Independent software vendors (ISVs) need to constantly release new products, upgrade features to existing products and maintain market share in an era defined by shifting tastes and a quickly evolving consumer base. Cloud based solutions can facilitate this process and help to jump-start your revenue.
According to Jiten Patil, cloud expert and senior technology consultant at Persistent Systems, customer “stickiness” is never guaranteed and poses a challenge to the ISV revenue cycle. But take heart, there are a few simple solutions to address these challenges and none will require shifting resources away from your core business.
Patil breaks the large ISV landscape into two general categories. The first are ISVs that are introducing a brand-new product, whether they are a startup or an established firm releasing a renascent offering. The second are ISVs retooling existing solutions to take advantage of customers’ new interest in cloud-computing technology. Regardless, nearly all ISVs can boost revenue generation by following a few simple steps.
1. Refine Your Strategy and Accelerate Your Go-To-Market Process
ISVs must develop new methodologies to bring products to market quickly. This means that you must make sure that the product design facilitates fast product delivery. According to Patil, it should be a priority to accelerate the marketing, promotion and sales process so that the all-important order-to-cash process can begin.
It’s important to hire talent with skill sets that support your product deployment strategy. You will want to complement your engineering talent with employees with strong skills in sales, marketing and cloud based product delivery.
2. Identify Your Unique Cloud Roadmap, and Build In End-to-End Revenue Generation
Patil said companies must first identify a unique cloud roadmap. This roadmap may deviate from traditional cloud-based solutions, or it may imitate a go-to-market strategy that’s already proven successful. Whichever route your company chooses, make sure that you’re working toward creating an end-to-end revenue generation process throughout the duration of the promotion, marketing and sales cycles. ISVs should employ strategies like continuous delivery of promotional content, new product trial offers and value-added features, Patil said, to keep clients engaged.
Of course, the cloud can facilitate product updates on-demand to quickly address software problems. However, according to Patel, ISVs should also use the cloud to keep customers apprised of new products, solutions, updates, and other information in real time. Together, these processes can build brand awareness and expedite the go-to-market process.
3. Use Cloud Solutions for Continuous Packaging and Distribution
ISVs should consider how cloud based technologies can be used for packaging and distribution of their applications. The cloud can also provide an extended development and testing platform for your products. This can streamline and speed up your product development and quality assurance process and enable you to begin generating revenue more quickly.
By following these guidelines, ISVs can use the cloud to accelerate the revenue generation cycle. ISVs ultimately need to plan for continual growth by embracing the new business strategies engendered by cloud computing. Doing so will ensure your business will remain competitive for years to come. Rackspace Hosting is the service leader in cloud computing, and a founder of OpenStack, an open source cloud operating system. The San Antonio-based company provides Fanatical Support to its customers and partners, across a portfolio of IT services, including Managed Hosting and Cloud Computing.