SearchITChannel.com's Channel Business How-To series provides actionable advice for managers of channel businesses. You'll find high-level, but highly specific, tips for running a successful reseller, service provider or IT consulting business. Channel Business How-To topics include how to evaluate the profitability of an IT project, how to incorporate a SaaS business model and how to develop effective IT marketing techniques. Email us your requests for more channel business topics, and check back here for more installments in the series.
Talk of recession is in the air, but value-added resellers (VARs) and managed service providers (MSPs) don't have to be caught in the downdraft. By adopting some best practices for monitoring your income, seeking recurring revenue streams and offering flexible payment options, you can find continued success even as enterprises reduce spending on new IT projects. In this Channel Business How-To, you'll not only learn how to survive in a recession, but thrive.
If you're rolling out a services-based line of business, such as managed services, an IT service-level agreement (SLA) is as essential as your vendor partnerships. Whereas many resellers may have previously acted just as an intermediary between their customers and vendors, more and more are providing service directly -- or at least rebranding services from a managed service provider (MSP) as their own. This closer, longer-term relationship means you'll have to draft an SLA to define exactly what you should and shouldn't be expected to do for your clients. Learn what an SLA is and how to draft an SLA that will save both you and your clients headaches in the future.
For a reseller or systems integrator, SaaS requires a few adjustments, but service providers and vendors alike agree there's a role for the channel with SaaS. Learn why, especially in the small and medium-sized business sector, companies wanting to use SaaS will still look to a reseller for advice and implementation help.
For many small and medium-sized resellers, expanding your line of business takes time and money, and it's important to know both your up-front capital expenses and ongoing costs so that you can calculate your return on investment (ROI). Read this Channel Business How-To for advice on becoming and staying profitable as a reseller. You'll learn techniques to expand your business, including gauging market demand, understanding fixed and ongoing costs, maximizing staff allocation, and how partnerships can help you.
In the fiercely competitive world of IT consulting, solid IT skills aren't enough to make your consulting business a success -- you need effective methods for getting your message out and differentiating yourself from your competitors. In this Channel Business How-To, you'll learn the steps to developing an effective IT marketing campaign. From identifying your audience, to developing a compelling message, to forming mutually beneficial partnerships, this advice gleaned from IT consulting veterans will take your business to the next level of success.