Interest in the cloud has never been so high. More people are using it than ever before and therefore more people are selling it. In fact, half of all global resellers are preparing to sell cloud services before the end of the year. Over 4,000 of the 8,500 resellers surveyed by Context said they will be selling cloud services by the end of 2017. The ChannelWatch 2017 survey also revealed that the sector is set to be worth $160 billion by 2020.
Over 10% of resellers said that either Software as a Service (SaaS) or Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) was one of their top three growth areas, with SaaS seen as the lowest hanging fruit as it’s easiest to implement. The most popular types of cloud services sold were similar to last year’s report, with back-up (53 per cent), storage (47 per cent) and business apps (35 per cent) topping the list.
There was also significant increase in those selling general infrastructure services, reflecting the fact that 14per cent rated IaaS as a major growth category, just 2 per cent behind SaaS. Large datacentre investments from Microsoft and Google has helped spur competition with Amazon Web Services, lowering prices and improving choice for buyers, the report found.
However, the biggest barrier for resellers interested in cloud computing services was demand not justifying the investment, followed by security concerns.
“As demand increases, so will the need for distributors and vendors to train their reseller partners. Hardware as a Service (49per cent) and SaaS (40 per cent) were the two areas where resellers felt coaching would be most valuable”, said Adam Simon, Global Managing Director at Context. “Specialist retailers and distributors are best placed to capitalise on growth in these segments as they are able to demonstrate products to customers most effectively."
Solid State Drives (SSD) topped the list for biggest percentage growth in 2017. Almost a third (31 per cent) of respondents claimed it was the best-selling category, driven in part by its role as a key enabling technology for modern cloud-ready datacentres.