Writing the book that will help traditional brick and mortar businesses move to a progressive internet marketing plan

Why Are You Ignoring Your Internet Customers?

by Joe Manausa, MBA on June 3, 2011

Follow-up With Internet CustomersA recent study of real estate brokerages showed that roughly one half of all consumer leads were ignored for more than 8 hours! Can you imagine being an internet customer and wanting to interact with a company online, but having to wait for more than 8 hours to get a reply? I don’t think so.

But this is not a surprise to me. I have been seeing this for years in the real estate business, and I suspect your industry might be just as broken. Internet customers have a low tolerance for waiting, and that is why my company works very hard to respond to an internet customer’s request for information in five minutes or less!

The study sent 715 web-form fills to 56 large multi-office brokerages, divided between agent-specific and IDX leads. Bradley Miller, founder and president of One Cavo, says agents failed to respond to 46 percent of leads or responded an average of eight hours after the forms were submitted.

I have conducted studies of both my company and many of my competitors and can tell you that it is a worthwhile exercise for any company which hopes to gain business from the internet. The average response from my company, during business hours, was less than 15 minutes, while the average response time from the competitors that I chose was more than a day. This was good news for me!

How To Evaluate Your Customer Response Time

If you really want to know how to evaluate your internet customer response time, just go to Google and create a few email addresses that have no identification about who you are. Then set-up a schedule to request information from your company website at random times during the day. The results just might surprise you.

Most internet customers want information fast, so do not be tempted to establish an auto-responder as your primary response mechanism. They will see right through that and move to another service provider that values them as a live, ready customer. Remember, business has moved to the internet, and it’s a very competitive field out there, so make sure that you lead your niche in internet customer response time.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Lynda White June 3, 2011 at 2:48 pm

I know what you mean. I booked a hotel where I’ll be vacationing this summer. After booking, I had a question about it, so I emailed the hotel. Two days later and I still have not heard anything. The question wasn’t urgent, but I feel like, now they got my money I’m not important to them. Next time I’ll stay somewhere else.

Fast responses are crucial with customers/clients who contact you online.

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Joe Manausa, MBA June 3, 2011 at 8:38 pm

I’m the same way Lynda. It doesn’t take much to send me away.

Reply

Buy Website Traffic | Aaron at The Warehouse June 4, 2011 at 10:09 am

Bad customer service is an art form on the Internet. For whatever reason, Internet proprietors will also type things that they would absolutely never say to a customer’s (or potential customer’s ) face. If I had a dime for the amount of times I wanted to reach through the Web and rip someone’s endocrine system from their body I’d be a much richer man (a never-ending wellspring of tales available upon request).

Indeed, good Internet customer service is what separates the proverbial men/ladies from the boys/girls these days. Speaking for myself, when I find a responsive service, I simply stop looking unless the price becomes unreasonable.

The best customer service will (and does) have a tiered, and measured response system for services and products for which their is a process or processing. NO ONE – and I mean NO ONE – is so busy as to not generate a manual, human response to an inquiry THE SAME DAY so long as that inquiry is made within the first half of traditional working hours.

I guarantee – those e-business that are failing; or, experiencing a high complaint rate, are not taking what has just been said and making it as a principled, ethical business approach.

To be honest, part of me likes how bad things are, especially in my niche, as we simply gobble-up other’s business with the most minimal of effort – simply by being responsive, attentive, and ethical proprietors.

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Kevin June 6, 2011 at 9:49 am

You must’ve offered suberb training to establish the IRT in your brokerage Joe. Wherever I venture on the web, needing information, if their Immediate Response Team is on break so will be my further communication there.

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