How would you react/answer if your receive this email?

51 replies
You are a small business owner and you got a new email:

"Hi, do you have a website for your business?
thanks."

let's say you don't have a website yet (or you have a crappy one which is even worse) how would you reply?

1- you ignore the email thinking that it is a spam.
2- No, I don't have one.
3- why are you asking?
4- ...

what would be your answer?
#email #react or answer #receive
  • Profile picture of the author Formal Shorts
    I'm sure people with more experience in approaching businesses will be along with helpful suggestions based on results.

    From a personal point of view, I wouldn't respond. However, if it said "I haven't been able to find your website, do you have one? " I'd be much more likely to reply.
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  • Profile picture of the author Trevor M
    If I was a small business owner and I didn't have a website, someone that approached me with that e-mail sure as hell wouldn't be getting my business.

    - Trevor
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    • Profile picture of the author Yetisam
      Well the big problem - There is no call to action .

      Also the email is far too short and would be seen as spam by me

      Sam
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      • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
        Banned
        I'd assume that it's an initial approach from an incompetent and spamming marketer, and delete it. I certainly wouldn't want to reply to it, thereby confirming my email address.
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      • Profile picture of the author Formal Shorts
        Kudos to the whoever just emailed me using my own website line.

        Top notch japery
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        • Profile picture of the author iThinkhard
          Originally Posted by Formal Shorts View Post

          Kudos to the whoever just emailed me using my own website line.

          Top notch japery
          lol, you don't seem to have a sense of humor
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    • Profile picture of the author iThinkhard
      If I was a small business owner and I didn't have a website, someone that approached me with that e-mail sure as hell wouldn't be getting my business.

      - Trevor
      please read the email again (it's just one line) there is nothing about getting your business or selling you anything.

      Well the big problem - There is no call to action .

      Also the email is far too short and would be seen as spam by me

      Sam
      yes, but there is a question a question that needs to be answered. is n't that enough for a call to action?
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      • Profile picture of the author Gail_Curran
        Originally Posted by iThinkhard View Post

        please read the email again (it's just one line) there is nothing about getting your business or selling you anything.

        yes, but there is a question a question that needs to be answered. is n't that enough for a call to action?
        Why are you arguing? You asked people here a question, and people are giving you their honest reaction. Take the feedback or leave it.

        .
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      • Profile picture of the author latestnewsheadline
        Banned
        You can check the sender email address before you decide to answer or not.
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  • Profile picture of the author Martin Pupke
    I would click on junk, anyone "cold" contacting you should introduce themselves and state their interest as opposed to just asking a question.

    Anyhow if the person cannot be bothered to write out a decent informative email pitching their website building service or whatever they have, then what is the quality of the service going to be like? I would expect more of the same.
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  • Profile picture of the author laracoates28
    I wouldn't reply to this email at all, because it's seems a spam email.
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  • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
    Banned
    I write longer text messages about when we are going to Chipotle.
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    • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

      I write longer text messages about when we are going to Chipotle.
      Thought you'd never ask. I quite like Mexicans, but I could never eat a whole one ...
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      • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
        Banned
        Originally Posted by Alexa Smith View Post

        Thought you'd never ask. I quite like Mexicans, but I could never eat a whole one ...
        You heard it here first! Alexa Smith eats Mexicans!
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      • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
        To answer your question, there wouldn't be an answer.

        I don't have a tendency to answer emails that are reminiscent of notes that were passed back and forth in the third grade, sorry.

        Terra
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  • Profile picture of the author Jordan Kovats
    I'd hit delete. You have to remember, people recieve dozens of these types of emails daily / weekly. What makes your message stand out? What makes you different? Why would I call you or reply to your message?

    No offence, but some "viagra" spam looks better than your message. You can't possibly convey that you do quality work with that type of introductory message you are passing on to a potential customer.
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  • Profile picture of the author hostwindsEvanM
    It is very poorly worded and there isn't even a proper closing line. Not sure what the point of this thread really even was. Rhetorical question!
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  • Profile picture of the author iThinkhard
    how do you all came to the conclusion that I was trying to sell webdesign service from that email? (what if I was a prospect client looking for your website?)
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    • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
      Banned
      Originally Posted by iThinkhard View Post

      how do you all came to the conclusion that I was trying to sell webdesign service from that email? (what if I was a prospect client looking for your website?)
      That's the freaking problem. No one knows what the heck you want. Quick delete and you're forgotten.
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      • Profile picture of the author iThinkhard
        Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

