Enterprise App Store: Buyer’s Guide



Senior editor

Parul Saxena

Chief editor

Last updated: September 30, 2019

An enterprise application is something that a business will create and customize to the needs of their organization. It’s a work-based app, and it will usually have unique features that allow the app to be described as enterprise-grade. 

Some of the features that make an app of enterprise-level include,

  • Non-dynamic and not open source
  • Built for speed and scale
  • Offers a higher level of auditing so that data can be appropriately used 
  • End-to-end encryption 
  • Extensive quality testing for stability

Many large companies don’t just have several enterprise-level apps, but they also have their own app store. 

The following are things you must know about using an enterprise app store to distribute corporate apps to employees. 

What is an Enterprise App Store?

Some businesses with their own apps will make them available to employees on public app stores such as the App Store itself or Google Play. This can create risks, such as security risks, however.  An enterprise app store provides you more streamlined control over how employees download your company apps. 

An enterprise app store, in simplest terms, is a portal or app your employees can use to search for, and download and install your company applications and software. 

While there are pros of using a public enterprise app store, such as the fact that it reduces the infrastructure that needs to be maintained by your business and there are no costs of customizations, beyond potential security risks there are downsides. For example, it’s tough to scale up past a few apps. 

With a hybrid app store, you introduce a web portal that the enterprise maintains, and it includes a catalog of your approved apps. 

With a private enterprise app store, you manage the lifecycle of an app from discovery to download. This also includes necessary upgrades, and users automatically receive push notifications and upgrades. 

What Are the Benefits of an Enterprise App Store?

There are some varying benefits of an enterprise app store that you might consider. These include,

  • First and foremost, an enterprise app store can help improve the likelihood of mobile app adoption. When your enterprise app is on a public app store, it can make it more difficult for employees to find it and therefore download it because of the amount of competition. With an enterprise app store, everything is in one centralized location. Not only does this make it easier for employees to adopt business apps, but it can improve productivity as well. 
  • You can ultimately reduce costs when you have an internally managed app store. 
  • When your employees bring their own devices, managing security as they’re downloading apps can be challenging at a minimum. Also, when employees place apps on an unauthorized network, it creates additional security risks. With a mobile app store, you can store assets in one place so that it’s easier to not only access them but also maintain them, reducing security risks. 

What Features Should Be Included In An Enterprise App Store?

Even if your business takes the time to create and introduce an enterprise app store, it’s not likely to be used by employees without certain features. 

First, it has to be easy for your employees to search and discover apps just as they would in a public app store. 

This may not be that much of a priority as you’re just starting out and you don’t have a lot of available apps, but it will become very important as the number of apps grows. 

You also want to make it easy for employees to save apps before they download them so they can go back and find them, and you want them organized by functionality. 

The goal should be that employees can search for an app based on functionality, find it easily, and then download it as they would in any other app store. 

Another feature to consider including in a successful enterprise app store is a way for employees to leave feedback for ratings. This is good from the standpoint of your organization because it will help you understand what apps are working well and which ones aren’t and make the necessary changes. It will also let you know which are the most popular apps. 

Finally, the design and user interface of your enterprise app store is as important as it is in the public app store. 

You want an enterprise app store that’s in line with the branding of your organization, and that feels cohesive and unified. 

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