Announcing SaaS Contracts, a Feature to Simplify SaaS Procurement on AWS Marketplace
By Brad Lyman, Principal Product Manager at AWS
Since the inception of AWS Marketplace, we have prioritized customer and seller feedback as our starting point for driving Marketplace improvements. In response to customers and sellers pointing to Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) as their preferred software delivery mechanism, we launched AWS Marketplace SaaS Subscriptions in November 2016.
SaaS Subscriptions enables sellers to offer their SaaS solutions directly to AWS customers, with all charges consolidated on the customer’s bill alongside other services bought directly from AWS or through AWS Marketplace.
Our goal is to continue to enable SaaS sellers and drive additional value for customers. Today, we’re excited to announce the launch of the AWS Marketplace SaaS Contracts, which allows sellers to offer monthly, one, two, and three year contracts for SaaS and application programming interface (API) products.
What are the Benefit of SaaS Contracts for Customers?
This new capability gives AWS customers more options and flexibility in how they procure software through AWS Marketplace. Customers can use a shopping-cart like experience to determine the number of included units and the duration of their contract. Customers can take advantage of potential cost savings resulting from longer-term contracts and will have the ability to expand their subscriptions at any time. Customers that purchase monthly contracts can expand to a one, two, or three year contract term as needed, and can take advantage of automatic, configurable renewals. Today, customers can now subscribe to over 70 SaaS products, giving AWS customers even greater selection.
How Does This Impact Sellers?
SaaS Contracts provides sellers even more options for monetizing their solutions to AWS customers. In addition to the pay-as-you-go options provided by SaaS Subscriptions, sellers can now provide services that require up-front payment or offer discounts for committed usage amounts. Sellers can offer customers a monthly option – good for customers that want to test software before making a longer commitment. From here, a buyer can easily upgrade to a one, two, or three year contract term. With simple auto-renewal options for customers, it’s easier to manage your ongoing relationship with customers.
After creating a new contract, Marketplace buyers are passed to the seller’s website, along with an encrypted token containing their customer identifier and product code. This experience is identical to the registration process for AWS Marketplace SaaS Subscriptions. Sellers use the customer identifier to check the customer’s entitlement by calling the AWS Marketplace entitlement service at any time, meaning sellers can rely on AWS Marketplace to serve as their primary entitlement store.
How Do I Get Started as a Seller?
We’ve made it simple for you to deliver your solution as a SaaS offering through AWS Marketplace. Once you have established your AWS Marketplace Seller account, you’ll need to select your billing dimension. You can choose from the existing options (users, hosts, data, units, tiers, bandwidth or requests) or request an additional dimension. You can also define multiple price points (called variants) within this dimension, such as admin, power, and read-only users within the user category.
To get started with your listing, log into the AWS Marketplace Management Portal and navigate to the “Listings” tab. To create a new SaaS listing, download and fill out the product load form for SaaS Contracts. Define your category, variants, pricing, and other listing data and submit it to AWS Marketplace once you are ready. You will receive a limited, preview version of your listing to test against before the listing is published live to the AWS Marketplace website.
Next, you’ll need to modify your registration page to receive the token containing the customer identifier and product code. You’ll also have to modify your application to call the new AWS Marketplace Entitlement Service to check the size and duration of your customer’s contract. You can download the AWS software development kit (SDK) that will help you format your metering records in any of the AWS supported languages. As a final step, you can choose to listen to notifications on a Simple Notification Service (SNS) topic for when your customers modify their contract. You can find more information about the steps necessary to modify your application in the AWS Marketplace SaaS Seller Integration guide, or reach out to your AWS Category Manager to connect with a solutions architect to help you with the process.
How Do I Learn More?
At launch, AWS Marketplace SaaS Contracts features products from 20 sellers: Alert Logic, AppDynamics, Box, Cloudberry Labs, CloudHealth, Davra Networks, Device Authority, Flowroute, Informatica, Lucidchart, Mnubo, NetApp, Pitney Bowes, Simularity, Splunk, SumoLogic, ThingLogix, Threat Stack, Trend Micro, and TSOLogic. Over the next few months, we expect more than a dozen additional sellers to release products. Visit here to see all the SaaS products available on AWS Marketplace.
To learn more about selling your product as a SaaS solution, or how to modify your product to become a SaaS solution, be sure to visit https://aws.amazon.com/marketplace/management/tour/.