after months of testing and preparation, we
finally launched a new web site just about a
You can probably imagine the thrill of finally
being able to start driving traffic to your new
I set it up in the late afternoon and went out
with my colleagues to celebrate. It was a glorious
The next morning dropped on me a totally new
I went to check the email and to see how the
site was doing. I wasn't expecting any sales as
I didn't really begin marketing yet (only a few
posts here and there...)
I was surprised and shocked at what I saw in
The site was live about 15 hours with almost no
advertising and it already had 5 sales!
But the excitement vanished almost instantly as
I saw the raging emails from the customers...
"Where's my product?!" was the most common
As I begun to read the emails, I realized that
NONE of the customers got their confirmation
email with their username, password and
One customer in particular was extremely persistent
and sent about 8 emails, the subject of the last
one being: "I want a refund NOW!"
I sent him an email and asked him to check his
"Junk folder" in case the confirmation mail got
The reply was: "I never received your email!"
I knew there was no point in arguing, after all,
we were the ones that apparently messed up so
I immediately issued him a refund and contacted
other customers after manually creating their
I also created an account for the customer that
wanted a refund and besides the video that he
wanted to purchase, added another video in his
account for free.
The result was amazing...
He almost immediately contacted me back, telling
me that now he could finally access his account
and that he WANTED to pay for the video again...
He was so thrilled that he even wrote a wonderful
testimonial about our customer service and our
KEY POINT: Never argue with your customers. Your
first priority is to break the current state they're
in. If you argue, you risk them sinking even deeper
into their own ideas. Break their state by adhering
to their demands A.S.A.P. Your point doesn't
matter! After you do that, apologise and try to
make it up to them. They just might become your
best customers this way...
Everything turned out well in the end (also with
It later turned out (after discussion with our
programmers) that Hotmail (and a few other email
services apparently) has an extremely rigid and
strict anti SPAM policy and it completely disregards
emails from some sources. They don't go into the
Junk folder but they simply don't get delivered at
I thought that the programmers would be aware of
such things and would set up emails the way that
would get them in people's inbox. They weren't.
Fortunately we set up everything now and it's all
It was something none of us expected, especially
after testing for so long and having no problems
Here's what I recommend you do before launching
your web site (if it sends out emails after purchase)...
- Create a Hotmail account and test your emails there.
Gmail uses different methods to detect spam and
everything will look fine there!
- Be careful when using form mails (or non-mailserver)
methods of sending email. These are very frequently
used by spammers and some email services will regard
such messages as SPAM automatically!
- If possible, try sending your emails through Aweber
or some similar service. Their emails tend to have
a much better delivery rate than others.
If anyone wishes, I'll post a separate post about how
to avoid your emails being detected as SPAM (it's
not just keywords and phrases!).
OK, enough from me, I just wanted to share...
Have a wonderful day!