This little rant will be shared by those who have numerous websites they need to keep on top of. Even if you have only one website you still must deal with the volume of e-mail generated by your site. This means weeding through them, responding to them, filing them and then responding to the responses to your replies.
It should go without saying that if you are online for commercial gain, it is important that you respond to site emails in a prompt and courteous manner. However, what many site visitors do not realize is that by virtue of how they email a website can give the site owners a view into the type of customer they will be.
Sadly, it is more common than you may think. If you have a website you receive inquiries that are demanding, terse, inconsiderate and plain ole’ lazy. I see this myself everyday.
How To Be a Good Potential Customer
Here’s a checklist to find out how your inquiries will be viewed by site owners you email.
- Did you read the FAQ? Many sites have a F.A.Q. = Frequently Asked Questions. How do you think you will be perceived when you type a demanding email for information readily available on the website’s F.A.Q.? LAZY
- Did you review the About Page to know who you are contacting? My sites are all me. Judith. On this site click on About [email protected]. As a WordPress Consultant, you will find out all about me on the “My Story” page. Read either and you know my name to e-mail me. How does it look when I receive e-mails that start with Dear Sir? SPAMMY
- Does the site even cover what you are looking for? This past week I was asked about the proper baby shower protocols for the 4th child in a 3rd marriage. I guess we missed the “Everything E-mail Etiquette” at the top of every page. INCONSIDERATE OF MY TIME
Successful sites and businesses have their hands full taking care of potentially serious and profitable customers. You want to give the impression that you are going to be one of those! Not someone who feels their time is more valuable than the site owner’s by expecting them to repeat what is on their site. Or worse, reply to an e-mail that has nothing to do with their site or what they offer.
Before e-mailing any site, make sure the information you seek is not already included for your convenience. Check the FAQ, read the About page, use the search bar. Then, if after a reasonable effort you do not find the information you seek, contact the site owner with courtesy and appreciation.
You may find you get a faster, more enthusiastic and more detailed response!