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Should I support home users?

By briwlls ·
I'm reading the recent article/thread about, 'What support services do you use for your PC?' and it's got me thinking about my business.

I'm currently a one-person shop and about 70% of my business is small business and 30% home/end-users.

I once read a statement, that at the time was 4 years old, that said the home user market was not a viable market segment to base your business on. While that has stuck in my mind I see Apple offering this new AppleCare Pro product, Best Buy's Geek Squad is growing and Dell is now entering this market segment plus a number of other companies providing end user support.

I'm thinking of taking on a contractor to handle this home user side of my business...and just wondering if I should do this. What are other's doing to make this product segment work? Do you have a monthly maintenance contract i.e. $39.99 a month for one hour of support, or $279 for 5 incidents etc.? I just know the average home user is faced with a large number of bills and they just won't take a new bill just to support their computer.

Love to hear others thoughts, ideas and concerns.

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

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...where is the pressure?

by TracyF In reply to Better You Than Me

My home clients bring me coffee & sandwiches while I work & explain what I'm doing? We have a very nice reporte & I enjoy my time there.

I email them a synopsis & instructions when I return home (assuming I haven't worked on their PC from my home, remotely?- in which case they mail a check).

I'll take a few bucks less, per hour, for all of that "nonsense"? You bet! There's enough to go around for all of us, it seems?

Tracy

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I agree

by jackie40d In reply to ...where is the pressure?

As they offer pop, drinks, sandwitches, and MONEY
to keep their computer running ! Its called SERVICE for a reason . . And I like computers my giant toy has almost every thing there is plugged into it and there is spagettii behind it geez what a mess back there tried ties and it still looks like a mess ! Seems slmost everything has 2 plugs going back to one area . . only things not having 2 cords is the joy sitick and camera . .

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Mmm...

by MrFurry In reply to Better You Than Me

I'm getting the feeling you're just a ****.

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Insults...

by carey In reply to Mmm...

Perhaps, in your opinion, I am a ****. However, this is not the discussion topic of this forum. I'd be more than happy to share my thoughts about someone so judgemental of others in the approriate forum. We can call it "What I think about you." If you think honestly believe anyone cares what your thoughts are, it would be a great way to give the people what they want.

Problem is, no one asked you what you thought of me, and this forum is specifically reserverd for the discussion of whether or not home support can be viable and profitable. If you'd like to join us in the discussion, you are more than welcome.

That's why the rest of us are here.

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Maybe there is, but ...

by Too Old For IT In reply to Great Market!

... I got back into corporate contracting because I was so worn out with "My cousin Timmy could do that for free", "The last time you were here .." and "It hasn't worked right since ..."

There were a few host ones who started in with "I always seem to have problems with the computer guy ...". Those I honestly told that they would likely be dissatisfied with my work too. After they thought about it a while, they became my best customers. Go figure.

Tho I'm sure part of the problem was management that refused to stand up for the home techs.

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You're joking, right?

by KendyfortheState In reply to I bet you heard this alre ...

You charge your mom to fix her computer? What kind of ungrateful B$@!%&# are you? How much did she charge you for carrying your sorry butt around for 9 months? How much did she charge you for feeding you, cleaning up after you, taking care of you when you were sick, making your bed washing your clothes, etc. for 18 years (or more)? The very LEAST you can do is fix her computer for free.

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[Post deleted by Admin]

by KaptKos In reply to You're joking, right?

[Post deleted by Admin]

[Edited by: admin on Mar 8, 2006 6:15 AM]

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...at least you're not bitter?

by TracyF In reply to [Post deleted by Admin]

Those folks, from other countries, who are doing these jobs are not the ones causing outsourcing. They are trying to earn a paycheck just like the rest of us.

Instead of uselessly denigrating them, write letters to the corporations doing this, to your congressmen/women, to the Whitehouse.

It certainly does nothing to snipe & stab a bunch of people who are just as victimized by these companies as the rest of us?

Tracy

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he's not bitter he's bigot plain and simple

by techiemikee In reply to ...at least you're not bi ...

Stop playing the victim and the blame game they didn?t steal your job you were to ignorant to keep it. All that hostility towards people you?ve never met is probably why you can?t get a job nobody wants to work around a racist pig.

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Don't waste your time: Lyrics change,song doesn't.. Not his fault

by Beoweolf In reply to he's not bitter he's bigo ...

There is a difference between a complaint about unfair competition; it is valid and is a problem that occurs and recurrs in unequal trade agreements. However, the desparate desire to restrict the lawful business of another in free commerce, based on supposed superiority is a uniquely short-sighted condition that unfortunatley appears to be Chronic. No matter what happens, In good times, "those people" are fair game, because they don't do anything to help themselves out of poverty. When they do something to stop the cycle of poverty: then they are compromising some unwritten reservation of prosparity that rightfully belongs only to a chosen few.

The issue is simple, cream rises to the top, if you are consistanly being out-thought, out-classed and out-manuvered...you need to step-up your game. Get better or get out of IT. Its just that simple.

Hunger is a great motivator, Countries that have over dependance on Class, Caste and entitlements are doomed to fail sooner or later. Communal entitlements, whether based on heredity, shared poverty or tradition are against the natural order. Being able to use tools, is the hallmark of the success of humanity. If you can't use tools ... expect to be siddled off to a dormant branch of evolution.

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