Phone Calls, Emails... I Can't Get Anything Done!

Business By Lenette Updated 28 Jul 2009 , 7:25am by kakethings

Lenette Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 3:25am
post #1 of 19

So, how do ya'll do it?

I really feel that I spent half of today on the phone and answering emails. I have two 4 tier wedding cakes and a bday cake to do and I was doing anything but. I am not complaining necessarily since most of this turned into orders for me which is great.

It just seems that in general it eats up a lot of my time. Just wondering how other people deal with it. It seems that if I wait to respond I lose orders. Advice?

18 replies
leah_s Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 4:24am
post #2 of 19

What kind of questions are you getting? Price? Flavors? Put as much info as possible on your website.

Lenette Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 4:45am
post #3 of 19

It's all there. I usually ask have they been to my website and they say yes. I think it is pretty straight forward as far as navigation.

I do get a lot of pricing questions (and that is on my site, starting prices at least) and asking can I do a particular design. I guess this is just life as a one woman show!

Mensch Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 7:25am
post #4 of 19

I do my e-mails before I leave for work and only sometimes in the evening when I come home. Phone calls, well, not much I do about that because I have a store and keep business hours, which means I have a lot of people coming in and asking about cakes and stuff.

I do have a lot of info on my website, but find that people call or come in and ask the same queations over and over. They've seen my site and just not bothered to read the info /FAQ.

If I were working from home I would not answer when I was working.

marmalade1687 Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 1:59pm
post #5 of 19

Ditto Mensch - I don't answer my phone when I am working...just let the machine pick up and I'll call back when I have time (or when my hands are not covered in icing, batter, etc.!).

As for emails, I find that most of my email answers are the same (people asking for info, where I am located, etc. and yes, it's all on my website too...they are just too lazy to look) icon_rolleyes.gif, so I have written draft emails that I can copy/send to people at a moment's notice (but again when I have time, or when my hands are not covered in icing or batter!).

indydebi Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 6:59pm
post #6 of 19

How about setting up an autoresponse so every incoming email gets a response email that says you're involved in a cake right now and will reply later today. In the meantime, most information regarding our location, hours, flavors, pricing, etc., can be found on our website at www.lookitupdumbass.com (well .... or SOMETHING like that!) icon_rolleyes.gif

FromScratch Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 7:08pm
post #7 of 19

Same here... any one who uses my contact page gets the standard "thank you for contacting us we will get back to you asap" email and phone calls go to voicemail when I am working. You can't do it all at once. I try to answer emails and voicemails at different intervals during the day.

sari66 Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 7:09pm
post #8 of 19

debi, I love your response icon_smile.gif

cylstrial Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 7:09pm
post #9 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

How about setting up an autoresponse so every incoming email gets a response email that says you're involved in a cake right now and will reply later today. In the meantime, most information regarding our location, hours, flavors, pricing, etc., can be found on our website at www.lookitupdumbass.com (well .... or SOMETHING like that!) icon_rolleyes.gif




LOL! That's a great website! icon_lol.gif

matthewkyrankelly Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 7:17pm
post #10 of 19

It looks like the domain is still available. I'll have to pick it up...

dhccster Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 7:41pm
post #11 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

How about setting up an autoresponse so every incoming email gets a response email that says you're involved in a cake right now and will reply later today. In the meantime, most information regarding our location, hours, flavors, pricing, etc., can be found on our website at www.lookitupdumbass.com (well .... or SOMETHING like that!) icon_rolleyes.gif




Too funny! I do love the idea of an autoresponse e-mail. I don't answer the phone while I am decorating... I am so scared the phone will fall on the cake!!

marmalade1687 Posted 10 Jul 2009 , 8:03pm
post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by dhccster

Too funny! I do love the idea of an autoresponse e-mail. I don't answer the phone while I am decorating... I am so scared the phone will fall on the cake!!




My phone fell on the oven once!! icon_lol.gificon_rolleyes.gif

1234me Posted 11 Jul 2009 , 1:37am
post #13 of 19

I don't have my phone number listed on my website because I would get calls all the time and don't hvae time to deal with them. I will call them after they email through my website. I try to do as much through my websie as possible, I like having the information in writing (typing) from them just so I can look back on it and also if they say I WANTED XYZ...I can point out exactly what they typed. good way to cover my a$$ icon_smile.gif

cylstrial Posted 11 Jul 2009 , 1:02pm
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by wendyintx

I don't have my phone number listed on my website because I would get calls all the time and don't hvae time to deal with them. I will call them after they email through my website. I try to do as much through my websie as possible, I like having the information in writing (typing) from them just so I can look back on it and also if they say I WANTED XYZ...I can point out exactly what they typed. good way to cover my a$$ icon_smile.gif




Two good points. What do you about your business cards though? Do you put a phone number on your card?

indydebi Posted 11 Jul 2009 , 1:09pm
post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by wendyintx

I like having the information in writing (typing) from them just so I can look back on it and also if they say I WANTED XYZ...I can point out exactly what they typed. good way to cover my a$$ icon_smile.gif


I do EVERYTHING via email just for this reason. I tell my brides at the consultation: If it's not written down, it's not happening, I PROMISE you!

All conversations, changes, updates, etc., are documented via email. "To confirm our conversation......"

1234me Posted 12 Jul 2009 , 1:13am
post #16 of 19

I don't hand out my cards that often and if I do, I tell them to contact me through my website. Ido have a few customers that call but if they have ordered from me once, they kow how i work and usually always just go through the website on following orders.

cylstrial Posted 12 Jul 2009 , 2:47pm
post #17 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by wendyintx

I don't hand out my cards that often and if I do, I tell them to contact me through my website. Ido have a few customers that call but if they have ordered from me once, they kow how i work and usually always just go through the website on following orders.




Gotcha. That's a good way to do it! So you just say something like, "Here's my business card. The best way to get in contact with me is through my website".

OhMyGanache Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 1:16am
post #18 of 19

I let all calls go to voicemail where they hear this:

Hi! Youve reached the voicemail for (my name) and the business line for (my business name)

If youd like to bypass this greeting and leave a message, please press the pound key. Otherwise, please be aware that I only answer the phone when I am not busy fulfilling an order. If you have questions, the best way to get ahold of me is through e-mail - (my email address). I answer e-mail twice a day - in the morning and in the evening. If for some reason you do not receive a response within 24 hours, do not hesitate to call me back. You can also visit my website for pricing information, frequently asked questions, check my availability or to view some samples of my work.

If you would like to leave a message, I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Thanks for calling, and have a great day.

kakethings Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 7:25am
post #19 of 19

Well, I tried to stay a one man show, but couldn't. I'm not one who sits and like to type for hours and I hate the phone. As much money as I was making behind both I wanted to quit. Since they have to have a order in at least 2 weeks, I do not like to take last minute orders. I have a secretary who comes in 5 to 6 hours Wednesday-Friday to return calls and deposit drop offs. I pay her $50 dollars a day, it is worth every dime. when it gets slow she wraps boards or fold boxes.
Some people don't want to do business because they are not so called people peoples,if you know what I mean. It got so bad I didn't want to look at a computer or phone for a week. I never liked the phone, if it wasn't for my husband I wouldn't have a cell phone. So if anyone like this you can still have a business and not deal with people much. What I do is leave on my message that I answer calls and deposit drop off Wednesday-Friday from 10-3 and all day Wednesday from 10-6 is my appointment days(this the only day I really deal with people). They know that this is not a big bakery operation, so I have to do whats best for me. and its been working so far.

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