How To Start A Computer Repair Business

Talk about a loaded question… boy. “How do I start a computer repair business?” is one of those things you generally see one of two types of people answering.  The first person is often someone already working within the IT community. They’re looking to either grab some extra cash or perhaps start up something with enough revenue to eventually quite the daytime gig. The second person is usually the technology hobbyist. They know what they’re doing, but perhaps haven’t had a lot of experiences working with SoHos or enterprise situations.

Which one are you and does it matter?

It will matter which category your experience happens to fall into. Why? Simply because of the fact that the person with the experience in handling enterprise needs is best suited to deal with them as an independent tech. The hobbyist might want to experience some of this field before leaping into it (just a suggestion). As for catering to the home user, I have to say, it’s a mixed bag. I would love to say working home users are easier, but that wouldn’t be entirely true.

In many respects, working with home users is a pain in the you know what. But they can also prove to be your most common clients if you’re starting out and don’t have any support contracts in place yet to act as your bread and butter. So getting used to what you might feel are silly questions, taking the extra time to help someone not getting it, and just being kind are all necessary traits to possess.

How To Start A Computer Repair Business
Photo by lumachrome

Advertising and marketing

Assuming you’ve done some soul searching, determined based on local research exactly who your target market actually is, then you’re all set. I have a comprehensive list of marketing ideas, but none of it really matters if you’re seeking out the wrong kind of client. Who are you trying to appeal to, exactly? This is something you’d better know or you’re going to find that many of your clients are not a good match for you.

For example, if you advertise “lowest prices in town,”  expect to entertain every cheapskate, penny pinching type in your area. And yes, there will be haggling. Not worth it. Better off not going with that approach and, instead, focusing on crazy-value, instead. Kill them with kindness and being willing to go that extra mile. Offer a free diagnostic, but charge a rate that is competitive while still keeping your bills paid.

There should be an image here!Buy the bookWithout any question, this is among one of the better books on the concept of starting your own computer repair business.

Because there is so much involved, I think it’s worth pointing out that this is a good approach to getting your own business off the ground. Hey, more information on getting things started right never hurt anyone.

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  • http://wp3.lockergnome.com/nexus/blade/ Ron Schenone

    Hi Matt,
    I found that if I had someone contact my competitors and obtained their labor rates, I could keep my rates competitive.

    Agree about getting clients that will work well with you and not try to gouge you on pricing. If I didn’t like the client I would fire them.

    I also found that my best form of advertising was word of mouth.

    I would also add do not take on any job that you do not have the expertise to complete. Trying to wing-it will end in disaster for both you and the client.

    Later, Ron

  • JFK

    Been doing the gig for some time helping a lot of users in their home. This write up is based on someone with experience. And though there is profit potential in servicing the home users there are as equally many unexpected pitfalls usually not the fault of the tech.

    My advise is not to offer any free estimates. If you add up all the possible free estimates, it usually will take many hours of your time and the possibilty of ending up with no business is high because it usually amounts to a solicitation to go elswehere.

    When the client calls you up he wants to know how much it’s going to cost and to have it fixed as soon as possible.

    And if they waste your time with the lowest of haggling, trying to take advantage of your skills and talents you charge him a rate for canceling.

    Unfortuantely, you’ll see bounced checks but you should be flexible and take checks and you’ll have to deal with plenty of red tape from time to time.

    But at times you’ll come across the good clients who are willing to pay for good service. You work on keeping the good clients.

    It’s better to have a mix of service contracts for business to balance things out.

    -JFK

  • http://www.udviklingspark.info Daniel Nielsen

    No matter what, it’s never easy to start a new business, and yes you have to start from the ground and build up. I could never start a computer repair business myself, I kinda h*** eh, don’t like those home users :-P