        That's the freaking problem. No one knows what the heck you want. Quick delete and you're forgotten.
        I agree, but couldn't that trigger some curisity in the mind of few ones? what if I was looking for your service and couldn't find your website?
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        • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
          Banned
          Originally Posted by iThinkhard View Post

          I agree, but couldn't that trigger some curisity in the mind of few ones? what if I was looking for your service and couldn't find your website?
          Maybe face to face if you're a great talker. In an email? No. It's 2012, and we've been conditioned to see spam when reading stuff like this.
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        • Profile picture of the author Jordan Kovats
          Originally Posted by iThinkhard View Post

          I agree, but couldn't that trigger some curisity in the mind of few ones? what if I was looking for your service and couldn't find your website?
          Your signature invokes curiosity.
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        • Profile picture of the author Lance K
          Originally Posted by iThinkhard View Post

          I agree, but couldn't that trigger some curisity in the mind of few ones? what if I was looking for your service and couldn't find your website?

          G-O-O-G-L-E

          If you found their email address, a 3 second Google search will tell you if they have a web site or not.
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    • Profile picture of the author cashcow
      Originally Posted by iThinkhard View Post

      how do you all came to the conclusion that I was trying to sell webdesign service from that email? (what if I was a prospect client looking for your website?)
      We all assume that because all you mention is "website". The reader is left to draw his own conclusion as to why you are asking and most will probably assume you want to sell them something.

      So, I think you can assume that the business owners who you sent that email to will also assume it and probably just delete it along with the hundreds of other emails they get asking them if they want/need/have a website.

      I'm willing to bet that most business owners get pummeled every day with various emails from people wanting to make them a website, rank their website etc... Yours seems no different.
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  • Profile picture of the author TomYevsikov
    Let's see, with this kind of approach you can see that the sender is not a professional even if he has something good to offer, i would send that email straight to my lovely junk-folder, it's too risky and unprofessional.
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  • Profile picture of the author sriram rajan
    the e-mail looks more of a spam than a genuine effort to help, although he may have hit the right prospect the method is not going to win him as a customer alone, unless it is indeed targetted then you can present it a much mroe better fashion.
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    • Profile picture of the author iThinkhard
      Originally Posted by sriram rajan View Post

      the e-mail looks more of a spam than a genuine effort to help, although he may have hit the right prospect the method is not going to win him as a customer alone, unless it is indeed targetted then you can present it a much mroe better fashion.
      well, let me share with you the latest spams I have received today:
      - Pharmacy Store : Viagra + Cialis !
      - Computer furniture discount
      - Win the newest Peugeot 208
      - Guaranteed to Work! Most Effective Male Enhancement and Male Enlargement Products
      - I have gained 1/2 inch in length
      - How would you like 2 Million Sites linking to your ad ?
      - ...


      I've seen thousands of these.. in all my life I've never seen a one line spam asking me a question without a need to pick my credit card.

      I could agree that's a lousy approach to speak to business.. but I've never seen a spam like that.
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      • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
        Banned
        Originally Posted by iThinkhard View Post

        I could agree that's a lousy approach to speak to business.. but I've never seen a spam like that.
        An entire spinoff of the Nigerian 419 scam is based off of it.

        Hi, my name is (generic "white-bread" name here) and I want to be friends, thanks.
        If you scam bait them back, it turns into a story of how they need to escape their country blah blah blah. So yes, there is precedent to categorize it as spam.

        Even if we threw that fact out the window and removed the word spam from the conversation, it is still a crap email. Why you keep pushing for someone to say it is good, I cannot fathom. If you want to approach a business, you're going to have to put in the work and contact them in a professional manner.

        Terrifying but necessary.
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        • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
          Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

          If you want to approach a business, you're going to have to put in the work and contact them in a professional manner.

          Terrifying but necessary.
          Exactly!

          Like using the word through when you should use threw for example. :p

          Terra
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          • Profile picture of the author Denden
            Rightly or wrongly, i'd think this person were 'up to something'. Mark as spam. Delete.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ewan Lumsden
    Banned
    The sender should also be aware that they may sound like spam, but that's rare from average internet user. If it's a web developer selling services, then they should know how to conduct themselves professionally.
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  • Profile picture of the author realreview
    If I were a small business owner and I didn't have a website I would wonder how you got my email address. If I advertised with hotmail address, your email would feel spammy to me.

