So what exactly is an AppExchange?
Salesforce App Exchange is a cloud computing marketplace, developed and hosted by salesforce.com. AppExchange works as an on-demand platform, where you do not have to purchase or install any software; instead you can view and install apps from a public directory of available applications. Launched in 2005, AppExchange is a community where you can build, develop, customize and market your applications and share it with millions of other users, all over the world. Through AppExchange, you can also get instant access to thousands of applications built by others.
Private AppExchange or the Corporate AppStore
Salesforce.com has now launched a white-label, private version of AppExchange for customers. The new product, called “Private AppExchange,” has been available since 1 November 2013, and it is implemented as an instance on a company’s Salesforce SaaS environment. It can also be integrated with Salesforce Identity.
Customers can install their own apps and third-party apps on the private AppExchange along with their own branding. The private AppExchange supports mobile, desktop, and web applications. It has a smart dashboard to observe the page views and other information. Companies can also leverage chatter on apps, to empower users to connect with each other and collect quality feedback.
With a Private AppExchange by SalesForce.com, you can distribute any app, to any user on any device, through a central, secure store. Salesforce Identity can then be used to grant employees instant access to the apps they need. It basically becomes a corporate App Store to distribute apps to everyone who matters in the sales cycle.
- One-Stop Shop: Distribute any web or mobile app (Built on Salesforce Platform, or leveraged on another cloud service) to your employees.
- One Login: Leverage Salesforce Identity to give users one common ID to access all apps in use by the company.
- Customization: Add your own categories and branding to give the store your own look and feel, to maximize visibility for apps.
The private AppExchange does have an identity capability, but it still requires companies to install software on their own servers to take advantage of a cloud service. Private AppExchange provides transparency around the apps that are available in the organization – both the ones installed from AppExchange, as well as those custom-built. For example, if “FinancialForce Accounting” was installed in your org, you could list “FinancialForce Accounting” in your private AppExchange, so that employees can be aware of its existence. Automatic access can be given to accounting staff, but same automatic access may not be given to other employees. At the same time, a marketing executive could find “FinancialForce Accounting” in the private AppExchange, and then request access for it on a one-off basis.
Salesforce Private AppExchange is included with Enterprise and Unlimited Edition licenses for Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Communities, Platform, and Chatter Plus. This is a free service for Enterprise and Unlimited subscribers. If employees who do not have enterprise seats require access, it can be given through the Salesforce Identity service. This is also a free service for Enterprise and Unlimited Edition licensed users, but is $5 per user, per month, for non-Salesforce subscribers. The Private AppExchange has become a great avenue to help you create your own corporate AppStore, and to share with employees, customers, and collaborators.