Consumer Security: Opportunities for channel partners

The consumer security software market, particularly in the Middle East is highly competitive, but where do the best opportunities lie for traditional resellers and retailers?

Tags: ComguardFrost & Sullivan (www.frost.com)McAfee IncorporationSourcefire (www.sourcefire.com)
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Consumer Security: Opportunities for channel partners
By  Piers Ford Published  May 28, 2013

At Comguard, Mobasseri said that only when consumers stop seeing security as an expense and start to see it as an investment in securing their world will it become a big market for value-added services.

“Currently, the profitability of security solutions selling to the consumer is in bundling, so I would urge channel partners to design different promotion and bundling, and value-add, which could be training at this time. This will help them to get more consumers interested in buying security products.”

Symantec’s Taufiq agreed. “Resellers and retailers see business value in the security market for many reasons, such as the obvious demand that needs to be filled, high-margin products and added-value offers, along with a decrease in hardware defects which will increase customer satisfaction overall,” he said. “It is a win-win situation for retailers and consumers.”

Even so, they need to do more to educate customers and push the need to protect new devices. This would drive security software sales which already generate good up-front margin both off-the-shelf and online, according to Taufiq.

Mobasseri recommended that resellers focus on online sales, where the ratio of buyers to physical purchases is increasing. “Online sales can also be more profitable than off-the-shelf sales, as the overheads online are far less than physical shops,” he said. “It would be nice to see if resellers could align themselves to online sales as fast as they can, as online shopping is becoming more popular in the region.”

Could general high-tech retailers become consumer security specialists, leading the charge for a proactive and better-informed customer attitude to adequate security software purchases for all their devices?

“Why not?” said Mobasseri. “Even now, we have a few power retailers who are working professionally in most of the segments by getting the right kind of skill sets on board.”

“Each retailer has strengths in his area of expertise,” said Symantec’s Taufiq. “Some retailers specialise in solutions and services, others are more oriented towards customer satisfaction, and some are focusing on massive sales – not to forget the e-stores or virtual retailers who are growing rapidly. There are several security solutions that can fit any of them. We tailor our business solution to fit each retailer. And we believe that security should be within the reach of everyone.”

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