Channel Sales Tips: Understanding the SMB IT Manager

If you just started in a sales position for an IT reseller with lots of SMB clients, you’ll want to do your homework to understand the clientele. Know how stretched they are with their budgets, what their concerns are and how they are using the technology you’re trying to sell.

Many SMBs are going to be looking for mid-range computers in order to perform the most general business work. Some customers may be looking for the cheapest available option due to budget constraints, so may ask for an entry-level notebook model. Try to steer them away from this not just because it’s not as lucrative of a deal, but because it will do them a disservice in the long run. Providing them with recertified options can give them the power they need at the price they want. If they insist on new, never-used technology, we can get you a great deal on recently discontinued notebooks that will save your customers money as well as maintain greater margins for yourself.

These customers are likely saving some of their budget for software as well, which if you can offer affordable bundles will be what may win you the deal.

Smaller companies may also not have the know-how to select the appropriate hardware for their needs and will be looking for some advice. In order to establish a long-lasting relationship with an organization that may continue to grow and give you years of repeat business, take the time to give them guidance and get them a solution that truly meets their needs and their budget. Ask them how the computers will be used, what kind of programs will they be running, if their employees will be working remotely or traveling often. If they find later that you misguided them or took advantage of their inexperience, you will lose them as a customer forever.

Speak in straight-forward, simple terms if your customer does not have a technical acumen. On the flip side, be prepared to bring in technical experts on your team if the customers’ knowledge goes over your head.

Make sure your client has security as a priority as cybercrime continues to flourish among SMBs. If you have security services, winning this business is a plus. Even if you don’t offer this, you want your customers to succeed so that they can continue coming back to you for every hardware refresh.

More and more SMBs are realizing the benefits of cloud computing as it comes to getting the most bang for their buck with storage and mobility. If your organization offers both hardware and IT services, make sure you are taking every advantage to cross-sell from every aspect your business can provide. Perhaps a customer has come to you with a need for new laptops. Help them with their need, but ask them about other opportunities that your company offers because they may not know that you can provide a service for which they were going to call someone else.

If you can get your customer to communicate their main business objective of making the purchase they’re discussing with you, how they plan to use IT devices or services every day, ideal capabilities for each job role using the devices, and any foresight into how their needs may change in the future – you will have enough information to guide your customers to the appropriate devices and services to make them successful. This will enable you to build a business relationship that can last for many years. By understanding the needs of small business IT, you will be prepared to ask questions that may lead to greater opportunities through cross-selling and keeping more business for your organization, rather than sending your customer to a competitor.

 

IT Xchange provides recertified and recently discontinued, new hardware to resellers of computer hardware throughout North America, Europe and Asia. To learn more about how we can help you expand your margins, contact us today.