August 29, 2007 10:33 AM
I'm not sure your product lends itself well to a reseller model.
Your software (web analytics) would have very broad applicability. I imagine, your software is used by internal corporate webmasters or webmasters where website management has been outsourced to hosting or Marcomm companies (becoming very common these days).
However, most B2B VARs are geograhpically bound, and focus on specfic verticals because "services" are not as mobile as product. Just generalizing, that's not always the case. But something to keep in mind.
I imagine, your ideal partner would be someone who currently sells other web development, monitoring and analytic tools. My guess, is that this type of company would be selling all over the US. My guess too, is that these types of products are simply sold over the web directly ...with little to no "face-to-face" (which is why I don't think a product like yours is conducive to a reseller model ... B2B resellers make money from their services not selling product).
I would follow Charles' suggestion: Start with Gilles database.
Next, google (spend a few days at it) finding companies selling similar type of products, ideally complimentatry. Look at how competitor solutions are sold. if they are not selling via resellers ... that tells you something.
Finally, find trade-shows and industry events geared to the webmaster folk, hosting ISP conferences... there are lots of them. This is probably the best way to network and find a potential partner.
I think those probably are the 3 best avenues, but I think its going to be tough. My guess, a direct sales model may work best for your type of software solution.
Not everything lends itself to a reseller sales model, and this may be one of those situations. I see tons of web analytics tools being promoted, but the sales model seems to be mostly direct, and the promotion coming from the web, through portals (sites that discuss, write and review such tools) and direct contact (direct sales calls to hosting companies for example). This is not stuff a reseller wants to "invest" their time doing. They would rather just sit back and take orders, and you do the promotion. Give it a try, but ...just a hunch ... you may find you will probably have to do your own selling and marketing.
Ken is absolutely right. With a low $ product, your product will likely sit on a shelf because a "reseller" tends to be just an order taker. Its up to you to do all the promo. With high $ items, there need to be a lot of "services" that can be wrapped around your product to make it interesting for them put some selling time.