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Google Helpout - Providers Find up to 90% Drop-off rate!

Google Helpout - Providers Find up to 90% Drop-off rate!

image: Jeff Attaway

Some of the top free Helpouts in each of the different categories have found an incredible number of drop-off's. These drop-offs include people who book a listing, but who don't show up, or they click on to join the live Helpout but they get cut off because their system didn't meet the requirements for performing a Helpout.

The Estimated Dropoff

In the Home & Garden category, Kirk Miller for HomeAdvisor, a website offering tools and resources for home improvement, maintenance and repair projects said that out of 300 people they provided help to, 30 people actually make it through the Helpout - that's a whooping 90% drop-out rate. Ken Rubin, VP of Marketing for Rouxbe Cooking School, who also manages the free Basic Cooking Helpout also estimated up to 80% drop-off rate for their helpout.

The Story Behind the Numbers

Most of the companies on Google Helpout were approached by Google to put up their listing. In the interview, most of the provider said they had only been listed for just over a week, so there's a steep learning curve ahead for many of them. For the most part, these are professionals who excel in their own career, but who may not be savvy IT professionals. They also haven't had the time to sit down, collect and analyse the data results from their Helpout.

But it's not just the providers who have problems, many users book a free helpout only to find that their computers did not meet the mimum requirements to run a Helpout session. 

And at this stage, because Google Helpout is a new platform, the Google Helpout team does not yet have the numbers to say how Helpout is performing for them.

What Does This Mean?

These businesses and individuals were consistent in reporting issues like people not been able to use the technology, the audio wasn't clear enough or the client kept cutting out. The number of drop off also includes people who schedule the free Helpout but who don't show up.

In one example, Keenan Jones, who provides Apple product support reported that 75% of his scheduled listings did not show up, while about 50% dropped out while he was providing, or about to provide the live helpouts. He also says that many of the tech and computer companys are fighting for top user ratings, so even though there are some issues at present, they are motivated to get the rankings and be known as a top provider on Google Helpout.

At this stage we only know the estimates from the users who provide a service on Google Helpout. Google has it's own challenges, bug fixes and other technical and user difficulties. But the Google Helpout team continues to provide an amazing service - a devoted phone and live support team to get people started.

Over time as these issues get ironed out, I'm sure that we experience a smoother, more user friendly marketplace on Google Helpout.