Dealer Discussion: How can vendors and distributors help resellers in 2019?

Industry community Tech For Techs asks its reseller and MSP members to outline what they’d most like to see vendors and distributors do to help encourage more business throughout the year. Here’s what they had to say…


“I’d like to see smaller packages for smaller items. I am sick of receiving big, two-foot boxes filled with air bags for a small order like an SSD.”


“Please negotiate better pricing so we don’t pay more than eBuyer are selling for.”


“We at Crosshaven Computers would like to see vendors and distributors reach out to the smaller MSPs more with better reseller deals and more options to have our logo on software we resell. Today’s smaller MSPs are tomorrow’s bigger MSPs. It’s a win-win for us all.”


“Sticking address labels to retail packaged goods – this does my head in. I don’t want to give my customer a new item with a huge address label stuck to it.”


“I would like to see vendors and distributors providing a decent data feed of products and prices. So many suppliers don’t offer any, or they offer a spreadsheet or a CSV with just a product list and no category information. With margins so small it really frustrates me having to spend half a day just to make sure I’m quoting with correct prices. It’s even more frustrating when the prices are volatile and you have to check every few days. Smarter not harder for 2019 please!”


“I would like to see and end to Amazon (and other large retailers) getting price support from manufacturers, which prevents independents from competing on price.”


“Over the past year we have seen a lot of our Tech For Techs members make comments about how distributors and vendors are not always helpful. One of the items that seem to come up a lot is point of sales materials. Distributors will start selling a new product range or a whole new brand, sometimes these brands are unknown, so resellers need all the help they can get selling them, and with no leaflets, posters or other forms of POS like dummy products, it means the resellers have to invest in marketing the new product. Some vendors will supply a mug or some pens to write with – while these may be nice they don’t really get people into the stores. To give credit when credit due we have found the most helpful suppliers of POS to be Bullguard, Cooler Master, Tenda and Gigabyte.

We see a large growth in the MSPs (managed service providers) sector, and they may need to resell an odd product now and then, like software packages, or get an item like a network device posted direct to the customer. But, unfortunately a lot of distributors will not sell directly to them as they don’t sell enough.

Large online stores and marketplaces like Amazon and Ebuyer sell a lot of products cheaper than distributors. A lot of the time, this is down to brands selling items to Amazon cheaper than they sell to distributors. In my opinion, you should never see the same product for sale at an online marketplace cheaper than a distributor. I stay away from reselling these products. You can sometimes get a slightly cheaper price from a distributor when buying in bulk or if you call them up and ask them for a cheaper price, unfortunately, most store owners do not have the time to spend an hour ringing everyone up to see if they can get something cheaper, and nine out of 10 times will just buy it online as it is quicker, cheaper and comes with free delivery.”


Launched in January 2018, Tech for Techs (TFT) is a new community for technicians of all kinds, including on-site call out services, retailers, resellers, managed service providers, vendors and distributors.

Free to join, TFT is run by the team behind retailer Chips Computers and offers up insight and information on the industry, as well as product reviews, price comparisons, free directory listings and more. Visit for more information.

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