From The Editor | August 6, 2013

ScanSource's Dixon At RetailNOW: Sell Services Beyond The Cash Register – Or Else

Jim Roddy

By Jim Roddy, Vantiv

BSM-Head In Sand

Greg Dixon, ScanSource’s CTO and Technology Evangelist, began his “Mobility Agility” presentation at RetailNOW Monday promising attendees they’ll leave with 60 pounds of actionable information. He certainly delivered.

In the near future, we’ll post on the Business Solutions website as much information as we can from Dixon’s talk – the audio, a complete transcript, and his PowerPoint slides. Those will happen in time. I wanted to share with you as soon as we could golden nuggets from Dixon’s presentation because I think they’re vital to the health of the reseller community.

Dixon is one of the most respected voices in the point of sale and data collection channel, and his message was exactly what resellers – especially retail IT VARs – need to hear.  

Dixon implored the overflow crowd of channel executives to transition their company to the “as a Service” business model. Years ago, that discussion wouldn’t have taken place at a POS hardware-focused event like RetailNOW. Even last year, there was some talk of managed services, but the attitude was more “wait and see” vs. Dixon’s weighty rhetoric.

I tweeted many of Dixon’s best points from his talk, which should give you the gist of his message:

·         @ScanSource CTO Dixon describes #RetailNOW as-a-service panel as "powerful - I changed my presentation based on it."

·         How do you participate in the iDevice market when you're not allowed to sell it? Dixon

·         Have customers send iDevices to you & you set them up & charge for it. Sell printers, mounts, accessories, too. Dixon

·         The theme this year is the reality of our business model. If you're not thinking about this, wake up. Dixon

·         How to respond to reality: sell more services. Old deal: 20% services 80% hardware/software. Now 40% services. Dixon

·         Dixon: Add new incremental services. They are more profitable than old business model.

·         New services include payment, carrier services, exchange hosting, disaster recovery/backup. Dixon

·         Wow - I'm at #RetailNOW listening to a disty promote the MSP (managed services provider) business model. The future is here and now.

·         Regarding services, wait and see isn't an option anymore. Dixon

·         Double wow – POS/AIDC disty encouraging #RetailNOW resellers to join CompTIA in addition to RSPA. Future = now.

·         How popular will this acronym become?: WaaS Wireless as a Service.

·         @ScanSource offering training on managed services model. Resellers should take advantage of partner offers like these!

·         We cannot afford to be tied to the old business model. Dixon @ScanSource #RetailNOW Amen!


RetailNOW 2013, hosted by the Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA), is being conducted Aug. 4-8 at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. For more information on the event, go to