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How to become a Microsoft Teams Reseller

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How to become a Microsoft Teams Reseller

Becoming a Microsoft Teams Reseller can allow your business to access additional revenue streams. In recent years, Teams has become an essential collaboration tool for modern workplaces, enabling constant communications across a range of devices, with options for video and voice calls alongside instant messaging and group chat capabilities. Microsoft Teams is only expected to be increasingly adopted as more businesses transition to either a remote or hybrid workforce. With this in mind, IT decision makers should consider becoming a Microsoft Teams Reseller to take advantage of the opportunity to generate revenue from a continuously growing market.

Understanding the Microsoft Partner Network

The Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) is designed for companies to build, sell or provide services for Microsoft products. The MPN consists of hundreds of thousands of partners worldwide, including resellers, independent software vendors (ISVs), managed service provider (MSP) and distributors.

Teams_MPN_Partnership_Types

Cloud Solution Providers can be either a direct bill partner when purchasing from Microsoft, or an indirect reseller, purchasing through an indirect provider/distributor. Typically for CSPs, indirect reseller is the more common starting model.

The Microsoft Partner Network enables partners to differentiate their business offerings by including tools to optimise operations, access marketing tools and sales resolutions in order to deliver improved value to customers.

Within the MPN there are multiple types of membership bands. The different membership options are:

Membership

Feature

Network membership (free)

Entry level benefits for training, support and customer connections.

Microsoft Action Pack subscription ($500 year)

Includes network benefits plus internal use licenses and support.

Competencies (Silver/Gold)

Earned designations that demonstrate expertise, unlocking additional benefits.

Becoming part of the Microsoft Partner Network does come with its benefits. These include but are not limited to:MPN Benefits

  • Access to training, technical support and exclusive Microsoft products for internal use.
  • Access to marketing resources and assets to promote your business.
  • Incentives and rebates for revenue, sales and customer additions.
  • Differentiate earned competencies and specialisations showcasing expertise, providing your business with a greater range of skills than your competitors.
  • Opportunities to collaborate with Microsoft and its large partner ecosystem.

Steps to Becoming a Microsoft Teams Reseller

To become a Microsoft Teams Reseller, you must first join the Microsoft Partner Network.

  1. Navigate to partner.microsoft.com, then select the build type most appropriate for your business and select join Microsoft Partner Network.
  2. Obtain Microsoft Partner ID (MPNID). This is a unique identifier for your business, providing access to resources and benefits. By document transactions and revenues, it will allow you to maximise your benefit access.
  3. Choose your partner type (Network membership, Microsoft Action Pack, Competency Silver/Gold). The Microsoft Action Pack provides a kick-starter package of resources for a discounted annual fee.
  4. Meet the eligibility requirements to sell Teams, such as having a physical storefront or website. Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) partners can sell Teams directly to customers or through an indirect model by partnering with distributors.
  5. Sign the Microsoft Partner agreement which provides the terms for CSP program partners. Submit the application through the Partner Centre Portal.
  6. Verify roles and permissions in Partner Centre and renew your MPNID every 365 days.

Once given access to the Microsoft Partner Network, you can utilise the training, tech support, incentives and marketing assets.

The training resources should be given greater attention as training is crucial for skills and credibility. Microsoft Learn offers free online training paths such as the “MS-700 Managing Microsoft Teams” course, providing management fundamentals. The Teams Admin associate certification demonstrates configuration, deployment and management of Teams, but also requires the MS-700 to be passed first.

The exclusive training and discounts provided by joining the Microsoft Partner Network includes up to 40% off Microsoft technical certification training and free exam vouchers. These certifications enables your team to become specialised in Teams management and configuration. One example use case is managing calls within Microsoft Teams where partners differentiate meeting resources to adhere to additional requirements and performance.

When beginning to resell Microsoft Teams, it is essential to have a business plan, knowing your target market and by creating a business profile on the Microsoft Commercial Marketplace for customer to find when searching Teams solution providers. By investing in the MPN, businesses can take advantage of Microsoft’s go-to-market services, with ready-made assets and sales enablement resources for partners.

Business should look to maximise customer referrals and provide case studies to demonstrate their ability to deploy and manage Teams for Voice, meetings, chat and collaborations. It is considered best practise to have at least three detailed referrals for silver competency.

Microsoft Partner Network Joining Checklist






Bundling Microsoft Teams with Office 365 and Other Services

Teams_Package_Offerings

Microsoft Teams can be bundled with a range of services, such as Microsoft 365 and Office 365. This provides a more appealing offering to potential customers and is a greater way to drive business.

Package

Offerings

Microsoft 365 Business Basic

Microsoft 365 Business Standard

Integrates Teams along with web and mobile versions of Office applications such as Word, Excel and Powerpoint.

Microsoft 365 E3

Microsoft 365 E5

Bundles Teams with the full desktop versions of Office applications, advanced security and enabling compliance with regulations.

