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Hosting Discussion > Operating a Web Hosting Business > Customer Service and Support Issues > Do any hosts provide general computer support?
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  Post #1 (permalink)   09-22-2004, 11:10 AM
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I was just wondering if this was something any hosts were doing to bring a value added service to there customers - after all, there are many many many computer users who are beyond manufacturer's support offerings....

I'm just kind of wondering because I know that ISPs often get stuck with this type of any web hosts support the customer's client/pc issues?

Specifically, a customer can't connect to the FTP server to upload their files - would anyone walk them through checking firewall/router/passive mode/winsock/restoring network settings/etc?
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  Post #2 (permalink)   09-22-2004, 01:52 PM
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I sometimes help my customers with browser, connection, ftp clients, or dns related issues that affect how or if they can view their site. I try to do everything in my power to help my customers within reason. I hate hosts that say, "We don't do that" or "that'll be 20 bucks".
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  Post #3 (permalink)   09-24-2004, 02:49 PM
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Although it's not in my 'job description' , I will try and help clients with other computer related problems. They appreciate it and it is one more reason for them to stay.

As for the $20.00 and I'll answer, I just read another post elsewhere, where they charge $19.99 per call for support. Those $20.00 sure could add up to a nice holiday.
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  Post #4 (permalink)   10-06-2004, 04:46 PM
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I'd partner up with a company that DOES offer computer support, and start referring customers. Or, if you have the time and resources, start a company that does offer computer support.

It would make sense to create an extension of your business and tap into other services that have a logical connection to hosting and technology. Your customer base is an untapped revenue source for other services - so be creative.

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  Post #5 (permalink)   11-19-2004, 04:58 AM
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Not only we give them suport, but we also give them the option if they want to host their website from their computer; which will lead to computer sales, isp, routers, etc. Depending on your client's taste and need.

  Post #6 (permalink)   12-15-2004, 07:03 AM
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I know that it can be a headache dealing with people's computer issues especially from 1000 miles away via e-mail or live chat. The Computer Geek in me wants to say "MOOOOOVE" (SNL). But if you know the solution, whether or not it pertains to web hosting, it only makes sense to offer some type of assistance.
1) It gives you the chance to show your customer you care.
2) It gives you credibility.
3) It makes it easier for referals from your current customers.
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  Post #7 (permalink)   12-15-2004, 08:08 PM
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We certainly provide support with hardware configuration/software configuration for our clients but only if the problem somehow relates to the services we provide. Although we don't provide telephone support, our team's emails always provided the guidance required by the customer to sort the problem.

Some years ago we did provide a 24 hour telephone support line, but had to scrap this service because of some people getting on the phone because their pc was not booting normally. This wastes precious time which could have been spent on improving the services.

The most usual problems our customers face are problems with outlook.

  Post #8 (permalink)   01-04-2005, 02:26 PM
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We usually help customers with anything we can. If they ask us a question, we try to answer it. Thats what I call customer service.
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  Post #9 (permalink)   01-04-2005, 03:01 PM
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From a client standpoint, having a web host that can help solve some frustrating computer problems is a plus. Most hosting companies are knowledgeable in computers. If they can provide support, even for a simple problem, it makes the customer feel connected with that host. This can translate into having a customer for a lifetime.

  Post #10 (permalink)   01-05-2005, 12:03 AM
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While we are always willing to help, I think a line has to be drawn. Helping the customer with a few computer issues is one thing. However, it has been my experience, that with some clients, you'll become their lifeline for such issues, and this can become a nightmare.

So, not only does it make the customer feel connected to the host, but in many instances will make the customer depend on the host to help with these issues.
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  Post #11 (permalink)   01-05-2005, 04:05 PM
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If a customer depends on a host, then that customer will probably rely on that company to host their site for a lifetime. This may make the support staff a little annoyed with having to always help the "computer dummy." But, in the end, going above and beyond will not only get a customer, it will keep a customer.

Last edited by webfreak08 : 01-05-2005 at 04:38 PM.

  Post #12 (permalink)   04-15-2005, 12:24 PM
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From personal expirience, I believe every once in a while that computer support comes with the territory. Some clients just need a little push every once in a while to get them going. Not too much to ask, I find it hard to belive, that the staff doing hosting support would not be able to help a client with a problem cleaning cache or cookies or just generally something along those lines.
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  Post #13 (permalink)   04-16-2005, 03:35 AM
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Personally ... I think that is where FAQ & Knowledgebase areas really come in handy. Detailed instructions there on the most common computer questions could sure lessen the need for direct contact with a support tech.


  Post #14 (permalink)   04-18-2005, 03:31 PM
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Yea, we offer limited general tech support. I would'nt exactly say that it ads a whole lot more to value, its more of the 'extra' things that add to a service. Whatever makes the customer happy, is good!

  Post #15 (permalink)   04-22-2005, 08:07 PM
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I always help my customers with computer related problems. If its hardware, then i can be of much help but i sometimes even VNC into their machine to fix problems.

Its all the little things that help.

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