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Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Value Of Being Accessible

By Sean Rasmussen

Trust means everything online. It can also make or break your sales, whether you specialise in downloads, e-books, selling on eBay, or selling from your own website.

You know you are trustworthy, but the customer doesn't. In short, you need to find as many ways as possible of bridging that gap to make the likelihood of people buying products from you even better than it is already.

To that end you should make sure you are as accessible as you possibly can be. That doesn't mean you should be giving out your home address and inviting people round for open days, but you should make sure they can get hold of you should they need to for any reason.

Provide a valid email address and a telephone number where people can reach you, and make it clear that you will answer all queries within a specific amount of time. It's better to say all queries will be answered within forty eight hours and be able to get to most of them within twenty four, than promise a twenty four hour turnaround and not be able to deliver.

But it's not just about being accessible when people want to get in touch with you. Another essential facet of this subject is to create trust by becoming a familiar sight to your customers online. One good way of doing this is to build an opt-in mailing list which you can send a newsletter to on a regular basis.

This means people will become familiar with your style and subject, and you go from being an unknown person to someone they begin to trust. It sounds like a contradiction in terms but it sometimes holds true that the less you try to sell to them, the more they will be inclined to buy from you.

Accessibility is a big part of being successful online. Finding and utilising as many ways as possible of achieving this, without it encroaching onto your life twenty four hours a day, should be one of your main aims. It also needs to be something which permeates into everything you do online. Whether you realise it or not, you are constantly creating an identity for yourself that will be judged by everyone who crosses your path.

It is ultimately up to you to make sure that identity is honest and open. If you don't like being contacted by other people online (even if there is a perfectly genuine and honest reason for it) then you have to accept that other people will be naturally suspicious of why you don't want to be contacted except to take orders.

You have to admit, when you look at it like that, you can see it looks a little less than trusting. Internet marketing is all about opening up lines of communication with as many potential customers as possible - and you should accept that those lines of communication have to be two way for your internet efforts to meet with long lasting success.

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Sean Rasmussen is an Internet Marketer and Stock Market Trader. You can read about affiliate marketing on the Internet Marketing Blog and locate more info on the Official SEO Wiki