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Everything channel partners need to know about customer mindset

We surveyed UK businesses to reveal the opportunities for the channel. Here’s everything you need to know about customer mindset.

We carried out research with 300 business decision makers to get to the heart of what matters most to your customers. We believe that by better understanding the end-users’ priorities and challenges, we can help partners seize the selling opportunity and supercharge growth.


Unsurprisingly, the number one priority for UK businesses in today’s economic climate is cost control - especially for SMEs. Channel partners can play a part in enabling this, by offering greater commercial flexibility. After all, no company wants to be stuck with stock it can’t sell, nor do they want to be tied into long-term fixed costs given the current volatile economy.


That said, it is value - the overall service beyond just a cheap price - that is the ultimate driver of business satisfaction. A combination of value for money and reliable technology, all underpinned by excellent customer service, keeps businesses happy. This article will delve into exactly what that means, and what customers are thinking right now.

Value above everything

The current climate of uncertainty is described as an ‘existential challenge’ for businesses by Thea Tanner, our Commercial & Propositions Director at BT Wholesale - a powerful expression of the cumulative effect of so many issues. From the impact of COVID-19 and supply chain issues, to soaring energy prices and the cost-of-living crisis, the UK has faced significant challenges which means that businesses want value for their money.


Ultimately, end-users are looking for support and guidance; for example, when it comes to untangling budget priorities and what to invest in. It’s suggested that industry jargon can often act as a barrier to understanding investment. Partners should be transparent and provide clarity as to what they’re offering. This means being clear in your arguments for a particular investment, outlining the business benefits, the risks, where the ROI is, and how it will help improve ways of working.

Capitalising on the mobile opportunity

The survey found that digital investment is considered non-negotiable by most organisations. Technology is integral to business operations and strategy, which resulted in respondents listing a fairly tight spread of investment priorities. There is so much appetite for spending - as long as you can prove the technology’s value.


Mobile connectivity took the lead followed by cybersecurity, digital phone lines, and broadband. 

This is in line with the fact that three in five British business owners consider their mobile phone to be the most essential item when it comes to running their company - even over their laptop. It’s clear that customers truly want to embrace mobile connectivity and recognise its part in the future of work. 


This is the reason behind BT Wholesale’s launch of Complete Mobile. Enabling access to EE’s 4G and 5G network - the best mobile network in the UK for ten years running - Complete Mobile marks the first time EE Mobile SIMs have been available to enterprise resellers via a direct channel model. This gives a real edge to partners’ offerings.

All-IP isn’t going anywhere

With the all-IP switch-on imminent, it’s encouraging that three in ten respondents to the survey see a move to IP solutions as an immediate priority, citing simplicity, speed, flexibility and reliability as the key business drivers. The expected timeline for the transition is largely positive, too. One in eight said their business had already migrated, five percent said it was underway, and two thirds planned to migrate within the next 12 months. However, all businesses should strive to lead from the front and getting ahead sooner means embracing the benefits sooner.


This should excite the channel. In those instances where the move to IP solutions isn’t a priority, partners can take control of the situation and educate and inspire their customers as to its benefits and potential. This should be well received. After the business delays and disruption experienced as part of their ‘existential challenge’, most organisations will appreciate that removing any uncertainty from their migration journey will mitigate the risk of disruption during the process. Again, transparency and simplicity are vital. Partners should clearly explain features and benefits while avoiding industry jargon. And if they don’t, a competitor will.


This changing economic and technical landscape has affected the way many organisations operate, along with the priorities of their leaders. How channel partners work with these organisations has changed as well, and will continue to do so. One thing is for sure - prioritising value will mean customers believe in your services and advice. There is no time to delay - if you don’t act now, your competitors will. 


Our full report is extensive, with many valuable insights into the risks and opportunities for your business and customers. If you are already a member of Partner Plus, our team can take you through the data in depth to help you understand how to boost your sales, marketing and business development. Email to set up a meeting. 


If you are not a member of Partner Plus, you can read the full report and get access to other exclusive benefits by signing up here.

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