One of the toughest things about running the WunderCounter is trying to figure out a transparent structure for pricing and packages. Initially, it was an easy task, since everything was free. Not many calculations to do there. As the site grew in popularity and users, expenses increased dramatically. So, I introduced a voluntary paid service for users who wanted to upgrade their accounts. That account was called the Premium account. There were still free accounts available, but they required users to display branded, graphical counters. Eventually I also added an account which had less features than the Premium account and also had a lower price. It was called the Invisible account. The free, branded accounts were called the Regular accounts and they were fairly limited in use, but there was no commitment to pay.
The packages available were: Regular < Invisible < Premium.
Eventually, I had to choose between spending a lot of time supporting the Regular accounts or no longer offering new accounts of that type. I chose to take that option offline. Users who never removed their Regular accounts still have access to them, but new accounts haven't been offered for a few years. That has allowed me to focus on the paying accounts. (Free accounts are now once again available, but that's a subject for a different post).
The packages now available were: Invisible < Premium.
Now, I find myself looking at the packages available and trying to find a way to make them simpler for you to understand and I see that the package names are suboptimal. The Invisible package is a source of confusion, because it implies that that's the only package with Invisible counters, which is not the case. To solve this problem, I need to find a more descriptive name for this package. While I'm at it, I'd also like to bump up the features of the Invisible package.
It can be a bit of a problem to rename an existing package and change the feature set. So, rather than just renaming the Invisible package and tweaking its features, what I've decided to do is to introduce two new package types, which are below the Premium pricing. I'm going to retire the Invisible package as these two packages will effective replace the Invisible. If you currently have an Invisible account, you'll have the option of switching to one of the newer packages. If you're happy with your current account, there's no need to change, but you will have the option to do so if you'd like to take advantage of it.
I've already started restructuring things and I'm working out some ideas. If you'd like to be a part of the process, contact me via firstname.lastname@example.org or comment back here. Tell me which features you like most and also which features you don't care about. Tell me what you love about the WunderCounter, but also tell me what you hate about it. How do you use it? What makes it useful to you? And, most importantly, tell me what it's worth to you. How much do you pay now? How much would you like to be paying?
As far as what is coming, I can tell you that the Premium package is going to be bigger and better than it now is, but that the pricing is not going to change. Premium users will get a beefed up account without any increase to the current price. Of the two remaining packages, the pricing of one package will be slightly higher than the Invisible account and the other will be lower. That will introduce a pricing range that covers a little more ground and gives users more flexibility in choice.
I can't please everyone (and I never will!), but your feedback is extremely helpful when making these sorts of (very important) decisions. So, let me know where your head is at and I'll keep you in mind as I roll out the new packages.