· Jan 13, 2020 4m read

How to Make Open Exchange Helpful For Your InterSystems Application

Hi Developers!

In previous articles, we spoke on how to publish your application. But how to make Open Exchange work its best for your application?

What do you want for your application on Open Exchange?  It is attention (traffic) and downloads.

Let's talk about how Open Exchange can deliver this.

How Do I know how many downloads I have?

There is an Analytics tab that is visible for the Author of application. It shows how many times users clicked on the Download button.

We have a roadmap for this tab and soon will add the monthly info on Downloads and some other information and you are very welcome to submit what else do you want to see here.

E.g. we plan to make this Downloads counter publicly available and make a sorting upon Downloads.

Prepare your Application's page

Your application's page should contain enough description of what the application does. This makes users want to click on the Download button.

How to set up the description?

If your application is the facade for a GitHub repo Open Exchange can import Readme.Md from your Github repo. E.g. like here: check the Open Exchange page and the related Github repo page 

So, in this case, you just need to properly maintain file in the Github repo which will be automatically updated on Open Exchange.

In case it is a non-Github application you setup the description on your own the Long Description field.

This field supports markdown so you have rich formatting tools to describe the purpose, features, installation steps and usage terms. 

A good example of a Markdown description on Open Exchange.

Make Regular Releases 

If your app is evolving this is noticed by users. Add the feature and don't forget to make a release on Developers Community. It takes 5 min but it adds the release notes to News, it places your app on top on the main page, it gets your subscribers notified on the new features your bring to your application.

Post the Related Developer Community article

You can tell a lot how to use your application and how people can benefit from its features? It's a great reason to write an article about it on Developers Community and highlight the features of your application. 

Of course, you will add the hyperlinks to your application page inside the text but you also can feature the application using DC tools. E.g. you can add the "Related Open Exchange Application" link and this will add a special button on top of your article and in the news feed and an URL to the app at the bottom of the application. See the Example.


You also want to link back the application on Open Exchange to the article on DC:

This will make the Discuss button active on the Application page.


An average DC article gets about 800 reads so you can deliver additional traffic to your application using this channel.

Easy installation and setup

If your application has 12 steps of "How to install it" this probably doesn't help to increase the number of downloads. Ideally, this should be a one-step installation.

If your application is InterSystems ObjectScript I recommend pack and publish it with an ObjectScript Package manager. This really makes your installation into one command:

USER:zpm>install your-application


Use Your Global Masters' "Miles" 

Another way how you can get more traffic to your application page is to use Global Masters points

You may know we have a Global Masters advocates hub where we give points to participants for there contribution to InterSystems Community. The ways of the contribution could be articles, answers, and questions on DC, applications on Open Exchange (yes, you get GM points for submitting applications).

So, you probably have some GM points(sign in with your DC or Open Exchange credentials) and if you give to the Community and the Community could give you back and you can use GM points to get more attention to your Open Exchange application.


Google Ads promotion

You can spend some points and set up a Google Adwords campaign of $1,000 which InterSystems will cover and manage. Learn more.

App of the week 

We have "News blocks" on every page of Developers Community and this News block can tell about your Open Exchange application. Learn more.

Your Application Screencast On InterSystems Developers Youtube

If you have a screencast on the features of your application you can get more views and traffic publishing it on Developers Community Youtube.

And the simplest and the most working approach: add the features which everybody likes and thus you get the most attention and downloads)

Choose any recipes above or take all of them and boost the downloads of your InterSystems Application on Open Exchange!

If you have any ideas on how we could better help to make your Open Exchange applications more noticed and helpful submit suggestions and bug reports here.

Submit your InterSystems apps and stay tuned!

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