The Importance of the "Human Touch" in the Virtual Marketplace
“A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kick boxing.” –Emo Philips
For those of us who have moved our businesses into the virtual world, it’s sometimes easy to forget that our customers are real, live breathing human beings. Some of us may even have moved into this area to avoid all the human interactions. However, it is imperative that we don’t forget the importance of the human component of sales, even online.
It’s easy for us to just see our clients as a number or an e-mail address because we don’t actually see them on a daily basis or in some cases, ever. But, it is important to realize that the majority of people are still not one hundred percent comfortable doing business with a faceless entity over a DSL line. It can be very hard for a client to put their trust and more importantly their money into someone or something they can’t see.
This is where communication comes into play. We all know that in business communication is key. However, in the virtual world, it is all-powerful. No matter what your product or service, if you expect to make a living in an online venture, you must be accessible to your existing clients and potential customers.
It is crucial that you offer as many avenues of reaching you as possible. You must give them e-mail addresses, physical addresses, phone numbers, fax numbers and as many different instant messenger options as you have. They must feel that just because you’re not in their office or around the corner, you’re just as available to them.
Now this may sound obvious, but just having all of those communication tools isn’t enough. You must make it priority number one to be accessible. None of those handy devices are any good if they don’t help get you on the line for that customer. You must always put answering messages, replying to e-mails and simply checking in from time to time at the top of your priority list!
Making the decision to hire online companies can be a major step to business owners who have never ventured into this new world, and it is your job to make sure they have a positive experience.
There is no question that computers have made all of lives easier and are growing the global economy at an astonishing rate, but let us never forget the importance of the “human touch!”