Harvard Business Review

harvard email response time“Are you confident that your company is effectively handling potential customers’ online queries? Think hard. Our research shows that most companies are not responding nearly fast enough… our research indicates that many firms are too slow to follow up on these leads. We audited 2,241 U.S. companies…. 24% took more than 24 hours—and 23% of the companies never responded at all. The average response time… .was 42 hours. These results are especially shocking given how quickly online leads go cold. Firms that tried to contact potential customers within an hour of receiving a query were nearly seven times as likely to qualify the lead….as those that tried to contact the customer even an hour later—and more than 60 times as likely as companies that waited 24 hours or longer.”

http://hbr.org/2011/03/the-short-life-of-online-sales-leads/ar/1