Tuesday, March 29, 2011

U.S. SMBs three times more likely than average consumers to purchase professional technical support for tablets, smartphones, PCs

Parks Associates reports tech-support services must be fast and proactive to capture SMB market share

U.S. small businesses (SMB) could be the next boom market for tech support services, provided manufacturers, retailers, and providers offer fast and proactive solutions for multidevice environments that include PCs, servers, tablets, and smartphones, Parks Associates reports.

The international market research firm recently completed the project SMB Demand for Technical Support Services, which finds SMBs are three times more likely than average consumers to use professional computer-related technical support services and significantly more likely to purchase additional support features when acquiring new equipment. Several large companies have already moved into the support market. Apple recently announced JointVenture, a new support network for small businesses that combines remote and retail support for its iPads and Macs.

"SMBs waste dozens of hours per month troubleshooting technology issues," said Kurt Scherf, VP, principal analyst, Parks Associates. "Over 70% are involved with ongoing computer maintenance on a monthly basis. About one-half deal with Internet access issues, 44% troubleshoot computer problems, 31% troubleshoot networking issues, and 27% deal with server problems."

SMB Use of Tech Support - chart

SMBs are most likely to use professional technical support services for server, networking, and computer issues, with preferences for subscriptions that come with proactive support including ongoing maintenance and computer “tune-ups.”

"SMBs often have heterogeneous technology environments, so they need support for a diverse array of technology platforms, from servers to workstations and even mobile handsets," Scherf said. "Speed is the top factor in choosing a professional technical support service, so remote components are important, but IT managers also like the availability of on-site options when choosing a provider. SMBs are always watching the clock, and tech-support companies that can give back those wasted hours could capture significant market share."

SMB Demand for Technical Support Services is a survey of 500 IT decision-makers in U.S. SMBs. It quantifies the technology environment and measures the current use of and future demand for professional technical support services. For more information, visit http://www.parksassociates.com or contact 972-490-1113, sales@parksassociates.com.

About Parks Associates: Parks Associates is an internationally recognized market research and consulting company specializing in emerging consumer technology products and services. Founded in 1986, Parks Associates creates research capital for companies ranging from Fortune 500 to small start-ups through market reports, primary studies, consumer research, custom research, workshops, executive conferences, and annual service subscriptions.

The company's expertise includes the Internet of Things (IoT), digital media and platforms, entertainment and gaming, home networks, Internet and television services, digital health, mobile applications and services, support services, consumer apps, advanced advertising, consumer electronics, energy management, and home control systems and security.

Each year, Parks Associates hosts industry webcasts, the CONNECTIONS™ Conference Series, Smart Energy Summit: Engaging the Consumer, and Connected Health Summit: Engaging Consumers.

http://www.parksassociates.com

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