Kerri Connolly Director Partner Development, Global Partner Solutions
Sep 27,2021

Increase scale through Microsoft’s commercial marketplace

Microsoft’s commercial marketplace experienced a 70 percent year-over-year increase in transactable applications. This growth makes it the most comprehensive commercial marketplace in the industry with four million shoppers engaging every month, across Microsoft AppSource (business solutions) and Azure Marketplace (IT solutions). 95 percent of Fortune 500 companies using Azure have access to the Microsoft commercial marketplace, which is available in more than 100 countries and regions.

The success of the marketplace has everything to do with Microsoft’s commitment to do everything we can to make our platform partner focused.

This year, Microsoft reduced fees for transactable offers to 3 percent—down significantly from an industry standard of 20 percent—for every transactable application published in the commercial marketplace, including both digital storefronts: Azure Marketplace and Microsoft AppSource. The reduction means higher margins for partners who publish transactable offers in our marketplaces and simplifies the fee structure. Learn more about the fee changes

As software needs continue to rise, Microsoft partners looking to simplify the deployment process increasingly rely on the commercial marketplace to find new customers and scale their business.

Forrester’s Total Economic Impact Report on the Commercial Marketplace concludes: “The benefits include selling more by increasing TAM [total accessible market] and win rates, making the sales processes easier and faster, and reducing operating costs.”

Canadian Marketplace success story

Located in Waterloo, Ontario, UnlimitedViz sells tyGraph, their award-winning suite of reporting and analytics tools, on Microsoft AppSource. In this story and in the video below, this independent software vendor (ISV) describes the impact of the Microsoft partnership on their business and explains how they use Microsoft AppSource to scale their solution to over six countries and deliver a seamless experience for customers everywhere.

Differentiate your offer

How you describe your product or service and represent your brand(s) makes all the difference. Microsoft stores offer ample room to advertise your content, even allowing for a promotional video.

Ensure your messaging and supporting content differentiates your brand and provides all the information a customer needs to feel comfortable reaching out to you, trying your product, and purchasing it. Articulate why prospects need to work with you. Effectively communicating your core value proposition and return on investment is paramount. Make sure to review these Marketing Best Practices.

Increase conversion with Test Drives and Trials

Once you determine your offer, you choose a listing option that best suits your goals.

Free Trial – prospects click here for a trial version of your offer. Customers can use your software as a service, infrastructure as a service, or Microsoft in-app experience at no cost from anywhere from 30 days to six months. Ideal to generate leads.

Test Drive – prospects click here to get access to a preconfigured environment for a fixed number of hours. Designed for more advanced leads, a Test Drive brings your product to life in a real-world implementation scenario.

Get It Now – customers can transact, through subscriptions or user-based pricing, bring their own license (BYOL), and get it now free. Microsoft takes responsibility for billing and collections, and in many countries, manages tax payment.

Existing Microsoft customers can simply add new purchases and receive a consolidated invoice from Microsoft.

TIP: Offering prospects a Trial experience or Test Drive increases engagement as well as exposure to your solution. 27 percent of app searches in the marketplace get filtered by users to look for solutions with trials. Without a trial you decrease your chances of getting found or considered by potential customers.

Unlock commercial marketplace rewards

When you publish your offer, you earn rewards such as gaining access to marketing, sales, technical resources, and self-serve digital marketing assets. You can choose to engage Microsoft partners to represent your product or invite them to co-sell. You can pursue a co-sell relationship with Microsoft, which may help you to close more deals.

Get started with your Marketplace listing

  1. Microsoft Commercial Marketplace Publisher Guide
  2. Azure Marketplace & AppSource best practice guide
  3. For one-on-one, personal assistance directly from Microsoft, contact the Cloud Enablement Desk. A specialist can work with you over time to navigate the commercial marketplace and prepare you for a co-sell opportunity.
  4. Sales enablement resources:  partner playbooks and solution workspace