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All SMBs, no matter their size, will increase tech support outlay over the next few years as they adopt BYOD and cloud services, and deal with an ever more virtual workforce.
But right now – at least among U.S. SMBs with more than 10 employees – tech support spending only amounts to about $3,000 per year, according to Parks Associates and its new report, “Selling Support Services to Consumers and Small Businesses." Of those firms, a mere 28 percent have a support subscription.
Still, those numbers stand to grow, thanks to the proliferation of technologies and gadgets that SMBs don’t want to tackle by themselves. All told, this year alone, SMBs will spend almost $400 million for computer and network setup and installation services, said Patrice Samuels, research analyst at Parks Associates.
“Their need for support will continue to increase as new devices enter the workplace and as use of telecommuting and cloud-based services continues to grow," Samuels said.
Those findings serve as a call to action to agents, VARs, integrators and other channel partners to beef up their tech support and other professional services practices as demand is expected to soar.
Here are the other takeaways from the Parks Associates report:
- Companies with more than 10 employees spend more than five times as much on support than do businesses with fewer than 10 employees.
- Businesses in the United States with 10 or fewer workers spend less than $1,000 per year on a combination of subscription and one-time support services.
- Fewer than 15 percent of U.S. SMBs are willing to purchase monthly subscriptions, even at low price points such as $9.99.
- Among SMBs, 37 percent are highly interested in support services that automatically fix problems before they occur; 31 percent are highly interested in services that routinely tune up their devices and make sure these devices are working optimally.