Just because a company's current firewall is safe today does not mean it won't be breached tomorrow.
Older-generation firewalls will not be up to the task of securing content at the application level or providing tools for managing bandwidth in a dynamic environment that hosts increasingly large volumes of data.
Of course, this creates sales and support opportunities. About 14 million sites are ready for firewall upgrading and replacement.
Next-generation firewalls can provide a richer, more sophisticated set of analysis and reporting tools and offer benefits that can be experienced immediately.
Software risk management reports can be used to show customers their current network traffic. Channel partners can provide their customers with detailed reports that show everything the current system is not able to deliver – such as, perhaps, application filtering or dynamic bandwidth control.
Next-generation firewalls can combine software and hardware to improve perimeter security. And because security threats change all the time, longer-term revenue streams from services and support – including training – can be developed by channel IT providers.
Security-focused resellers can be subject-matter experts and nearest to the customer's datacentre.
So the opportunity is one offering long-term revenue. A well-thought-out go-to-market approach combines sales, support and services to ensure earnings continue throughout the firewall life cycle.
Every pound of services revenue can be multiplied over the length of the contract. A four-year service agreement can triple revenue, and over time, channel partners can renew 75 per cent of initial product sales.
However, due to the complexity of these new firewalls, resellers must have strong partnerships with their vendors. Cloud computing can also make things more difficult.
Channel partners who are able to hunt out enterprise customers require much more vendor support and assistance. This may include additional channel programmes that can boost profits as well as marketing collateral such as white papers.
Andy Zollo is EMEA vice president of sales at Dell SonicWall
MSP plans to use new acquisition to expand its security offerings
Reseller also saw its operating profit fall five per cent in its financial 2017
Wendy Bahr to bring 18-year spell at networking giant to an end
AdEPT says latest purchase will push revenue beyond £50m