With the cloud industry exploding, many channel partners are trying to figure out the value of selling and managing cloud services. Technology research firm IDC has even predicted worldwide spending on public IT cloud services will approach $100 billion in 2016. This is a great statistic of course, but I am often asked what it means for our channel partners.
As consumers and small businesses become more familiar with cloud services, they are increasingly driving demand. So, what kind of value would selling cloud services really deliver? Here are four key channel partner benefits to consider:
- Channel partners can bundle multiple cloud services together within comprehensive, cost-effective packages.
- By deploying remotely, channel partners can reduce their travel time and expenses, freeing more time to focus on growing their businesses.
- Cloud services are incredibly easy to manage. Historically, many channel partners built their business by selling hardware and software, requiring time at customers’ sites. Now, resellers can move customers to cloud solutions without additional equipment and they can troubleshoot remotely.
- As customers renew services, ongoing revenue streams are created while perpetuating customer relationships. Unlike single hardware implementations, cloud services offer opportunities for ongoing management and monitoring. Over time, this can deepen customer relationships through access to real-time tools that help channel partners best meet their customer’s needs.
Using Online Backup as an Entrée into the Cloud
Many channel partners have found that online backup represents a strong entry point for offering cloud services. In Carbonite studies on data backup usage, small businesses ranked the permanent loss of data as the top challenge to maintaining their operations in the event of a natural disaster—even more than the loss of their physical location or products and materials. Yet many were challenged by keeping pace with backup tasks. Half of respondents noted that they used external hard drives, and 40 percent of them only started backing up after experiencing a hard drive failure. A robust, secure and easy way to back up data is compelling, and helps to ease customers into using cloud services. Protecting that valuable data creates a strong and long-term relationship between customers and channel partners.
Rising demand for cloud services will create more opportunities for channel partners, who can leverage these offerings to customers and bundle multiple services. Furthermore, the cloud allows more freedom for relationship building, new customers acquisition and strategic management.
At Carbonite, we are committed to work very closely with our channel partners. If you’re interested in learning more about Carbonite’s Online Backup Reseller Program please email or call us at 877-391-4759.
David Hauser is Channel Director at Carbonite, a leading cloud backup service provider. Monthly guest blogs such as this one are part of The VAR Guy’s annual platinum sponsorship program.