Now, more than ever, small businesses rely on technology to keep their operations running. Whether it's computers and Wi-Fi connections or printers and tablets, when these technologies don't work, a business's operations can crawl to a stop.
Since many small businesses can't afford their own IT staff to ensure things are always running smoothly, many turn to online tech-support services when they run into trouble. Rather than having to trek broken-down equipment to a local repair shop, online tech-support services can remotely access a computer and other equipment through an Internet connection and offer help by email, online chats or over the telephone.
With tech support taking on such a critical role in keeping businesses up and running, it can sometimes be difficult for business owners to find the service that fits all of their specific needs. When choosing an online tech-support service, there are a number of things small business owners should be looking for, including the ability to support a wide range of both Mac and PC computers, tablets and other peripheral devices, such as modems, printers and digital cameras. The service should also be adept at ensuring Wi-Fi networks are working properly and be able to provide help 24 hours a day all year long.
A subsidiary of electronic giant Best Buy, Geek Squad earned this year's TopTenREVIEWS Gold Award for its flexible support options, comprehensive services, and large, nationwide team of technicians. Geek Squad personnel can help install new computers, devices and software, as well as handle all repair issues, including virus and malware removal. The service also conducts regular computer tune-ups to ensure a business's system is always running at optimal speeds. In addition, unlike many of the other services, Geek Squad can provide hardware repair, not just software or system repair and setup.
Devices and Peripherals: In addition to being able to service all computers, Geek Squad provides support for a wide range of tech gadgets, including MP3 players, digital cameras, smartphones, tablets, printers and scanners. In addition, it is one of the few companies that can also service televisions that need repair.
Service Features: Geek Squad provides technical service 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to ensure small business owners get immediate assistance, regardless of when they need it. The service, which only employs U.S.-based technicians, is open about each tech's background and areas of expertise to ensure businesses are getting the services they need. Geek Squad offers two separate service options: a flat-rate fee for one-time fixes, and monthly or annual subscriptions for unlimited remote support.
Support Options: Geek Squad provides remote, in-store and on-site technical support. For remote service, small businesses can work with Geek Squad techs via a telephone or live-chat session. Small businesses also have the option of working with the tech of their choosing, making it possible to get assistance from the same technician on a regular basis. Geek Squad also provides clients with self-help tools, such as free downloads, system-security checks, technology tips and detailed how-to guides.
Cost: To compare costs, visit TopTenREVIEWS' best online tech-support services.
iYogi scores high marks for its flexible service options, including unlimited subscriptions and one-time fixes. The online tech service provides support for a vast array of computing devices and software. In addition to helping with diagnostics, iYogi can assist small business owners with their network setup, software and operating-system installation, data backup, browser security and virus removal.
Devices and Peripherals: iYogi's remote support service can help users with any issue pertaining to PCs or Macs, as well as any peripherals, including tablets, MP3 players, printers and smart TVs that are Internet-connected and app-compatible.
Service Features: Some of the top service features iYogi offers include a money-back guarantee and a secure, encrypted connection that gives a technician the ability to remotely log in to a business's computer. The service also provides support in both English and French, as well as a free price quote for one-time fixes.
Support Options: In addition to its remote support, iYogi provides on-site tech support throughout the U.S., primarily for PC repair, or any other issue that a remote technician cannot adequately fix. The company's network of on-site technicians comprises more than 1,000 third-party techs who have been vetted by iYogi.
A technology company that specializes in tech service programs for both businesses and consumers, Support.com took home this year's TopTenREVIEWS Bronze Award for its breadth of services and its flexible subscription plans. Support.com provides service for a wide range of issues, including PC tune-ups, peripheral setup, operating-system migration and malware removal. In addition, the company offers its own line of computer-optimization software. Support.com is also one of the few tech-support service providers that offer an integrated data-backup solution that automatically backs up all digital files to the cloud. The company offers both unlimited subscriptions and flat-rate, one-time fixes.
Devices and Peripherals: Support.com provides tech support for myriad devices, including both Windows and Mac computers, as well as all major computer peripherals, such as routers, printers, tablets, cameras and MP3 players.
Service Features: As a Microsoft Certified Partner, Support.com is accredited by the tech giant to provide technical support for Microsoft products, including Windows, Microsoft Office and Outlook. The company also offers a guarantee that if it doesn't fix the problem, it will provide either additional support at no cost or a full refund.
Support Options: Support.com offers both 24-hour remote support and on-site tech services. When in need of service, users are connected to a native English-speaking technician who can provide assistance in less than one minute.
Originally published on BusinessNewsDaily.