If you are a professional tarot reader it’s likely that a lot of your business is conducted on the internet. Many tarotists think of the internet as their second home, but others find it difficult to make the transition from face-to-face readings. This article offers 15 tips for giving accurate online tarot readings, and to help you make the most of your fledgling online tarot business.
1. Know Your Cards
It helps to use the same deck for all your online readings in the beginning. Create a boilerplate text file with a brief description of each card. It takes a bit of time but it will enable you to really see the symbolism and correspondences on each card. And talking of symbolism and correspondences, make sure you read up and understand how they can aid your readings. Once you are confident with your tarot cards, expand your knowledge by learning basic numerology and astrological correspondences. Don’t get yourself in a muddle by trying to learn it all in one go.
2. Tarot Reading Formats
Decide on the format of your readings. There are many ways that an online reading can be delivered: email, video recording, Skype, Facebook, instant messaging, or even via your site’s guest-book or blog comment section. Do your research by requesting plenty of free readings for yourself – the bad ones will help you as much as the good ones.
3. Do Free Readings
Once you have chosen your preferred format – and there’s no reason why you cannot use more than one – offer some free online readings for practice. Use your social media accounts to advertise your services and explain why you are doing this for free. You may well attract repeat, paying business in this way.
4. Written Readings
If you are doing written email readings ensure you are confident your writing is up to the job. You need excellent language skills and the ability to express ideas and information clearly and succinctly. Good places to gain experience are some of the free reading networks, such as the American Tarot Association or the Tarot Association of the British Isles.
5. Whoa, Bessie – Hold Something Back
Don’t try to impart all your knowledge. It is very tempting to try to instruct a client by sharing all your information about a card. Very often it is way too much and your poor client is left bemused and confused. Your client is only really interested in how it relates to them and their situation. Sometimes less is more.
6. Code of Ethics
Create a Code of Ethics. Every tarot reader should have one. It might include things like: “I will not read for under 18 year olds” and “I will never share information about a client”. Upload your Code of Ethics to your website and make sure there is a prominent link to it on your home page.
7. Third Party Readings
Following on from ethics, never do third party readings. In other words, do not tell your client what her boyfriend thinks of her. It’s okay to touch lightly on what he might be feeling but do not state it as fact. Emphasize that you can only read the cards on her behalf and from her point of view. Your client will be impressed by your principles, and s/he will feel confident that his/her private information is safe with you.
8. Make it Easy to Order a Tarot Reading
Make sure your payment rates are clear and that you have a straightforward way for people to order readings from you. Paypal is most people’s choice but there are other methods. Your clients also need to know what they are getting for their money so tell them how many cards and roughly how many pages/minutes they can expect.
9. What Price a Tarot Reading?
Price your readings realistically. You need to earn money from your tarot reading talents and you should be paid accordingly. It is tempting to under price yourself in order to get the work, but if you are, for example typing out a ten-card reading, it could take you hours if you are interpreting as you go. Work out what you require for your hourly rate and cost your readings on that basis.
10. Set a Mutually Agreeable Time
If you are reading in real time via Skype, make sure you have agreed a time suitable for both you and your client. Don’t try to fit in with them just to get the business – you won’t be giving your best readings at 3am.
11. Minimise Interruptions
Again, if reading tarot online on Skype, ensure you won’t be interrupted. If the kids come in from school or the dog begins whining to go out, it can make you look unprofessional. At the same time, it can also make you appear human and normal, so don’t fret if an unexpected interruption occurs. If it is an emergency, your client will understand and you can rearrange the call.
12. Put Clients at Ease
Have a sense of humour. Clients appreciate someone who can relax them with a little humour but don’t let it get out of hand. This person has concerns about their life or they wouldn’t be asking for a reading in the first place, so when it’s time to be serious, be serious. You are, however, encouraged to smile.
13. Be a Tarot Reading Angel
Always give more than you need to. Do a good job and you will get endless repeat business. Clients appreciate someone who is prepared to go the extra mile. When the online reading comes to a close, invite your client to contact you with any follow-up questions. Of course there are some who take advantage but they are few and far between. Once they have had answers to a couple of follow-up questions you can politely invite them to order another reading.
14. When You Forget What To Say
If your mind goes blank while undertaking a live online reading, hold the card up so your client can see it and ask her what it means to her. Describe the image, talk about what the suit and number means and you’ll soon get back on track. You can always smile and apologise for losing your train of thought – it happens to the best readers from time to time.
15. Be Nice
While you should pay attention to thoughts, feelings and images that spring to mind, never blurt them out without considering how to phrase them. Clients are sensitive and you can cause great damage by putting a negative idea into their heads. Cultivate a pleasant manner. Never inform your client her situation is all her own fault. Never be rude or abrupt however frustrated you might feel. Online readings, by their nature are one step removed from reality, but remember that there is a real human being behind that screen. Always treat them politely, professionally and with genuine compassion.
Deck used for illustration purposes is Tarot of the New Vision