This week I’m looking at Channel Issues. With ever increasing product complexities and product offerings, the ICT industry with its constantly changing landscape remains a hotly contested marketplace.
But, with margins being squeezed on all sides throughout the value chain, how are vendors, distributors and resellers meant to build true collaborative partnerships?
Relationships are made even more difficult when vendor expectations are placed on distributors and what distis are required to do for them, to enable resellers to maximize sales continue to increase.
Is Collaboration Enough?
Collaboration is a starting point, but today’s reseller needs to be wooed much more than ever before as they face a backdrop of significant challenges which include; shrinking budgets, increased planning timescales and multiple products from more vendor stakeholders than they can possibly market and sell successfully. It certainly feels like there is less resource available all-round, so naturally, vendors will typically focus more of their squeezed resources on the channel partners who not only offer the best ROI, but deliver above and beyond on their agreements.
So, it’s pretty much as we have been then really, just tougher. But what’s going to happen over the next few years? Surely it can’t just carry on as business as usual – where rather than break the status quo we’ll continue to see many great ideas fall into the, “it’s too difficult to do box, so we’ll leave it.” Could customization help; will the vendors be willing to throw some more money at the problem?
In the current market conditions, the same old “blah blah blah” just does not cut it as a differentiator – did it ever in fact? There is still space in the market to be unique, for vendors to take on the challenge. The question is who is going to make the first move and stamp their mark over the next few years?