More than 40 percent of salespeople say that prospecting is the most challenging part of their job. Once you’ve built a relationship, the sales part comes easy. This is why many vendors are rethinking their sales models and looking to value-added resellers and affiliate partners—because these partners come with built-in clients.
Today we’re discussing how creating a 100 percent channel sales model for your organization should matter to you.
Here’s what you need to know about channel sales, and why it will benefit not just your organization, but everyone else too.
What is a Channel Sales Model?
When we talk about “channel sales,” what does this actually refer to? According to HubSpot, a channel sales model has a lot to do with how you sell your product or service.
When you employ channel sales, you are relying on third parties to sell your product or service. These third parties come in the form of: resellers, affiliate partners, wholesalers, agents, dealers, distributors, value-added providers, independent retailers, or anyone else who doesn’t work directly for your organization.
This differs greatly from the traditional, direct sales model, where your employees are the only ones who sell to clients.
How Does a Channel Sales Approach Apply to Software Sales or Value-Added Resellers?
Many software companies tap into a wide spectrum of avenues through which they can sell their products, one of these being channel sales. This allows them to put their products in the hands of the right end-users.
For value-added resellers in particular, a channel sales model seems to be an ideal approach.
HubSpot has developed an invaluable tool for setting up your own unique channel sales model, from outlining your team and finding channel partners to marketing your product and defining your strategy before you get started.
Truly, channel sales methods are a win for everyone involved. Your end-users and partners will benefit as much as you do! Here’s how you’ll all benefit:
Benefits for End-Users
When you employ a channel-type sales model, your end-users benefit greatly. When they work with one of your partners, they are set up for better success as they use your products and services.
It’s no secret that it can be a challenge to provide adequate support for your end-users 100 percent of the time. After all, you’re busy coming up with the latest and greatest, and you don’t always have the resources to help everyone. But when you rely entirely on channel sales, your end-users have a direct line of communication with your partners; they have an already-established working relationship. Your partners personally know how the end-users utilize your product and how it’s been implemented into their enterprise system, and they can help them right away.
When your end-users need training, onboarding, implementation support, or other services, your partners can work one-on-one with them to get them the help they need. You can focus on bringing in new business without having to sacrifice customer service or support for your existing users.
Benefits for Your Partners
What’s the incentive for your channel partners to work with you? Why is it so important for them?
When channel partners add your products and services to their portfolio, it’s like adding another tool to their toolbox. The more tools they have, the better they can serve their clients with just the right product to solve their problems. Your product can enhance their offerings and make them a more well-rounded ally for their clients (who become your future end-users!).
Here’s why so many value-added resellers and other partners are switching to a channel sales model:
- They get access to a full suite of products and services
- They can share cutting-edge technology with their clients and end-users
- They have access to your full range of resources and unparalleled expertise
- They benefit from lead generation when you pass leads onto them
- They see increased profit margins
- They boost their market credibility.
Benefits for You as the Vendor
As the supplier and vendor, what are some of the benefits you’ll enjoy when you employ a channel sales model?
Working with a channel partner, you are working with someone who is already well-known within their market; someone who is trusted. To tap into that market, you don’t have to work on establishing a brand presence. Instead, you get the built-in credibility of your channel partner. Their endorsement will be enough for many users to choose your product or service over someone else’s because they are a trusted and knowledgeable presence within their market or vertical.
More Time and Resources Spent Where It Matters
When you rely on an entirely channel sales-based model, you have more time and resources to spend on building out your product to be the best. You can devote more of your profits back into your company, investing in creating new and improved products and services.
Your channel partners are there to focus on all of your end-users, which means you can focus on the task at hand.
Efficiency and Increased Revenue
If you hire a channel sales manager, and they pair with several channel partners, you may find that with a channel sales model, you can bring in the same amount of revenue as five or six salespeople—at a fraction of the cost.
You also get the added efficiency of bringing in new partners over hiring new salespeople. It’s a much simpler process, and once you’ve established your sales channel and worked out all the bugs, it’s an incredibly efficient way to bring in new customers.
- Experience accelerated growth
- Reach new markets and customer segments
- Reduce your organization’s cost of onboarding new customers
- Build a sense of community around your brand and your product
- Build strong relationships with partners and customers
What You’ll Need to Support Your Channel Sales Model
When we talk about adding channel partners and additional end-users, you need to make sure that your infrastructure is ready to take on the extra technological “weight” of new users and partners. Are your products ready to scale and grow with you? Are they designed to prevent lags and latencies?
As a vendor and as a value-added reseller, it’s more important than ever to have an all-flash array to support your systems.
When you consider a channel sales model for products like virtual desktops and other offerings, the only real option is an all-flash array. Here’s why:
- It’s manageable
- It’s accessible from anywhere
- It saves you money on IT staff and support
Additionally, an all-flash array will keep everything secure—a true win-win-win situation. All-flash arrays allow you to enable enterprise-wide security, even when your partners and end-users are accessing your information from their personal devices. You can add high-level security with multi-factor authentication, data encryption, and password protections, as well as vulnerability detection and prevention systems.
Simply put? An all-flash array is the best option for a successful channel sales model.
A channel sales model is a great solution for everyone involved. But to make it happen seamlessly? Let’s ensure your infrastructure is set up to support it.
At Violin Systems, we can help you implement channel sales to keep everyone going. Want to learn more about how we can set you up for success with personalized solutions and unbeatable infrastructure? Contact us today!