• 2 min read

Microsoft commercial marketplace updates–May 2019

New Partner Center tooling, seat-based SaaS billing, and purchases through AppSource.

Today marks an exciting milestone for Microsoft's commerce ecosystem evolution as we extend our sales channels to benefit our partners and, ultimately, our customers. With audience-specific web stores AppSource and Azure Marketplace, thousands of partners in the Cloud Solution Provider program, and a world-class enterprise sales team, Microsoft provides you with both cloud technologies and go-to-market motions.

As announced at Microsoft Build, we’re rolling out new capabilities to simplify publisher sign-up and account management, unlock powerful Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) business models, and improve product discovery and purchasing. We look forward to sharing many more updates and announcements at Microsoft Inspire in July, and hope to see you there!

New partner center tooling for offer management and account settings

Whether your organization is new to Microsoft’s commercial marketplace, is well-established, or evaluating it’s options, the updates to sign-up, publishing, and offer management experiences will make life much easier.

Effective immediately, all new publisher accounts are created through a simplified and streamlined process in Partner Center. Registering as a Microsoft partner, getting a Microsoft partner network ID, and creating your publisher profile is easy and intuitive. Sign up for the Microsoft commercial marketplace program today.
If you have an existing account in the Cloud Partner Portal, you’ll receive an email inviting you to activate your account in Partner Center. From that point forward, your account and publisher information will be mastered in Partner Center and synchronized to Cloud Partner Portal.
Starting with SaaS offers and then expanding to other offer types in waves, the offer creation and management will take place in Partner Center. But don't worry—the coexistence experience will be seamless, with automatic transition between portals without the need to open a new window. Learn more about the transition from Cloud Partner Portal to Partner Center.

An image of the commercial marketplace ovierview page within Partner Center

Commercial marketplace overview page within Partner Center

Software-as-a-Service user licensing

In 2018, Microsoft introduced the ability for partners to offer flat fee (also known as site-based) SaaS offerings on a monthly basis in the commercial marketplace, and in March 2019, we added annual billing capabilities. Now we’re introducing the option to offer seat-based SaaS subscriptions, which are licensed per user. Using Azure Active Directory for single sign on and the marketplace SaaS Fulfillment API, Microsoft's commercial marketplace is optimized for partners delivering business solutions.

Within Microsoft's commercial marketplace, SaaS is defined as a software solution that’s developed, deployed, managed, updated, and supported within the ISV's infrastructure or Azure subscription.

 Software as a Service plan creation in Partner Center showing seat based billing
Software-as-a-Service plan creation in Partner Center showing seat based billing.

AppSource purchases

To complement the availability of a business solution licensing model, we’re excited to introduce a purchase experience directly in the business and industry web store, AppSource. With simply a credit card and Azure Active Directory account, customers can discover, evaluate, and purchase SaaS solutions provided by Microsoft's partners.

Coming soon

Our teams are busy working on many more capabilities and enhancements that we’re excited to release in the future. Learn more about the commercial marketplace roadmap.

Have questions or feedback? Join the conversation in the marketplace section of the Microsoft Partner Community.