What are the different partner types?

Partnership is all about building value for your customers! What type of partners do you want to have a relationship with and how can they be defined? Examples are Distributors, Resellers, Value Added Resellers, Technology Partners, etc. What value do they bring to the customer?

Value-added resellers (VAR)

A company that resells software, hardware and/or networking
products and provides value beyond order fulfillment.
Managed Service Providers (MSP) A company that remotely manages a customer’s IT infrastructure and/or end-user systems, typically on a proactive basis and under a subscription model.
Reseller and VAR partners are applicable to any industry whether it’s hardware or software, or a product or a service. Any company that needs to grow without the overhead of a large sales force can set up a program for other companies to resell their product.

Consultants & Services Partners

An experienced individual that is trained to analyze and advise
a client in order to help the client make the best possible choices. Services partners support implementations, installations, support, consulting, or product training. Services partners generally augment the professional services department of a company as opposed to the sales teams.

System Integrators (SI)

An individual or business that builds computing systems for clients
by combining hardware and software products from multiple vendors.

Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM)

A broad term whose meaning has evolved over time. In the past, OEM referred to the company that originally built a given product, which was then sold to other companies to rebrand and resell. Over
time, however, the term is more frequently used to describe those companies in the business of rebranding a manufacturer’s products and selling them to end customers. An OEM partnership is a bit more involved, requiring white-labelling (i.e. rebranding) a product or embedding it into another product, generally necessitating more contracts and billing requirements.

Independent Software Vendors (ISV)

Makes and sells software products that run on one or
more computer hardware or operating system platforms.


A distributor is an intermediary entity between the producer of a product & another entity in the distribution channel or supply chain, such as a retailer, a value-added reseller (VAR) or a system integrator (SI).

So many types to chose from!

What are the critical success factors that will enable your partners to close deals? You have a defined sales process and type of partners. Now you must define how you can support the partners sales process. What are the critical factors? Is it a Proof of concept? Really good support? Clever pricing structure? Great project management? – Define your partners sales process. – Define the success factors for your partners sales processes.

Don’t waste time on partners that cant bring value to the customer. Each new relationship is an investment and it is important that you define characteristics or attributes of the ideal channel partner required to address a particular market segment.
This will help you to decide what partners you would like to invest in and build a deeper relationship with. Define how many partner you should recruit and set a target.

  • Define characteristics or attributes of the ideal channel partner.
  • Define your partner capacity and decide how many partners you will recruit.
  • Partner selection matrix http://www.daniel-one.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/Partner_selection_matrix.xlsx