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When and When Not To Use an Auto Responder

By Joe Bingham
Posted Tuesday, November 23, 2004

You've got your business, you've got some ads ready to run, and your site is ready to take orders. All that's left is to buy some advertising and get people coming to your site. But should you send people straight to your site from your ads or set up some auto responder messages and direct them to those?

Hmmm. Good question. Here's some thoughts to help you with the decision.

When NOT To Use an Auto Responder

In general, if you're selling a single product, something that's not really that complicated, only requires a limited amount of information to stimulate interest, or you are using the excitement of the moment to make the sale, do NOT use an auto responder. Just direct people straight to the site.

For example, ebooks. Generally, any information you need to stimulate interest can be done on a single page site. You don't want to give away too much either, and if you are setting up multiple messages in an auto responder, what are you going to talk about?

When You SHOULD Use an Auto Responder

A more complicated topic, products or opportunities that require a somewhat larger investment, or plans to cover multiple products or multiple benefits, require the use of an auto responder.

Auto responders give you more time to explain your business or product. Or, you may just need to keep in touch while your prospect considers a way to come up with the money for what you are offering. In these cases auto responders are excellent. You simply provide more information or feature different benefits in each message and then direct prospects to your site to learn more or to make a purchase.


No rules are perfect, so we should all learn to put what we read into perspective when considering our own businesses. So, even if you're product is expensive or complicated to understand, if that's better 'shown' at a web site than 'told' in an email, send people directly to your site.

As well, you can use email information courses to keep referring people back to your site for just one simple product.

Ways To Compliment A Site With an Auto Responder

I've had quite a few hits on an auto responder I placed on my site. I simply ask, "In a hurry? Want more information by email?" and provide a link. That way, even though everything is right there on my site, if they are intrigued but don't want to spend much time right then, there is a way they can get more information later, and I still get to keep in contact with them.

Also, you can offer different information courses through auto responders and put them on your site. This way, even if people don't buy from their initial visit, you'll get repeat contact and get multiple chances to convince them to return.

Auto responders are extremely useful. There's no replacing them. It's just a matter of considering your product or opportunity, and your options when deciding how best to use them.

About the Author
Joe Bingham, Editor of the NetPlay Newsletters Want MORE articles like this delivered REGULARLY? Subscribe to 1 of 3 Quality NetPlay Ezines, See which one fits you at: (


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