10 Ways to Generate Recurring Revenue
Running a managed services practice is all about generating recurring revenue. Too many small IT providers get so hung up on the service part of Managed Services that they forget about the other ways to make recurring revenue. Here is my top ten list of ways to generate recurring revenue.
1. Watch Their Networks: Even if you are not a full-fledged MSP, why not offer some basic monitoring services for your clients? Just bill them for being a little proactive. It is an easy way to get them started in Managed Services.
2. Manage Their Internet Usage: Firewalls can be managed and monitored. Wouldn’t your customers want to know who is doing what on the network and when they are doing it? Many firewalls have remote management tools to fulfill this need. Manage your customers’ firewalls, provide them detailed reports on network usage and make some monthly income while doing so.
3. Clean Their E-mail: Everyone gets spam. Everyone hates spam. There are many ways to filter it. Why not solve your customers’ spam issues with a service that generates recurring revenue? Filter it in the cloud and save your customer the hassle and expense of purchasing a email filtering device and generate recurring revenue while doing so.
4. Protect Their Data: Backups are a no brainer for your clients. You have two choices: 1. Local backups to protect against hardware failure, data deletion, and corruption. 2. Offsite backups to protect from disasters (fire, theft, and water). Both options generate recurring revenue while protecting their data.
5. Virus Defense: Just like spam, every business has to deal with the constant threat from viruses and malware. Your clients need protection and you should be selling it to them as a monthly subscription service.
6. Offer a Variety of Web Services: Most businesses have websites and there are needs associated with maintaining them such as domain name registration, email, and hosting. What about SSL certs for your Exchange servers? These are opportunities to make recurring revenue that most service providers pass up.
7. Get Them Hooked Up: Are you cashing in on phone and internet service? ISP’s, phone providers, and brokers offer recurring commissions for referring business their way.
8. Use SaaS Options Like Hosted Exchange: Smaller clients might not need an in-house Exchange server. Why not offer hosted Exchange as an alternative? This is a great way to generate recurring revenue. There are many other hosted applications you can also resell to your clients and generate recurring revenue with (CRM tools, Google Apps, etc.).
9. File Sharing: File sharing and collaboration is a big conundrum for small businesses. Most end up using clunky FTP services as a solution, and we all know that this is less than ideal. There is another option. Offer an online file sharing and collaboration service as a monthly subscription.
10. Keep it Current: While not a monthly recurring revenue generator, licenses for firewalls, software, services, and warranties come up for renewal. Why let an opportunity to make money slip by? Most vendors pay good commissions for renewals and you should cash in.
There are many other ways to generate recurring revenue. Keep your eyes open for them and add them to your menu.
Paul Barnett is marketing director for VirtualAdministrator, which offers hosted solutions for managed service providers. Read all of Paul’s guest blogs here. Guest blog entries such as this one are contributed on a monthly basis as part of MSPmentor.net’s 2009 Platinum sponsorship.