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Order online or not? What do you suggest?

     
8:57 pm on May 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I run an online 'writing' service and don't sell a physical 'product'.

For the past 5 years, my order process has been:
Email us attaching relevant documents
We email back asking for payment
We might also contact the client at this point if we are unsure of anything
Payment is received and we start work

However, we're now considering implementing an online order system so that the process changes to:
Client orders immediately online
Once payment has been taken, they are redirected to a page requesting documentation we need
We start work

As an alternative, we could also stick to the method we use now but also put on the site, 'If you'd like to order online immediately, click here', or something along those lines.

Which service do people here think would be better - taking into consideration the fact 99% of my competitors provide instant online ordering?

12:52 am on May 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Hi I think this says it all, but as a courtesy to new or repeating customers why not offer both.
taking into consideration the fact 99% of my competitors provide instant online ordering?
3:56 am on May 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Instant Online Orrfering will only increase sales and business IMO, many times dramaticly...in your business I would say less dramatic but still a must do....
7:00 am on May 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Once payment has been taken, they are redirected to a page requesting documentation we need
We start work

I have a customer that does this and it works like a charm. IMHO, the less hassle for the customer, the more customers you get.

Marshall

8:24 am on May 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Thanks for the responses guys, think I'll give the online ordering a trial run and see how things go.
7:22 pm on May 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I say less dramatic with your service because it will not be a impulse buy, as the customer will probably want to go over with you in detail what they want before they buy and your sale will really on your replies to them, so once you have the sale you will have it through your contact....But what a instant ordering or checkout on your site will do is ad a bit of confidence to the buyers that may increase those on the fence about ordering from you as your site will look more proper as a professional business....