Monday, February 11, 2013

SMB tech support market will achieve double-digit growth through 2016

Parks Associates today announced new SMB (small-and-medium-business) technical support research showing network complexity, growth of cloud services, and BYOD (bring-your-own-device) trends will help drive the U.S. market to a 14.4% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) between 2012 and 2016, reaching nearly $25 billion by 2016.

Small Business Tech Support: Small Target, Big Market, a new report from Parks Associates, reports there are nearly six million U.S. firms with 1-99 employees. Nonprofits and non-employer firms also account for a large part of the market potential; the U.S. non-employer segment will reach nearly 24 million in 2013. The new research shows 45% of U.S. SMBs with 1-20 employees have paid for tech support at least once in the past year, but as the SMB network gets more complicated, many current solutions are inadequate.

"Many tech support providers have offered SMBs a product that was, essentially, a consumer solution on steroids," said Jim O'Neill, research analyst, Parks Associates. "But as SMBs have become more dependent on 24/7 uptime, tech support providers are responding with more robust offerings. Ideally, these new products are delivered by companies that already have relationships with SMBs: service providers like ISPs, cable companies, and telcos. Tech support is a great source of incremental revenue for them and also helps keep their services sticky."

Chart: http://blast.parksassociates.com/extras/pressreleases/2013/smb-pr2013.gif

Increasing network and connectivity complexity and the emergence of cloud storage and application adoption will drive the SMB tech support market to develop more robust solutions. For example, Comcast recently rolled out its tech support product "Signature Support" targeted at small businesses. Cox Communications plans to deploy an SMB version of its residential product Cox Tech Solutions this year.

"Small business owners can spend up to 20 hours a month solving IT issues," O'Neill said. "Support providers need to develop tools that target those lost hours."

From the article, "SMB tech support market will achieve double-digit growth through 2016." 

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