How Freshworks Rapidly Grew Their Integration Ecosystem in 2021

Cass Polzin
Cass Polzin20 Dec, 2021

This article is part of our first-ever 2021 Partnership Leaders Awards, highlighting influential professionals in the partnerships space. Learn more about the awards and check out all the winners.

We recently named Freshworks as our first-ever, Rapid Growth Ecosystem 2021. Today, Krishanth Thangarajah, Head of Global Technology Partnerships at Freshworks joins us to discuss their team’s initiatives in 2021 and goals for 2022.

Creating & Growing the Freshworks Partner Program

Freshworks started its marketplace program in early 2018. Krishanth Thangarajah explained, “The core idea was to have options for our end-customers when it comes to integrations. We didn’t want to monetize it. We wanted to offer an open platform. I was part of the team expansion to support the integrations and marketplace growth. In 2019, we were looking to scale our marketplace from 350 apps to thousands. We wanted to make the platform even more powerful for users.”

There are a few key concepts that have helped Krishanth and his team grow this year. “We take a structured approach. We were seeing a lot of customers looking at the marketplace page. We started to work on the structure — all these products needed a solid marketplace. We looked at our regional strategy as well. We took a product-oriented strategy to understand what we could build for the product.”

“We were looking at innovative use-cases we could bring to the table with customers,” Krishanth continued. “We wanted to reach the same use cases as our competitions. We did internal comparisons. If integration requests came up, we wanted to have them. We would take ownership instead of waiting for the integration partners to come to us. Our platform brings volumes for the partners, we also make it easier for them on the admin side.”

Freshworks’s Ecosystem Goals for 2022

Rajiv Ramanan

Freshworks has grown significantly since beginning to build its ecosystem. Krishanth shared, “We have a lot of apps today and we have covered a lot of use cases. It’s important for us to go much more nuclear by encouraging more solution partners. We want to grow our community of partners who understand the platform and build solutions they can position with their services, such as paid apps in the marketplace they can use to grow their revenue.”

Today, Freshworks is working with big brands to explore their ecosystems. Next year, they are looking to build integrations into those large marketplaces. Krishanth explained, “In order to continue growing, we plan to revisit partners to present case studies and explore how to take thousands of users to tens of thousands. I want to show value with the number of common customers we have. More integrations increase the stickiness of our solution. We are looking at having app adoption as a critical metric for success.”

Our 2021 Rapid Growth Ecosystem Award Winner

Rapid growth ecosystem

We’re proud to have named Freshworks our first-ever Rapid Growth Ecosystem. Of the award, Krishanth shared, “We’re happy we were able to scale multiple growth engines in a short period of time. We didn’t think of monetizing the platform but trying to grow the ecosystem in an organic way.”

This month, we’re celebrating all of the incredible partnerships professionals and teams who took home our first-ever Partnership Leaders awards. Be sure to follow us on LinkedIn so you don’t miss any updates.

Get advice from and connect with hundreds of powerful partnerships professionals, like the Freshworks team, when you join Partnership Leaders. Hundreds of industry professionals turn to Partnership Leaders for support with their latest projects, answers to burning questions, and general camaraderie. 

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