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New Cloud Tools Aim to Streamline, Monetize Partner Relationships

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AppDirect on Tuesday announced new products and functionality for its Cloud Commerce Platform.

The new tools, AppReseller and Cloud Management Suite, enable software vendors to launch reseller partner programs quickly. Software as a Service providers can use the new capabilities to help their small and mid-sized business users manage and leverage their software more effectively.

AppReseller helps software vendors monetize partner relationships by enabling channel partners to spin up customer accounts and place orders in real time.

With AppReseller, vendors can accomplish the following tasks:

  • Set up a portal to onboard and manage partners;
  • Get a granular view of data on the status of partnerships, including leads, pipeline, influenced revenue and attributed revenue;
  • View sales, costs and revenue across a partner ecosystem through a single dashboard; and
  • Automate payments and reconciliations between themselves and partners and resellers.

“AppDirect does provide our partners with this data, but AppReseller’s built as a standalone product to enable partners to build their own reseller networks,” said AppDirect CEO Daniel Saks.

“It wasn’t designed to replace these tools but to supplement these systems,” he told CRM Buyer.

Customers no longer have to be a part of the AppDirect reseller ecosystem, Saks noted.

“Think of it as a distribution channel in a box,” said Michael Jude, a research manager at Stratecast/Frost & Sullivan.

Still, “not really seeing a lot here,” said Rebecca Wettemann, VP of research at Nucleus Research.

“Most CRM vendors provide capabilities for partner relationship management as well,” she told CRM Buyer, “that’s…

Executive Briefings: Thirstie, Exceptional Spirits Delivered to Your Door

The C-Suite is a vast audience of leaders who all have a little extra insight into their industry and the current business world. I sit down with these leaders to give them the opportunity to share that insight and give a glimpse to their personal stories as a business leader. I recently had the opportunity to interview Devaraj Southworth, CEO and Co-founder of Thirstie.

Alcohol is a heavily regulated industry, and because of that the way consumers have traditionally purchased alcohol has not changed much. Thirstie has created quite a disruption within this industry; how did this come about?

There are companies delivering products within the food, transportation, grocery industries, however within the wine and beverage industry we immediately noticed there was no one clear technology leader. We wanted to be the technology company to take an innovative approach to alcoholic beverage distribution. Of course, we had to address the legal challenges and that was about solving business challenges on a consumer side as well as the distribution aspect.

I’m having a party, I’m about to run out, or I want to have a party and I need to stock up – I can now call Thirstie.

Yes, call Thirstie! We created a system that would enable the consumer to use their mobile device to purchase alcoholic beverages and have them delivered to their home within the hour. We also offer more specialized products that can be delivered within 3 days as well as integrated recipes as a way to wrap our consumers in a fabulous value added experience.

Regarding wrapping your consumer in a value added experience, what didn’t work and what did work and what do you do as an ongoing process to continue to learn?

Early on we did a lot of testing. Our first tests involved a very niche approach. We assumed that our viewers and our readers would want a more limited group of products. We were wrong; we quickly learned our consumers wanted the largest selection possible. Our customers asked for more so we created a mail order division to better serve them.

Listen to your consumers.

Our early customers were asking for more information and education. The traditional model involves going to the liquor store, seeing thousands of items and generally leaving with the same product you usually buy. That’s not the ideal purchasing experience, so presenting information that is not overwhelming is part of our customer experience.

Five years from now how do you see change, if at all, in the primary distribution of liquor and spirits.

I think technology much like ours will enable the large massive brands to sell directly, as well as the smaller and early ones. This is the future. Using a mobile device to order alcohol does not mean we are cutting out a person, or tier. The reality is we’re not, we’re working within that system and the system’s being – first tier manufacturers, the second being distributors, and the third being retailers.

What we are doing is leading additional demand, which is beneficial to the retailers, the distributors, the brands and ultimately the consumer.

This article is also featured on Huffington Post.