Many clients don’t want to spend money on new hardware, especially when they believe their out-of-date technologies are working just fine, but what they don’t realize is the cost of inaction, which can get pricey quickly when something goes wrong.
When clients use price as the reason for objecting to hardware upgrades, show them what their costs would be if their systems were to fail by educating them on downtime and highlighting the figures.
Hardware can be costly, but it can be even more costly if it’s not up to date
Without a doubt, hardware can be a costly investment for SMBs — especially when IT budgets are typically limited — but what many SMBs fail to realize is the costs of inaction are oftentimes higher.
Cybersecurity firms are seeing an increase in cyberattacks. Sixty-one percent of businesses have suffered a cyberattack within the past year, up 20 percent from the year prior, according to the “2019 Hiscox Cyber Reading Readiness Report. There’s a good reason for cybercriminals to target SMBs.
For hackers, there’s money to be made. The cybercrime industry is estimated to be $1.5 trillion, according to a report titled “Into The Web of Profit.” These cybercriminals go after low-hanging fruit.
Further reading Why Cybercriminals Are Targeting MSPs?
SMBs lacking up-to-date technology are typically far more prone to IT vulnerabilities, threats and risks. When cyberattacks hit, the costs can be detrimental to these businesses. For example, the average cost of a data breach is $7.91 million, according to the “13th annual 2018 Cost of a Data Breach Study: Global Overview” published by IBM Security and Ponemon Institute. When equipment is up to date, SMBs are less likely to have compromised systems.
While updated hardware decreases the chances of cybercriminals infiltrating networks, it also makes downtime less likely.
Equipment is bound to break from time to time, but typically, it’s avoidable. Outdated hardware is more likely to fail. When equipment breaks, productivity goes down — and that impacts revenue.
Downtime due to IT is costly. Businesses are losing $700 billion a year to IT downtime, according to IHS' “The Cost of Server, Application, and Network Downtime: North American Enterprise Survey and Calculator” report.
One of the top ways to prevent IT downtime is by making small investments in increasing system reliability, according to the study. When clients don’t believe you, show them the numbers.
Alternatively to big numbers, tell them a couple of real-life stories of the failed Windows 2003R2 Server which leads to database shutdown and massive business losses. That, typically, has a profound effect on business owners.
Be upfront with your clients about equipment failure costs
Not all clients are going to understand the potential long-term costs of operating with out-of-date equipment. This is where channel partners can play a critical role in informing clients of the realities.
Educating clients on the costs of an equipment failure is one thing, but they usually want to see something tangible — actual numbers. It’s best to provide clients with real-life scenarios by using their numbers. For example, point out how old their equipment is and what would happen if it failed. How long would it take you to fix their issues? What about hardware parts? Are any of them no longer available for purchase? These concerns can negatively impact a client’s bottom line and downtime.
What if your clients still don’t believe you?
If a client still isn’t getting the message, it may be best to part ways. After all, it's your job to prevent downtime and issues, so if the client isn’t going to allow you to do what you must, consider firing the problem client. There are plenty of prospects willing to pay for your expertise — go and find them.
Most clients only look at the immediate costs of purchasing new hardware instead of considering what the costs would be if their IT equipment failed. By educating them on downtime and breaking down the numbers, you put yourself in a better position to generate more revenue by selling more hardware.