VAR programs are widely available to small and medium-sized businesses looking to profit by reselling highly sought after IT services. In a dream scenario, you choose a partner with a hot technology, integrate it into your offerings, and make bookoo bucks for the foreseeable future. Sounds good, but the road isn’t always so smooth for aspiring VARs.
Buying a product and pricing at a high enough mark-up to make for a worthwhile venture is actually the simple part. Identifying a lucrative market that can be tapped into effectively is where things get challenging. But there are opportunities to be had.
The cloud is a humongous space. VARs need to know exactly where to focus their efforts, and SaaS could be the answer. SaaS almost looks tailor made for this purpose, offering resellers compelling advantages such as:
Demand. Cost effectiveness, scalability, and convenience has businesses increasingly choosing cloud-hosted applications over on-premise software. IDC predicts that the SaaS market will exceed $60 billion by 2018.
Recurring revenue. SaaS offers subscription-based model that opens up a recurring stream of income. The predictability of recurring revenue can give VARs the stability needed to stand tall and keep the lights on.
Convenience. Resellers can reap many of the same cloud perks enjoyed by consumers. The SaaS gives you a license to sell software products with minimal capital expenditure, no systems to set up, and absolutely no inventory to maintain.
Big data is one of the biggest opportunities available to IT channel partners. Like the cloud, big data is raking in serious dough with revenues expected to near $50 billion by 2018. In addition to skilled analysts, enterprises need hardware and software that allows them to make the most efficient use of their data. VARs can supply the demand with technology that supports the large-scale data-driven requirements of the modern day enterprise. Narrow your focus to specific markets like “big data healthcare” or “government”, and you can really stand out from the crowd.
Mobile devices have changed the way organizations of all size conduct business. Opportunistic VARs can cash in by helping connect those devices in ways that are not limited to BYOD integration. For example, maybe your company works as the consultant who helps clients create policies and incorporate technologies that mitigate new security risks that arise from BYOD. Whether it’s providing software or supported devices, savvy VARs can be trusted go-to sources for a range of BYOD solutions.
Don’t Reinvent the Wheel, Transform It!
I wanted to highlight the aforementioned areas because of all the current trends, they are probably most likely to stick around. No matter what you seek out, though, turning those opportunities into steady revenue drivers requires a fundamental understanding of the existing IT landscape. The cost of hardware continues to plummet, open source is steadily replacing proprietary applications, and the cloud is rising as the infrastructure of choice. While there is still money to be made in moving technology goods, a new approach is needed. A solutions-oriented approach.
Businesses have changed how they go about procuring and using technology. The fact of the matter is that they still need technology and will buy it from the right provider. VARs who focus less on the selling element, and more on lending added value to the business problem at hand can deliver solutions that result in long-term profitability for all parties involved.
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