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  1. #1
    SitePoint Wizard Another Designer's Avatar
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    How long for professional email replies?

    How long does it take for you to get professional email replies? I'm talking from clients, accountants, ect...

    I have had to wait for days sometimes. It's rather annoying. I understand if a person is out of town.

    You would think they would put the automatic reply on. sheessshhh.
    I'm starting to worry those people don't take me seriously.

  2. #2
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy
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    Yep, it just gets worse an worse over time. I sometimes wait weeks for a client to respond - for example yesterday a client responded to an email I sent on Dec 9th regarding a standing order he'd forgot to set up for me - his response was as if it were Dec 10th, not Jan 19th the next year - not even a hint of embarrassment or apology.

    I always try to respond to emails within 24 hours, same day if possible, but I'm finding it increasingly rare to get speedy responses from so called professionals, even when it's sometimes me trying to do them a favour. These days, I tend to expect at least 3 working days for responses.
    Last edited by shadowbox; Jan 20, 2006 at 08:50. Reason: spelling

  3. #3
    SitePoint Wizard Another Designer's Avatar
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    I'm relieved to find I'm not the only one. This is amazing!

  4. #4
    SitePoint Wizard LiquidReflex's Avatar
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    Well, not everyone sits at their computer and goes directly to their email right when one comes over. Usually I expect a reply within 3 business days. Longer does seem a bit long for any sort of reply, but I definitely don't expect same-day responses. Perhaps they are running to meet clients most of the day, working with projects (and not wanting to waste time checking emails every time one comes over) or even having to do some research / legwork before replying to whatever you are looking for.

    I also think it has to do with who you are awaiting a response from. If it's a tech support question, it should definitely be sooner as that is a vital type of question that warrants a quicker response. If it's a general question (like "I thought of maybe doing this, what do you think?"), it's definitely not a priority over things that are time-sensitive. I used to have the same annoyance, just waiting for responses and thought they should be replied to the same day because I was at my computer all day and did that. But now, as I've gotten busier, even the rush responses can be hard to get to and reply. So much on your plate and you have to rank importance somehow.

    Either way, it is frustrating, but I think that's a direction that business is going today. I think if there are immediate responses needed, email should not be used ... instead, get a phone number and give them a ring.
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  5. #5
    SitePoint Zealot chihpih's Avatar
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    Get used to it, I've have a client who gave me a deposit in September and site is still not done because of delays Design is done but I have been waiting for content for a long long time. The funny thing is that when I asked for content and for another meeting to show CMS demo the client wanted to pay me everything that is owed before the site is even finished.
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  6. #6
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy
    beley's Avatar
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    I can't even respond the same day every time. I read my email all day, because I have a Treo and can get it even when I'm not in the office. But I don't always respond immediately, especially if it's not an emergency.

    I try to respond to most inquiries within one business day, 2 at the most. Sometimes I will write a quick note to let them know I won't be able to respond until a certain date. But the more emails you get, the longer it takes you to respond.

    I get hundreds of legitimate emails a day, from all sorts of places and people. As many as 50-100 need to be responded to every day. That's a lot! I have to prioritize so I only answer emails at specific times unless it's an emergency.

    It's also not the best idea to respond immediately to emails, because your clients will get used to it. It's been said here before, but if you often respond after hours, and within just a few minutes your clients will expect that level of service and then when you take a day (just one day) to respond, they will see it as bad service.


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