Saturday, September 12, 2009

Do You Answer Your Email?

How much in sales revenue did I lose last year because I didn't answer my email? This is a question many firms need to ask themselves.

I’ve lost count of how many firms, large and small I have emailed using either the email address or the contact form on their Internet sites and NEVER received a response. That's right ... never received a response!

Some send an immediate canned response advising they have received my message and promise to respond within a given time, usually three days. That’s the last I ever hear from them.

Most of the email enquiries I send are about goods and services I want to buy. Most recently I emailed Microsoft Australia using the contact form on its site. I had hoped to buy a couple of thousand dollars worth of software. No response. Period.

This is not the type of response I expect from a prominent firm like Microsoft. In fact I don't expect a nil response from anyone trying to sell goods or services. Every enquiry is important. You never know who is trying to contact you, it just might happen to be a well-funded government department ready to spend half a million dollars.

My guess is the reason why you never hear from these firms is that they set up their email and Internet contact forms, but then don't allocate someone the task of checking it every day.

Part of the quality management role of any reasonably large organisation should be to test its customer relations systems. If you have an Internet contact form, why don't you complete an enquiry now and see what response you get?

You may be shocked.

Robin
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