PowerSellers have discovered some tools they've found useful in helping them provide great support for their customers. Some of these they recommend to you, and you might also find them useful. Others you'll want to keep in mind and bring into your business once you've grown big enough and busy enough to make them reasonable for you.
I list a phone number in all my auctions and make it clear my customer service hours are from 8:00 AM until 10:00 PM Mountain time, Monday through Friday. In all the years I've been on eBay, no one has ever called outside of those hours. I've gotten international phone calls at 8:01! But, never before or after my official hours. "Other PowerSellers agree, and it isn't at all unusual to find customer service telephone numbers listed in their auctions.
If you don't wish to accept calls for a period of time, you can set Call Activator to go directly to e-mail. You can also set it to send requests to live chat, and then you can respond to your customer's requests live via the computer rather than on the phone. Diverting the Call Activator allows you to see quickly via e-mail that you have requests from customers. In future evolutions of this product you will be able to establish time-of-day routing that will simply record and list calls that arrive before or after your established business hours.
You may have a tool to use if you come across the customer who claims "I never got your e-mail!" Message Tag is a little software tool you can add to your desktop. You'll find the company at http://www.messagetag.com . Once you do, you will receive an e-mail notifying you of the time that e-mail reached its destination and another message noting the time the recipient opened it. Now when you hear the old excuse, you can double-check for yourself and see if the problem might be a Spam filter, or if the problem is a bidder trying to dodge your e-mail.