Your contact info on your Web site

Jeanne Guerin-Daley asks:

What do you think about having your full name and (mailing) address on your blog and website? As an artist, I want folks to be able to find me easily. If they want to order note cards from me, they need to know my mailing address. Any business of course has their name, address and telephone number on their site so that customers can find them. But as an artist, is it be best to get a PO box and use that and keep one’s mailing address private? Or am I going overboard worrying about that?

Jeanne, you’re not overboard worrying about that. You must protect yourself and feel safe in your home and studio.

Having said that, it’s very important that people have more than one way to contact you. I stressed this so many times in my book that my editor talked me into taking out all but one or two mentions of it! I’m so annoyed by artists who only use email addresses and my email can’t get through to them. Either they have a spam filter or junk mail system and I can’t reach them. Sometimes, they don’t even know about it.

So, if you don’t like using your home or studio address for your art business, a PO box is the way to go. You need a bricks-and-mortar address to send emails that comply with the CAN SPAM laws.

Also, Jeanne, this is for you in response to your signature block in your email and to others as a reminder: Don’t forget to put the http:// in front of all links in your emails–especially your signature block. This makes them clickable in all programs and you want to make it easy for people to click on your blog or Web site URL. Just get into that habit of http:// in front of all links in emails and you’ll be sitting pretty.

Book Update
400 books were mailed yesterday. If you ordered before last weekend, yours is in the mail!
(Photo: books packed and waiting in the garage for the mail carrier to pick them up.)

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10 comments to Your contact info on your Web site

  • Jeanne is definitely not overboard in worrying – I would NEVER put my actual home address out on the internet for anyone to find. I had a creepy experience a couple of years ago – some guy found me through an article in Southwest Art and started sending me bizarre emails and calling my cell phone. At the time, I was very thankful that my address wasn’t out there!! PO Box is the way to go if you need to give people an address.

  • Tim Ferriss, in his book _The 4 Hour Work Week_, has a clever trick for using a P.O. box to avoid visitors at your home-based business. The trick is to give people the street address of the post office where the box is, and list the box number as the suite number. I haven’t done this yet as I haven’t gotten a PO box, but I plan to soon. I used to put my e-mail address on my website, but it attracted so much spam it was ridiculous. With the help of a developer friend, I set up a contact form on my site instead. No more spam!

  • Look at all of those books, Alyson! Congratulations. It must be an amazing feeling of accomplishment. I can’t wait to receive mine.

  • Stacey: What a scare! Glad you were safe. Brad: Drat! I haven’t gotten to that part in the book. Or maybe I missed it. Will check it out again–an interesting angle! Karine: Thanks so much. Yes, I’m thrilled with the book and the accomplishment. And very happy to share it with you. Should be there tomorrow or the next day.

  • First–can’t wait to get my book! You must be so psyched! Second–I used to have all that info on my website but took it off. I do have my phone number and email and haven’t had any problems. It’s an interesting thing having to weigh a bit of healthy paranoia (is that an oxymoron?)with a need to get info out there for potential clients….especially on the web. When I had my website analized a while back I was told to be sure my phone number was accessible and obvious on every page. I have to say it was the best advice ever–I’ve had a lot more contacts since people can call me while looking at a web page.

  • Lyn

    I’d like to add that having your full, and clickable, email address listed on your website can attract spiders who collect these addresses for the purpose of spam. In my 10 years of owning my own domain and listing my email address as clickable, it’s become a real headache for me. I get upwards to 1500 spam per DAY. Infact, Alysons first email to me ended up in this spam mailbox without me knowing. Drat! I now use an alternative web based email address when I sign up for things that require one, and on my website, or other public internet spot where I want people to know my email address I type it as “myname(at)mydomain.com. This does render it unclickable, and causes an extra step for the user, however, it’s all I can do to stop the spiders, without changing my email address all together.

  • Got my book yesterday. Looks great. Now, I suppose I ought to read it? Walt

  • I just got my book in the mail on Wed. and have already started reading it – it looks great, congratulations!

  • I agree that putting your home address out there is a risky prospect. I was thinking that for sales you can use a service like Cafe Press or Paypal so that orders can be placed without people needing your home address. PO Boxes can be a good idea but they can also be annoying and pricey if you don’t get much mail. Cordelia Cordelia Blake Web Design http://www.CordeliaBlake.com

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