What your Out of Office reply says about you
We just received this Out of Office reply today, in late February:
Thank you for your inquiry. We are currently Closed for the Christmas holidays and will reply to your inquiry in the new year. A Merry Christmas to all our clients and all the best for 2011
This isn't an isolated example - here's one we got at the end of 2010:
Sorry we are on Holidays and will be back on 23/4/2001
It doesn't look good if your Out of Office reply says you've been on vacation for a decade. It's worse if your Out of Office reply contains an emergency contact email address that doesn't work. None of these examples inspire confidence in the businesses that sent them.
The main problem is a lot of email software makes it hard to see what your auto-reply looks like: you usually don't get an auto-reply if you send yourself an email. Here's how to test it - try sending an email from your personal account to your business account when you turn Out of Office on. Otherwise you might be losing business or alienating customers.
First posted Feb 2011