There's a new Channel Champ this year in the category of Workgroup Color Printers: Xerox. The vendor dominated all three evaluated areas: technical satisfaction, support satisfaction and financial factors, edging out last year's winner, Hewlett-Packard, which finished second this year.
Allowing it to sweep the support category was an increase of roughly 25 percent in field-based resources in support of its partners, said Tom Gall, director of channel marketing at Xerox. "The channel is important for us to grow the printing business, and we want to grow the number of partners, and the support that we're providing to them."
Xerox also dominated the financial subcategory, winning all criteria except competitive pricing. Gall credits a renewed focus on resellers at Xerox, as well as retooled programs for branded marketing, consisting of "integrated, co-branded e-mail and Web site collateral materials that help resellers by synchronizing Xerox print services and content to help educate their customers and prospects."
The company also broke ground last year with the release of eConcierge, a replenishment service for printer supplies and consumables. "This basic tool helps resellers capture supply sales they would otherwise lose to big-box stores," said Gall.
Terry Williams is owner of Advanced Technical Support, a managed service provider and Xerox reseller in Morrisville, N.C. The company was on the advisory council that developed eConcierge and has been using it since its inception. "We've had tremendous success with the product," he said, "both for retaining existing clients and capturing new business."
Among the services offered by ATS is break-fix, and Williams said that customers are generally interested in hearing about eConcierge since it includes a free warranty on Xerox equipment. "Enrollment is free and the client has to buy supplies anyway."