Am I working with an authorized copier dealer?
In the course of a year, we meet with thousands of prospective clients and it seems that this question very rarely gets addressed. “Are you an authorized copier dealer for the manufacturer you sell?” It can be confusing, with so many terms now-a-days: “authorized”, “distributor”, “channel reseller/partner”, what do these terms actually mean? Let me see if I can shed some light on what you should be looking for and expect from any vendor that you purchase office equipment from.
Let’s start with some basics, just because you meet with a sales person and they hand you their business card with all of those “pretty” logos, certainly doesn’t mean they have all the requirements to display that logo! In the age of information (Google) it’s fairly simple to plug a term such as “Kyocera authorized dealer logo” into a search bar and have your choice of logos to download. Is it ethical? Heck no! Unfortunately the industry does a poor job of policing itself to get these “bad guys” exposed. Having more than 30 years in this business I’ve met and become close to many of my competitors, if I wanted to sell a machine that I wasn’t authorized for I assure you I could get it.
The process to become an authorized copier dealer is not as simple as having a checkbook and a nice smile. We make commitments to our manufacturers both financially, technically and through education. In order to maintain a dealership, all manufactures have two basic requirements. First, in order to secure your territory they will use some involved analytic to determine the potential sales and base a quota on that number. It’s up to the dealership to fulfill that number year in and year out. Besides having a financial quota the dealership must all commit to a complete technical and sales training process. The manufacturer wants to ensure that the end users are being offered the correct equipment for their needs and once the unit is placed it needs to be maintained properly. This all means that the authorized copier dealer must enroll all of their personnel in extensive training. This is pivotal in that the company has shown a commitment to excellence in representing that brand.
Why is all of this important to you? Having an authorized copier dealer sell and service your equipment means that you are getting the most out of your equipment. They are using Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) parts, have the latest bulletins and proper service documentation, and most of all *IF* something goes wrong, the complete support of the manufacturer to get things resolved.
How can I find out if my copier dealer is authorized? It’s simple really! Every manufacturer has a section of their website that lists the authorized dealers in your territory.
Before you lease or purchase your next copy machine or MFP make sure you take the 5 minutes it takes to check out their credentials. Knowing that the manufacturer had the confidence to authorize them should make you feel much more secure in your decision.
My hope to educate you comes from 30+ years of doing things right. If that means not always being able to assist every customer I meet, then so be it. I would rather walk away then sell you something that I (personally) am not 100% confident we can support. Happy researching and let me know how I can help?