In today's world it has never been easier to setup an email address. Yet many small business owners make simple mistakes along the way. Something I notice on a number of web sites are contact email addresses that don't match their associated domains. This is very prevalent amongst small business/personal business web sites. People use their personal email address instead of using an email associated with the domain. I don't think this is a good idea. Today we'll look at some simple suggestions you can easily implement.
People go to Email First
It is very important to give people a place to contact you. A recurring theme in all our usability studies is that people prefer to initiate contact via email, even before a telephone call. If you are in business people are going to want to contact you. Make the process as easy as possible.
If you are doing business via your web site think about building trust and credibility with the consumer. Contact email addresses are a small step in trust building. There have been several occasions when I've wanted to write a small business. I proceed to the contact info page and see an unfamiliar email. I'm forced to ask myself who is MrGolf0842@aol.com? And is this going to the right person? There is no additional contact information. This always leaves me a little hesitant.
If you are going to use your personal email address setup a small disclaimer about it. Tell them it's your personal email address and where it's going. It's also help to provide your full name. Some people get concerned with privacy. But realize that people are going to be a little hesitant in doing business with anonymous people.
Keep Separate Emails - Business & Personal
One simple way to keep your anonymity and build trust with customers is to have two email addresses. Keep a personal email address and a business email address. This way you can use your personal email address for personal things and business email for business.
If you want to just maintain one email account, setup a business address and have email forward to your personal address. This gets you the best of both worlds.
Make sure you set your SPAM filters properly. It might be a pain, but read through the documentation. Proper setup should stop the blatantly obvious SPAM. But not block people just because you haven't white listed them. I've run into this on a few occasions. People ratchet down their SPAM filters allowing almost nothing through including legitimate emails. Why is this bad? Because someone might be writing you regarding a customer service issue or look to make a purchase.
There are a number of additional steps you can take. What you see above should get you into the right frame of mind. Make sure you are making it as easy as possible for people to do business with you.