A Blog From The Editors Of Business Solutions Magazine A Blog From The Editors Of Business Solutions Magazine

ETA Addresses Ethics, Professionalism In The Payments Industry

I had a phone call this morning with ETA (Electronic Transaction Association) CEO Jason Oxman to get his response on my previous articles questioning the "dirtiness" of the processing industry. For those who don't know, the ETA is to the payments industry as the RSPA is to retail industry. So basically, I was talking to the right guy.  Continue Reading...

What Hurricane Sandy Is About To Do For MSPs And The Cloud

I just got back from N-able's Partner Conference, which was held in Montreal last week. One of the conference highlights for me was CEO Gavin Garbutt's keynote speech. He shared the results from N-able's extensive research conducted earlier this year, involving feedback from 1,800 IT service providers throughout the United States and Canada. Following are a few points that got my attention.   Continue Reading...

Focus On Recurring Revenue Now, Or Hate Yourself Later

It's easy to look at certain recurring revenue opportunities and think that they just aren't worth you time. Sign one customer up for [insert product here] and you might be earning a few pennies per transaction. Is this really worth your time, particularly since you're so busy?  Continue Reading...

VARs Speak Out Regarding Dirty Payment Processing Practices

In a previous article, I pondered the "dirty" nature of the payment processing industry and received a lot of hate mail for my words. Even though my article was more of me wondering aloud than making definitive statements, some in the processing industry acted like I called their baby ugly.  Continue Reading...

7 "Must Do's" For Retail IT VARs In 2013

Do shed the mindset that you're just a provider of ECRs or POS terminals. Your customers have business problems that you can solve if you look beyond the checkout area. Step up and become a true trusted advisor.  Continue Reading...

Here's Proof You Don't Need To Be Fort Knox To Be An Effective Security VAR

I just read an interesting study recently released by Verizon, titled, "2012 Data Breach Investigations Report," which Verizon's RISK Team conducted in conjunction with cooperation from multiple security organizations, including the United States Secret Services.  Continue Reading...

The One Oversight Stunting Your MSP Business Growth

I had the opportunity to attend PSA (professional service automation) vendor Tigerpaw's National Conference recently in Chicago. In addition to record attendance and inspiring speakers like Howard Putnam, former CEO of Southwest, the keynote speech given by Tigerpaw President James Foxall really hit home with the hundreds of MSPs in attendance. It was practical advice that's often overlooked by many companies -- IT  vendors...  Continue Reading...

Quit Losing Sleep Over iPad-Based POS

If customers asking about iPad-based POS keeps you up at night, it's time to stop worrying.  Continue Reading...

Is This IT Service Missing From Your Managed Services Practice?

Most of the MSPs (managed services providers) I talk to are selling remote monitoring and management (RMM) and even backup services as part of their core offerings.  Continue Reading...

5 Windows Server 2012 Essentials You Can't Neglect

As many of you probably know by now, I've been on a kick to get to the bottom of the Microsoft SBS (Small Business Server) termination debate. Microsoft is claiming this is ultimately better for the channel and addresses what SMBs want (i.e. running their email, backup, and other services in the cloud).  Continue Reading...

It's Gut Check Time For Retail IT VARs

If you don't find the following fascinating as a technologist, it might be time to retire.  Continue Reading...

Don't Make This Mistake In Selecting Your IP Camera Vendors

Last week I was at Synnex' (NYSE: SNX) National Partner Conference in Greenville, SC, where I found myself the first morning having a great conversation over breakfast with a network integrator. I asked him what he hoped to get out of the event and he told me he was looking to learn where to expand his business.  Continue Reading...
Top Tweets From BlueStar’s VARTECH 2012

Top Tweets From BlueStar’s VARTECH 2012

Promoted as a “mobile trade show,” BlueStar hosted its annual VARTECH Conference Oct. 5-8 on the Carnival Imagination cruise ship traveling from Miami to Nassau, The Bahamas. More than 1,400 people attended the event with over half of them being the distributor’s top resellers from the U.S. and Latin America. Among the technologies represented were data capture, point of sale, mobility, digital signage, video surveillance, and...  Continue Reading...
8 Pitfalls To Avoid When Reselling Security

8 Pitfalls To Avoid When Reselling Security

On the final full day of VARTECH 2012, I was a man on a mission. Several VARs I talked with in the morning said they were interested in adopting video surveillance and security solutions but they wanted to know the pitfalls first. So, my mission today was to gather as much information as I could on that topic. By Jim Roddy, president, Jameson Publishing and Business Solutions magazine  Continue Reading...
BlueStar Makes Trade Show On Cruise Ship A Reality

BlueStar Makes Trade Show On Cruise Ship A Reality

About a year ago when I first heard that VARTECH, BlueStar’s annual conference, would be held on a cruise ship, I thought it was a ruse. There couldn’t possibly be a floating trade show, right? You couldn’t actually coordinate nearly 1,400 attendees throughout North and Latin America, along with exhibitor hardware, and get everything and everyone onto one boat, right? By Jim Roddy, president, Jameson Publishing and Business...  Continue Reading...

4 Takeaways From The GFI MAX Conference

One of my favorite parts of any trade show or conference I attend is to hear what the keynote speaker has to say about the most important trends they’re seeing in the channel, as well as hearing their advice to the VARs and MSPs in attendance about capitalizing on those trends.  Continue Reading...

Restaurant VARs: 3 Ways To Inject New Life Into Your Business

I'm going to give you a sneak preview of a feature article in next month's issue of Business Solutions because the VAR we highlight is doing some great stuff that's really impacting his business. The VAR is Andrew Strickler and his company is Tampa Bay POS. We featured Andrew in our magazine back in 2007.  Continue Reading...

A Dummy's Guide To Cloud Video Surveillance

In the world of physical security, cloud-based surveillance is in its infancy. This, for two primary reasons: First, technology is just coming around to enable cost-effective and high-functioning solutions. Second, traditional security dealers have been slow to adopt IP cameras, let alone the cloud.   Continue Reading...

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