I recently found a website I might have been interested in bar the fact that they made it too difficult to contact them. Their contact page simply had a contact form saying that they have so many enquiries every day that they only accept questions via email. As well as no phone number their website also had no physical address details.
Whilst you may be busy running your business contact information (not only a legal requirement for distance selling!) gives buyers confidence that if they do need to contact you that they can.
Writing on eSeller recently, James Critchley, CEO of cloud-IQpoints out that callback buttons boost sales by upwards of 10% for online retailers. He quotes Forrester Research as finding that for every £100 organisations spend getting customers to a website, only £1 goes into converting them. Attracting traffic is the first step to conversion and closing the sale is what needs focusing on.
Callback buttons are great, they enable a buyer to instantly click to talk to you, but even displaying a good old fashioned phone number can make the difference between getting a sale and wasting your SEO funds. If you do display a number remember that whilst 0845 type numbers may be billed at local rates from a land line they’re rarely included in the free minutes on a mobile tariff – offer your geographic number as an alternative to enable customers to call you for free.
I’ve never understood retailers, whether on eBay or their own website, don’t make it easy for customer to call them. Sure there are times of day you don’t want calls such as the middle of the night, that’s what answering machines are for. However as James concluded people buy from people so embrace good old fashioned voice (even if with the latest technology) and then people get to do business with people again.