While we don’t want to sound like an infomercial touting “a get rich quick” program, the fact is that those who work smarter often outperform those who merely try to work harder. With the start of the Cisco fiscal year, we wanted to share four best practices for Cisco solution providers to ensure you’re reaching (or exceeding) your sales projections and getting the highest levels of rebates, credits and other incentives that are available to your company.
Sometimes the price difference between what a customer is willing to pay and your asking price is so close – yet so far away. In those instances, instead of delaying the sales process or compromising your profit margins, think “Refresh.” Cisco Refresh is the rebranded and updated version of CCRE (Cisco Certified Refurbished Equipment) and includes nearly 4,000 offerings from all technology areas (e.g. switching, routing, wireless, IP telephony, security and other advanced technologies.) What’s nice about Cisco Refresh is that unlike “grey market” products, these come with the same Cisco warranties and support service as new products, and are eligible for leasing and financing offers available through Cisco Capital. Aside from an attractive price point (up to 40% less expensive), Cisco Refresh products are viewed favorably by customers with green IT initiatives, and these products often are available quicker than new products — especially when you’re buying from a premier Cisco distributor like Ingram Micro.
Fast Track SKUs
In a typical IT project there are a variety of products involved – ranging from basic plug-and-play items that a customer could set up by itself to more complex products that require your certified engineers’ attention. To optimize your engineers’ labor, be sure to keep an eye on Cisco Fast Track SKUs. These high-run-rate products, which are updated regularly, are typically in stock (Ingram Micro, for example, has $200 million in Cisco products on hand) and can be drop-shipped directly to your customer. Plus, Cisco Fast Track SKUs often are sold at deeper discounts than other Cisco products.
Rather than focusing your sales energy only on acquiring new business, consider the money you may be leaving on the table with your existing customers. One area where IT solution providers miss out on incremental sales is with professional and managed services, which can be attached to hardware (and software) sales. Cisco Smart Net Total Care (SNTC), formerly SMARTnet Service, was created to lead Cisco partners to increased service opportunities, monetization of their installed base, and greater resource efficiency. Including SMART capabilities with Cisco foundational technical services delivery, and providing unmatched visibility to customer’s installed base and contracts, can increase operational efficiency, shift the focus from support delivery to business outcomes, and provide an opportunity for greater revenues. Cisco SMART capabilities also offer up-to-date visibility into a customer’s service and hardware opportunities.
Know Your Metrics
As a Cisco partner, you know the value of meeting certain sales thresholds. The Cisco Value Incentive Program (VIP) makes it easier to keep track of sales; plus it offers monetary rewards to partners who focus their practice on technologies that are part of Cisco architectures or emerging offerings. VIP architectures and tracks include Collaboration, Data Center, Enterprise Networks, Security, Cloud Managed Services, Cloud Services Reseller, Software as a Service (SaaS) and Cisco Open Network Environment (Cisco ONE). VIP is open to Cisco Specialized, Certified or Authorized Technology Provider (ATP) partners who sell Cisco architectures within the current six-month program period. Contact your Ingram Micro channel account manager to learn more about getting signed up during the next Cisco VIP open enrollment period. If you’re close to meeting the next revenue threshold, contact us so we can help you meet your business goals.
Speed of execution is where Ingram Micro shines for its Cisco partners. We take pride in executing large volumes in short periods. Let us help you grow and drive your Cisco and other IT business to new heights, starting with your Cisco fiscal year-end business goals.
Learn more about Cisco Refresh, Fast Track SKUs, SNTC and Cisco VIP by visiting our Cisco Showcase on ingrammicro.com.