Last week I did a post on how Scam Artists have started defrauding Nigerians under the Guise of being SMS Providers, there was a lot of response from Members of Our Mailing list who all received the email and gave so much interesting insight on how wide and how sophisticated the networks of these scammers have become.
While I would not focus on scam sms gateways today, I would focus on another Big Problem facing everyone today with an SMS Business in Operation.
No matter How Big or Small your SMS Operation is, it depends on various factors to survive some of which are; You (the Entrepreneur), Your Hosting Provider, Your Domain registrar and Your SMS Gateway Provider.
Failure on the part of any of these could result in your sweat, sleepless nights and hardwork going down the drain within a twinkle of an eye.
In this Post, I would try to outline simple steps you should take and questions you should ask your sms provider before you pay for your Portal to ensure that whatever happens at anytime, you would be assured that you still retain full control of your business and can easily bounce back without too much adverse effects on your clients even if you meet a fly by night SMS Provider.
The following are the questions you should ask your provider:
1.) Are you given Full cPanel Access?:
cPanel is an extremely popular software used by webhosts to provide a Graphical User Interface and make the entire experience simpler and more intuitive, cPanel Access gives you full acces to the raw files of your website, your databases, your emails and loads of other configurations,
A lot of SMS providers, to retain control and prevent clients from leaving them in the future withold these cpanel details from clients. This is not ideal as in the event of catastrophe, the client has no way of retrieving site files and databases. Always confirm from your potential provider if you would be given your cpanel details before hand.
2.)Do you have Site Administrator Details:
Like mentioned in the last point, some SMS providers would Hoard your Site administrator details, or refuse to give you full administrator access to your Site. As far as you are paying in full for your WebSite, you must demand to be given full administrator access to your site.
This would ensure that you avoid heartache down the line and can also make necessary modifications down the line. Also, having these details is not a license to damage your website as at a point in our company, we stopped giving out admin details as Clients kept making modifications which damaged their sites leading to lengthy repairs having to be carried out.
Always ensure you have these details though and Guard them jealously.
3.) Domain epp code
This is the code needed to transfer your domain name to another provider in case your provider goes out of business.
It should be generated before any transfer is approved. before making payment, make sure your prospective SMS provider is willing to generate this for you on demand or has facilities to allow you generate it yourself.
4.) Ability to change API
Your API (Application Programmer Interface) is the system used to connect your Website to your SMS provider.
Before Getting your SMS Site, find out if you are allowed to modify/change your API and it hasnt been locked.
5.) On your own, make constant backups
Finally, on your Own, make constant Backups of your Portal when it has been delivered so you always have a recent copy downloaded in case anything goes wrong.
Do you have any other measures you take to ensure your business keeps running 24/7?
Let us know here.