Microsoft’s new commerce experience in simple terms
Microsoft's roll-out of its new commerce experience for Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, Power Platform and Windows 365 has begun. We unpack what this means, both for Cloud Service Providers and the customers they serve.
Join Umbrellar’s informative Partner Webinar to learn more about Microsoft’s new commerce experience and what it means for your CSP business and your customers.
Microsoft’s goal with the new commerce experience (NCE) revolves around giving greater choice and flexibility to how and where customers purchase software whilst giving Microsoft CSPs more opportunities to sell.
Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, Power Platform and Windows are now available as Microsoft CSP seat-based cloud offers to commercial customers.
Great! But what does it mean for your business?
In a nutshell, it makes it easier for CSPs to drive business growth by:
- expanding through continuous selling
- offering value-added services to retain business
- reducing costs while accelerating customer success.
Subscription terms can be 1-month, 12-month or 36-month and there are pros and cons for each offer.
Customers can have the flexibility of renewing licences every month. This is the best use case if they’re unsure of business requirements for a whole year. They can increase or decrease licence numbers each month to suit their unique business needs without the fear of being locked in for 12 months at a time – but the cost of a monthly licence will be 20% more expensive compared to an annual term fee.
Probably the most popular term for SMBs, a full 1-year licence gives an economical edge and flexible billing options of either monthly or full-term upfront payments. Even better – more licences can be added in after the term start date, with their end dates aligned to the original subscription term end date so you’re not trying to remember a staggered line of licence renewal dates.
This offers big savings for businesses, locking in the subscription purchase price for 36 months – something CFOs are bound to love! You’ll still enjoy the flexible billing options of monthly, annual or full-term upfront payment as well.
As a CSP, you can better manage customer subscriptions, with the ability to Suspend, Cancel or Auto-Renew subscriptions.
CSPs can suspend subscriptions, effectively blocking customers from signing in and using suspended services. The subscription can be reactivated or resumed at any time in the next 90 days – but if it isn’t, all data related to the subscription will be deleted once the 90-day mark is reached. It’s important to note partner billing continues during the suspension.
A subscription can be cancelled at any time – but no refund will be forthcoming unless the cancellation occurs within the first 72 hours of any subscription term. If cancelled within 72 hours of the subscription term, a pro-rated refund based on daily calculation will be offered. Please note that once the cancellation process has begun, it cannot be stopped or reversed.
Subscriptions now have the ability to toggle Auto-Renew ON and OFF. When ON, the subscription will automatically renew at the end of the term. The first 72 hours cancellation policy will apply here. When Auto-Renew is toggled OFF, the subscription will expire as expected at the end of the term. Note: Auto-Renew is toggled ON by default.
The NCE offers full or partial upgrades when moving to new SKUs or higher-level products mid-term.
While dates may be subject to change, the table below gives an indication of Microsoft’s NCE timeframes for adoption.
NCE products will be available to transact from MyCSP portal from mid-end February 2022.
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are some FAQs but if you want to know more, contact us and one of our Cloud Experts will be happy to help.
Q: Are there any refunds for a 12-months term subscription cancelled early?
A: Refund is only possible if you cancel in the first 72 hours cancellation period. Cancellation outside of the first 72 hours does not incur a refund. You will be liable to pay for the remaining term (monthly/12-months/36-months) of the subscription.
Q: What is the first 72 hours cancellation period?
A: Under NCE, Microsoft provides the option to cancel the subscription and get a pro-rated refund if done within the first 72 hours of ordering a subscription. This is the only time you will qualify for a refund. The pro-rated refund is calculated at a daily rate. The 72-hour cancellation period applies to all terms: one month, 12-months, 36-months as well as for renewed subscriptions.
Q: Any flexibility possible on 72 hours cancellation period?
A: No. This is strictly enforced. If you are unsure of committing to longer subscription term periods, the best option is to choose a 1-month term.
Q: Can the customer transition between NCE partners within their term?
A: No. This is not possible. The licenses assigned cannot be transferred mid-term to another customer.
Q: Can I add more licenses to a subscription that I have already purchased with any term? What would be the expiry date or the end date of those newly added licenses?
A: Yes, you can. The newly added licenses would align to the same term-end of the subscription. Let’s run through an example:
You purchased 10 Microsoft 365 E3 subscription licenses on 01/01/2022 for a 12-month term then add another 10 licenses on 01/07/2022.
The license expiry date of the new licenses will be aligned to the subscription term end date of 31/12/2022.
You will pay for these newly added licenses from when you added in July until the end of the subscription in December, choosing to use monthly or upfront as your billing option.
For more about NCE, visit Microsoft Partner Network: New commerce experience for CSP seat-based offers
Download the CSP Partner FAQ pdf from Microsoft
Join Umbrellar’s informative Partner Webinar to learn more about Microsoft’s new commerce experience and what it means for your CSP business and your customers. Umbrellar cloud specialists Alexandr Basan and Hazel Yang, joined by Microsoft’s Paul Bowkett, will go through what you need to know about the new seat-based commerce experience. At the end of the session, you’ll get the chance to clarify points and ask questions of our panel of experts.
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