Microsoft Windows 8, Office: Q4 2013 Partner Sales Push
Even as Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) prepares Windows 8.1 for release later thi year, the company is making a major Windows 8 and Office partner push to help finish its current quarter on a high note. Microsoft’s effort, called Beyond Easy, helps partners to find, sell and profit from Office 365, Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, Hyper-V and SQL Server. Here’s the update.
Microsoft’s Q4 2013 ends when June 2013 comes to a close. Seeking to fuel partner-driven sales in the current quarter, the company notes:
- about 65 percent of SMB customers run Office 2007 or older versions of the suite.
- Web syndication technology from Microsoft allows VARs to offer Office 365 trials via their respective websites. Those VARs can also become partners of record for customers that sign up for Office 365.
- Special offers called Big Easy and Cloud Easy offer higher margins and are available through May 31, 2013.
- And some additional bonuses and prizes are available.
A Closer Look
Cindy Bates, VP of Microsoft’s US SMB and distribution, told The VAR Guy that her key goal is to help partners find customers; understand incentives; and get rewarded.
The current Beyond Easy push should appeal to any Microsoft partner that has sold any Open licensing to customers in the past six years. Microsoft still has the data on those sales, and is prepared to help partners of record to re-engage those customers with upsell opportunities.
Preparing for WPC 2013
Meanwhile, Microsoft also is preparin for its Worldwide Partner Conference 2013, where cloud, mobile, big data and social will take center stage. Moreover, there are rumors that Microsoft’s Surface tablet will receive a more formalized channel partner program. Bates declined to speculate about a Surface channel program, but said Microsoft will continue to expand its OEM strategy for Windows 8.
WPC 2013, scheduled for July 2013, will arrive only a couple of weeks after Microsoft completes its fiscal 2013 year.