How to Build an App on the HubSpot Marketplace

06/08/2020 3 min read Written by Corie Stark

In the HubSpot ecosystem, an app is an integration that can be installed in a customer’s portal to help resolve a pain point they’re experiencing. However, before embarking on your app journey, there are several items to consider, such as how to build an app, why you might make one, and examples of what you can create before getting started. If you’re new to the process, keep reading below.

Why Would You Build an App?

Typically, customers request apps because they feel limited by HubSpot’s functionality. An app is an excellent way to extend its capabilities and have your preferred systems (HubSpot and external platforms) talk to each other. 

Recently, we built a Microsoft Teams Notifications HubSpot Integration and listed it on the marketplace to allow anyone to use so they can send notifications to Microsoft Teams from HubSpot workflows. Using this app improves real-time communication – another reason you’d want a custom app!

What Does the App Building Process Look Like?

You have two avenues to consider when it comes to installing apps in your HubSpot account. You can opt to build your own internally or partner with an HubSpot Elite partner, like Lynton. Should you choose to work with us, here’s an overview of what our process entails:

  1. Your team will clearly define what the app is, what you hope to achieve with it, how you want it to work, and why you need it. This information helps us in our next step.
  2. We’ll take over and enter our discovery phase, which is the point where we ensure that your app is possible. We’ll also begin to determine how best to create it.
  3. Our team will create a service-level agreement (SLA) to dot our i’s and cross our t’s. After you’ve signed off, we’ll provide a timeframe for different steps and an estimated completion date.
  4. We will create the app in a HubSpot developer account and show the proof of concept in a HubSpot test portal. This process looks like:
    • We’ll access the “Create app” option from the developer account homepage.
    • Our team will fill out the information and settings of your app. This information is seen after users authenticate the app within your HubSpot account.
    • We’ll set up the Auth settings, including your client ID and client secret. Our team will also set up scopes for the app, which is needed for the next step. All of this information is crucial to initiate an OAuth connection between the app and HubSpot later on.
    • Our team will add new scopes, or permissions, which provide access to API endpoints and to grant the app entry to specific tools within your portal.
    • Your URL will be redirected.
  5. Once the app is built, we’ll undergo user-acceptance testing (UAT) to ensure the app is working to your specifications. At this point, we can add or remove anything and fix any bugs.
  6. We’ll get your approval and go live!
  7. If you’re comfortable, we’ll list your app on the HubSpot App Marketplace for others to install. 
  8. We’ll all celebrate!

What Are Some More Examples of Apps You Can Build?

With HubSpot’s guides and API documentation, the possibilities are seemingly endless, but common examples of use cases include:

  • Custom workflow extensions – ex: a workflow that sends appointment information from an outside platform to HubSpot automatically, without manual work
  • CRM extensions – ex: an integration that provides external data to a HubSpot contact, company, or deal record so you can access and edit information hosted outside of your HubSpot CRM.
  • Custom workflow APIs -- note: while this is relatively new, this API offers a more flexible version of a workflow extension.

Why Choose a Partner like Lynton?

Outside of our clearly defined process, there are other reasons to work with a partner, such as Lynton. Specifically, we:

  • Have a long history of integrations with HubSpot
  • Were the first go-to-market integration provider
  • Work in an agile, flexible environment
  • Are well-known for accommodating custom requests
  • Willing to utilize BETA APIs, so we stay ahead of the game

On top of that, we’re always up for a challenge. If you have a request for a custom app or have more questions about the marketplace, reach out.

By: Corie Stark

After spending many years as a sports journalist, Corie switched to marketing in 2013. Her love of writing, talking to people, and keeping up with the industry enables her to use her skills for anything from social media to long-form blogging. Outside of work, she enjoys hiking with her dogs and making her cats chase the ever elusive red dot.

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