Generations ago, business deals were sealed with a shake of the hand, those days have passed. Often many business deals are made without meeting and over the Internet with a few emails. In current times, are face-to-face meetings necessary? They aren’t necessary, but if the company you want to do business with is in your area, try to make the time for at least one face-to-face meeting.
When considering doing business with a new company, information about services can be found on their website. To know if an Internet service is going to be a good match for you, use the following to get to know the people you will be working with when you can’t do a face-to-face meeting:
• Email-this is good if you have a few specific questions
• IM-this gives provides opportunity to immediately clarify points
• Fax-use this for signing official acceptances of proposals and contracts
• Phone calls-this will allow you to match a voice with a name, always follow up with a email summary to document the points discussed on the phone
• Video chat-this puts a face and voice to a name, close to a face-to-face meeting, always follow up with an email summary to document the points discussed on a video chat
You can “Google” the company, but large numbers of happy customers may not put out any effort to get information out there, like one disgruntled customer might. If you find something negative, ask the company about it and give them a chance to explain.
Taking your time to get to know an Internet company that you are considering doing business with will establish trust without a face-to-face meeting.