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The Salesforce AppExchange is your Salesforce app marketplace, and just like the App Store for IOS or Google Play for Android, you can browse, upload and install the packages you desire. And YES, some are free for installation!
An interesting fact for you, the reason that the AppExchange sounds similar to the App Store is because in 2006, Salesforce launched its app store AppExchange, and Apple launched its own app store in 2008. Benioff gave the "App Store" trademark and appstore.com to Apple as a gift. The URL is still in use today, as it redirects to Apple's iTunes store.
So, what is the Salesforce AppExchange?
The Salesforce AppExchange is an online marketplace for Salesforce apps, components and consulting services. Whether you are a consultant or a developer uploading your business solution for customers to utilise or you are a Salesforce Administrator or user visiting the AppExchange for tools and services, the AppExchange has something for everyone!
How does the Salesforce AppExchange work?
For a partner looking to provide a solution the Salesforce AppExchange listing is your gateway to promoting your app or component to the public. The listing will contain a description, pricing, support and package details so customers can decide whether your product is the solution for them. You can also provide other details such as data sheets, case studies, whitepapers, webinars and videos, this is the place where you can really sell your solution and make it stand out. Once you have submitted your listing, an AppExchange curator will categorise your solution depending on the information given such as sales, service or marketing.
To upload your package, you need to create a provider profile, this is when you can create your first listing. You can only create one listing per app or component, this allows for easier version control and updates, it also makes it easier for your customers to find the solution without having to search through several similar listings. The AppExchange ranks listings based on a few metrics such as page views and customer reviews. This is to benefit you, the provider, with feedback but also to provide customers with other user’s feedback.
For a system admin, the AppExchange is the place to look to find ready-made solutions to your business challenges. We’ll cover some examples in a moment.
Who can use the Salesforce AppExchange?
The great thing is anyone can browse through the listings, there are two ways to access the AppExchange:
However, if you are to download an app or component you will need the “Download Packages” permission in your profile, and to create and upload a package you must have the “Create Packages” and “Upload Packages” permissions. To create and publish a listing you will need the “Manage Listings” permission.
The AppExchange is the next step after using the declarative tools Salesforce offers right out of the box. If you can’t quite get Salesforce to do what you want, then someone may have created a similar solution, which with a few tweaks here and there may be a more cost effective solution to your problem. Salesforce Labs are Salesforce’s own in-house developers who create apps and components which are free to use, this may be a useful place to start to understand what the AppExchange is all about. Some apps/components of interest:
There are many many more exciting apps and components out there and many to come in the future.
Finding Certified Consultants
Have you ever wanted to find Salesforce experts, or someone to take on your implementation projects? The AppExchange now gives you access to over 65,000 Salesforce-accredited consultants from more than 1,000 partners. They can offer deep technical skills, project implementations, integrations and migrations, strategic guidance and deep technical skills. Feel free to search for us “Stimulus Consulting” in the AppExchange.
The Salesforce AppExchange is a place with a vast variety of packages which are always changing and improving. There is something for everyone in the AppExchange, hopefully you can find what you are looking for. Stay tuned for more useful blogs and videos.