Technology Services Continue to Grow, Driven by Home Networking and Customer Experience
The growth in the usage of mobile devices and cloud-based services by consumers and small businesses, coupled with the rapid adoption of wireless networking, is driving the market for technology services.
"In today's world, customer experience has become paramount to every business's success," said James Morehead, Vice President Product Management and Corporate Marketing, Support.com. "With the wide adoption of wireless networks and connected technology, and the challenges that they are causing for consumers, companies have an opportunity to take customer experience management to the next level through premium support."
Some key features of the connected home include sharing data across multiple interconnected devices and accessing bandwidth-rich value added services, such as digital media streaming, cloud-based services, and IP-based home management. Despite the convenience of mobile devices, non-tech-savvy consumers find interconnecting a diverse range of gadgets intimating and complex.
According to a research recently published by Park Associates, while 60% of broadband households now set up their home networks on their owni the remaining 40% still require assistance.
In our previous blog posts, we’ve highlighted how the small business technology services market is growing and that SMBs are embracing cloud computing to enhance their IT capabilities and to access reliable, cost-effective, and scalable IT infrastructure resources.
Unlike large enterprises, most SMBs do not have dedicated in-house IT resources. According to Park Associates, the average SMB experiences around nine IT issues every month; employees spend roughly 11 hours per month addressing IT support issues and lose seven hours of productivity.iii
Even though SMBs are smaller in size, their tech support needs can be just as business-critical as in large enterprises. In order to run their business operations in a smooth manner, SMBs need a robust, comprehensive, and cost-effective IT support solution.
How National Technology Brands Can Leverage this Opportunity
The growing demand for technology services among consumers and SMBs is creating new opportunities for leading technology brands. To leverage this opportunity, technology brands will need to develop new partnerships, design innovative tech-support business models, and embrace new technologies.
Parks Associates recently reported that, "consumer and small business technology service programs will grow from approximately $18 billion in 2012 to approximately $32 billion in 2016." iv
The Parks study also indicates that consumers are looking for an efficient and comprehensive support solution that covers all their needs from computers to tablets to smartphones. Nearly 50% are willing to use a service offered by a retailer, ISP, or manufacturer for their comprehensive technology needs. Services that combine software solutions, on‐call support, and device repair/replacement will resonate with consumers.v
Also according to Parks, Approximately 20% to 30% of customers who receive a one-time incident service will upgrade to a subscription and 5% to 10% of consumers who purchase a new computer will purchase a support subscription with the device.vi
National technology brands serving the SMB technology support market also have reason to be optimistic; as Parks Associates predicts in a recent blog post, network complexity, increased adoption of cloud services and bring your own device (BYOD) trends will help drive the U.S. market for SMB tech support to 14.4% CAGR between 2012 and 2016, reaching nearly $25 billion by 2016.
According to Jim O'Neill, a Parks Associates research analyst, "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."
As the demand for comprehensive technology services continues to grow, so does the opportunity for leading technology brands to generate new revenue streams and deepen customer engagement and loyalty.
Parks Associates and Support.com are presenting a free webinar, "Premium Support for the Home Network", on March 7 at 11am PST (register here).
Safe Harbor Statement
This release contains "forward-looking statements" as defined under the U.S. Federal Securities Laws, including the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and is subject to the safe harbors created by such laws. Forward-looking statements may relate to, but are not limited to, market and consumer activity, supported devices, the features available in, and the potential benefits to be derived from products and solutions, plans and market acceptance of such products and solutions, and consumer trends and demand. Such forward-looking statements are based on current expectations that involve a number of uncertainties and risks that may cause actual events or results to differ materially including, among others, Support.com's ability to predict revenue and control expenses, shifts in customer trends and demand, shifts in strategic relationships, delays in Support.com's ability to deliver its products and services, or announcements by competitors. These and other risks may be detailed from time to time in Support.com periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, but not limited to, its latest Annual Report on Form 10-K and its latest Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q, copies of which may be obtained from www.sec.gov. Support.com is under no obligation to update its forward-looking statements. Information contained in our website is not incorporated by reference in, or made part of this press release.
i - Creating Holistic Consumer Technology Support Services - © 2012 Parks Associates
ii - Creating Holistic Consumer Technology Support Services - © 2012 Parks Associates
iii - Small Business Tech Support: Small Target, Big Market - © 2012 Parks Associates
iv - Small Business Tech Support: Small Target, Big Market, Creating Holistic Consumer Technology Support Services - © 2012 Parks Associates
v - Creating Holistic Consumer Technology Support Services - © 2012 Parks Associates
vi - Creating Holistic Consumer Technology Support Services - © 2012 Parks Associates