Email Etiquette for the new Online Business Person

Are you new to the online business world? There’s a lot to learn, not only about doing business to make money online, but also about the art of communicating with your customers when you can’t see them. Online communication most often depends on email, which means that your email habits are very important.

An email to a customer is more than just a quick note. It’s a representation of your business.

You should take some extra time to make sure it represents you well.

Here are some things you’ll want to remember when communicating with your customers by email.

Respond to every single email as soon as you can. And don’t respond just to say that you did. You’ll need to make sure that your response is as substantive as it can be. If you don’t have the complete answer (perhaps you need to do some research or await a response from someone else) then answer as much as you can and explain when an answer is incomplete. Customers like to know that they’ve been heard, and often accept that you sometimes need more time to get them a thorough answer.

Don’t forget to spell check. When you’re just starting out you need every single customer you can get. You don’t want to lose any because of an embarrassing spelling error. That said, don’t use the spell check as a crutch. Remember that it only checks spelling. Some correctly spelled words can be inappropriate for the message you want to send. Don’t be like the guy in Texas who offered an event in a “public place,” but forgot to put the “L” in “public.”

When you fill in the subject box, make sure you give your customer a clue as to why you’re contacting them. Email boxes are already deluged with spam emails, and your treasured customer certainly doesn’t want any more. Beat spam by putting something specific to their inquiry in the subject line. “A response to your question about cell phones,” is a good example.

You’ll also want to have your contact information listed under your signature. Include your title, fax number, and web contact information. Make your customers feel like you will be easy to reach if they have any further questions.

When you’re typing an email (or anything online) using all capital letters is seen as the equivalent of yelling. DON’T DO IT! Instead, capitalize words according to good grammar…like you normally do.

Following these simple guidelines will be a good way step towards having positive communication with your customers which will potentially lead to sales for your business and ensure your long term growth of your online business.