    If you are a genuine customer you may have asked "I'm looking to buy some of your widgets, have you got a website I can look at them on?"

    The fact you asked"...website for your business" feels like a business enquiry as I don't feel a customer would ask in that way. Especially as you don't put forward the reason why you care if they have a website or not.
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  • Profile picture of the author MikeWike
    Banned
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  • Profile picture of the author nasuryono
    I would not reply and think it's a spam.

    Anyone who writes like that does not deserve any attention IMHO.

    We tend to forget that we are dealing with human beings, professional human beings even though we do not see face to face.

    If someone approach you with that kind of question in real life, would you respond to it? I wouldn't think so.
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  • Profile picture of the author ghostrecon
    Sounds a bit like a prelude to a (bad) sales pitch. Don't respond.
    Though, it would probably be in your best interest to have a landing page of some kind. Perhaps Wordpress.
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    • Profile picture of the author VanessaB
      When I was a 'non-Internet savvy brick and mortar business owner' the email would have come across as though it was from a potential customer who wanted to know if there was a website where they could get more information about my business.

      If you're trying to get a sampling of those 'non-Internet savvy brick and mortars' response to such an email, you should be asking them, not the "Internet savvy Internet Marketers" here on Warrior Forum whose reactions are already based on their experiences which made them Internet savvy. Just sayin...
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  • Profile picture of the author ceenote100
    If there's no link there in the first place then I would just delete it.
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  • Profile picture of the author DonaldGadson
    I appreciate that you are at least thinking of ways to contact businesses ! Way to go. As stated before, a call to action is huge and for what it's worth: people buy from those they know like and trust. Stay the course!
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  • Profile picture of the author aquariumchat
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    • Profile picture of the author PR Wizard
      I would delete the email without response. I might not think of it as spam but I certainly wouldn't think it was professional. A short email isn't going to bait anyone. Nobody is going to be curious enough to reply. There just isn't any hook or grab to get someones attention. A properly written email with correct grammar, a link to your portfolio and a call to action would be far more likely to get a response. Even then you still might not get any responses. People are leery of the internet and I doubt many will be willing to hire someone who randomly emailed them. If you are targeting local business's I suggest you put on a nice shirt and go visit them in person.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ant Marshall
    Originally Posted by iThinkhard View Post

    You are a small business owner and you got a new email:

    "Hi, do you have a website for your business?
    thanks."
    I seriously hope to god this isn't your sales pitch...
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  • Profile picture of the author Derek_Thomas
    In some ways it seems you're already sold on your idea, in spite of some legitimate concerns raised here. With that said, in my opinion, you'd be better suited testing your hypothesis on potential clients rather than debating it's merits here.

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    • Profile picture of the author TheClarkey
      If the email was that short and without no introduction, I would send it straight to junk.
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      • Profile picture of the author fin
        I think if you tried really hard to could make it shorter. Something like:

        Website?
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  • I probably wouldn't of even opened it. If I did then I would just delete it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tom Lazenby
    I'd just ignore it, personally...not a great way to attract business.
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  • Profile picture of the author Berg Canon
    If I had a support department I would forward the email to them if not I would reply with the website link myself. If I had no website I would just delete it or maybe and I mean maybe I would reply with "sorry we don't currently have a website at this time"
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    • Profile picture of the author iThinkhard
      Originally Posted by Berg Canon View Post

      If I had a support department I would forward the email to them if not I would reply with the website link myself. If I had no website I would just delete it or maybe and I mean maybe I would reply with "sorry we don't currently have a website at this time"
      True, because I have already tested that email:
      - almost half of them do not reply at all .
      - nearly 5% replies with their website links (I failed to find it because they were not on the first page of google)
      - The remaining replies with "No we don't have a website yet... bla bla bla... what are you looking for... bla bla bla" --> at this moment I try to start a conversation with them to understand why they don't have a website and I try to sell them on one.
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  • Profile picture of the author williamk
    Banned
    It wont work, even if it does, the conversion rate will be off the charts.
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  • Profile picture of the author EddieWade
    Banned
    Personally, I think that IF this were a serious business proposal, it would be much more than one line asking just one single question. I think the approach should be different. That is if you want a serious answer to your question, and not being seen as a spammer.
    This seems quite a ...”pick-up” line :-D
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Gray
    I wouldn't respond, there are loads of strange and frankly rude emails in my in-box every day, i hit the delete button and add the sender to my spam filter.

    Mark
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