Exclusive Westcoast research entitled What UK Resellers Really Think has revealed that while 92 per cent of VARs/MSPs admit to feeling frustrated with their distributors over lack of contact and flexibility, they still need distributor support more than ever as they embark on crucial digital transformation journey.
Westcoast commissioned an independent survey of over 200 UK resellers earlier this year, ranging from turnover of £50m to £500m-plus, to discover what services and support are most needed in the channel.
According to the findings, while 92 per cent see digital transformation as a chance to get closer to customers, and 89 per cent feel distribution can help them with their digital transformation strategies; less than half of the resellers questioned (41 per cent) said they were ready to take the digital transformation journey in the next 12-24 months.
Yet 64 per cent saw cloud services, and 53 per cent saw machine learning as key growth areas in the coming two to three years, meaning there is a gap between what they know they should be focusing on in the future, and what they feel they can confidently do right now.
And this is where distribution comes into its own. According to the report findings:
- 92 per cent of resellers admit to being ‘more demanding’ of distribution than two years ago
- 60 per cent of resellers questioned look to distribution for customer insights
- 51 per cent look to distribution for marketing advice
- 44 per cent need distribution for market forecasts
However, the report highlights that there is still work to be done on the part of distributors to address growing frustrations felt by resellers. According to the findings:
- 100 per cent of respondents said they were ‘satisfied’ or ‘very satisfied’ with their distribution partners, but just 8 per cent admitted to having ‘no frustrations’
- 50 per cent feel that distributors don’t offer total solutions
- 56 per cent are frustrated by pricing flexibility
- 47 per cent are frustrated by a perceived lack of product flexibility
- 40 per cent are frustrated by a lack of personal contact
- 60 per cent prefer to buy stock from retailers
Lucy Weedon, marketing director at Westcoast said: “UK resellers have spoken – and for Westcoast, it provides a real opportunity to meet higher demands, resolve any frustrations and overcome critical challenges. From a marketing perspective we have a clear view of what our customers need and have a strategy to deliver on just that.
“It is clear that distributors need to provide more value, direction and expertise. At Westcoast we believe that we can offer our partners all they need to strengthen customer relationships, develop skills in emerging technologies and future-proof their businesses.”