Move from yearly subscription pricing to a single price for lifetime membership?

  • 26
  • Idea
  • Updated 7 years ago
Hey NewsBlur folks, I'm asking you guys since it's likely that if you're reading ideas on our support forum, you probably have some interest in seeing NewsBlur succeed.

At this point, there are a few hundred premium users, all paying from $1 to $3 per month (mostly $1). It's keeping the servers running, but not much more. My goal is to make enough to one day run NewsBlur full-time. In order to do that, I would either need to get a lot more premium customers or raise the price point. Would a $20 (maybe $18) price point for a lifetime subscription be a better idea than having recurring subscriptions? Note that I would not continue to have both subscriptions and the lifetime price. Switch to $18 and that's it, although I'd continue to have tiered pricing that allows you to pay more if you like.

My other goal is to get NewsBlur in front of as many people as possible. I'm thinking this may help.

And just as a note, I would upgrade everybody from the yearly subscription to a lifetime subscription.
Photo of Samuel Clay

Samuel Clay, Official Rep

  • 6514 Posts
  • 1474 Reply Likes

Posted 9 years ago

  • 26
Photo of Hikari


  • 43 Posts
  • 18 Reply Likes
Lifetime premium is not a good business model at all. It's a desperate action when you're close to bankrupcy and needs huge money quickly at all cost.

With it you're expecting to offer premium service for the whole service life cycle, without receiving no more money for it after the initial payment. That money will go away, and your service will still be being serviced.

The only way for it to work is hope that lifetime premium users would leave in a shorter time than the time required for them to pay this amount in a subscription business model. They'd be so amused they'd think to stay a lot of time, pay for it then leave shortly... not a good way to work at all.

I myself would happily pay the yearly subscription if you'd just remove the 2-week auto-mark as read and add "saved stories" (starred articles is a way better name) into normal feeds workflow. With these 2 you already have mostly all features I need, so it would be just a matter of enhancing look prettiness and optimizing productivity making it easier to go straight to articles with most value to us.
Photo of romkyns


  • 44 Posts
  • 2 Reply Likes
Agreed. Also, I'd like to reaffirm my intention to pay once NewsBlur is able to keep more than 2 weeks' worth of "unread" marks.
Photo of Kazriko Redclaw

Kazriko Redclaw

  • 51 Posts
  • 6 Reply Likes
This is also known as the "Social Security" business model. Old subscribers subsidized by new ones, and you're hoping enough of them die off that your future declining number of paying subscribers isn't overburdened.
Photo of Samuel Clay

Samuel Clay, Official Rep

  • 6514 Posts
  • 1474 Reply Likes
Yup, no plans to offer this pricing model. I am firmly in the subscription camp. It's worked wonderfully so far and I don't see that changing.
Photo of Shannara


  • 12 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
As a developer, Lifetime subscriptions = instant suicide. A yearly or a monthly would help pay the bills (Which is not happening in your case as it only pays for server and not all the bills) if done properly.

$2 - $5 a month is not asking much at all. As long as it pays all the bills (server, labor, etc), then it should work out nicely.