Many SMB owners think IT downtime only costs them a few productive hours, but there’s a lot more at stake when your systems go down. Customer satisfaction and loss of brand integrity are just two of the key losses apart from the more evident costs such as lost productivity and a temporary dip in sales.
Here’s a few other ways downtime can hurt your business:
1. Customer Loss – Today’s buyer lacks patience; they are used to getting everything at the click of a mouse, at the tap of a finger. Suppose they are looking for the kind of products/services that you offer and your site doesn’t load or is unavailable — even if temporarily — you are likely to lose them to a competitor—permanently.
2. Damage to Brand Reputation – Customers are now using social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and blogs to vent their bad brand experiences. Imagine an irate customer who doesn’t know if their card was charged on your site, or not, due to a server error. If it’s your bad day, they could be using Facebook or Twitter to share their bad experience, and it could be viewed by hundreds of people, causing irreparable harm to your brand image.
3. Loss of Productivity – When your systems don’t work, this can have a direct impact on your employees’ productivity. Consider a research firm of 200 employees where they primarily rely on internet connectivity to access the knowledge base. If the server hosting the knowledge base is down, there’s a total loss of at least 1600 work hours for one day.
4. Overtime, Repair and Recovery, Compensatory costs – In the above case, imagine the overtime wages the business would have to incur if they were to make up for the work loss they faced owing to downtime. In addition, there’s always the cost of repair—the money the business would have to shell out to fix the issue that caused the downtime and get the server up and running again.
In some cases, businesses would have to incur additional costs to make customers happy. These could include giving away the product for free or at a discount, or using priority shipping to make up for a delayed order.
The bottom line—one natural disaster, one technical snag or just one power outage has the power to put you out of business – both virtually and in reality.
It’s probably time to think about how you can mitigate the threat of a possible downtime and whether your IT Managed Service Providor can act as an effective and efficient ally in this battle for you. For assistance looking into this, or to see if we would be the right fit for managing your IT, get in contact here.