Zoho has opened for business an online app store whose virtual shelves are stocked with software from its developers.Zoho Marketplace will compete with Salesforce's AppExchange, albeit on a smaller scale, says TechCrunch, with a place for third-party applications that can be built on Zoho's Creator platform. Application categories includes sales, marketing, IT management, human resources, and customer service.
"We are trying to be the IT department for SMBs," Zoho evangelist Raju Vegesna told InformationWeek earlier this month.
According to Zoho: "Users who want to buy Zoho Creator applications can find ready-made applications in the Zoho Marketplace and install them in seconds. Users can also post their application needs in the Zoho Marketplace, letting developers bid to develop that particular application. In turn, developers who want to sell Zoho Creator applications can develop custom web-based solutions based on customersï¿¼ unique requirements as posted in the Zoho Marketplace. Or developers can build ready-made applications and post them in the Zoho Marketplace for broader distribution -- with zero upfront investment, zero royalties, and Zohoï¿¼s renowned support."
Also part of its announcement is the rollout of Zoho Creator 3.0, the drag-and-drop platform for "regular folks," where all of these applications can be created in the first place and be kept private, shared, published, or sold through Zoho Marketplace. Enhancements include the ability to create fully customized HTML pages and mashups.
Pricing plans vary from free to $300 per month for a 100-user business package (nonprofits get a discount).