As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) startup, it can be difficult to find the right support and resources to help your business grow.
At Microsoft Inspire 2021, were excited to see a new focus on supporting ISVs to expand and grow their business. As of October 2021, Microsoft has made available important technical go-to-market and co-sell benefits particularly for ISVs.
The first step for an ISV Partner is to create, publish and manage their offers in the Microsoft commercial marketplace. This presents a great opportunity to reach more customers, expand your business and provide the services your customers need most.
A key addition is that Microsoft now has a committed ISV team set up that will help your business make the best start possible. As well as this, custom software development companies such as Ballard Chalmers, who have achieved gold competencies with Microsoft, are in a perfect position to partner with ISVs to sell together and reach more customers.
What this Means for You as an ISV
According to Casey McGee, Vice President of Microsoft’s ISV Business within the Global Partner Solutions team, there has never been a better time to partner with Microsoft. He stated that Microsoft relies on the deep customer expertise of ISVs to develop the solutions customers need most. Furthermore, Microsoft is committed to providing the top platform, tools and resources to ensure their partners’ success.
A recent study was conducted by Forrester on the growth and revenue opportunities for Microsoft Partners that build with the Microsoft cloud. It was shown that they can get to market faster with a 50% to 75% faster development of MVP (minimum viable product) and an 85% reduced time to implement SaaS (software as a service).
In addition, the study showed that partners who sell with Microsoft increase their deals by up to 400% and experience 100% greater subscription growth in the first three years.
In today’s ever-changing world of technology, organisations in all industries, such as healthcare, energy and utilities, financial services and non-profit need to be able to adapt and respond quickly to meet the needs of their customers.
Working alongside Microsoft, developers can build and deploy solutions on the Microsoft cloud with a number of professional development tools such as Visual Studio and GitHub.
As an ISV start-up, you’ll be able to deliver faster solutions to your customers who need it most, for example:
New Ways to Reach More Customers
An exciting announcement was made at 2021 Microsoft Inspire — more focus on ISVs. To this end, Microsoft made several enhancements to their ISV Connect program. These key technical go-to-market and co-sell benefits, which started at the beginning of October 2021, include:
- 3% Revenue sharing aligned with Marketplace (down from 10% and 20%)
- Simplified GTM benefits offered at reduced tiers
- The creation of new private offers in the Commercial Marketplace to showcase products to Cloud Solution Providers (CSP/resellers)
- The ability to extend margin to resellers to incentivize them to sell their applications.
Toby Bowers, General Manager of Product Marketing at Microsoft explained that over 4 million shoppers are engaging in the Microsoft marketplace every month. This means the commercial marketplace is central to selling with Microsoft. Whether that’s direct to the customer, with Microsoft’s field sellers, with CSPs (over 90K) via partner to partner, or going to market jointly with IP co-sell.
Partner to partner deals for ISVs working with CSPs
The opportunity to invite partners to deals will allow ISVs to scale through Microsoft cloud solution provider resellers. Particularly with the new capacity for ISVs building on Azure and Microsoft 365 to share margins to those resellers.
This is an amazing new opportunity for ISVs to reach more customers and for resellers to add more offerings. Put simply, it is based on selling together to better meet the needs of customers and to share success through Microsoft.
In practical terms, it means that ISVs can scale instantly by publishing once to Microsoft’s catalogue and selling through multiple channels, including 90K+ CSPs. You can grow your business and reach new markets utilising margin flexibility. For example, setting your pricing strategy and providing different margin percentages per partner or offer, as below:
In turn, the CSP partner can view all margins extended to them in the Partner Centre UI or via API. They can then purchase offers via the Partner Centre, APIs or the Azure portal. The CSP partner will receive a bill from Microsoft at the price after the margin has been applied. The CSP partner then sets the price and invoices their customer outside of the commercial marketplace.
For ISVs and ISV start-ups, this amazing news represents a massive opportunity of over 90,000 cloud service providers ready to instantly scale your application to new customers. Many of these CSPs, such as Ballard Chalmers, will have Gold Status meaning advanced expertise in several areas.
As we have mentioned in our previous Inspire blog post looking at the UK news, together, as partners, we can grow, and in turn, bring digital transformation and more, thereby helping the UK economy grow.
If you would like to find out more about the Microsoft Partner Program for ISVs, these links and documentation should provide everything you need.