Simplification & Alignment in Marketplace Rewards

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Simplification & Alignment in Marketplace Rewards  

We know that there’s a lot to keep in mind when you’re running your business. Keeping track of your benefits shouldn’t be one of them. To help drive simplicity, make it easier for you to access benefits, and support co-selling through the marketplace, we’ve made several changes to Marketplace Rewards, as part of ISV Success, a pathway within the Microsoft AI Cloud Partner Program. No partners will lose any benefits they have already unlocked because of these changes, they will only impact how benefits are unlocked starting in early December. 


Here’s a summary of changes and then we’ll dive into each update in this blog post:

  • Lowering of the highest benefit tier from USD $5M to USD $4M: we’re making it easier to achieve the highest tier of Marketplace Rewards benefits
  • Benefits will now refresh yearly: benefits will now refresh yearly, based on the anniversary date of when you first received benefits
  • All benefits will be visible and available to activate via Partner Center: all benefits will be visible and available to activate in Partner Center for partners who unlock benefits based on Marketplace Billed Sales (MBS) in the last year and going forward
  • Simplification of tiers: to simplify your growth journey, we’ve consolidated tiers to make it easier to understand and engage your benefits
  • Metrics alignment for Teams Apps: to better support M365 and Teams Apps ISVs, we’re eliminating the Seats Sold metric and aligning to Teams Apps Monthly Active Users (MAU)
  • Alignment on sales requirements: MBS remains the primary metric you use to unlock benefits, but we’ll now measure it on a Trailing Twelve Months (TTM) calculation, so you can track your progress toward unlocking benefits in the same way you track your co-sell progress
  • Benefits unlock at the partner level: to provide greater consistency, all benefits will now be unlocked at the partner—not marketplace offer—level
  • Technical benefits are now available through ISV Success Core and Expanded packages to help build and publish your next app. As a result, they will no longer be issued separately via Marketplace Rewards which will focus on Marketing and Sales benefits

These changes should help make it easier to understand how to unlock benefits and when you can use them.


Driving simplification  

Business can be hard; we want to help simplify where we can. Let’s examine the changes to simplify Marketplace Rewards.


By providing wider bands of performance-based tiers, you will now have a simpler path forward and clear signposts of the next level of benefits. We’ve heard your feedback that keeping track of the many levels in Marketplace Rewards could be time-consuming and a little confusing, so we’re eliminating the USD $50,000 and USD $2M tiers. The remaining tiers will provide a more streamlined path to benefits.


Partners who have already unlocked benefits by reaching these tiers will keep their benefits. These changes will take effect in November and apply only to the future unlocking of benefits by performance tier. The following chart shows the new benefit tiers: 


Changes to Marketplace Rewards by tier - starting November 8th.png


Another way we’ve simplified is to switch the benefit refresh date to anniversary date, rather than the Microsoft fiscal year. Benefits will now refresh yearly based on the date they were first unlocked, giving you a full year to utilize them. You won’t have to rush to use your benefits at the end of the Microsoft fiscal any longer, you’ll see your benefits refresh in Partner Center on the anniversary of the date you were granted benefits. For partners who unlock benefits through Teams App Monthly Active Users (MAU) or qualifying Business Application Solution Value, look for a communication from your Engagement Manager about your refreshed benefits.


We’re also increasing visibility of your benefits on Partner Center. After the launch date in November, all benefits will be visible and available to activate on Partner Center for partners who unlock benefits based on Marketplace Billed Sales (MBS) who have joined less than a year ago. For partners who joined more than a year ago, initially, you’ll see a banner to direct you to reach out about your benefits. When you unlock a new tier or pass your anniversary date, you’ll see all of your benefits in Partner Center. For those who unlock through Teams App MAU or qualifying Business Application Solution Value, you will continue to have engagement outside of Partner Center to unlock your benefits.


For those of you who have published Teams App, you’ll now have your performance measured on Teams Apps MAU, rather than M365 Seats Sold metric. This continues our support of a variety of ISVs and types of applications by measuring by MBS, Teams Apps MAU, and Solution Value of qualifying Business Applications.


Consolidating these pivotal parts of Marketplace Rewards will help you minimize tracking and maximize your use of benefits.  


Alignment across Microsoft


We’ve heard from hundreds of partners like you that they love what Microsoft has to offer, but keeping track of requirements across multiple membership offerings and incentives can be difficult. With this in mind, we’re aligning to how many Microsoft AI Cloud Partner Program membership offerings and incentives measure eligibility and tiering.


We’ve aligned to a popular change that was offered in co-sell requirements. Now, you can earn the highest tier of Marketplace Rewards benefits available at a lower performance level. In the past, you would have needed to attain USD $5M in marketplace billed sales or had a USD $5M solution value or had USD $500,000 Teams App MAU. Now, we’ve aligned to the same levels as you’ll see in the marketplace performance path for Azure IP co-sell top-tier benefits requirements: USD $4M in marketplace billed sales. For partners with Azure IP co-sell qualifying solutions, this means you can qualify those top-tier benefits by selling USD $4M through marketplace and you can also unlock USD $400,000 in Azure sponsorship through Marketplace Rewards, both at USD $4M marketplace billed sales. 


We've also made it easier to understand when you are eligible to unlock new benefits based on performance. Marketplace Rewards will now be measured on a 12-month trailing basis. Today, this calculation looks back to 2018, but will switch to trailing 12-months in November. This mirrors what you’ll find across the Microsoft AI Cloud Partner Program including co-sell requirements.


We’re also driving consistency in how you unlock benefits. You no longer need to track benefits at the offer level, worrying about whether you’ve used what you’ve unlocked. Now all benefits unlocked on publishing to the Microsoft commercial marketplace will be applied at the company level and you can use them whenever and however you like across your business landscape.


Lastly, we’ve shifted benefits to unlock when we think you’d need them most. Now, technical benefits will be available in the ISV Success packages to help you with building and publishing your next app. To drive alignment of Marketplace Rewards to focus on selling and growing, these technical benefits will be issued separately. If you’re interested in building and publishing an app, or publishing transactable, you can learn more about ISV Success here.


Full details will be available in the ISV Success benefit guide when changes go live. These changes should help take a few things off your list of items to track and allow you and your business more time to strategize about how to use your benefits to grow. We’re here to support every step of the way.


To engage in your benefits, visit the Marketing Benefits page on Partner Center. If you have any questions about these changes or to learn more about Marketplace Rewards, please reach out to

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