Phone support - How important is it in the hosting industry

SenseiSteve

HD Moderator
Staff member
Have to admit not seeing a lot of providers offering phone support, much less 24/7. Do you think offering this service gives them an advantage? Would you prefer to initiate a support ticket?
 

Localnode

Member
Personally, if it is urgent I usually hop on the phone (or chat if phone support isn't an option).

Sales - I prefer to call as well. Much less back-and-forth in tickets.
A lot of the time providers won't have 24/7 sales - in which case I submit a ticket. Being in Australia, sales hours in some countries can be very restrictive with timezone differences.

Overall, I prefer tickets.
 

Artashes

Administrator
Staff member
A phone is a great option. As a consumer, however, I don't see myself jumping to use it.

I would very much prefer a 24/7 live chat.
 

SenseiSteve

HD Moderator
Staff member
I do think offering phone support 24/7 is a great asset if the reps on the other end are professional and competent. Unfortunately, you run the risk of talking to level one techs that have to escalate most of the calls.
 

izumi777

Member
For our hosting company, we use phone support for only pre-sales question, billing questions and basic usage problems. But when it comes to certain support that require verification of the owner of the website such as reverting backups we stick to supporting tickets or emails as it is much easier to verify the ownership of the account. Our phone support is not 24/7 since we encourage our customers to contact us via support ticket instead which is fully 24/7.
 

hostkoala

New member
To me phone support is unnecessary, but there are a few clients/enquiries from potential clients who asked for it, and to them it is a necessity.

This is a very small percentage though ( Like less than 1 % )
 

AstroHost

New member
I think this is a personal preference again.

We offer as many options as possible. However, if i'm dealing with a new supplier, I like to speak on the phone & get a feel for the supplier.
 

easyhostmedia

Well-known member
I find in the hosting industry phone support to be tricky as when you have clients from all corners of the earth and not all will speak English or good English then asking and giving correct support can be challenging.

How many of us have called up service providers (phone/broadband etc.) and ended up frustrated as we cant understand them and they cant understand us.
 

server

Member
For the following aforementioned reasons, we are not considering phone support as of crucial importance:

Unfortunately, you run the risk of talking to level one techs that have to escalate most of the calls.

But when it comes to certain support that require verification of the owner of the website such as reverting backups we stick to supporting tickets or emails as it is much easier to verify the ownership of the account.

How many of us have called up service providers (phone/broadband etc.) and ended up frustrated as we cant understand them and they cant understand us.

While it can be helpful as well, but other options are more effective.
 

easyhostmedia

Well-known member
But when it comes to certain support that require verification of the owner of the website such as reverting backups we stick to supporting tickets or emails as it is much easier to verify the ownership of the account.

I would never take emails as a way to verify ownership of an account.

example:
1) You get an email asking you to remove a feature on my hosting account, so you do this.
2) A couple of days later you get a support ticket from me screaming blue murder as an important feature that my business website needs to function has been removed.
3) You explain that you were told to remove this by email.
4) I tell you that i never sent such an email
5) How can you prove or verify that i actually sent the email.

The only way you can verify any request from a client is through a support ticket etc. direct through their account.

If a client emailed me i would just ask them to submit the request through a support ticket, then as its is requested through their account they have no comebacks.
 

easyhostmedia

Well-known member
@easyhostmedia

I agree with you maybe I should use support ticket instead of emails for customer verification.

You could also use a support pin module for your client management system, this will place a pin number in the admin area of the clients account, the same pin number will be visable to the client from their account (this changes every time they log in), so even if they did phone, you could simply ask them for this pin and only if they are genuine and have access tom the clients account would they be able to give you the correct pin number.
 

reddyash

New member
I dont think phone support helps you get faster resolution. Any technical problem,s have to be resolved by a server admin. Most of the chat or phone support usually take your request and forward the same to the IT department.
Not to mention most of the phone and chat support are always outsourced to customer service companies.

As long as you get a proper response through chat or support ticket phone does not really matter.
 

ServageOne

New member
Consider that phone support, especially if you are a big company and have clients all over the globe can be a communication barrier - even if both parties speak English or any common language. There may be a problem of accent and lack of clarity, plus it does not solve your issue faster. In most cases, live chat may be more efficient. It is live and as fast as phone support but without the language barrier. I think phone support works if you have local clients and that too only for minor issues, which take probably 2-4 mins to fix. No one likes to be kept on hold for longer than that.
 

S4 Hosting

Active member
For sales I think phone or skype or whatever is great, it's good to be able to speak to someone and get a feel for what the company is about.

For technical support then I think that live chat, email, or tickets are much better. It's much easier to have clear written information for both sides to refer back to.
 

easyhostmedia

Well-known member
With support other than support tickets you need to have a way to verify you are actually speaking to the account holder as anyone can open a live chat, phone or email you and say they are the account holder.
 
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