2022’s Hottest Channel Topics: Events, Super Apps, Events (Again), Labor Solutions, Events (Yes, Again)

By: Jim Roddy, President & CEO at the RSPA

Retail IT channel executives love attending industry events, and they sure enjoy reading about them as well. That’s one of the findings in our analysis of this year’s most popular content on the RSPA website.  

By reviewing web analytics from the past year, the RSPA team learned what was the most popular thought leadership content published on GoRSPA.org. We’ve divided the results into three content categories below: Blog, Community IQ, and Podcast. For each category, we’ll list at least the 10 most popular pieces of content and then I’ll offer some analysis.


  1. NRF 2022 Analysis: 1/5th of a Show > No Show at All
  2. RetailNOW 2022 Analysis: “RSPA 2.0” Features Managed Services, ISVs, and Sophisticated VARs
  3. “New ScanSource” Unveiled at Channel Connect 2022 Could Accelerate Retail IT Industry Transition
  4. 2022 RSPA Retail IT Channel KPI Study
  5. Inspire 2022: The “New VAR” is Here, and They’ve Brought Software
  6. The Ultimate List of Recurring Revenue Products and Services [Version 2.0]
  7. VARTECH 2022 Analysis: BlueStar Challenges VARs, ISVs to Ditch Their Comfort Zone
  8. RE: It’s Time to Improve Your Auto-Reply Game
  9. Roddy’s Recommended Reading for SMB Executives – 2022 Edition
  10. (tie) CannaTech Expo 2022 Takeaways: “There’s a massive play now in point of sale”
  11. (tie) MJBizCon 2022 Analysis: Cannabis Industry Oughta Turn That Frown Upside Down
  12. Canadian VARs, ISVs Escape the Office for Restaurants Canada Show 2022
  13. RSPA Futurecast: The Status Quo Isn’t Apropos
  14. RSPA Recommended Read: Leading From Anywhere
  15. Recommended Read: The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing

A whopping eight of the top 12 RSPA blog entries were conference coverage, and the year’s #1 article analyzing the 2022 NRF Big Show set an all-time record for RSPA content pageviews. Actually, it was more than record-setting – it was record-smashing. While I’m not at liberty to share specific traffic numbers, let’s say it was akin to Usain Bolt’s 100-meter world record of 9.58 being obliterated by someone running a 5.96. The bottom-line lesson here for all retail IT channel marketers is that events attract eyeballs. When attending your next conference, be sure to plan in advance and set aside time to collect quotes, notes, and ideas you can share through an article on your website. For additional guidance on creating thought leadership content efficiently and effectively, read the RSPA’s Spartan Plan to Powerful B2B Content Marketing.

Non-event-related content that proved popular in 2022 included annual features like the RSPA KPI Study and Ultimate Recurring Revenue list as well as my once-a-year Recommended Reading list. Other top content ranged from high-level topics such as the future of our industry/association to tactical pieces like email auto-reply best practices.

RSPA Community IQ Resource Center

  1. U.S. Restaurant Industry: Current State, Trends & Outlook by Poonam Rao, Global Payments/Heartland
  2. Super Apps Are Booming, and Here’s Why It Matters by Discover Global Network
  3. The Rise of Super Apps: Will this Change the Payments Economic Model? by Kevin Kogler, Microbiz
  4. The Recurring Revenue Model’s Impact on Business Valuation by Cort Ouzts, POS Nation
  5. Six Proven Strategies to Help Value-Added Resellers Increase Sales by EVO Payments

Visit the RSPA Solution Center – a web platform designed to connect VARs and ISVs to providers of innovative solutions

  1. Warehouse Clubs are Gaining Popularity in China, Will it Be the New Trend? by Telpo
  2. Reinventing Restaurant Experiences Through Facial Recognition by Dr. Jau Huang, CyberLink
  3. 3 Important Ways Bid Shifts Help Employers Overcome the Difficulties of Fair Workweek Legislation and Retain Employees by Mike Hetisimer, TimeForge
  4. The Past, Present and Future of Contactless Technology by Josh Shultz, Revel Systems
  5. Making Your RFID Smarter Using AI by Jerry Abiog, Standard Insights
  6. Cannabis and Cash Management Best Practices in 2022 by CIMA
  7. Ten Retail Trends to Watch in 2022 by Paul Griffiths, apg

The Community IQ Resource Center on the RSPA website features thought leadership content authored by our members, and in 2022 IQ engagement grew exponentially for the second consecutive year. Credit for that goes to both new contributors and four evergreen pieces that seem to have claimed a permanent spot on our annual list:

  • The #1 most read IQ piece in 2022 was #2 last year; it was first published in May 2021
  • The #2 piece this year was #1 last year; it was originally published in June 2021
  • #7 this year was #5 last year; first published in Jan. 2021
  • #9 this year was #3 last year; that article was published all the way back in freaking Aug. 2020

If you select the right topic and place popular keywords in your headline, you’ve got some content with staying power. You can gain popularity quickly as well; the #10 piece on this year’s list was published just weeks ago in Oct. 2022.

The most popular technology topic among IQ pieces this year was super apps, taking the #2 and #3 positions. Other attention-getting tech topics were contactless technology, RFID, and cash management. Articles on recurring revenue and VAR sales strategies also cracked the top five. To submit your content or learn more about the Community IQ Resource Center, email the RSPA Marketing team of Chris Arnold (CArnold@GoRSPA.org) and Ayana Scriven (AScriven@GoRSPA.org).

RSPA Trusted Advisor Podcast

  1. How VARs Can Help Merchants Solve Their Labor Crisis featuring TimeForge and North Country Business Products
  2. How to Leverage the Unconventional to Recruit Talent featuring VAULT
  3. What VAR Acquisitions Actually Mean for the Retail IT Channel
  4. No-Nonsense Customer Service for VARs and ISVs featuring Spark Solutions Group and Southwest Point of Sale
  5. Rebranding Lessons for the Retail IT Channel featuring apg
  6. ISV Growth Strategies and Go-To-Market Plans featuring Bookkeep and Acadia POS
  7. VAR Opportunities with Electric Vehicle Charging Stations featuring BlueStar
  8. The New-and-Improved Retail IT Ecosystem
  9. Lucrative Growth Strategies for Retail IT VARs featuring Shift4
  10. 6 Key Skills Every Channel Leader Needs featuring MPI POS and North American Bancard

Everybody is talking about the worldwide labor shortage, and on the RSPA podcast our members are discussing how to solve it. Labor-related content claimed the top two spots on the Trusted Advisor list thanks to interviews with Audrey Hogan of ISV TimeForge, Barb Trushenski and Jeff Zimmerman of VAR North Country Business Products, and Tracey Lande of VAULT. Other RSPA members helping generate popular content this year were VARs Randy Gunter of Spark and Jeff Sanders of Southwest POS, Paul Griffiths and Stephen Bergeron of vendor apg, and ISVs Jason Richelson of Bookkeep and Ben Leviton of Acadia POS.

Thanks for your support of the RSPA in 2022, Happy New Year … and we gotta get back to work creating more content for you in 2023!

Editor’s Note: To see our content rankings from previous years, follow this link from 2020 (Now Presenting: The Most Popular Channel Content from the Least Popular Year) and this from 2021 (RSPA Reveals 2021’s Most Popular Retail IT Channel Content).

Don’t forget to visit the RSPA Solution Center – a web platform designed to connect VARs and ISVs to providers of innovative solutions