Selling Direct and Customer Support

I have my ebookshop at, and it’s a great defense against online retailers deciding that they don’t want my business. But sometimes it comes back to bite me.

I don’t want your personal information, unless things go wrong. But when it goes wrong, I have no way to contact you.

I got an email today from antonio@z*****.com, saying they hadn’t gotten the BookFunnel email for their purchase. They had received the receipt from me. It happens. I replied, and my maillog spat out:

Mar 1 12:00:54 mail sm-mta[17756]: 321H0qc5053731: to=, ctladdr= (1001/1001), delay=00:00:02, xdelay=00:00:02, mailer=esmtp, pri=31211, [], dsn=5.7.1, reply=554 5.7.1 : Relay access denied, stat=Service unavailable

In between them getting the receipts and BookFunnel sending the email, their mail server broke.

I have no other information by which to reach this reader. They did provide an address, which is nice. I could send a postcard. To another country. Assuming that address is even correct, which is dubious given the privacy habits of y’all. (Yes, I collect addresses, this is why.)

So, what do I do here?


Presumably, the customer will notice that they aren’t getting any email and reach out again.

Although I do see that the customer has four MXs, and they’re all the same priority. It might be one of them is misconfigured. I’ll send another message, see what happens. Or, maybe the customer will see this blog or my fedi post and see that they have email trouble.

If I demanded phone numbers for ebook purchase I could text them, but that would require I collect phone numbers and I want to not have that information.

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