How you can benefit from some good old-fashioned common courtesy….

Is it all about you?

Firstly today I have a small request. Every week I give free advice via my eletter on a topic which I think will benefit you(if you don’t already receive my newsletter you can sign up via the box at the end of this blog post)  – and I’ll be honest, some weeks it’s easier than others to decide on which direction I take – depending on what’s topical, the type of emails I’ve received from subscribers, what’s in the news and so on.

So here’s my request to you; if there is a topic you would like to see me cover in my eletter that will ultimately help you with your online business please just drop me a short email and I will do my best to oblige. That’s it! I’m looking forward to your suggestions.

So, anyway, this week was one of those weeks because I’m currently away with my family in beautiful snowy Chamonix and I wanted to keep this weeks offering short and sweet (for obvious selfish reasons) but I also wanted to keep it interesting and helpful for you.

And as I wrote this eletter I thought that as we are talking about interactions between you and me, what better subject to cover than that of communication.

It’s all about ME!

We live in an ‘it’s all about me’, busy, frantic world where communication is key – but often gets overlooked. These days telephone calls, emails and letters are often totally ignored – and it’s simply because we’re all too ‘busy’. It seems beyond reason that in this day and age with our huge array of technical gadgets to make communicating quicker and easier – smart phones, iPads, Netbooks – that the ‘No Response’ phenomenon is actually worse than ever.

Just think about this. It’s something we’ve all done, but it’s not right! To ignore and never reply to an email is actually the equivalent of hiding in your home when someone rings your doorbell that knows you’re in. It’s true!

But surely, at least in my view, it is simple courtesy to respond to an email, telephone call or text message whether business or pleasure? Or am I missing something here?

I am one of those people who cannot ignore communication – whoever it may be from and however busy I am – which obviously can be a good thing but also a bad thing too. Those who know me well will know that every email that lands in my inbox is answered promptly. If on the rare occasion it doesn’t get replied to it’s only because I haven’t received it and it’s gone AWOL in that big black hole that is cyberspace!

I’m one of those people who writes a ‘thank you’ letter then feels that I should thank the person who thanked me for sending the thank you letter in the first place! I’m one of those people who isn’t entirely sure when a text conversation should officially come to an end – can you just abruptly leave a text conversation hanging or should you add one final comment?

And a question I get asked during almost every E-Seller Mastery Programme I run is how long do my students receive email support from me. I am always horrified that students might think that one day they will send me an email and I will just decide that they have received quite enough of my attention, have reached their quota of questions and so will press the delete button!

But I do understand why this question arises. Our society is really self-centered…and so busy, busy, busy and that’s why simple communication etiquette doesn’t happen.

And this ties in with you and your online business.

Courtesy costs nothing and it doesn’t take long to acknowledge an email or text or make a quick return phone call. I appreciate that you are busy – we all are – but most of us aren’t so busy that we can’t respond within a couple of days surely?

I’m not saying that you should reply the minute an email lands in your inbox and I know that sometimes it is really tempting to hit the delete button and move on. But what if that had been you that had sent that email and the recipient had deleted it. You’d be waiting for an answer – an answer that would never come.

And how would you feel? Disappointed? Let down? Upset?

Would you get over it?

Of course you would – but that’s not the point. It’s all about striking a balance. It’s about managing expectations too. And this applies to your online business – see I told you my ramblings would be beneficial to you in the end!

Good customer service is free

Ultimately, you want to achieve lots of satisfied customers, good positive feedback comments, testimonials, recommendations and repeat custom, and you will if you make sure your service is up to scratch. With a little bit of time management, you can ensure you have time each day to answer your emails, so that no one is disappointed.

And this can quite easily lead to more sales too – if you promptly answer that eBay message that’s waiting, that potential buyer is more likely to become a definite buyer because you’ve firstly shown good service by being prompt and secondly you have hopefully given the correct answer so that they go on to buy your item. Following that they will leave good positive feedback and they may even tell their friends. It’s a chain reaction that starts from one simple action – answering one tiny little email.

Seriously that’s all it takes and that’s what courtesy is. Make time and I guarantee it will make you feel good and you’ll have no disappointed potential customers.

Oh and just before I go, having asked earlier for your suggestions for future eletter topics, understandably I’m anticipating lots of emails, so at the risk of sounding completely contradictory, I must point out that this is a slightly different scenario and so I won’t be responding personally to those – so please, no reprimands about me not following my own advice!

I will however collate your suggestions and then incorporate as many topics as I can into my eletters very soon.

As always I wish you the very best of success,

This article first appeared on The Source Report» Blog. Read more and comment here