A Tale of Two Online Orders

Every Friday I invite the members of my Facebook Page community to share their favorite product and a link in the comments of a specific post. It’s a way for folks to promote their businesses to one another. And when I have a need for a product, I often turn to that list first, and place orders from consultants who are members of the community.

A couple of weeks ago, I had a need for two different types of products. So I went through the list, selected 2 particularly active members of the community (my way of giving back), and placed an online order from both of them. Both orders were placed the same day, and both were delivered the same day. But the level of service I received was very different. Take a look.

Consultant 1’s messages:

Day of Order: I had mentioned to the consultant that I was trying to find something my husband would like. After placing my order, I got this message.

Thanks again, Jennifer,
I do hope you’ll let me know if he/you doesn’t/don’t (lol) love everything.

A Couple of Days After the Order: 

Hi Jennifer!

‘hope you are having a fabulous day.  I just wanted you to know that I should have a delivery date for you tomorrow.  🙂

The Next Day:

Tomorrow!  🙂

The Day the Order Was Delivered:

Well?  Happy?  (I hope.)  🙂

Brown guy/gal wrote cute confirmation:

Left At:

Met Customer Girl

Then I got a card in the mail (snail mail) thanking me for my order, along with a small product sample. When I sent a note of thanks she wrote back:

My pleasure!  Its fun for me to (try to) show customers how much I appreciate them; that I want a relationship, not just a sale (can’t have too many friends, you know?)   🙂

So that was order 1. Pretty impressive, huh?

Consultant 2’s messages:

So now let’s take a look at order #2. An order placed the same day on the consultant’s website.

Day of Order:

I received a form email that looked like an invoice. It contained a link for tracking the order, name of the consultant, my payment information, and my shipping address. Basically an automatic order confirmation.

Last Night (a few days after the order was delivered):

I received an “e-card” that looked as though it was generated through the e-tools section of the consultant website that said:

Hi Jennifer, Thank you for your recent order. I hope that everything was satisfactory. Please let me know how I can help in the future.

And that was it.

Who do you think I will be more excited about shopping with in the future? Who will I be more loyal to?

How do you treat the customers who show up as unsolicited online orders? How connected do they feel to you?

Would love to read your thoughts in the comments.

11 Responses to A Tale of Two Online Orders
  1. Dr. Phil Scraps
    May 31, 2014 | 10:06 am

    This is a great reminder of power of the personal touch. As someone who works in the paper crafting industry, I often have other businesses buy bulk handmade cards from me in order to send to their own customers. And who doesn’t love receiving a fun card in the mail, instead of bills! Thanks Jennifer for the good reminders!
    Dr. Phil Scraps recently posted..Last Call for Stamp of the Month and National Scrapbooking Special

  2. Stacey
    October 5, 2011 | 1:38 pm

    When I receive an online order and the customer leaves contact information, I always send a thank you card for their order. Since they are sent to me from my company thru leads, I usually include a “coupon” to save on their next order from me. I am not sure if this part is a good idea or not, but figured it couldn’t hurt.

    Thank you for sharing. I am loving your blogs. Great ideas and tips.

  3. Dede Scheel
    October 4, 2011 | 12:09 pm

    I’ve just recently “got back into” my business and have started receiving web orders. I try to respond by email the day they place their order. With a huge thank you and how soon they should expect their product and to please contact me immediately if there are any issues when it arrives. Because I receive an email stating their order shipped, I also send a reminder email that it is on it’s way. Then I write a thank you card and send it snail mail thanking them again and offering future assistance. If this is their first time ordering from me, I also include a catalog with the thank you note, because it’s always nicer to browse a catalog on the couch than on your computer!
    Depending on your circumstances (other work or family obligations) it can seems hard to keep up with, but it sure makes me feel good when I follow up on time.

  4. Pat Zahn
    October 4, 2011 | 11:54 am

    I’m in between the two – I do like to make personal contact – it just feels weird not to reach out to someone who has purchased from me. Customers have the option of purchasing on the main website w/o choosing a Consultant and they can opt NOT to be contacted – that just about kills me. I was talking to a downline who had that happen and she said, “I just want to thank her.” But, we have to respect their wishes…still feels weird though.
    Pat Zahn recently posted..Direct Sellers – Is it Ever ok to Brawl Online?

  5. Sue McKenna
    October 4, 2011 | 9:40 am

    Thanks for the story Jennifer, it is a great reminder to not only sell but to ‘connect’ on a more personal level too, for very little extra effort a customer can receive an entirely different experience. And I just love the ‘snail mail’ touch, how often do we receive something that is ‘personal’ in the post these days!, it’s good to be reminded that it is not just the product but the experience that counts too!

  6. Katie
    October 3, 2011 | 2:19 pm

    Wow, Jennifer, what a reminder of how important it is to keep our business about the relationship not just a sale.

    There are times when I feel like I don’t have enough time to get out my personal notes and postcards as follow up but when you see the difference it reinforces how important it is if you want to keep a customer and how it sets us apart from shopping in a store!

    Thanks for all your great tips!

  7. Lucrecia
    October 3, 2011 | 2:01 pm

    I have yet to receive an unexpected online order so I hadn’t given this much thought. Great ideas here! Thanks for all the info you give out daily, I’ve learned so much!

  8. HeatherS
    October 3, 2011 | 2:01 pm

    When I first started out in CM (13 years ago) I used to send written thank-you’s to everyone who attended my events. As the years went on and we communicated more by email, I felt the need for this drop off since I was communicating more with them and following up by email. When someone unsolicited places an order on my website, I send them a personal thank-you note introducing myself, asking them if there is anything else I can help them with and letting them know they should call or email me if they any questions when their order comes in. I also ask them if they would like to be added to my customer e-list to receive my e-news a couple of times a month. I rarely hear from these people. I think most of the people who order from my website without contacting me want to be anonymous and don’t want to form a relationship with a consultant. The ones who seem to want to, usually call first or send me a quick email after placing the order which kind of gives me the signal that they want contact. I don’t want to offend the people who want a “hands-off” consultant by being too much in their face. I’m wondering if others have had this experience, too. Am I doing the wrong thing?

    • Jennifer Fong
      October 3, 2011 | 2:56 pm

      I think the contact that shows you care is important. Do it from a service standpoint…when something will be delivered, after it’s delivered are they happy? These are the things they’ll remember.

  9. Barbara Hess
    October 3, 2011 | 10:52 am

    Good Morning Jennifer!

    I so loved reading your story here and have often wonder how to set up my business to be more personal then just selling or recruiting.

    I just have a question, should we send out note cards or is it ok to use the internet with simple emails to say thank you?

    Growing up “old school” mom always said an hand written note meant a lot more then just an typed or scripted note. So need to know if it is ok to write a note via email.

    Thanks for all you do! Love to read all your helpful ways to enhance our business!!!

    • Jennifer Fong
      October 3, 2011 | 1:38 pm

      I would consider the e-note the minimum. However the written card feels very “above and beyond” and can set you apart. Hope this helps!

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