting. It's also a great way to connect with your referrer (AKA coach, mentor, etc) here in the community.
The best way to leverage PMs (in my opinion) is for bigger questions, or a question to a specific person because of their knowledge. For example, I Private Messaged a couple people last month because I wanted to ask them about their experience selling websites.
Another great way to use PMs is for longer-term discussions. For example, I'm working with one guy who is getting outranked by competitors stealing his content, so we're trying to figure out what's going on with that.
IMPORTANT! One strategy I like to have my referrals do is to ask a question in a classrooms first, then PM me with a link to the question. This works great because everyone benefits from getting my answer, plus you get access to answers from other members as well.
Just keep in mind, not everyone answers PMs daily, and some may not respond at all. Many members are building their own businesses (including myself), and they may not have time to respond to all messages.
I personally respond to all my referrals here daily. If you don't get a response from someone, just be sure to use all of the other support resources available to you here.
Related Training: How to use PM (private message) on WA
- Pros: Can fix anything technical (so you don't have to!)
- Cons: Limited to hosting/webiste tech issues
SiteSupport is only for when the technical side of things are not working. Appropriate reasons to contact SiteSupport include (but are not limited to):
- webiste down
- can't get plugin installed correctly
- site won't load or loading slow
- siterubix site won't move to .com domain
There are lots of technical issues that could go wrong, so I won't go through all of them. I basically mean to say taht SiteSupport is not for help with the training, blog design, billing, or questions about how to run your affiliate business.
- Pros: Quick access to lengthy discussions, many topics have already been covered
- Cons: Sometimes difficult to know how to phrase your question in one sentence, can be hard to find the "perfect" answer to your question
After reading the comments below, I wanted to add a section here just in case you forgot - there's a search bar at the top of your WA dashboard. Many newbie questions have been answered multiple times over by multiple people throughout the past decade.
Be sure to search for your answers as well!
Doing this kind of seaching in WA will also help you discover members to follow, and get you exposed to different viewpoints.
Some discussions go on for hundreds of comments long, with varying opinions or methods of solving a problem. Rather than wait for those answers to come in by starting a new question, you can make use of what's already there.
Plus, you'll also see blog posts and training modules created by the community to help with common problems and questions.
Live Events: As a subset of the search bar, I also want to point you to the Live Events section, where there are hundreds of previously recorded webinars on a variety of topics. These will usually turn up in the search bar, but not always.
If you need a tutorial, make sure to also search in the Live Events section too!
Related Training: Using the Smart Search Bar to Find Specific Member Training
Related Training: Understanding Wealthy Affiliate Search Bar!
Why No Skype?
I get asked frequently enough for a live call on Skype of phone that I felt like I wanted to address it here. This is just my personal thoughts on it.
I've done Skype sessions before. 100% of the time people basically just want to interview me and ask me about my websites and how much money I make. It's completely unproductive.
Plus, think about any professional in any other field. How much do they make? A plumber or repairman in the USA makes at least $60 per hour, up to $300 per hour for specialized work. I don't want to charge people these kind of fees for a full hour of 1-on-1 time.
Personally, I hate the "upsell to the coaching call" stuff most programs do, so my solution is to just not do the Skype thing.
I've purchased a lot of "make money" products over the years, and the support at Wealthy Affiliate is second to none. Aside from the fact that most products out there are just a PDF guide or video series, even products that claim to have a support basically just toss everyone into a Facebook group.
Questions are disorganized, they're not easily related to the training, and from what I've seen, these groups usually just get dominated by two or three enthusiastic individuals while everyone else lurks.
Wealthy Affiliate has thousands of active members, including many full time affiliate marketers running six-figure businesses. Hundreds of new discussions are being posted daily, and there's always someone to talk to about your business, whether it's a question you have, a success story you want to share, or you just want to vent.
Best of all, we have a culture of positive vibes that's contagioius.
What's Your Favorite Help Resource In Wealthy Affiliate?
Hope you all have a great week. Get to work!