Unless you like to live paycheck-to-paycheck, setting up recurring revenue for your computer repair business is a must. It is hard to plan for your future without it. Your income is unpredictable and your business isn’t predictable. Without it, I wouldn’t have been able quit my job and start working for myself. This was a huge help to me. It should be part of your plans too.
Basic Business Models
Computer repair and computer consulting generally involve dealing with both residential users and businesses. You will likely offer one of the following services to each type of client: Break/fix Support, or Managed Services. (This might still include support for break/fix).
It is just what it sounds. You fix something that breaks. Preventative maintenance is often very minimal or absent. Clients only call when they have problems. The client may not call for several months, or even a whole year between visits.
This is bad news for both the client and you.
This is bad news for the client as some of the problems they are referring to could have been anticipated and prevented. The damage could have been reduced. It is not a good idea to only visit clients when disaster strikes. Clients might also associate you with those who are having trouble using technology.
Without actively monitoring their systems, there is no way to know the health of their computers. This is a bonus for fix/break providers, who get paid when stuff breaks. This is not good for the client.
It’s certainly not healthy for you. It’s impossible to predict when clients will need your services. It’s impossible to plan and budget without knowing this. It is very difficult to do.
Both you and your client will benefit from managed services. This is a great way for business clients to be supported (especially if your experience with servers and networks is a plus). You can offer a higher level of service by maintaining the systems of your clients. This type of business model requires that the client pays a monthly fee for you to maintain their computers. You can define what you mean by “maintenance” and the services you offer. Unlimited support is also possible.
This is how it works in most cases. You bill per computer per month. Servers can have a higher support fee because they are more complex and require more time.
This is great for both the client and you! You get predictable monthly income and proactive support from the client.
How can you make a steady income from your computer repair business?
You can sell maintenance and/or unlimited support agreements. Every contract should be customized to the needs of each client. Each client will likely have different contracts and services depending upon certain factors, such as:
How many computers do they have?
How often they require your services
Computers are getting older
They feel which services are most important to them
They can choose whether or not they have a Server
Which type of service they prefer (maintenance or unlimited support)
The price you charge your client will depend on the scenario.