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Buy From Local VAR or Online?

On-Line or Local Var?This is something that happens from time to time; I get an email from a client saying that he can buy the same thing I quoted him for way less money from one of the big on-line barcode companies.

Would you believe it, I had a good example just yesterday. I’d quoted a BarTender software package and the client quickly pointed out that several on-line outlets were offering the same thing at a lower price – very close to our cost as it happens.

While this kind of situation can be annoying for a Value Added Reseller such as Winco, it does give the end-user more options so could be considered good from that point of view.

One of the things I like to do is to try and think about things in the same way as our customers (or potential customers) might think about them. So if I was looking to buy a label software package, for example, how would I purchase it?

I’d get a quote from one of the sales guys at Winco and I’d probably ask Dr. Google to help me out with some suggestions. As a result, I might well find an on-line price that would save me some money.

Here’s the thing though: usually ordering on-line results in getting the product shipped in a box and that is the end of the transaction. This is fine if the customer has experience at getting the software installed, getting the drivers set up, designing the label formats, connecting the databases…

Buying the software from Winco means that we can help with all these things – if the client is in our region we’ll have one of our great technicians come right on-site at a really good price.

Sure, a company like Winco ID doesn’t sell huge numbers of software packages – meaning that our cost from the software company is often higher than what the high volume on-line guys enjoy. This means we often can’t beat them on price – but we beat them all the time on value!

Just for fun, here’s a real life example. I wrote in this post about how Teklynx have changed their software licensing so that a constant Internet connection is needed for the keyless versions. As a real partner, we would make sure (now that we know about this) that our customer didn’t buy this version for use on a non-connected computer. Going to one of the largest IT products online retailers however, I get this specification:

online teklynx specs

Click on the image for a larger version.

No mention that an internet connection is needed – a customer buying this for a stand alone PC would end up with a product that doesn’t work. Not much value there!

(Update: after talking with Teklynx, it turns out that there is an unpublished option that allows users to activate their keyless software with no internet access. Of course, this still requires a call to tech support to get it sorted!)

So if you need label software like BarTender or LabelView, or maybe tracking software like RedBeam, give us a call at 603-598-1553. Perhaps the value we provide is just what you need.

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