Why Customer Support Matters in the Server Hosting Industry

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The Importance of Customer Support in a Web Host

These days, there’s a lot of heavy competition in the web hosting industry, with the market expected to reach a value of more than $216 billion by 2025. More than ever, web hosting companies are striving to offer the “latest and greatest” in server hardware and account features. With so much focus on innovation and technology, however, it’s easy to overlook the undeniable importance of customer service and support.

While it’s true that today’s hosting clients demand the latest in server technology, they also want to know that someone will be there to answer their call if they have questions or concerns about their service. By having a better understanding of why customer support matters in the server hosting industry, hosting companies can better serve their clients and grow their businesses.

Why Does Customer Service Matter in Web Hosting?

It’s no secret that customer service matters in every field, but what makes it so vital for the hosting industry? By implementing a comprehensive and reliable customer support program, your hosting service can achieve the following goals:

Increase Client Flow

Over time, exceptional customer service may become a defining characteristic of your business. In-turn, you might find that your customer flow increases, especially as users leave other web hosting companies that lack adequate support.

Delivering exceptional customer service can also help you retain existing clients. When customers have access to help whenever they need it, they’ll feel valued and will be more likely to develop a sense of loyalty to your company.

Current clients who are happy with the support they’re receiving may even recommend your services to others who are looking for reliable web hosting. They might tell their friends, family members, and colleagues about their positive experience with your company, which could generate even more business for you.

Build a Reputation

One of the greatest rewards your business can reap from delivering unrivaled customer service and support is a reputation boost. In the hosting world, you certainly don’t want to be known as the company that has abysmal customer service. Building a reputation for going above and beyond for your clients can set your business apart from the competition.

Improve Server Maintenance

When you have a dedicated customer support team that addresses clients’ issues as they arise, you can also work to improve your overall server maintenance. For example, if your customer service team finds that clients are calling with the same complaint about their servers, they can then pass this information along to technical support for further investigation. From there, problems can be addressed before they turn into bigger issues, and your business can deliver improved services to clients.

With a helpful customer service team, your company can also help clients maintain their own hosting accounts more effectively. After all, many web hosting users have limited knowledge when it comes to managing servers. By turning to your knowledgeable customer service staff, clients can receive the assistance they need with basic maintenance tasks, such as:

  • Installing patches and security updates
  • Backing up their data
  • Setting up multi-factor authentication

This is truly a “win-win” situation because it positions your customer service as being reliable and accommodating while also cutting down on common server maintenance issues.

Avoid Negative Reviews

If you’ve ever had a negative experience with a company’s customer support team, there’s a good chance you were upset enough to leave a negative review online. Unfortunately, negative reviews can have a huge impact on your business, resulting in damage to your overall reputation and a lower ranking on search engine results pages (SERPs).

You must also consider the fact that many of your prospective customers may take the time to read reviews and use that information to inform their purchasing decisions. In fact, a 2017 study found that 93 percent of consumers use reviews to guide their buying choices. If you have a lot of negative reviews relating to your customer service, there’s a good chance that you may be missing out on business as a direct result.

Components of Excellent Customer Service in Hosting

Now that you have a better understanding of why customer service is so essential in the web hosting industry, it’s time to run an audit on your own support offerings. There are a few key components that users look for in a web host. These include:

Prompt Response Time

Running into an issue with one’s hosting account is unpleasant enough for your clients – but being unable to get a resolution to a problem can be even more frustrating. This is why having a prompt response time is so important. When a user submits a ticket or contacts customer service with an issue, the support team should be able to get to work right away in finding a resolution.

If a full resolution cannot be reached right away, a temporary fix should be implemented until the support team can address the issue completely.

Easy Ticket Submission

These days, many customers don’t even want to call customer service directly in order to report an issue. This is where having an online chat or online ticket submission portal can come in handy. If your hosting platform does not already offer a means for clients to submit online tickets, now is the time to add one. Your clients will appreciate being able to address issues from the convenience of their computers or mobile devices without having to take time out of their day for a phone call.

Of course, online ticket submissions and customer service chats are not always ideal, and speaking over-the-phone in real-time can be beneficial when serious problems arise. For this reason, clients should be directed to call customer service directly for issues that require immediate attention, such as:

  • Website or server downtime
  • Security breaches
  • Signs of a DDoS attack

Extensive Resources

Offering excellent customer support also means providing clients with the tools and resources they need to answer some of their own questions and address their own concerns. This is where having an extensive “help desk” with a frequently asked questions section and other easy-to-navigate information can make all the difference.

By making it easy for clients to find the answers to common questions, your hosting business can keep the phone lines open for users who have more pressing issues. This results in improved overall customer service that your clients will undoubtedly appreciate.

24/7 Availability

This is perhaps one of the most critical components of any web hosting company’s customer service. Your clients should always be able to reach someone when they have a question or concern, no matter the time of day. This is also one of the biggest pitfalls of smaller hosting companies that don’t have the resources to offer around-the-clock support.

In the event that there is a server outage, your company must have someone available to address the issue. In the hosting industry, downtime for your clients is not something to be taken lightly. Businesses that rely on your hosting service can miss out on significant profits when their site goes down. In fact, a Ponemon study found that just a single minute of server downtime can cost a business an average of $7,908. And of course, there’s also the risk that their own reputation may be tarnished when their website becomes inaccessible.

The last thing a client needs when they’re experiencing downtime or other major issues with their server is to be unable to get ahold of a representative until the next business day. This will likely result in lost business for your hosting company. If you’re not already offering 24/7 customer support, be sure to make it a priority.

Knowledgeable Staff

Even with 24/7 dedicated support, your clients aren’t going to be happy if they can’t get the answers or resolutions they need from your staff. This is where training becomes extremely important; your customer service professionals should know your business inside and out, so they can provide your clients with the knowledgeable assistance they need and expect.

If a customer service agent doesn’t have the answer to a question or doesn’t know how to resolve an issue, he or she should be able to turn to a supervisor for help. Managers should then be trained to revisit the subject with the representative later on to provide proper instruction for handling similar issues or questions down the road.

The Bottom Line

There is simply no denying the importance of dedicated customer service in the web hosting industry. While it’s true that clients want the latest and greatest hardware when they sign up for a hosting plan, being able to turn to an accessible and knowledgeable support team 24/7 is just as vital.

Let these insights guide you as you evaluate your hosting company’s own customer service. From there, you can implement small changes that will add up to make a huge difference in the quality of support your valued clients receive.

Author Bio

ReliableSite is a hosting company that offers dedicated server solutions to meet a variety of needs. With data centers in four locations across the United States, ReliableSite servers offer low latency, excellent security, and 24/7 customer technical support.