What is a test drive?
A test drive is a great way to showcase your offer to potential customers by giving them the option to try before you buy, generating highly qualified leads and resulting in increased conversion. A test drive brings your product to life in a real-world implementation scenario. Customers who try out your product are demonstrating a clear intent to buy a similar solution. Use this to your advantage by following up with more advanced leads.
Your customers benefit from a test drive as well. By allowing them to try your product first, you are reducing the friction of the purchase process. In addition, test drive is pre-provisioned, i.e., customers don’t have to download, set up or configure the product.
To see the customer's view of test drive in the commercial marketplace, see What is Azure Marketplace? and What is Microsoft AppSource?.
How does it work?
Test drives are managed instances that launch your solution or application on-demand for customers who request it. Once a test drive instance is assigned, it is available for use by that customer for a set period. After the period has ended, it is then deleted to create room for another customer.
As a publisher, you manage and configure the test drive settings in Partner Center. Technical configuration details vary depending on the type of offer. For detailed guidance, see the Test drive technical configuration.
Types of test drives
There are different test drives available on the commercial marketplace for select offers depending on the type of product, scenario, and marketplace you are on:
- Azure Resource Manager
- Azure Applications
- Virtual Machines
- Hosted test drive
- Dynamics 365 Business Central (currently not supported)
- Dynamics 365 apps on Dataverse and Power Apps
- Dynamics 365 Operations Apps
- Logic app (in support mode only)
- Power BI
For details on configuring one of these test drives, see Test drive technical configuration.
Azure Resource Manager test drive
This deployment template contains all the Azure resources that comprise your solution. Products that fit this scenario use only Azure resources. The Azure Resource Manager test drive is available for these offer types:
- Azure applications
- Virtual machines
This is the only test drive option for virtual machine and Azure application offers.
Hosted test drive (Recommended)
A hosted test drive removes the complexity of setup by letting Microsoft host and maintain the service that performs the test drive user provisioning, and de-provisioning. If you have an offer on Microsoft AppSource, build your test drive to connect with a Dynamics AX/CRM instance. You can use the following AppSource offers types:
- Use Dynamics 365 apps on Dataverse and Power Apps for a Customer Engagement system such as sales, service, project service, and field service.
- Use Dynamics 365 Operations Apps for a Finance and Operations enterprise resource planning system such as finance, operations, and manufacturing, supply chain.
Logic app test drive
This type of test drive is not hosted by Microsoft and uses Azure Resource Manager (ARM) templates for Dynamics AX/CRM offer types. You will need to run the ARM template to create required resources in your Azure subscription. Logic App Test Drive is currently on support mode only and is not recommended by Microsoft For details on configuring a Logic App Test Drive, see Test drive technical configuration.
Power BI test drive
This is simply an embedded link to a custom-built dashboard. Any product that only demonstrates an interactive Power BI visual should use this type of test drive.
The process of turning an architecture of resources into a test drive can be daunting. Check out these examples of how to best transform current architectures.
Transform a website template into a test drive
Transform a virtual machine template into a test drive
Transform an existing Resource Manager template into a test drive
Generate leads from your test drive
A commercial marketplace test drive is a great tool for marketers. We recommend you incorporate it in your go-to-market efforts when you launch to generate more leads for your business. For detailed guidance, see Customer leads from your commercial marketplace offer.
If you close a deal with a test drive lead, be sure to register it at Grow your business with referrals from Microsoft. Also, we would love to hear about your customer wins where a test drive played a role.
Additional test drive resources:
- Test Drive best practices
- Overview (PDF; make sure your pop-up blocker is off)