Last updated on March 24th, 2020 by Chris Griffin

Appearance can be everything for a business –– especially one that’s new and trying to make a name for itself. Consumers are on high alert for scammers and therefore place a high value on protecting their privacy and security online. Simply put, anything that seems sketchy about a new company is typically a non-starter, and that starts with business email.

In today’s economy, first impressions are made based on your digital presence (before consumers explore your products and services). And when it comes to digital presence, it’s often the overlooked basics that cause the most harm to a business. In the eyes of consumers, things like your email address matter just as much, if not more, than your website or social media. You can create a beautiful website for your business, but if your email winds up in your recipient’s spam folder, they’ll probably won’t visit it. 

To get a real world sense of how something as seemingly innocuous as an email address can impact a business’s credibility, we turned to their customers. We asked 500 customers of U.S.- based small businesses how comfortable they were interacting and more importantly, transacting, with a business using an email address like davestvshop@yahoo.com. Here’s what they had to say.

1. Is a business that uses an email address like davestvshop@yahoo.com trustworthy?

When we first got the results of this survey, I was surprised to see that the response rate for ‘Trustworthy’ was as high as 28%. But then again, when it comes to first impressions, the devil often lies in the details. 41% of respondents said they were unsure about whether or not they had faith in the intentions of an email coming from this address. Making a customer question your company, even a little bit, is never a good thing. And a slight distrust can start a pattern.

2. If davestvshop@yahoo.com reached out to you and asked for personal information to process a purchase, would you be comfortable sharing it?

We then turned to asking the customers how comfortable they would be sharing information with this business. It’s one thing to open a promotional email or a newsletter, but it’s another to actually interact with the business. And it shows in the response.

3. Would you be comfortable sharing credit card information with davestvshop@yahoo.com?

58% of customers responded that they would not be comfortable sharing credit card information with a business that was not using a real business email address. Another 22% said that they were only somewhat comfortable doing so. If your business relies on online transactions in any way, it’s imperative that you do everything you can to earn customer’s trust.

4. Do you trust davestvshop@yahoo.com?

All of this speaks to the overall impression your email address has on consumers. Email is often the first touchpoint with a customer, and your email address indicates whether or not you’re professional, you value the recipient’s privacy and information security, and if the content of your email is authentic. As data privacy concerns mount and spam filters get more sophisticated, a small thing like an email address can have a big impact on a business.

5. How important are the following digital touchpoints for a company’s professional image?

For business owners, the phrase ‘digital presence’ evokes images of a website, social media accounts, and a blog. But for customers, your ’email presence’ is just as important. Email is the easiest and cheapest way for a new business to start communicating, but business owners tend to forget about the little details that actually matter to consumers. That’s why so many just create a Gmail account and start firing off emails.

No business has time to wait for email. But if you’re not using a legitimate business email address, it’s costing your credibility. While free email services like Gmail and Yahoo are fast and functional, they won’t let you use a custom domain.

With Titan, businesses get a professional email service at their domain for just $1.49 a month. Try it out today for free! It’s super easy to get started.

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Originally published 11th March 2020 07:58:16am, last updated on March 24th, 2020

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