Thursday, January 23, 2014

Value Added Resellers of SaaS

No doubt SaaS and its brethren has turned the world of IT and IT delivery upside down. As a result, traditional VARS (Value-Added ReSellers) have been pushed aside. Certainly at the lower-end of the market where all the exciting stuff is taking place. Simply put when software is delivered as a service there seems little need for a service to deliver software

However, there are organisations springing up now who do add value to SaaS and cloud applications. That is the new wave of integrators. Not to be confused with old school System Integrators (SI's), the likes of IFTTT, OneSaas, CloudWork and Bondable focus solely on building (and selling) plug-ins that automate transactions between SaaS applications. They do this by utilising the API each vendor provides to allow secure access to their service.

Integrations and a free public API have always been an essential ingredient in the SaaS go-to-market recipe. Now the sheer volume of services out there is creating a demand for these dedicated integration services. Making it even more important to provide an API with your SaaS product of course. 

But it's early days for these guys. I would suggest they're a bit ahead of the curve. Yes, the market is getting evermore savvy but for the players in this space and their backers it is a long game! But services that offer additional functionality to SaaS are ideally placed to become the trusted advisors to small business customers looking for simple, straightforward technology that does nothing more than help them run their business as efficiently as possible.

I expect to see the integration players start to leverage their position and the relationships they have with the vendors. If done right their domain could be a compelling one stop shop for SaaS customers. For vendors a new, reliable sales channel. For the integrators, extra revenue and greater customer interaction and satisfaction. Trust and added value are a heady mix! Step forward the Value Added Resellers of SaaS.

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