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October 01, 2013

Peter Heinrich

Until now, submitting your PC or Mac digital software or video games for sale on Amazon has been a largely manual process. In sharp contrast, submitting a mobile app to the Amazon Appstore for Android has always been completely self-service; to submit a mobile app for approval, you click-through our distribution agreement, supply a title, description, list price and display imagery, upload your binary, and voilà! Even the tax information we are required to collect can be entered online.

Simple and Consistent

You can say goodbye to this disparity as of now. In addition to HTML5 mobile apps and mobile apps for Android (including Kindle Fire), you can now submit your PC and Mac digital software and video games to be sold on Amazon. You can start the process at https://developer.amazon.com/welcome.html. Ingestion has been streamlined and automated to match the mobile app submission process, making the UI more uniform and significantly improving the developer experience.

At present, the distribution portal supports only US sales from Amazon.com of digital PC software and games, but we working hard to add international support.

We’ve also updated our distribution agreement to cover PC and Mac software and video games, and renamed the agreement the “App Distribution and Services Agreement”. You can review the updated agreement here.

The Workflow

Like mobile app developers, digital PC software and games developers need a valid Amazon account to log on to the  our portal. You can use your existing distribution account to upload a PC and Mac, digital software and video game in our portal If you don’t have one,

A)     I don’t believe it, and

B)      It’s easy to set up.

Just go to our portals welcome page and click the big green button labeled Create an Account.

 

Log in to your account from the welcome page above and you’ll see a dashboard view like the one below showing unit sales for each mobile app, digital software product or video game. This list will be empty, of course, until you actually submit an app, so hover over the Add a New App button to see a pop-up menu of supported product types. Select PC & Mac to create a new entry and present a form where you can enter general information about the digital software or video game to be sold, like title, platform, and minimum system requirements.

After you’ve filled in the required fields and clicked Save, a green checkmark should appear on the General Information tab. This confirms that the new product has been registered successfully and you can proceed to fill in information on the other tabs. You can do this in any order (once the general information tab is complete), but keep in mind that all tabs must have a green check before you can complete the submission process.

Continue to fill in the product information, tab by tab. It’s a good idea to pay close attention to the details here, since much of this information will be displayed on the product page seen by Amazon customers. Make sure that what you enter is accurate and compelling; this is your opportunity to let your work shine. It’s always good to spend a little extra time on the description, and be sure to include several screenshots. They really make a difference to customers.

Once you’ve completed all the data entry and each tab has a green check, you’re ready to complete the submission. A new Submit App button will appear below the data entry area.

After you complete the submission, you’ll be directed to the My Apps page, which lists all the products currently associated with your account. The status of each will also be displayed so you can keep track of its progress through the submission pipeline..

Key Management

You may be required to complete one additional bit of data entry after you submit, before the product summary screen above is displayed. If your digital software or video game will use product keys to unlock content or functionality, you can indicate that on the last data tab. In that case, you’ll be required to upload keys that Amazon can distribute to paying customers, though not until you actually complete the submission. Then you’ll be directed to the Key Management page to complete the upload.

That’s It!

Unless they also created PC or Mac digital software or video games to be sold on Amazon, most developers probably never even realized how manual that submission process was, especially compared to releasing applications on the Amazon Appstore for Android. Today’s update and unification of the ingestion processes should greatly streamline the  process for selling your PC and Mac digital software and video games on Amazon. Set-up will be easier and deployment faster.

If you haven’t submitted digital software or video games to Amazon before, now’s the perfect time to get started. If you have comments or questions, please let us know; your feedback helps us make our services better.

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