I have some software that I built that's been around for 14 years. It nearly went extinct for awhile since it was built with Silverlight initially. Now it's been rebuilt from scratch and I'll soon be selling it again.

Here's my question. Since I'm effectively starting over and the old version is no longer for sale, there are 3 pricing models I'm considering going forward. My question is which would be the most user-friendly and effective approach and are there specific case studies you could point to?

Option 1 (subscription)

Standard (includes features A+B): $3 per 6 months or $5 per year

Professional (includes features A+B+C+D): $5 per 6 months or $8 per year

Option 2 (traditional)

Standard (includes features A+B): $10 (one-time purchase)

Professional (includes features A+B+C+D): $20 (one-time purchase)

Option 3 (a la carte)

Super Strength Package (includes feature A+B) $10

Super Speed Package (includes feature C+D) $10

By the way, this might be of interest to some. Once upon a time the Professional version was the only option. Then I introduced the Standard version and the sales tripled. The interesting thing is that 90% of sales were still for the Professional version. This same phenomenon is described in Dan Ariely's book Predictably Irrational when he talks about bread machines.

  • Is it software a user will use often, or seldom? Is the software upgraded often, or seldom? Jan 23, 2023 at 20:27
  • I hear from some users that they use it nearly every day. But I think most would only use it once every couple of weeks. And I'd say that a year from now the software would be updated only occasionally. Jan 23, 2023 at 20:31
  • It would be easier to think over this if you provide visual mockups of the three variations.
    – drabsv
    Jan 23, 2023 at 21:35

1 Answer 1


This is what I'm leaning towards. It's a slight variation of Option 3:

Super Intelligence Package (includes feature A+B) $15

Super Speed Package (includes feature C+D) $15

Ultimate Package (includes features A+B+C+D) $25

In my mind there are 4 advantages to this approach:

  • The a la carte options gives the end user the choice to buy only what's important to them.
  • Many will be enticed by the discounted rate of the Ultimate Package.
  • If they buy the Super Intelligence Package they can still buy the Super Speed Package at a later date if they wanted to.
  • The product has a superhero theme so playing on that is kind of fun.

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