Do you run a web hosting business? Do you sell cloud solutions, domain names or any other IT services? Are you aware of any existing or potential problems you may be having which deprive your business of flexibility and competitiveness? Well, we have thoroughly researched and you would be surprised how many and how serious they are.
Ever since we started developing the cloud billing & automation software Billia, our team has been gathering insights on the most common issues IT service providers encounter while running their business.
1. Lack of flexibility with pricing and promotions
Can you really modify your own marketing?
It turns out that continuous access to pricing options, margins and modifiable promotion setups is an issue for most service providers. Some billing platforms make it hard for individual clients to be presented with or use special offers during the process of their purchase. In those cases, the system’s promotional functionality is configured so that all of its factors are preset for that specific offer. So, to ensure smooth order completion, this would require you to put in a lot of manual work, especially if other promotions are active or can be applied at that moment. Sometimes you may also find it impossible to configure conditional promotions for a specific time frame or purchase amount.
We believe that pricing and promotion modifications are a must to ensure your marketing department works with more tools for attracting customers.
Can you start a subscription that has not been paid yet?
Our understanding while creating Billia was that some hosting providers and IT companies sell to large businesses and government institutions who sometimes delay their payments by a day or two. If you have such a valuable client, you do not want to put their account on hold and cause them trouble. Instead, you would credit them and let their subscription run until you get paid. Just make sure your billing platform can make it work.
How easily can you create a new service plan?
Businesses in 2019 need the flexibility to constantly introduce new offerings, change parameters and add value to their services. Make sure this is an option for you, as well.
What if you want to add features, change pricing and apply exchange rate?
If you are reading this, you know what we mean. It is a pain point to support various currencies and make sure the exchange rate doesn’t kill your margin.
2. Customer management and communication is a tough job
How easily can you add a new customer in your system?
Some of the companies we interviewed, report a very difficult and unintuitive process of customer management within the billing platform they use.
And what happens when someone purchases numerous items with a single payment?
In many cases the system generates separate invoices for each item purchased which creates a nightmare for buyers, sellers, accountants and auditors.
By the way, can you send customized emails, special promo codes, invoice and configuration data about a purchase in one single email to your clients?
We were really surprised that some billing softwares don’t support this option..
And what about mass emails to your customers?
Sometimes it is necessary to inform everyone about an emergency, planned changes, new products or hot industry news. Or maybe you would like to send monthly newsletters to all your clients. Some of our partners shared their negative experience with billing & automation platforms that don’t support this function for hosting providers and resellers.
3. Lack of clear documentation and timely support by developers
How fast can you add an integration with a new vendor or partner of yours?
Is there anyone you can immediately ask for assistance? It turns out that a common issue for IT service companies is the lack of adequate documentation and support. Thus, sometimes companies find themselves lost in the process of adding new SSL vendors, domains or other services to their offerings.
We can guarantee that Billia comes with full support from our side meaning that we will always be available to help you configure, change and add integrations. Also, if you don’t see any vendor you would like to work with in our list, just let us know and we will do our best to support it.
4. Limited opportunities for partnership and affiliate programs
What do you do with your referrals?
You need to have an established bonus system for referrals and enable discounts they could provide to every client they attract. Moreover, you need a billing engine to manage the entire process. Our experience shows that affiliate and partnership programs are among the most effective ways to grow a hosting brand and increase revenue. Don’t deprive yourself of the opportunity just because a weak billing solution you may be currently using.
5. Weak functionalities and domain search engines
Does it take more than a few seconds for your clients to find the domain name they are looking for?
If so, you have something to worry about. In Billia, we managed to integrate a powerful search engine that lists the results for domain searches in no time. Moreover, we guarantee the smooth and fast completion of all processes so that neither your staff nor your clients waste their time.
Our research also showed that many hosters are not supplied with all the tools they need to optimize customer experience within their billing platform. A basic example we could give is sending customers a customized .pdf invoice template with your logo and other brand assets. Can you automate that within your current software?
Can you add more?
Of course! That’s not the full list, but we could say these are probably the biggest pain points for hosters. And we are glad to announce that we solved all of them with Billia! We dare to say that ApiHawk has created the most flexible and complete cloud billing solution for IT companies that corresponds to all their needs in 2019. Customization of the software for your business and integration with your preferred vendors is not a problem anymore. Believe it or not, selling hosting is now made simple.
Still not sure? We encourage you to get in touch with ApiHawk and you will learn why we are so confident with our solution and why we offer it with €100,000 warranty for your business.