Fog Creek Software
Discussion Board




What shareware model works today?

Since people are hating email spam, ads, especially popup ads, not to mention spyware.

The author of Getright is simply giving it away and "hoping" some users will pay up.

What works today?

Alex
Saturday, June 05, 2004

You have a free version that's time or feature limited, with obvious but not annoying reminders to register, and make it easy to pay by clicking a button or link within the software.

Shareware Lou
Saturday, June 05, 2004

Before you consider integrated solution from eSellerate (or anyother service) just make sure that you understand that changing them in the future wouldn't be easy. Once your software and their is coupled, it wouldn't be easy to just switch over.

Green Pajamas
Saturday, June 05, 2004

Basically it's like this.  You work your ass off and make a good program.

I'll take the time to download it and use it and not pay you.

Thanks
Saturday, June 05, 2004

1) Just give it away, with a polite and non-irritating reminder, which makes it easy (very easy) for people to pay. If I have to sign up for paypal I'm not bothered, for example.

Bear in mind that people who are lazy, stingy or feel they can't afford to pay (eg students), will just go straight to astalavista.box.sk and search for a crack anyway, and that there's very little you can do about this, unless you want to spend more time developing machiavellian security measures than the app itself, and even then...

2) Perhaps a good idea would be to give away a decent fully functional app, but also sell a 'pro' version with lots of extra goodies. Trillian would be a good example of that approach. I think Winamp do that aswell actually? If it feels like there's anything 'crippled' about the non-pro version, though, that's likely to annoy/put people off. Things like arbitrary limits on things, nag boxes that can't be supressed etc.

Matt
Saturday, June 05, 2004

I have paid for the following shareware recently:

WebDrive
WinZip
Textpad
Beyond Compare
Charles Web Debugger
Citydesk
Musicmatch

So people (at least me) do pay for good programs. To be honest I'm probably more likely to pay for a program when it has a 30 day limit rather than a nag screen.

Matthew Lock
Sunday, June 06, 2004

> 2) Perhaps a good idea would be to give away a decent fully
>  functional app, but also sell a 'pro' version with lots of extra
> goodies.

I don't know about this? For example do you know anyone who has paid for Adaware Pro? I don't even know what is in the Pro version. Everytime I need Adaware I just hop online and download the free version, then leave the site.

Matthew Lock
Sunday, June 06, 2004

I bought:

Advanced Uninstaller Pro
Diskkeeper
Windows Commander

George
Sunday, June 06, 2004

CityDesk
UltraEdit
PHPExpert
TaskTracker
and some others

Phil
Sunday, June 06, 2004

I forgot to mention VMWare - that's some pretty expensive shareware too.

Matthew Lock
Sunday, June 06, 2004

As a consumer the 30 day limited trial works best for me.

It's amazing how easily you can get used to nag screens.

Ged Byrne
Monday, June 07, 2004

:) True, I don't even notice the nag on Winrar.

Mentally it's right there with "hello, click OK to continue" :))

Alex
Monday, June 07, 2004

GetRight ... It's not even annoying :p

Green Pajamas
Monday, June 07, 2004

One thing that I've found necessary is to make sure that you have a model that allows the LONGER of 30 days or 30 uses (pick your own number). Many users download something, run it to make sure it doesn't crash and then don't remember it is there for another three months. If your software tells them "Sorry, trial expired" when they fire it back up, you lost a possible sale.

A piece of software I wrote had a surge in sales shortly after release and three months after release with a "longer of 30 day/30 use" policy. I likely would have lost some of those sales with a 30 day only policy.

Mole
Monday, June 07, 2004

*  Recent Topics

*  Fog Creek Home