Autoresponders 101

By: Scott Lindsay

A difficulty that standard brick and mortar stores face is in providing follow-up to their customers. When you make a purchase a normal retailer your contact information might be used to send sales flyers or an invitation to a customer only event. There is very little personal contact with the customer although a growing number of these stores may ask for email address or other contact information to alert you to upcoming events.

With online marketing this scenario is quickly resolved through the use of autoresponders (sometimes referred to as auto responders). If someone sends your company an email an autoresponder can send a return email instantly to advise them that their question will be addressed very soon.

This idea has been expanded to include an autoresponder message when a customer concludes an online sale. Once the credit card information is completed and authorized an autoresponder message is executed that provides an immediate thank you for the sale and confirms their order. Generally these messages are in rich text (html) and can provide pictures, company logos and other unique design features. Customers will also find contact information and a tracking number in most cases.

Most opt-in mailing lists also provide autoresponder messages that welcome the new member and provide control functions for changing their subscription when they need to.

Online business can take advantage of the many uses for autoresponders by utilizing multiple email addresses for a variety of business applications. Each email address should be set aside for a specific business purpose so an autoresponder message can be put in place that is specific to the intended purpose of the email address.

One of the functions for an autoresponder is important for online business because they can independently send out a series of timed messages that provide a broad overview of your business and provide a welcomed means of learning more about your business.

In essence this means if you have a series of six messages that you plan on sending to customers over a six-week period, you can set up autoresponder software to automatically ship these six messages once a week for six weeks. On the same day your software could be sending out each of these six emails to customers who purchased from your online store at separate times. Autoresponders can take the guesswork out of follow up by insuring that every contact you receive will automatically receive a return email.

While this is a broad overview on the subject hopefully you gain an understanding that autoresponders provide a meaningful and many times multiple step mechanism for developing, maintaining and keeping your customers.

Software
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Software
 



Share this article :
Click to see more related articles