Memo to Google Apps Resellers: Two Follow-on Sales Ideas

Memo to Google Apps Resellers: Two Follow-on Sales Ideas

More than 1,000 channel companies participate in the Google Apps Reseller Program. But is there life after Gmail, Calendar, Docs and the other component of the cloud-based suite?

Of course, most cloud partners will be providing a mix of consulting, support, managed services and cloud services around Google Apps. And on top of that, there’s new opportunities for follow-on product sales. Unified communications and backup vendors now aim to sell through the expanding Google Apps channel. Partnering to add those tools to your portfolio could boost recurring revenue.

Two examples include Unified Communications and Backup Solutions.

Unified Communications

Esna Technologies Inc., based in Richmond Hill, Ontario, provides unified communications software that integrates with cloud offerings such as Google Apps and customers’ existing voice systems. The company, which typically partnered with traditional voice resellers, is shifting its focus to Google Apps resellers.

Davide Petramala, vice president of sales and marketing at Esnatech, said the company began working proactively with Google Apps resellers in late 2010. Esnatech helps resellers promote its unified communications product, Office-LinX , on initial Google Apps sales. The company also helps resellers promote the technology as a follow-up revenue opportunity. In the latter case, existing Google Apps customers look to integrate unified communications and voice infrastructure, Petramala added.

Office-LinX fits well with systems integrators since the product ties into a customers on-premise infrastructure and cloud-based applications.

“Because of the integration and professional services opportunity, it has a big appeal to SIs,” Petramala said. “They not only have product revenue opportunity, but deployment, support and product management revenue opportunities.”

Esnatech partners can expect product revenue of $15 to 70 per user per year depending on the service. The Office-LinX platform comes in a range of configurations, supporting different number of ports and users. Petramala said the partners’ margin is 20 to 25 percent.

In addition, there’s one-time installation revenue of $5 per user. Installation support and project management revenue provides additional opportunities.

For the first half of the year, Esnatech focused on the top 25 premier Google Apps partners and enlisted 14 of those as certified partners, Petramala said.

Backup Apps

On the data protection side, Backupify offers a backup service for Google Apps.  The company last month launched its Backupify Authorized Reseller program, which targets VARs and MSPs.

The Cambridge, Mass. company says its offers channel partners recurring revenue, training and deal registration for additional margin. Backupify, which also offers social media backup, has pointed to Google Apps backup as its most popular service for small businesses, a market many channel partners emphasize.

Products like backup and unified communications could potentially boost revenue in an established Google Apps account. At the very least, they provide a reason to go back and knock on the customer’s door.
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