The technology sphere is one of constant innovation. New trends and techniques emerge almost daily to offer better, faster and stronger ways to conduct business activities.
Amidst the development of trends, recognizing what your organization needs is key to deciding what to incorporate.
For IT resellers, VARs (value-added resellers) and channel partners meeting requirements to move information around securely, monitor business activities and automate processes could be what distinguishes your organization from competitors.
Staying aware of the latest trends in software and IT development offers you the ability to optimize and scale, with minimal investment, as you grow.
Four Software Trends to Watch
Trend #1 Growing Front Office Spending on SaaS
Software is no longer a back end expense. SaaS or software as a service is expected to experience over 380 million installations by the year 2021.
The expenditure on software has increased over the past decade. Companies are no longer investing in technology only for conventional use.
Integration capabilities are now available across all departments within the organization and VARs and IT resellers are taking note.
Creating interactive virtual experiences for prospective clients could be what secures your sale.
An appealing front office experience is the equivalent of investing to make your reception comfortable at your physical office.
Making a strong and reliable first impression not only helps bring in your clients but maintain them.
SaaS capabilities include creating smooth communication flows between your client and business and ensuring comprehensive information is readily available for perusing without inquiry.
Well-rounded business software suites are bound to offer foundational eCommerce platform-building tools.
Their integration abilities help create unique storefronts that incorporate software solutions already in use.
For VARs, the VARStreet business management application offers an interesting tool to make B2B transactions as comprehensive as possible.
Companies are now expected to invest heavier in IT solutions to keep up with innovation and optimisation trends. The end result; optimized business practices.
Trend #2 Infrastructure Ecosystems and Integration
VARs and IT resellers, much like other businesses, are incorporating a growing number of technology-based solutions.
The traditional approach to software in this context revolves around multiple individual modules forming a business-wide system.
This means every department has a reporting and recording software that assists with process management and keeps information sharing between team members.
When the information needs to be shared or monitored by upper management, a team member is often required to make sense of the data. In practical application, this process can be tedious and expensive.
Looking for an alternative? Say goodbye to managing processes individually.
Everything from your accounting to CRM (customer relationship management) needs can now be addressed by a single business management software.
Such software offers control capabilities over each component and a dashboard to monitor bigger undertakings.
Help fluid information sharing between interdependent departments and enable fact and figure sharing to enhance business activities.
All of your business information is now available in one centralized portal for access as needed.
While it may seem investment heavy, most business management systems offer strong integration capabilities to make the best of existing infrastructure.
Migrate your systems, scale up when needed and upgrade components at your pace.
The wide variety of software compatible with VARStreets system allows for fluid information channels between existing systems and your newly implemented VARStreet application.
The in-house integration team helps you navigate creating a comfortable and exhaustive software solution.
Investing in a single software suite may be a more effective solution, adding the pieces you need and upgrading existing systems as the business grows.
Trend #3 The Solutions Based Approach
The “customer is king” approach is a common business model for companies to adopt.
VARs are centered around features, products and services that cater to a B2B audience.
When tackled traditionally, customers may not find what they are looking for but rather what the VAR thinks is relevant. The end result could be traffic that does not translate down into sales.
Migrate to customer-centric business activities. This trend encourages companies to keep the customer in mind and ensure quality is translated down to the end product from the start of the production process to delivery.
If your business is struggling to understand where the discrepancy between want and fulfilment is coming from, introduce a strong CRM to your organization’s existing software suite.
Within a sales pipeline, a customer-based approach translates down to encouraging communication of substance with leads who are familiar with your product catalog but haven’t been sure what the right solution is for them.
Within a marketing scope, highlighting the space that gives product purchase context within their organization helps businesses understand why they should be investing.
CRM modules are able to handle these queries and more.
When looking to invest in a software solution, look for applications that enhance the customers purchasing experience. Simultaneously streamlining front and back end processes for ease of use should be a priority.
Trend #4 Adopting The Cloud
Investing in physical hardware and software components is outdated, restrictive and can be frustrating to deal with.
How do you deal with information sharing on the go? How do you approach work-from-home structures without compromising on quality communication?
More importantly, how do you access and edit important information to be shared with customers if information is bound to a single location? Enter cloud computing.
A survey conducted by OpsRamp discovered almost all organizations interviewed had planned to increase their cloud service dependency with 84% actively pursuing this as a business goal to achieve over the next two years.
