The right choice in cloud hosting goes a long way in eliminating the hassles of server management, and if acquired at a reasonable price point you can create a very profitable and stable line of business.
But with so many proponents for each solution lobbying for a wide range of options, the right choice has suddenly become a difficult choice for carriers. Do IT providers hand the entire relationship to Microsoft?
Probably the main thing in Office 365’s favor is that its a suite of applications and not just email but with that also comes $6, $10, or $14 per user per month billing responsibilities.
It also helps that it already comes bundled with some rather excellent features, like OneNote, SharePoint, and Lync, which need to be bought as add-ons with other solutions. Not only that, Office 365 updates come fairly often so it’s a nice option for keeping office in line from year to year.
On the downside, Office 365 does limit the number of email recipients for every 24-hour period and can only support 300 users per account so medium to larger situations at the lowest price point are not supported. This can be a hindrance to a lot of companies but especially to IT providers as each 365 instance has it’s own separate login and web panel. Multi-tenancy for MSP’s is not a consideration and makes it very difficult to provide distributor level management. Not only that, Office 365 support can be a bit difficult to engage if purchased directly. Users have to go through a sizeable and complicated knowledge base to find answers and phone support is offshore. Techincal issues require language nuance and trust so most customers dont want someone they have never met remoting into their computers or network environments.
From a financial perspective, Office 365 costs quite a bit more than our $2 white label hosted exchange 2013. Furthermore, Office 365 is strictly commission-based and doesn’t have the same earning potential as white label solutions. This means that the client has to pay Microsoft directly for the Office 365 service, which leaves you with no paperwork or collection of the transaction. When the transaction is complete you will then receive a commission check, a very small one, from Microsoft and you are out of the picture.
With a white label solution you keep the client, you set the price point, and you support the product. White labeling keeps your company relevant and as cloud adoption rates soar you aren’t left out in the cold on residual revenues. As computers become more resilient the break fix market is drying up. Residual cloud services offer a new stream of stable revenue and white labeling maintains the relationship you have worked so hard to obtain.
Does your client need the full office suite or just enterprise Exchange email? Most users already have MS office so take advantage of that with our $2/1GB Exchange 2013 mailbox. If they are coming from a pop3/imap environment hosted exchange will change their business. Collaboration and connectivity that will truly save them money and increase productivity.
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