If you want to make money from support, you need to charge for it and most technology companies do.
Should you charge for support?
The majority (89.7%) of technology companies offer some form of fee-based support option. Not all support programs are the same – some are extensive with many choices for the customers to select while others are limited in scope. Fee based support options are not always presented to the customer as a choice. In some cases, the support fee may be bundled within the product price or included as a compulsory first year option. Very few companies offer free support.
The starting point for this discussion is that Support should be sold. A well-defined support offering is far too valuable for both customers and the company offering it. For customers, support is a means to gain access to the expertise they need to help them apply the product to its fullest potential. For the product vendor, good support it too costly to give away and the financial benefits of the ongoing annuity are too attractive to not pursue.
Sell Support Unless:
- Your product or service is so simple there is no reason a customer would need assistance.
- Your market is so competitive that introducing fee-based support would create a significant competitive disadvantage.
- Your product is used at a time or in a way that there is no practical way to deliver support.