As 2015 winds to a close, value-added resellers (VARs) across the country are preparing for a busy year ahead. If you work in the pro AV and digital signage space, you’re likely prepping for an especially full schedule, because the industry is in the midst of a very dynamic time.
With 2016 on the horizon, let’s take a quick look at where the pro AV and digital signage industry is headed—and what it could mean for you:
As the global economy steadily recovers, investment in pro AV and digital signage technology has been on the rise—a trend that should continue for the next several years.
The overall pro AV industry is in a period of slow yet steady growth, with digital signage really leading the charge. Pro AV should total about $116 billion worldwide by 2016, thanks in large part to a growing need for more seamless collaboration. Digital signage is expected to account for about $24 billion in revenues by 2020, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region, where customers in the banking and education markets are leading a rapid surge in growth.
Pro AV and digital signage have moved well beyond the original versions of themselves; today, each segment of the market is full of exciting innovation and advanced features. As pro AV becomes increasingly popular and competition increases among product manufacturers, expect even greater innovation to emerge in the coming years.
According to IHS Research, the exciting developments that are pushing growth include more robust video management software, more energy-efficient display options, higher-resolution screens (including 4K and 8K), ultra-narrow bezel video walls, and larger digital displays. Meanwhile, a growing number of AV customers are more likely to seek out Internet of Things–enabled meeting rooms, BYOD-friendly presentation technologies, and more seamless mobile capabilities.
Growing acceptance and awareness
As recently as 10 years ago, there was limited customer awareness of pro AV and digital signage technologies. However, as today’s businesses become increasingly reliant upon digital communications and collaboration technology, it only makes sense to make the move toward pro AV systems and digital signage. Today, companies and organizations in every vertical from finance and healthcare to education, retail, and hospitality are realizing that AV technologies stand to benefit them in a variety of ways.
As a VAR, keep in mind that some of your new and potential customers will still be fairly unaware of the benefits offered by pro AV and digital signage. Your opportunity is to educate these customers on the potential of AV—and you may end up with a lifelong client in the process.
Greater opportunities for VARs
As the pro AV industry grows and awareness increases, your sales are likely to continually improve as well. In addition, today’s newer technologies give you the opportunity to incorporate more service-based offerings, such as content and video conferencing services, which give you greater potential for recurring revenue and the chance to build your business for years to come.
What trends do you see shaping the pro AV and digital signage markets in your own area? What factors do you think will have the biggest impact on your own business over the next five years?