I started trading as FowlerWeb in May 2005, making myself available to people in need of help with their computers or websites. My business has grown steadily over the years as more people have come to know about me.
When a customer contacts me with a problem or question, I listen to what they have to say and if appropriate, give advice in response. More often than not, the person asks me to come out to help. Some customers prefer me to take their computers away to repair which can sometimes work out a little cheaper. If the person has not called before, I make sure I clearly explain my fees.
When going to a customer I always make a point of appearing presentable and arriving on time. Of course, when going from one customer to another, it is inevitable that I am sometimes delayed. When this happens I give as much advance warning as possible.
I recognise the job I do is a very personal thing; going into people’s homes, working on their computers, and often being around their children or grandchildren. Because of this I make a real point of being friendly and approachable. Teaching somebody new skills on their computer can often require a lot of patience as well; something I am often told I have a great deal of. If I have to explain problems or new procedures, I do so clearly, making sure I am understood and welcoming any questions.
Some of the problems people call me out to fix can take quite a long time and potentially prove expensive. When this is the case I make a point of explaining what is required and what options are available. I give as accurate an idea of cost as possible and will only do the work if the customer agrees to it.
When I have finished the work I have been called out for, I usually write out an invoice there and then. Most people prefer to pay before I leave – I can accept cheques or cash – but some prefer to post a cheque or pay via online banking. I only invoice when I feel a job is completed and the benefits are clear.
I have found that once people have used me, they tend to come back in future. Some might only need me once a year, others need me much more often. One of the things they all benefit from is the relationship which is built up and the reassurance that they know who to turn to next time they need help.
If you have any questions about what I do or how I do it, please do contact me.