Indirect Sales Will Only Get Bigger In 2016: Why Apple Could Be a Catalyst

By John Gelardi Posted on 11/24/15 5:36 PM

Sometimes it takes the success of larger companies to show why using the indirect sales channel concept is worth every effort. In the case of Apple, they've recently shown a very good example of why indirect sales will only get bigger in 2016. If you've resisted going into the practice of sales channels, you should take a look at what Apple announced in October about using the same process.

Indirect Sales Will Only Get Bigger In 2016: Why Apple Could Be a Catalyst

In a recent announcement by Tim Cook, the company revealed that growth in their enterprise segment was due to using indirect sales channels. If you've paid attention to Apple's long trajectory, you know about how they resisted indirect sales for years. Now it's no longer the case as they partner with IBM and Cisco for the first time to get Apple products to other vendors.

SEE ALSO: How to Master the Art of Indirect Sales

As a result of these new partnerships, Apple managed to have $25 billion in revenue through their enterprise segments. Beyond this, Cook above said Apple wants to tap into more indirect channels to help consumers find Apple products easier.

While some in the industry thought Apple wouldn't be channel friendly, Cisco says otherwise. Their partnership with Apple is one that proves the advantages of getting products to other vendors so exclusive products become easier to find.

No doubt you've found this development interesting, even if you're nowhere as large as Apple. It doesn't matter how big your company is, because the indirect sales channel approach will likely grow as a result of what Apple did this year.

Let's take a look at how Apple could benefit, and how you can benefit using the same principles they'll use to create better business relationships and product distribution.

Establishing a Better Customer Base

Even Cisco above realized the powerful potential of indirect sales channels, and they're quoted above as saying they think they can influence Apple to do more with the process. Not that Apple necessarily needs more customers, through their fan base could easily wither away with constant competition in the smartphone and tablet markets.

Tim Cook wisely realized you should never get complacent. It's why indirect sales can help your own customer base tremendously by getting your products into places you perhaps didn't expect. Ones with established audiences can help you make quicker revenues as Apple did through Cisco.

It pays to pick a sales channel that uses the indirect sales process themselves (as Cisco does) so they understand how it works.

Product Storage and Logistics Management

Apple had to store their entire inventory in their own headquarters during the times they stuck with their direct sales policy. Not that they had challenges on physical storage space, though it's likely a different story for your company. You're probably at the point where you're starting to run out of room because you have your products stored from floor to ceiling in your distribution department.

With a channel partner, you can let them store your inventory on their property where they may also have better logistics in moving those items around. No doubt the indirect channel process helps many Apple Stores not deal with overwhelming inventory.

SEE ALSO: How to Train an Indirect Sales Force for Success

Gaining Global Coverage of Your Products

In the report on Apple above, it's noted they've used indirect sales in China as well where the company had huge sales. Global distribution is never an easy road when you have to handle it yourself. With the complications of international marketing and laws, it can become a long road to selling your products globally.

Using indirect sales channels gets your product out there on a global scale in a faster way. It's time you follow Apple's lead and place indirect sales as a major goal for 2016 in your company.

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