Revenue Models

What revenue model should I use? = the wrong question to ask.
Why will people pay me? = the right question
The Board of Innovation.

There are so many different revenue models in OSS that there are no simple apples-for-apples comparisons on price. There are perpetual licenses, annual licenses, processor-based licensing, node-based licensing, named user licensing, concurrent user licensing, data volume-based licensing and so many others.

The potential customer may have to prepare a comprehensive Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) analysis to get some level of comparison, but even then there are many variables/assumptions being made along the way.

The vendors’s products are already highly differentiated so I wonder whether the revenue models don’t necessarily need to be? Each vendor’s pricing strategists have far more expertise than me in this area, but my mind always goes back to the saying, “a confused mind says no” and many customers end up confused with the different pricing models presented to them.

Do you think that a “clear / simple pricing model” combined with a “clear / obvious reason why people will pay” would make it easier for the customer to say yes? Or am I being too naïve?

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