Partner Programs Prove Key to Channel Relationships

Channel Partners surveyed in a Canalys study have conclusively agreed that partner programs are essential to their vendor relationships.

The survey of 130 partners showed the importance of programs to partner vendor relationships at eight on a 10-point scale. Partners rated the most important benefits of a partner program, in order of importance, as rebates, deal registration, lead generation, account management and front-end discounts.

“All program benefits are important to some degree,” said Alex Smith, senior channels analyst at Canalys, “but there is a clear hierarchy. After the foundation benefits you have the benefits that strengthen a program. These include MDF, training courses, partner portals and specializations. Finally, there are those benefits that help refine a program. These include access to vendor financing, the program branding, marketing collateral, access to events and individual sales rewards. These play a role in enhancing a vendor’s program, but our research shows they hold the lowest priority for channel partners.”

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