Offering a range of cloud services to your MSP clients is a great way to boost your company’s revenue, and at the same time make your service offerings more comprehensive.
Clients generally require a fairly predictable set of IT services to effectively run their businesses. They need a way to share files and deal with company email. They need to backup their information, and they need to deal with the inevitable spam and virus problems.
Cloud services can now do all of these things.
While moving everything to the cloud is unlikely to be a good fit for every client, there are sure to be some facets of their IT provision that could be effectively handled by cloud services – and this is where your opportunity lies.
Now is the time to consider every service your client base may ask you for, and spend some time researching the market to find a suitable cloud service to offer them. When deciding on each service, consider the following:
Taking the time to add suitable cloud services to your portfolio benefits your clients and your own business. Your clients end up with a single point of contact and more straightforward billing. You retain ownership and control of the infrastructure, and get to work with a consistent range of products and services that are reliable and easy to support.
So with this in mind, here is a list of some widely available cloud services that you could add to your MSP offering:
1. Hosted AntiVirus
When the time comes to renew a client’s Internet security provision, consider the benefits of replacing a traditional onsite product with a managed service that gives you a commission stream AND provides you with centralized control.
2. Hosted Anti Spam
Fire-fighting junk mail on an internal server makes no sense when it can be caught and quarantined before it enters the LAN. Hosted anti spam services are widely available and easy for you to keep control of from anywhere.
3. Managed Online Backup
All clients need backup, so consider waving goodbye to the days of chasing up unchanged backup tapes and instead offer your own managed online backup service. You and your clients both benefit from increased backup reliability, and you get to increase revenue at the same time.
4. Hosted Email
An increasingly mobile workforce actually means that hosted email makes more sense for many of today’s businesses. If an Exchange account is as likely to be accessed from an iPhone as an office PC, having an Exchange server in the office is no longer logical.
5. Cloud Databases and Cloud CRM
Most companies eventually need one or more databases or a CRM system. Would you rather support a physical SQL server, complete with its maintenance plans and backup jobs, or encourage clients to use a cloud service that is easy for you to maintain and provides them with browser-based access from anywhere?
This list is really just the start. There are few IT services that cannot be provided via the cloud. This isn’t, however, about forcing your clients in this direction for their entire infrastructure, but instead seeing where gaps in their provision can be filled with suitable, reliable cloud services.
When a client needs a new IT service, you don’t want them searching the market for a solution and a suitable provider – you want them to come to you instead – so make sure you have something ready to offer them.
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