cloud marketplace

The rise of cloud marketplaces

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It is not insignificant that we chose re:Invent to launch our email solutions on the AWS Marketplace. A recent study from shows that nearly 60% of respondents said they have already or would be purchasing solutions in the future via cloud marketplaces. We see a similar trend among our own customers.

There are a lot of drivers behind this. One obvious one, which many overlook, is that as consumers, we have grown used to, and in many cases reliant on, cloud purchasing. This was happening well before the COVID-19 pandemic, but those stay-at-home months only cemented the process further in the minds of consumers. A full 96% of shoppers have purchased products through e-commerce, so this is a comfortable pattern.

The same benefits these consumer purchasers found in e-commerce, such as 24×7 availability, easy comparison-shopping, and rapid fulfilment, are also elements in cloud marketplaces. Business buyers can read reviews, look at technical documentation, and compare pricing, all through a single marketplace. Some marketplaces take it a step further and allow the buyers to customize their experience and streamline the purchasing process even further, adding enablement, education, and consultations.

As organizations deploy more cloud-based products and services, their consumption of cloud computing resources naturally increases. A growing number of customers are leveraging agreements like Microsoft’s MACC contracts or AWS Volume Purchase Agreements to lock in cloud compute costs at a fixed rate and for a committed volume. To make these agreements more enticing (and help keep them more ingrained into customers), cloud companies allow these contract holders to use committed cloud funds on products in their particular marketplace. In fact in the study, 43% of respondents said their top reason for purchasing from a cloud marketplace was to use-down pre-committed cloud funds.

What's next for cloud marketplaces

But cloud marketplaces are continuing to push their evolution. While specialty marketplaces continue to open shop (an example is Pax8, designed specifically for MSP providers), the larger cloud marketplaces are accommodating new ways to license solutions to customers and through reseller channels. Vehicles like Private Offers and Consulting Partner Private Offers provide vendors the ability to provide special discounts, buying terms, and procurement methods (for example, through a preferred consulting partner) yet still take advantage of these marketplaces’ other benefits.

In short, marketplaces are driving innovation and changing purchasing patterns. Initially more of an experiment, they are now an integral part of most organizations’ procurement strategies. All Barracuda’s SaaS solutions are available on the AWS and Azure Marketplaces and as Private Offers through a wide network of partners and resellers.

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