5 Questions to Ask When Comparing VoIP Reseller Programmes

According to industry analysts Technavio, the VoIP services market is expected to grow steadily in the coming years, with a CAGR of around 10% by 2021. With ever-increasing demand, becoming a VoIP reseller remains a lucrative, lasting opportunity.

However, the scale of demand for hosted VoIP has led to a growth in the number of VoIP service providers vying for attention. These vary from small, inexperienced startups – some of whom are even disguised resellers themselves – to well established technology businesses moving into VoIP.

With so many providers to choose from, choosing the best VoIP reseller programme can be difficult. To help you get started, here are just five crucial questions that you should ask every service provider you speak to.

1. What will my VoIP reseller margin look like?

There’s no need to be shy – the amount of money you can make will play an important role in which reseller programme you choose. As we've written before, the right margin can be the difference between profitability and struggling to make ends meet.

An inefficient and inexperienced service provider will usually be unable to offer a margin that makes good business sense. Worse, some service providers offer impossibly generous margins, but achieve them by cutting corners on service quality and resilience.

In our experience, resellers should be looking for a healthy margin and, critically, control over the prices you pass onto your customers. If you can determine call rates and service fees, you can determine your own profitability.

2. Can you prove the quality of your service?

Every VoIP service provider claims to offer never-faltering service, constant uptime, and outstanding call quality. However, before you pass those promises onto your potential customers, you’ll want to check that every claim is supported by evidence.

As you explore and compare VoIP reseller programmes, dig deeper into service quality and be sure to ask your shortlisted providers for proof.

This could take the shape of:

  • Uptime reports
  • Live demos
  • Service Level Agreements (SLAs) that guarantee a certain level of service

3. Can I talk to customers or other VoIP resellers?

Similarly, your shortlisted VoIP service providers may be able to put you in contact with existing customers and, occasionally, resellers.

This is an opportunity for you to hear about the service first-hand, whether that’s the end-user experience of hosted VoIP or how resellers have got on. As well as being a powerful way to build your understanding of a potential partner, this could even be an opportunity to forge relationships with like-minded resellers who may be able to offer some advice.

4. Who is responsible for technical support?

Looking further ahead, ask potential VoIP service providers about technical support, both for you and your customers. Particularly in the early days of your business, you may be reliant on your service provider to deliver frontline support on your behalf, or help out at short-notice when a customer encounters an issue you can’t solve.

All of this should be supported by clear agreements and guarantees that give you a targeted response time. If a VoIP reseller plan leaves you with responsibility for technical support, you should still expect your service provider to offer an additional layer of help and advice.

5. What happens when I grow my VoIP business?

Finally, don’t forget to ask questions about the long-term future. While you’re potentially starting a VoIP business as an addition to your existing one – or even starting from scratch – you’ll need confidence that your service provider can help you grow for years to come.

The most successful VoIP resellers work with partners they can depend on (and you can find out what that looks like in practice in another of our blog posts).

In short, your needs today are significantly different from what you will need once you have a solid customer base and understand more of the intricacies of hosted VoIP. Above all else, make sure you choose a VoIP reseller programme from a service provider that’s flexible, agile, and willing to change your arrangement over time.

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