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by Stephanie Suesan Smith on May 12, 2011

I just tried to sign up for a service that matched consumers looking for arts and crafts with master craftsmen.  The sign-up form rejected my email address and web address as invalid.  I went to their “contact” page and encountered a form that did the very same thing.  There is no telephone number or other way to contact them, so I will not be using their services.

This made me more aware than ever that it is important to have multiple ways to contact you on your webpage so that if one way goes down, someone can reach you and make you aware of the problem.  You may not want to post your phone number, but you should have an email address and some other means of communication.  That may be Facebook or Twitter, or it may be a phone number.

Of course, if this is a hobby, contact information is not as important.  But if it is a business, you need to be reachable if your contact form on your website goes haywire, or your email starts lobbing your mail back at the sender.  Remember the principle that should govern a consumer’s visit to you:  Don’t Make Me Think.  Obviously, your posts are designed to make people think, but getting around your site and contacting you should not take an advanced degree in computer science.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Plumbing May 13, 2011 at 12:55 am

I think that you have succinctly hit the nail on the head for businesses: Don’t Make the Consumers Think when they are paying you a special visit to your site. They will not be willing to expend the mental energy when there are 500,000,000 other websites out there where they won’t have to break a sweat to get to the contact page or whatever relative page they are searching for.

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Stephanie Suesan Smith May 13, 2011 at 7:05 am

Yes, if I get frustrated trying to reach you I will move on to your competitor.

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Jackie Dishner May 13, 2011 at 5:55 pm

Agreed! That’s so aggravating.

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Stephanie Suesan Smith May 13, 2011 at 6:04 pm

It annoyed me enough to write about it.

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