ONE thing could be turning away 86% of potential partners: Does your business pass the test?

In my first 23 years of marriage, my husband and I were transferred 9 times with his company. Each move involved the requisite “house hunting” trip of 4 to 5 days of intense house searching -- usually resulting in looking at 30 to 40 houses and making an offer that same week.

What I know for sure after all those years and all those houses, is that the door mat would tell you everything you needed to know about the house. Dog fur and old leaves: dirty, poorly maintained house. Geese in outfits (sorry, dressed-goose lovers): out of date and tacky. Perfect, well maintained, current and clean: perfect, well maintained, current and clean.

Your Partner Portal is that door mat for your business. In an eye-opening new stat from global analyst firm Frost and Sullivan, a full 86 percent of today’s partners base their decisions on which vendor to work with on the Partner Portal. It’s the entry point for your channel program. In its very quality and construction, partners see a crystal clear view of how easy you are to do business with, how contemporary you are in your use of technology to service them, and the spectrum of tools they will have at their disposal to maximize their business opportunity with you. Is it any wonder then, that companies with a commercially available SaaS PRM solution generate, on average, an additional $8 to $9 million in incremental channel revenue each year, according to the same Frost & Sullivan report?

Those two stats become even more critical as the indirect channel continues to outpace direct sales as the primary sales vehicle for businesses worldwide. Analysts estimate that as much as 80 percent of worldwide revenue in Information Technology alone, already flows through the channel and it is only increasing. As companies struggle to find and retain experienced enterprise sales executives, they almost inevitably turn to the indirect channel as the cost-effective solution to the problem of scale.

Despite these stats, a surprising number of companies still rely on homegrown portals with limited functionality that they view as “good enough.” Or worse, they use no portal at all. But the numbers speak for themselves about the sense of urgency companies should be putting into upgrading the technology that powers their Partner Portals. Can your business afford not to attract the best partners? Do you really want only partners who accept the poorest of experiences as they themselves may have dated, less than optimized systems? Can your business afford to turn its back on what study after study shows contemporary PRM solutions generate in additional revenue alone? Take the Frost and Sullivan number of an incremental $9 million in revenue a year. That’s more than $24,000 a day in potential lost revenue because you’re failing to attract the best partners and/or optimize the experience for and the performance of your partners. Even if that number feels like a stretch – any percentage you cut off it is still a tremendous number that would quickly pay for the cost of upgrading your PRM solution.

At Impartner, we understand that part of the challenge is simply getting over the hurdle of aligning your organization around making a PRM decision. That’s why we’ve made it so easy to have you up and running with a contemporary, fully featured Partner Portal in as few as 30 days, whether you’re managing thousands of channel partners or you’re just starting to build your partner program. Take a demo now and find out how we can make sure the welcome mat you put out for your indirect channel brings the industry’s best partners to the front door of your business and helps you accelerate channel revenue.

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