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What CSPs Should Demand From a Cloud Marketplace Platform

Posted by Ian Constantine on Nov 13, 2017 12:00:00 PM

"Cloud Marketplace Platform" is a new channel buzz phrase. This is something you may be considering, or have already started using. What exactly is a cloud marketplace? It’s a digital marketplace where you can purchase and manage cloud subscriptions and services across multiple vendors or cloud providers. Often available through your traditional distribution partner, you can also find marketplaces with non-traditional distribution partners for niche services.

When searching for the best cloud marketplace platform, you need to consider how the platform can help your company achieve the following business objectives.

Increase Value and Profitability

Gone are the days of one-and-done sales of point products. Value added resellers are now cloud solution providers (CSPs). It's all about building a book of business and reaping the benefits of recurring revenue streams. The problem with that, however, is that if you're only selling one tenant solution, you're just making a few dollars per customer. Further, we can expect that those solutions will squeeze margins as they become more commoditized. Cloud solution providers need to put together multiple integrated components to construct higher value solutions.

A cloud marketplace platform should help to expand your portfolio and enable the sales of more complete (and more profitable) solutions.

Build and Protect Business Intelligently

Customer subscriptions are living, breathing things. You have to care for them to help them grow. To do that, you need to have complete visibility into what's going on throughout their lifecycles. Are your customers using their solutions to their fullest capabilities? Are their users engaged with the features that can maximize their productivity? Is one area of their business running up the bill on a particular service? These are all questions you should be asking on a monthly, if not daily basis.

A cloud marketplace platform should empower your company to become smarter and more proactive by providing insight into your customer’s interests and behaviors with the products you sell, which can help retain your customer for the long run.

Make Business Management More Efficient

Selling solutions is great, but managing them in eight different portals is not. If you need to make simple changes like adjusting the number of licenses for a user, purchasing add-ons, assigning licenses, resetting passwords, etc., you need one single place that allows you to do that. Managing a subscription-based business comes with additional operational costs, and CSPs have to find ways to minimize that time spent away from selling.

A cloud marketplace platform should save you time and money by reducing the number of places you need to visit to manage your business.

Automate and Create

Every CSP is different. You have different customer bases, vertical specialties and unique ways to package your value to customers. All of these various use cases cannot funnel into the same linear transactional model and user experience. Web service methods like REST APIs help automate processes like billing, creating custom experiences and intellectual property, which can help generate additional profit.

A cloud marketplace platform should be flexible enough to let you consume its services and present them to customers in the way that best fits your business.

At Tech Data, we have a team dedicated to helping you start or accelerate your cloud business. With that, we have a robust cloud marketplace and platform, StreamOne, that covers the needs of your SMB and enterprise customers. For more information, call 800-237-8931, ext. 87663 or email tdcloud@techdata.com to learn more.

Tags: Cloud Marketplace, Cloud, platform

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