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This is a tool for e-commerce. It is not intended to replace existing search engines or email permissive marketing techniques, it solves a problem these facilities are not very good at. It enables users to declare their intentions and enough about themselves so they are self- qualified at moment they make a search - and it enables you to reach them at just this key moment. Isn't this what you want to do?
For user, they remain completely anonymous, they are simply looking for virtual people who are just like themselves. We don't need to know their name, address or anything at all that can be used to identify them personally. The vexed privacy issue in target marketing is nicely sidestepped. There is no data collection or tracking involved. We know everyone but no one!
So take a new look at your web site. If you know who your customers are you now can think more about what you want to tell them - individually - in depth, they want to know. If, however, you don't know who your customers are then you have a perfect way of finding out. Your page stats will reflect distribution of people visiting, helping you to focus on repeat sales and lifetime custom. The possibilities are enormous and costs are trivial. I will be looking closer at both of these in follow up articles.
John Jones. www.tankup.com. IM@GE Technology puts personality into the net | USA: 1-877 660 5238 Int +402 996 4056 UK: 0870-7410043