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Ideas for pricing ImageIngester? Continue with free version?
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Author Topic: Ideas for pricing ImageIngester? Continue with free version?  (Read 6270 times)
Marc Rochkind
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« on: May 13, 2008, 09:43:45 AM »

After providing both a free and pro version of IIP for more than a year, I think a few decisions I made need to be thought about:

1. Is the line between the two in the wrong place? That is, is there too much in the free version?

2. Should there be a free version at all? Most good software products don't have a free version. (There will always be a free limited demo, however.)

3. Should the price for the pro version be higher? Lower? The same?

Of course, as users, you might at first think, "No, everything should be free!" The problem is that the conversion ratio for IIP is much too low. I have hundreds of downloads a month, but less than 5% convert. (Of course, many of those downloads are just so somebody can see what the app does. They don't actually use it.) Users of the free version get free technical support, and probably the quality of that support is the single biggest reason why they do convert. (The amount of my time spent on technical support isn't an issue. IIP is very reliable, and the technical support load is very small.)

With the present state of affairs, I can't spend as much time improving IIP as I'd like to. You may have noticed that I've been working on LRViewer and a few other apps instead.

Ideas?

--Marc
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andris
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« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2008, 10:55:19 AM »

Hi Marc,

Your free version is amazingly useful and full featured for a free app...especially considering the level of support you provide.  I think you'd be totally justified in going to a 30 day trial model with no/limited functionality after that without registration.  After all, a brother gots to get paid.

My gut instinct is that the price point is great where it is, but I guess it's like photography...it's worth whatever you decide it's worth.  Considering it's a utility rather than a standalone (i.e. I wouldn't get much use out of using just IIP by itself without apps like iView, LR, and Bridge to leverage the metadata).  I would think people would balk at paying more for what is essentially a downloader (albeit an extremely full featured and well thought out one).

Personally, I'd love any decision that made you more able to spend time on IIP.  I was just wishing for that 'preserve subfolders' checkbox the other day. Smiley

Just my two cents...keep up the great work!

Andris
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markpirozzi
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« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2008, 04:57:49 PM »

Marc,

I agree with andris' comments.

It would be nice if you had time to work on suggestions for improvements made by Peter and others.  I'm not sure if Peter mentioned this one but when you switch to a different preference, the card name changes so it seems a card name is part of the preference.  This doesn't seem logical to me and can cause the wrong card name to be recorded if you forget about this when you select a new pref.

Mark
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aramb
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« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2008, 08:03:48 PM »

I agree with the previous comments. I tried the free version and paid for the pro version shortly thereafter. Extremely useful software.

Aram Basmadjian
Allentown, PA
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Ken
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« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2008, 08:52:12 AM »

Marc,

I think the price point is fine.  I can clearly see the value in the product at its current price point, but would be hard pressed to feel that way if the price increased radically.  As I am still getting the feel for a workflow with LR (and IIP), I have to admit that I have not yet sent you money for the program, but have been meaning to do so.  I like to support small software companies that develop high quality products and provide personal support.  It seems that IIP is earning its keep, and it compliments LR quite nicely when managing my personal collection.  And the new Viewer is also shaping up to be a great product.  Thank you for your patience, I'll try to get a payment out soon.

--Ken
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ScottBuckel
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« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2008, 08:54:52 AM »

Marc -

Maybe the conversion rate would be bettter if II had fewer features, but a trial period of 30 maybe 60 days (it may take more than 30 days to truely appreciate the features?) may bethe best wya to go.  It would be nice if you had more time to add a few more features to IIP.  For me being able to automaticaly load from several cards readers in series would be great - that way I could start the download and do a few things aorund the house and come back to the images being loaded into the computer.

Scott
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Scott Buckel
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Marc Rochkind
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« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2008, 12:13:37 PM »

Thanks for the input, everyone.

(Mark: I'm going to remove the card from the Preferences. But, the last card will still be remembered as a global preference.)

I'm working on a new version, 2.4.01, which I hope to have ready in a few days. Pro version only... free II will stop with the current 2.3.x version, and in a few weeks it won't be on the web site. Price for the Pro version (which includes ImageVerifier) will stay as it is. At some point, it's possible that IV will be split off.

--Marc
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markpirozzi
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« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2008, 02:03:45 PM »

(Mark: I'm going to remove the card from the Preferences. But, the last card will still be remembered as a global preference.)

Thanks,  I tend to change the card name first while I am thinking about it and sometimes forget to check the name before I run the ingestion.  When I catch my error after ingestion, I usually make a note of the correct card in the  Ingestion Notes - at least the right info would be available if a card issue should occur.

Mark
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Marc Rochkind
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« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2008, 12:00:16 PM »

Mark (and others)--

Turns out that removing the card choice from the Preference Set is more complicated than I first thought, so it won't be in the imminent 2.4.01 version that I'm finishing up. Still on my list, however.

--Marc
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markpirozzi
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« Reply #9 on: May 16, 2008, 04:09:55 PM »

Marc,

Thanks.

Mark
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SteveM
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« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2008, 07:53:51 AM »

Good morning Marc,

For me, the current price point is the correct one. My current workflow is:

1. Ingest with Image Ingester Pro (IIP)
2. Select and annotate with Photo Mechanic (PM)
3. Edit via Bridge, Camera Raw, and Photoshop
4. Catalog in Expressions Media (EM)

Note that IIP, PM, Bridge, and EM all have the capability to ingest, but unlike IIP, can all do other tasks as well. I prefer IIP for ingestion because it does what I need it to do and it does it well. And because it is the tool I am most familiar with.

But if IIP was priced much higher, I would probably use one of the other apps for ingestion.

Some might be wondering why if I have PM I didn't just use that for ingestion. The main reason is that I purchased my license for PM well after that for IIP. The reason I use PM is speed. I had been selecting and annotating in Bridge. But on a recent trip to Mexico, where in a week I made over 1000 images, Bridge was just too slow. I had played with PM before, downloading the free trial, but could not justify buying an app that did the same things as apps I had already spent a good deal on. But after the Mexico trip I bit the bullet. I used PM on a trip to northeastern Arizona last month and am glad I bought the license.

Had PM been cheaper I would have bought a license some time ago. But given the overlapping functionality, the price was definitely a barrier. This is a problem you could run into if you raise the price point for IIP.

You also need to consider your target market. Photography is a hobby for me, so I may not be in that target market. And I expect I have a much lower budget for image processing software then a pro would have.

Thanks for a great app, and I hope this helps you make (or confirm as the case seems to be) your decision.

SteveM

 
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IIP - PM - CS3 (Bridge, ACR, PS) - XM - OS X
Marc Rochkind
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« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2008, 08:16:22 AM »

The price will indeed remain the same, Steve.

I just replied to you on another thread. Try new version 2.4.02 (or the earlier 2.4.01) to see if it fixes the problem of a crash when launching a viewer.

--Marc
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