Microsoft 365 F1

Microsoft 365 F3

Designed for frontline workers, Microsoft 365 F1 and F3 plans provide Teams with purpose-built features like shift management.

Standalone Teams Essentials

Offers core Teams features such as unlimited group meetings, chats, file sharing and more for $4 per user per month.

Standalone Teams Enterprise

Offers enterprise-level Teams features but does not include other Microsoft 365 applications or services.

Standalone Teams Phone

Provides a cloud-based phone system add on to Teams in order to enable Public Switched Telephone Network (PTSN) calling.

Premium Teams options also offer access to webinars to up to 1000 attendees, advanced meeting options and extended meeting duration limits.

Alternatively, Teams can be bundled with broadband and leased lines. For example, Virgin Media O2 offer Teams with broadband connections up to 1 Gbps, or with dedicated leased lines for guaranteed speeds. This allows providers to offer integrated productivity and connectivity into a single solution. This enhances the end-user experience by providing simplified procurement and billing, optimised performance and sufficient bandwidth for network quality. Through end-to-end troubleshooting, they can also offer enhanced support. This differentiates their solution against competitors, increasing revenues by layering Teams as an add-on service beyond network accessibility and provides the ability to wrap managed services around the Teams deployment and migration.

Marketing and Selling Microsoft Teams

To best market and sell Microsoft Teams, it is advised that businesses first identify target markets. This identification includes:

  • Key potential customer segments.
  • Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) looking for an affordable, integrated collaboration solution.
  • Large enterprises that require team communication across distributed geographical locations.
  • Organisations within the frontline, retail, manufacturing or health sectors that require purpose-built tools to manage day-to-day activities.
  • Businesses that leverage a remote or hybrid workforce and require a solution to stay connected.
  • Businesses with unique needs or requirements where Teams can be tailored with offerings to suit their criteria.

Creating a product bundle can improve the marketability of Microsoft Teams. By bundling Teams with Microsoft 365 or Office 365 plans, this can be marketed as an integrated productivity solution. Alternatively, Teams can be sold as a standalone product, such as Microsoft Teams Essentials which can be marketing towards customers that just want core Teams features without the full Microsoft 365 suite. The ability to offer Teams bundled with broadband internet or connections or be offered as a managed service which can also be used to offerings to novice-level companies around Teams deployment, adoption, security and provides a basis for customised development. These offer the opportunity for ongoing customer engagement and thus continuous revenue.

Another way to market Teams is to use Microsoft Partner Network’s go-to-market resources, which include customisable marketing content, digital marketing tools, sales enablement assets and demand generation support. By co-branding with Microsoft, this enables you to showcase your expertise and build customer trust. This includes the use of partner badges and logos on your website and marketing materials. To supplement this, develop customer references and case studies highlight your businesses impact and use these within marketing campaigns. Promote your Teams offerings on your website, social media and events to educate customers on the benefits of buying Teams through your business. By listing yourself in the Microsoft Community Marketplaces, it enables you to reach a global customer base and collaborate with Microsoft sellers. Finally, by participating in the Microsoft AI Cloud Partner program, you can get access to personalised assistance, training and resources to help grow and practice Teams.

Managing Customer Relationships and Support

Teams_Reseller_Customer_Relations

Building long-term customer relationships are crucial for maintaining long-term success. These relationships may cause re-purchasing and therefore act as a stable way to retain business.

One way of managing this customer relationship is to provide excellent customer service. This may come in several forms, such as reducing response-times, being more empathetic to customers, adopting a solutions-oriented approach and, more generally, going above and beyond for greater satisfaction. To deliver this customer service, your team need expertise in Microsoft 365 and therefore it is an important consideration that all members become Microsoft 365 certified.

By proactively communicating with the customer to understand their needs and business requirements, you can identify potential opportunities to add value for the customer. Alternatively, by scheduling regular check ins or by sending newsletters, you can also provide insights into your key offerings that customers may have a use case for.

Another proactive measure you can take is to develop a large knowledge base of common issues customers experienced and how these were resolved. By documenting resolutions, FAQs and best practices, your team can be seen as trusted advisors and customers will be more inclined to trust them to deliver their business goals, provide them with guidance and to recommend further Microsoft solutions to meet their growing objectives.

Offering customers ongoing training and adoption support can be a great way to provide greater customer service. Change management services are crucial for helping customers maximise the use of Teams and realise the business value that it provides. Further support should also be offered via as many channels as possible, such as phone, email, webcaht and self-service, enabling the customer to access their preferential support method. These factors in turn strengthens the partnership between the customer and yourself, leading to increased later sales potential.

Conclusion

In conclusion, becoming a Microsoft Teams Reseller offers your business with the opportunity to add additional revenue streams by assisting customers within a growing market. By joining the Microsoft Partner Network, you can gain access to marketing resources, training and support networks in order to successfully bundle Teams with your other services and provide a significantly improved offering over your competitors. Effective marketing and excellent customer service are crucial for retaining customers and creating success for both you and your customers seeking productivity and collaboration solutions.

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