August 11, 2014

Of the Shop: Pro-Active vs. Reactive


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When I first opened my shop, I did not have sound policies in place. It didn't take long before I realised that it was important to have shop policies to inform customers of how the shop is run, and some expectations that I had for them as customers. But even after the policies were made available to my customers, I still had inquiries about shipping times, etc.

That's when I asked another business owner that I admire if she had any advice so that I wouldn't get as many questions from customers about how long it would take for their items to reach them. She told me that I had two options: I could be pro-active, or I could be reactive. 

To be pro-active she told me to write the estimated shipping times in the product listings and the shop announcement. That way I would be informing all potential customers of how long to expect to wait for their purchase to arrive, and then she told me the way to be reactive would be to include the shipping times in the message that is sent out to my customers in the form of an email after they buy something from the shop. That way they get the information upon being informed about the transaction that they just took part in. She said that the only tricky part about being reactive is that if customers don't read this email then they will probably contact me to ask about shipping times anyway.

I voted to be pro-active, and I think that is a good way to go about doing business. Providing all of the necessary information for my customers -- the frequently asked questions, if you will -- so that they are fully informed before they make a purchase is one of the best ways for me to run my shop, and it is also how I go about being a customer myself. I pay a lot of attention to the information that the shops that I purchase from provide enough information for me to make an informed purchase. 

Being pro-active is just better all around in every aspect of your life, isn't it?


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