I have a saying "Competition is good for business" but I'm beginning to feel like that is the majority of our clients / sales requests these days -- are Competitors.

We seem to be replying to massive emails about the technical details of their questions. We don't like to leave customers in the dark in regards to the software we have built, and having a FAQ seems to bring even more questions about details within some of the FAQs!

So at the moment, it's like "Let's just sit here all day and reply to our potential customers emails" which on average takes roughly from 5 to 20 minutes to compose and send out with on average about 20 sales requests per day. The real customers will ask a few questions, and purchase within 1 week (due to the cost of the software), the fake customers (aka competitors will keep replying email after email and never purchase). However, we cannot classify every customer who has many questions as a competitor, some people really do have massive amounts of questions before a purchase. I'm one of those people.

Based on the nature of the software, there are various questions and almost all customers require a "privatized" email reply or they will know right away it's based on a canned response, which isn't too good either.

The end result leaves us to believe that from the percentage of sales requests we receive, the ones that are actual customers don't have as many questions or comments to be answered as the ones that don't purchase but ask the most questions.

Do you have any ideas of how we can reduce this issue? something professional to say so they can purchase "NOW" and ask later ?

Or even better -- is there something "legal" we can present to our new customers asking them if they are a competitor or not? It really does sound silly, just want any clairification if we can do something like this? (I'm sure we could, but is that legal)?

But to my main question: How do you deal with competition when it comes knocking at your door?