Customer visits your site.
Customer is very interested in what you have to sell.
Customer has question that she cannot find an answer to on your site.
Customer finds contact email and spends time typing an inquiry about your company/service/product. Hits send button.
Customer waits and waits and waits and waits and waits.
Customer gets NO reply.
Customer assumes you don't want her business.
Customer begins to visit your competitors.
Customer finds the answer to their question and then purchases from your competitor.
All the web analytics , all the SEM , all the SEO, all the traffic increases, all the clever marketing strategies, all the best practices, all the best company strategies, all the best site design, all the best research in the world will do nothing for your company if you cannot do something as basic as take care of the the customer's that visit your site. Seems simple, and it is. Maybe that is the problem. Maybe folks think the job of answering customer email inquiries is small potatoes and have delegated the job to someone in the company without the authority or knowledge to help the customers, worse yet to someone that does not give a whit about your customers.
Where are your customer's emails going?
Show me the company that works it's tail off to communicate and reply to customer inquiries and I will show you a company with better site performance, better conversion rates, more repeat customers, and better word of mouth.
Again it sounds soooooo basic, but seems like alot of companies are ignoring it. Scope this article from Internet Retailer.
26% of retailers fail to reply to customer e-mail inquiries, study says Although more than a quarter, or 26%, of retailers failed to respond to e-mail inquiries from customers seeking to make a purchase, the retail industry outperformed the cross-industry response rate of 41% in a recent study by Benchmark Portal and sponsored by eGain Communications Corp. Read Whole Story.