Cloud software solutions are able to move with your organization. Geographical bounds for information sharing is a thing of the past.
Cloud infrastructures allow organizations to minimize investment in on-premise solutions. VARs who are focused on scalability for their business should look at adopting more cloud-based software solutions.
Software today, is built to accommodate cloud infrastructures. They are likely to offer decentralised information storing in a self-contained server at a remote location.
While this makes it easier to access data, it makes it more prone to data breaches. Ensure your software provider offers strong security measures to keep any information stored or communicated via the cloud safely.
Introduce a ONE-Stop Business Management Solution
VARs have been able to integrate various hardware and software components from multiple service providers to create a custom solution.
To incorporate and maintain these components individually can be time-consuming and difficult to coordinate without heavy investment into IT infrastructure and knowledgeable staff.
Migrating from old school, traditional software solutions to a fully self-contained, multi-functional unit offers higher functionality at a lower investment.
For any organization looking to grow, investing in a flexible business management solution will streamline your approach to running your business.
The Comprehensive Solution: VAR Business Management Software
The VARStreet business management software offers a unified platform to handle quoting, eCommerce, CRM, catalog management, sourcing and marketing.
Specializing in building strong B2B relationships, VARStreet is a useful component to optimize vendor-centric business activities.
Moving sales online has never been easier. Introducing a comprehensive eCommerce storefront that makes the process from identifying a product to completing the transaction has never been as seamless.
Additionally creating a dynamic portal that evolves with your business is an easy process with a number of premade templates and integrations.
Minimize the time invested in creating quotation documents with the sales quoting application offered by VARStreet;
- The multitude of ready-made sales quotation templates offer customization options to create collaterals unique to your organization and its needs. Add or import items required to offer bespoke detailed invoices to your clients.
- Should you be looking to stay competitive, the real-time access to over 45 IT and office supply distributors across Canada and the United States keeps you aware of industry pricing and trends.
- Automation is no longer a complicated process with a “rules-based calculations” feature that allows you to input sets of logic that can be used to make quotations with minimal intervention.
- Access your quotes on the go with an optimized mobile sales quotation application.
- Looking to send multiple quotes to different customers, the inbuilt multiple quote delivery system simplifies organisation.
Streamline communication with your customers by introducing a single platform to manage sales, connect and close deals;
- The easy lead capture process allows you to declare and change the status of a pursuit. Understanding where your customer lies along the journey of completing a sale is crucial to knowing how to approach them for successful completion.
- Create automated workflows help your business move towards maximizing customer relationships with minimal staff intervention.
- The “Notes” feature allows you to keep track of critical pieces of information that could help you close a sale.
- Introduce analytics for cart management. Understand customer purchasing trends and cart abandonment rates to frame sales trends.
- A reporting system offers clean analytics about traffic flows to your business. Use the reporting feature to churn out real-time and monitor your KPIs.
- Handle all customer information in a centralized location.
- CRM integrates with the quotation software to offer an automated conversion of quotes to order when a sale is successfully completed.
Sourcing and Procurement
Access multiple distributor pricing and inventories in a single access portal;
- VARStreet’s aggregated product catalog allows you to access products at the best possible pricing structure.
- Introduce real-time data flows with pricing and inventory updates available for over 7 million IT and office supplies.
- Create combination orders to offer clients bulk order deals.
- Minimize logistics costs by enabling distributors to drop ship products directly to your customers.
- Rule-based automated cart to purchase order conversion minimizes manual error and the need for staff intervention.
With over 25,000 VAR users, 5,500 manufacturers in their aggregated catalog and over $10 billion in transactions via VARStreet a year. The proof is in the pudding.
Should you be looking to invest in a comprehensive B2B business-enhancement solution, the growing number of features and integration options make the software an ideal investment at any stage of business development.
Investing in technology for enhanced organization management is the standard across all industries in today’s business environment.
Look to implement flexible systems that can scale up when required. Creating simple and logical workflows within your software can offer automation advantages creating more time to focus on more time-consuming activities.
Today’s VAR and IT reseller software trends revolve around incorporating further efficiency and effectiveness.
Introducing a customer-centric model helps businesses understand where and why revenue finds its way to the organization.
VARStreet offers a 360-degree approach to B2B selling. The software infrastructure offers insight into all your business departments and activities creating a streamlined portal for both the front and back end use; an ideal investment for smart businesses.