Despite the fact that there is a lot of garbage out there, some of you actually produce some pretty good WSO's. I've discovered a lot of good tools in the WF from some brilliant developers and very good marketers.
That being said, most of you stink at instruction. I can't tell you how many times I've been excited about a piece of software or product release, just to give up on it because the developers couldn't explain how it worked properly.
I think the biggest mistake most of you make is assuming that your buyers know what you know. Many of you fail to see your product from the viewpoint of those who are brand new to your it. Put yourself in their shoes.
Step by step is always the best method. Lay it out there as if you were explaining it to your grandmother (unless your grandmother works for Microsoft). And pleeeease give practical applications. Go through a live example. If not in a video, do it with screen shots in a pdf. And it's not enough to explain "how" to do something, you need to explain "what" it is and "why" one would do it.
Don't worry about being repetitive either. The more examples, the better. The more ways you can explain something, the better.
Does it make sense for me to explain to you how to use the space modulator if you don't know what the space modulator does (if you're wondering, search Marvin the Martian - the SM will change your life). Before you show me how it works, I need to know what it does.
Another big mistake I see is that many of you start your tutorials with the details. That will just confuse everyone. Begin with the big picture. Give an overview of your product and how it fits into the goals of those buying it. Work backwards from there. If I understand what it is and how it fits into the grand scheme of things, then the details are going to make a lot more sense to me.
If you still do not understand what I'm getting at, just go look up the Noble Samuari tutorials (Market Samurai and now Article Samurai). They are the best in the business. And it makes good sense, too. Noble Samurai understands that clear instruction equals happy customers and more sales.
Having good customer support is a no-brainer. Bad support equals product refund for me. And I'm going to resist getting into the blasted up-sells since that's more about your product launch than instruction. I'll save that for another post.
So, if you want me to keep your product after purchase, please help yourself by helping me understand how to get it going as easily and as quickly as possible...like I said, for what it's worth.