By John Zanni, Vice President, Marketing and Alliances, Parallels
In this ever changing cloud environment, service providers are telling us that whenever they think they have a handle on what SMBs want, SMBs indicate their “wants” are expanding. What this means is that service providers cannot linger on what was a key service last year. SMBs are constantly trying to grow their business and furthering their understanding of their customers, so as their customers branch out into new territories whether accounting, health care, entertainment, retail (you get the picture), SMBs will look to service providers to be nimble enough to accommodate those developments with cloud offerings they can use – and use with ease. In fact, best-of-breed is no longer as relevant or as meaningful as are specificity and ease of use.
Luckily for everyone, need generates innovation and development. There is a burgeoning of cloud services applications for a world of vertical markets, and many SMBs are looking for the application that specifically serves their needs rather than the most well-known or most often used applications.
From open source applications to complex solutions, through Application Packaging Standards, ISVs can create any applications that are needed or can be invented. (You can learn more about APS at appstandards.org.) Of note, this is an open standard, and Parallels does not need to approve an application for it to become available through APS.
There are a number of examples of such offerings in the Parallels APS catalogue, including:
- · MoySklad – a Russian business that produces a contact resource management and accounting service
- · SpamExperts – an Anti-virus/anti-spam/archiving solution very popular throughout Europe
- · BackupAgent – produces backup services for hosters and service providers and is popular in Europe and Asia.
Service Providers have access to these cloud services and applications and can easily enable them on Parallels Plesk Panel or Parallels Automation service providers; it then simply becomes a matter of marketing those applications to their customers with those particular requirements.
For service providers looking for more information on how to grow their business through the bundling of new applications that live in the cloud, Parallels Summit 2013, Feb 4-6, at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas is the place to be. Hundreds of ISVs with be demonstrating their services. There will be technical, developer, and business tracks on how to enable and promote applications in the cloud along with best practices on working with Parallels products that push your business up the ladder. Be there to experience and assess what you could use for your customers.