According to CNET, the new app store will be rolled out slowly in North America through Amazon’s Seller Central. The store will include tools to handle pricing, inventory, advertising and other needs for sellers.
“Many developers have innovated and created applications that complement our tools and integrate with our service,” Amazon said in a statement. “We created the Marketplace Appstore to help businesses more easily discover these applications, streamline their business operations and ultimately create a better experience for our customers.”
While the Appstore could provide a way for sellers to grow their businesses on Amazon, it also gives developers the chance to present their tools to the more than one million small- and medium-sized U.S. businesses that sell their products on the site.
“Ultimately, that’s what we’re all trying to do, is help sellers sell more products on Amazon,” said Jeff Cohen, chief marketing officer and partner of Seller Labs, which will provide its advertising and customer communication tools through the app store.
Seller Labs, which launched five years ago, sees the Appstore as an important step in finding new customers, said Cohen.
The store is invite-only for developers, and any company interested in joining will need to submit a request and undergo an Amazon review. It is currently free for developers.
The launch of the Appstore comes after the introduction of Amazon’s new advisory board, the Marketplace Developer Council. Both the council and Appstore aim to boost communication between Amazon and developers, helping both improve their work for the site’s sellers.
Cohen, whose company is part of the council, admitted that there is a chance Amazon could use developers’ insights for its own development work, but he is hopeful that both sides will work to help each other.