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Tracking Early Signs of Success for your AppExchange Listing

Salesforce Partnerships, much like your internal sales team, are seen as successful by sales teams and executive teams alike based mostly on pipeline and closed deals. These are important metrics to sustain a business and fund an alliance team, but it can’t be the only metrics you track in the first 12-24 months after launching your app on the Salesforce AppExchange

As we dig into the leading indicators that help track success on the way to dollars, think of partnerships like gardening. 

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Your AppExchange listing is like a garden

Anyone who has played around in the dirt of their backyard, struggled to maintain a balcony garden or just just tried to keep an herb garden alive knows that it isn’t as easy as planting the seeds and waiting for magic to happen. 


Stage one – Selecting the right plant

Not all plants are created for all climates – and not all partnerships are created for all ISVs. Take the time to understand which partnership is the right fit for you and your organization’s goal at this time. 


Stage two – Select the right size container 

How big will your plant / partnership grow and how do you want to accommodate that? Understanding how you will support the growth of your partnership is important to identify from the beginning. Do you have the support of your leadership team? Do you have the right fundamentals identified before you get your hands dirty with partnerships?


Stage three – Feed, Nurture and Wait 

You have identified your perfect partnership, you put in good fundamental work to make sure there is the right size foundation to grow… now you wait.  Just like it takes time for harvest ready plants, it takes time to see partnership success. Again that can be 12-24 months. However, there are signs of growth that you can and should track during those first 1-2 years, and even those first few months, that let you and your leadership team know you’re on the right track. 


Stage four – Track growth 

The leading indicators to success start early, much earlier than partnerships affecting pipeline or catching the attention of your sales and leadership teams. 


Leading indicators of AppExchange success 

  • AppExchange (sprouts) – the AppExchange is where prospects, SIs and Salesforce go to research solutions. 
  • PAM relationship (Healthy leaves) – your partner account manager is in charge of dozens to hundreds of ISVs. 
  • Meetings (flowers) – When you’ve put in the work to establish a great AppExchange listing, build a solid sales kit and start developing your PAM relationship, the next thing to track is meetings. 


Showcasing your wins on the AppExchange

All wins should be reported back to Salesforce. Not just in the form of your COA, which is required to track the deal, but in terms of celebration and promotion. Tracking these key aspects of wins increases the fomo within the Salesforce organization and tells your story via a painted picture of the value, use case and dollars. 

Although a full pipeline that shows the value of partnerships might seem easy to achieve from the outside, the work that goes into laying the foundation, planting and cultivating the relationship takes hard work and dedication. Ensuring you have a way to prove these leading indicators through facts not feelings will go a long way in validating the potential of the relationship.

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