Microsoft Commercial Marketplace Extension

Updated: September 13, 2021
Contents

Overview

Microsoft Commercial Marketplace represents a catalog of solutions from independent software vendors (ISVs). It is designed to help Vendors publish their applications or software services and access go-to-market benefits to accelerate the business growth.

By publishing your solution into the commercial marketplace, you’re putting your offer on the Microsoft price list. This enables you to easily:

  • Develop an indirect channel with the Microsoft network of 70,000+ CSPs  (cloud solution providers)
  • Gain global distribution while easing sales operations
  • Transfer the cost of invoicing, collections, currency translation, and tax remittance
  • Leverage Microsoft commercial agreements
  • Earn GTM benefits and rewards
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The commercial marketplace is a starting point for go-to-market collaboration and enablement with sales channels and Marketplace Rewards. 

The websites and in-product experiences give the visibility of your products to millions of customers who are seeking solutions like yours. You don’t even need to build or buy the commerce capabilities.

The commercial marketplace is available in 141 regions, on a per-plan basis.

It manages tax payments in many countries/regions, and it provides access to Microsoft’s global channel network of resellers. You can use a customer’s Microsoft Customer Agreement or Enterprise Agreement to sell to organizations without having to create a new buying relationship.

There’s no cost to publish offers in Microsoft’s commercial marketplace. It keeps a small percentage of the sale, as a transaction fee, and invests it in the Marketplace Rewards program, platform innovation, and commercial marketplace operations.

In order to create offers on the commercial marketplace, it is required to become a Microsoft partner as described in the corresponding article.

Marketplace Structure

Microsoft’s commercial marketplace features the two marketplace types that are described below.

Microsoft AppSource: AppSource represents a marketplace for business apps and technologies. It offers an extensive catalog of software as a service (SaaS) applications; solutions built for Dynamics 365, Microsoft 365, Power BI, and Power Apps; and consulting services from certified Microsoft partners. 

The Microsoft AppSource product catalog can be accessed via the web at https://appsource.microsoft.com, as well as through the in-product experience in Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, and Power Platform. 

Azure Marketplace: Offers cloud apps and tools for IT specialists and developers building solutions on Azure. It features SaaS solutions, Virtual Machine images, Azure applications (either deployed or fully managed), container images, IoT solutions, and Azure Managed Services and Consulting Services from Microsoft certified partners.

The Azure Marketplace catalog can be accessed on the web at http://azuremarketplace.microsoft.com

It can also be accessed within the Azure portal, allowing you to deploy seamlessly into your Azure account.

Purchase Operations

In order to purchase products from Microsoft AppSource, it is required to have an Azure Active Directory account (also referred to as a work or school account). If your organization uses Office 365, your normal email address will suffice.

If you don’t have one of these accounts, the purchase flow will prompt you to sign up, which is free. SaaS subscriptions on Microsoft AppSource are purchased using a credit card at the time of signup. 

Once you click Get It Now on the offer page, you will be prompted to select the plan and number of licenses, and then to enter your credit card information and billing address. Microsoft AppSource accepts VISA, American Express, Mastercard, and Discover cards. 

To deploy resources and SaaS solutions from Azure Marketplace, you’ll need an active Azure subscription with an associated payment method. 

Products purchased through Azure Marketplace are automatically added to your Azure bill and charged to the payment method associated with that account. This can be a credit card or invoice. 

To complete a purchase or deploy and configure resources, you’ll need to have appropriate permissions within the Azure subscription. 

Azure Marketplace purchases can be controlled and governed by your organization, and if any of these configurations are in place, you may be unable to make a purchase. 

Subscription Management

SaaS subscriptions obtained through Azure Marketplace are managed via the SaaS section of the Azure Portal.

You can access this page by searching for “SaaS” in the search bar within https://portal.azure.com

SaaS subscriptions obtained through Microsoft AppSource are managed via the Microsoft 365 Admin Center at https://admin.microsoft.com.

Therefore, by using provided interfaces, you increase or decrease license volumes, cancel subscriptions, and manage credit cards for payment.

AppSource vs. Azure Marketplace

The Microsoft commercial marketplace includes Microsoft AppSource and Azure Marketplace. Each storefront serves unique customer requirements and different target audiences, so you can make sure your solution or service is available to the right customers.

To choose a storefront, first, identify the target audience for your offer. If you’re targeting audiences in multiple storefronts, you can publish once to sell in multiple storefronts.

Azure MarketplaceAppSource
IT Professionals and DevelopersBusiness Users and Business Decision Makers

The following table describes the benefits of using each storefront:

BenefitsAzure MarketplaceAppSource
Billing flexibilityAzure Marketplace supports free, trial, BYOL, and transact offer types. Transact offers are either consumption-based or subscription-based. Consumption-based offers are billed by hourly usage and can provide an initial free period. Subscription-based services are billed monthly or annually on a per-seat or flat rate.AppSource supports free, trial, BYOL, and transact offer types. Transact offers are subscription-based SaaS products that can be billed monthly or annually on a per-seat or flat rate.
Connections with other partnersCurrently, you cannot link a service provider or delivery partner to your offer.Links independent software vendors, system integrators, and managed service providers to specific implementation scenarios. You can collaboratively sell to new customers.
AutomationCurrently, you cannot link a service provider or delivery partner to your offer. Take advantage of automated software as a service (SaaS) with add-on provisioning. Use the Azure apps: Solution template publishing option to automate SaaS-based data collection and deployment scenarios.Links independent software vendors, system integrators, and managed service providers to specific implementation scenarios. You can collaboratively sell to new customers.
Multiple cloud typesPublish solutions for both the public cloud and on-premises by using the following types: Azure Stack, Azure Government Regional clouds, including China and GermanyCurrently, doesn’t support Azure Stack, Azure Government, or regional clouds.
In-context presentation to customersMake your solution available in the Azure in-portal experience for contextual search. Use the Virtual machine and Azure apps: Solution template publishing options.Reach more customers through the in-app experience for Microsoft products such as Dynamics 365, Power BI, and Office 365.

More Information

Refer to the following articles to learn how to address the Microsoft Commercial Marketplace integration and how to publish your offer on this marketplace:

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