Differences between AppStores, WebStores, Catalogs and Ecosystem Marketplaces

Ecosystem MarketplaceFor Business Software Vendors, the need to implement a more encompassing ecommerce solution is becoming more prevalent every day.

This is being driven by a changing landscape in which the industry is seeing new sales channels, new deployment methods, new revenue drivers and new business models which in turn are affecting the rest of the business operations including marketing, channel management and accounting.

Once the vendor has recognized their need for an ecommerce solution to manage their changing business, they then face the challenge of figuring out which of the myriad of options out there best suites their business.

This is especially difficult for vendors that have an established and complex ecosystem of resellers, ISVs, end-users, distributors and skilled resources as the ecommerce solution selected needs to keep these entities involved in the transactions.

The following chart shows the types of ecommerce features needed by a channel focused vendor and the ability of different types of systems to deliver them.


Function Marketplace Webstore Catalog App Store
Self Help Portals supporting the whole ecosystem including partners, distributors, ISVs, end-users, branches, “crowd”
Multi-Channel Sales model support including Web, Mobile, In-App, Channel
Multi Party Transactions to include multiple trading partners in a single transaction


Multiple Product Types including Mobile, On-Premise, SaaS, Hosted, etc.
Automated Notifications
Traffic Analytics
Payment Processing


Inbound Marketing


Outbound Marketing



Complete product collateral including video, PDF, HTML, presentations, spreadsheets, etc
Fully integrated across all components i.e. each of the features listed in this table should be integrated with each other to provide a single cohesive solution
Skills Market
Ecosystem Profiling
Ecosystem monetization e.g. membership fees, product placement fees, skills search, advertising etc.
Ecosystem activity integrated to social networks
Drives traffic back to the vendor
Vendor shares in revenue
The Skills available in your ecosystem are critica...
A Cloud Product Strategy Is not Enough

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