Read the Fine Print

Written by Bob Osgoodby

We all hearrepparttar stories about how E-Commerce isrepparttar 127583 wave ofrepparttar 127584 future, and what we must do to compete. Yes,repparttar 127585 smallest "Mom and Pop" business can compete againstrepparttar 127586 "Big Guys" and make a respectable buck or two. As I'm sure you have, I get email everyday about how important it is to be able to accept credit cards on line.

And guess what - this is true. Not only should you be able to accept credit cards, but also online checks. When a person decides to buy, you have a very narrow window of time for them to completerepparttar 127587 order. If you can allow them to make their purchase and pay for it online, you have a great chance of gettingrepparttar 127588 order. However, if they have to write a check and mail it to you, there is a "cooling off period" and you may not getrepparttar 127589 order.

So we all agree that accepting credit cards is a good tactic for an online business. To do this, you must have a merchant account, and here is where some people get into trouble.

You receive an unsolicited email (spam) that says they will act as your agent, and will accept credit cards and checks on your behalf. They then go on to say they will depositrepparttar 127590 money in your account within two working days. If you join withinrepparttar 127591 next 48 hours, they will waiverepparttar 127592 usual $695 set up fee and give it to you for only $39.95 - there will be no monthly fees and they'll only charge you 1.75% ofrepparttar 127593 sale - wow what a deal.

I had a call this week from someone who did just that. Now here is what happened. He didn't readrepparttar 127594 "fine print" and when he signedrepparttar 127595 agreement, he actually authorized them to charge his bank account for $295 security which was non-refundable if his account was cancelled, plusrepparttar 127596 $39.95 set up fee.

Nowrepparttar 127597 plot thickens. He submitted about $1,500 in charges andrepparttar 127598 money never showed up in his bank. In coversation with his bank representative, he then found out aboutrepparttar 127599 $295 charge to his account. He called his supposed contact atrepparttar 127600 credit card company, found out that they were an independant sales agent, andrepparttar 127601 $39.95 was not a set up fee, but a referral fee. When asked aboutrepparttar 127602 $295 charge, his contact pleaded ignorance, told him he would have to callrepparttar 127603 Company direct, and was given their number.

He calledrepparttar 127604 Company, asked aboutrepparttar 127605 $295 fee, and was told there was no one there at that time to answer his questions, but they would call back. He then asked aboutrepparttar 127606 status ofrepparttar 127607 charges he hadn't received, and was told he would have to fax additional information and proof of delivery of his product. He did this.

Bingo - You're Cancelled

Written by Bob Osgoodby

What isrepparttar value ofrepparttar 127582 E-mail lists that promise to "blast" your message to millions of potential clients? We all get many unsolicited E-mails every day, and many are sent this way.

Let's examine this a bit.

It starts off with an E-mail you receive promising huge returns forrepparttar 127583 expenditure of a relatively small amount of money. Just think - for only $200 you can get your message out to a million people who are onrepparttar 127584 general subscriber list of AOL members.

"Wow" - you think - "even if I only get one half of one percent, that will be 5,000 customers". Now they also offer a "targeted" list of one million for $400. Advertisers inrepparttar 127585 know, say you can expect up to a 3 percent return from a targeted list - that's 30,000 customers.

They dorepparttar 127586 mailing and you won't have problems with your ISP (Internet Service Provider) who will cancel your account for spamming. How do they do this? Simple - they do not list your address inrepparttar 127587 copy they send out, and they use a "forged" address inrepparttar 127588 header. Try responding to any offer you receive and, most ofrepparttar 127589 time it will be returned as undeliverable. These spammers usually provide a telephone number you can call, where you will get a pre-recorded bit of hype, and a message to send your money to their P.O. Box.

So what is a realistic response rate? Well folks don't start packing your bags for that vacation to Tahiti. The only people making any money with this arerepparttar 127590 people conning you into paying them to send out your E-mail. I have received numerous notes from people who told me they paid "big bucks" to these companies and didn't get ANY responses. I've also received reports from people who thought that a mailing was never made, even though they paid for it - how do you prove they didn't send it.

Cont'd on page 2 ==> © 2005
Terms of Use