24/7 tech support in web hosting – Common pitfalls & how we avoid them
24/7 tech support is now a standard feature offered by all web hosting providers. But some companies do it better than others, and turn it into a way to attract more customers.
So, how do the winners do it? They make fewer mistakes than others, and focus on a few key areas that make the maximum impact in delivering 24/7 tech support.
Here at Bobcares, we help web hosts fix and streamline their tech support process. We’ve been doing this for the past 15+ years, and today we’ll see the most common mistakes web hosts make in delivering 24/7/365 hosting tech support, and how we help them fix it.
Mistake 1 – Emergency support delivered via email
Emergency support is a core component of 24/7 tech support. When a website does down, or a server crashes, customers should be able to contact you – and quickly.
Some companies cut costs by providing only email support. This undermines the urgency requirement of emergency support.
In times of emergency, customers need to know that their issue is being looked into with priority, and Phone Support is the ideal channel for that.
Why phone is ideal for emergency support
- Human factor – Talking to a living, breathing person is any day better than an impersonal email. During emergencies, customers need reassurance, and a human voice is the best way to deliver it.
- The interaction happens in real time : Unlike mail communication, the customer knows that someone is looking into the issue RIGHT NOW. That someone is accountable at that moment.
- Helps quick & accurate issue troubleshooting – Upset customers tend to leave out critical information. On phone, the techs can ask precise questions to quickly find out what’s going wrong.
- Assess customer satisfaction – It is important to de-escalate a situation before signing off from a support interaction. On phone, it is easier to understand if a customer is happy with the resolution, and if not, more actions can be initiated to make the customer happy.
Mistake 2 – Using auto-responders and KB in lieu of personalized help
Some say that by 2030 AI powered bots can replace humans in customer support jobs, but until that time, there’s just no replacement for an actual tech expert.
Many companies have tried using auto-search knowledge bases and video tutorials as a first line of support, but it has often led to more questions than answers.
Sure, KBs are good, but it’ll work flawlessly only with technically savvy customers. For others, such as small business owners, they’ll any day choose help from a real person than a bot.
So, if you have customers who are not familiar with hosting, you’ll need personalized support. Ideally it should be delivered via phone.
Use phone support for non-tech customers
Hearing an actual person’s voice, and their readiness to help can make a big difference to the customer’s attitude during a support call. Greeting someone by their name, referencing their past support history, and ability to give precise help for their issue can bring an enormous difference in the value of your service.
This benefit is not available in email and much less in knowledge bases.
That does not mean KBs are worthless. At Bobcares, we use KB articles as a secondary tool to deliver quick support.
For eg. We provide first level 24/7 tech support via phone. When calls come in, we talk to the customer, understand the issue, and use images and videos in KBs to walk them through the different steps to resolve an issue.
One small step like using phone as a first level support can go a long way in reducing customer churn, and save hundreds of dollars in marketing.
Mistake 3 – Limiting after hours tech support to only server wide issues
Many data centers offer 24/7 monitoring, alerting, and on-demand server administration.
We’ve seen many web hosts try to cut costs by using data center’s support to take care of server downtime during night time, while leave normal customer queries in the queue until morning.
This is a brand reputation disaster waiting to happen.
For a customer, a non-functioning email could mean several hundred dollars worth of orders lost, or an inability to send a business proposal in time. When that happens, they need to feel that you’ve got their back.
The resolution to such issues could be trivial, but to be available at the right time makes all the difference between a loyal customer, and one that leaves bad reviews in public forums.
We recommend customers to use Phone support as the first line of 24/7 tech support. In this way, customers know that there’s an expert on call when they need you, and that someone is accountable to resolve their issue.
At Bobcares, we give every caller the same level of consideration, and make them feel that their issue is NOT secondary to any other issue that we may have. That is one of the reasons why our team consistently gets happy reviews every single day.
It need not be costly
Here is the good news – You don’t have to spend a ton of money to get 24/7 tech support.
You’ll get only a few calls per month, and you can easily get a specialist company such as Bobcares to cover the graveyard shift for you. Since you pay only for a limited number of minutes, there’s no risk of you spending more money than you need.
With such a small investment in 24/7 tech support, you get a powerful marketing edge, which if used right will put you company in the premium league while keeping the service price comparable to your competitors.