Ray, in reality I could buy $399.99 at the moment. I have already paid $479.00 for Essential Suite and another $200 for membership that would cover upgrades for last year since I purchased the suite right before this membership thing. But that is water under the bridge and I understand you need to make money to pay the bills. But...you are doing it wrong. You guys have a great program but your marketing is not very smart. First cut the price by so much...so often gets your current customer mad because many have probably paid more. Second, you nickel and dime your current customers to the point where I would assume many said forget it.
Now, I bet most of the web guys here do not use all the products but like to have them anyways...just in case. I know I probably would never spend $200 per year every year on upgrades. I don't do with adobe (still cs3) and still use office 2003. It does what I need them to do. But, saying that I know I would spend $200 per year to keep the upgrades coming on all the products. The reason....lack of thinking and hassle of keeping up.
What you guys should do is for current customers who already spent money on the original product and the annual payment (not monthly - to much hassle and time) is give them the choice to continue paying an annual fee of $200 per year to keep what they have right now. You have really nothing to lose since the product is already developed. If a new product comes out...then give those people a discounted price on that product and now it becomes part of the bundle for that $200 per year upgrade fee but you still get some money for the new product.
Now, anyone who buys right now...say 399.99 for the suite...well they get the suite but any upgrades that come out...they will have to buy unless they pay the $200 per year upgrade service fee which they can pay upfront for the next year. This way your old customer don't feel like they are getting rip off. Now, your still making it on both side and giving us less things to worry about.
Now, the most important thing is marketing. I have been on the internet at least 6 hours per day up to maybe 10 hours and I have never seen any advertising from you guys. You guys need to get new customers instead of finding new ways to charge your current customers. Now, I would do a affiliate program where each customer has a assigned number and each person we get signed up to a SuperSuite we would receive a credit of $50 which would be applied toward our Upgrade service fee. This way it really does not cost you anything since I would attempt to get 4 people and I get upgrades for free but you get at least $1600 (399.99) up to $2400 including upgrade fees.
Anyways, I hope this helps....you have a great product but somethings not right. You really should let all the people who were paying annual fee of $200 to continue to pay because I thing if you don't you may lose more than you gain. Remember the lifetime value of a customer.
P.S. Since I paid for membership on Oct 17, 2009 | 06:56:15 CDT for Payment -$199.99 USD - Success
Can some reactivate my account...plus I would like the choices put back on my account.