Building a Marketplace app? Get It Approved on the First Review!

Daniel Picon
Jul 1 · 6 min read
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Pipedrive’s App Marketplace has been around since the end of 2017 and within that time has added over 200 apps. In order for someone to add an application to the Marketplace, we require that the application uses OAuth authentication and meets minimum viable product criteria. From my experience, I find that, more often than not, the minimum requirement tends to be missed. This prompted me to write an article to help apps have a higher chance of being approved on their first attempt.

Since a particular level of quality is expected in the apps listed on our Marketplace — we monitor UX consistency as well and standards that resonate with the Pipedrive brand. The Marketplace should be seen as a bridge between a 3rd party product and Pipedrive, from the customer’s perspective there’s a user experience expectation that needs to be smooth throughout the whole journey — from finding your app in the Marketplace, to installing it, and finally to using it.

What are the most common roadblocks that app developers often face and what exactly is the quality standard I previously mentioned?

I will divide the journey into 3 separate parts in order to better answer these questions and to separate the important aspects that pertain to each area — whether it’s landing page content, OAuth installation, or API functionality.

Part. 1 — App discoverability in the Marketplace

Marketplace Landing Page

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We have a few minimum requirements to have your app listed (at least one image, certain required fields, etc), but if an app is sent to us for reviewal with minimal effort placing into its landing page, it may be rejected on this fact alone. As the Marketplace is operated by Pipedrive, the quality of the apps located within also reflect back on our product — this is why we maintain a seriousness for aesthetics and presentation. We expect that once a user lands on an app page, they will quickly and easily be able to understand what the app does, and shouldn’t view the aesthetics of the app as a question of its authenticity.

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Part. 2 — An App’s Purpose is Easily Understood

App installation

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Creating a page asking whether or not there’s an existing account is ideal

In the image above, you can see how one app followed the installation requirements. You can use this as a UX example to follow — remember, we prefer consistency between all apps.

Account creation: What if you need to send a confirmation email to the user for them to confirm the account? This prolongs the account creation process and might hinder fulfilling this installation requirement, right?

The desired outcome is that the user will be redirected to an integration hub, on your platform, where they can already see the app as installed, perhaps then allowing them to fine tune some settings. *Please take note, at this point the app should already show as installed, and won’t require users to install the app again.

If it happens that the user took more than 5 minutes, the authorization code will be invalid and the user will have to install the app again. If this occurs, we expect you to explain this to the user, don’t leave them in the dark — guide them as much as possible regardless the situation.

What if you don’t have a public sign up option? (For example, you create accounts only on request.)

If you can explain to us that it’s not a possibility, we then expect you to make it clear within your app page’s description and handle new users who install your app and expecting a sign-up option. Simply place yourself in the position of a new user. Use the tools at your disposal to mitigate any confusion that this situation might create.
Hint: Explain on your login page, on the landing page description and installation instructions.

Part. 3 — App installed! Make the most out of our API and the functionality of the integration.

For example, let’s say you are creating an SMS app. We expect that all the messages that the user sends will be carried over to Pipedrive via a note and activity. Take a look below at how NectarDesk handled this:

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The above is a very simple example, and perhaps has nothing to do with what your app will do, but the main takeaway is that we want you to really look into what you offer. Look at how you can connect the data from your platform and how to do it in a way that makes sense to the user.

Some recommendations:

  1. Use webhooks as much as possible
  2. Use app extensions
  3. Don’t abuse the API rate limits
  4. Getting some errors? Check our error codes

Checklist

  1. Handle Installation flows
  2. Handle user uninstallation
  3. Is the app easy to configure after installation?
  4. Do all your features work as intended? Please test all features as much as possible, get some beta testers to help you out with user experience feedback.
  5. Make the app landing page presentable, use images to visually explain what the app does.

Here are some apps that went through a thorough review process but in the end delivered an exemplary app:

Hopefully this gives you a better idea of what to do to create a successful app that gets approved on the first review.

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