As a value-added reseller, everything about the products you work with needs to be oriented around ROI. Often, optimizing what products you offer goes deeper than generating revenue; it becomes about what generates the most revenue.
This causes VARs to specialize in specific brands for their product portfolio. Brands that they have a history working with and know inside and out. And for many solutions, this approach has a lot of benefits.
Access control is one of those solutions that specializing in a brand can help maximize ROI. There are several reasons for this.
Working closely with a single access control distributor can present you with better and better benefits over time because of one, old-school concept: Relationships.
Focusing on one access control distributor lets you spend a lot of time establishing and fostering a good ongoing relationship. Any vendor will tell you that a great vendor-VAR relationship is a lot more than numbers—it’s communication, facetime, and rapport building.
So what makes it worth maintaining this relationship, potentially at the cost of other relationships with competitive vendors?
A great relationship with your access control distributor can result in revenue opportunities like:
These “inside tracks” can give you a leg up when it comes to selling. Being able to offer more competitive pricing or customized features can help close a difficult deal more often than not.
Honing your service offering around tentpole vendors seems like a limiting element; wouldn’t offering more brands bring in more potential customers?
On the surface, that seems true. Yet, in commercial spaces, businesses aren’t as locked into a brand as we tend to think—especially if it’s a solution they don’t already have.
What potential customers are really looking for is a solution to their problems. If you can solve their unique issues then the specific brand matters less. Because of this, working with a single brand can make it easier for you to solve a wider array of problems by virtue of specialization.
In access control, when you know a certain brand inside and out, you understand everything from the engineering to the backend support. You can solve more complex problems like mutli-place management, software and hardware integrations, etc.
For instance, if a customer wants an access control solution that pushes notifications about opened doors to a Slack channel, having knowledge about integrations or API can make that an easy thing to do.
As another example, say a potential client wants access permissions to be automatically granted from information in their Active Directory. And they need their access control to work with their existing surveillance and alarm system. Knowing exactly how an access control distributor’s solution answers these questions can turn an “I need to check on that,” into a “we can definitely do that.”
Remember earlier when we said a strong relationship with our access control distributor may get you some preferential treatment? Here we are.
If you’re an especially active VAR—always in communication with your vendor, forwarding deals, joining beta programs, visiting with them at conferences—then, chances are, when you encounter a problem and need support fast they’ll be there for you.
Vendors work hard to enable their VARs in any way they can, and if you’re a favorite VAR of a vendor then you can expect a little extra oomph to everything they do.
You may get to know your account manager, but you can also get to know members of the help desk or a support manager. All of these people want you to close more deals and promote the product more, so when it comes time to solve a problem you can expect it to get done quickly.
Every customer wants something “custom” done with their solutions—even in access control.
We know this is a classic eye-roll moment for any VAR. We hear the word “custom” and we immediately think “time-sink.” Generally, this holds true. But if you specialize in a specific brand and have a good enough relationship with your access control distributor, certain varieties of custom can be more achievable.
Even beyond your own expertise with the product, you can often get some help directly from your vendor. This may not make everything possible, but it certainly enables you to solve more unique problems and close deals that may have slipped through your fingers otherwise.
Vendors work hard to develop VARs for more reasons than selling their products. Vendors often have huge lead networks of their own, and VARs act as the scalable foundation that enables vendors to turn their lead network into revenue.
As a VAR, this means more leads in your inbox. More often than not, the frequency, quality, and quantity of the leads you receive are affected by how active a reseller you are: How many deals you forward, how much you communicate, etc.
This is yet another payoff to maintaining a great relationship with your access control distributor. If they think of your company when they receive a lead in your region, that is a direct revenue opportunity that you otherwise may have missed.
Now that you know your value as a reseller, how do you choose the right access control distributor?
In our opinion, Kisi is a pretty great choice (surprise!).
Everything we’ve covered here, Kisi does for our VARs in some way. Our reseller network is constantly growing, and we do everything in our power to enable reseller success. This means speedy support, relationship-based account management, access to beta initiatives, and, yes, a lead network.
If becoming a Kisi reseller sounds like a good fit for your business, check out our reseller page.