StockMarketEye 5: Switching to a Subscription Model

Why are we switching to a subscription model?

The short answer: long-term business viability

We’ve been developing StockMarketEye for more than 10 years. During that time, we’ve seen at least 5 major competitors close-up shop.

  • Microsoft Money – MSMoney was a personal finance tracker, but had solid investment tracking features. It was used by *lots* of people, but Microsoft pulled the plug anyway. We can only assume that their costs were higher than their revenues.
  • PSM (Personal Stock Monitor) – Was the gold standard for portfolio trackers in the 90s and early 00s but went out of business in 2011 due to lack of sales. They also tried to sell the business, but didn’t find any takers. Their main problem was their business model – a one-off perpetual license ($50) and never any major (i.e. paid) upgrades. They also had a very complete set of features but were unwilling to invest in new technologies and advancements (such as creating a mobile edition or revamping the UI).
  • Investoscope – A Mac-only portfolio tracker that was available only in the Mac App store. For a niche software product, this potential user base was too small to make it profitable. The developer worked on it in his free time, but ultimately gave up on it. He also didn’t embrace mobile apps or do much in the way of marketing.
  • Google Finance Portfolios – More recently, Google announced their intention of stopping their portfolio tracking features that were integrated into Google Finance. Like with Microsoft, we can only assume that this free service was not bringing any real benefit to Google, but still costing them money to run and maintain.
  • QuoteTracker – The author sold it to Ameritrade, who very quickly sun-setted it to try to force users onto their “Sink or Swim” platform.

Conclusion: Each competitor had a flaw in their business plan which lead to little or no profit, which in turn ultimately lead to the death of the product.

Long Term Business Viability

If there is one thing we very much want to avoid, it is the fate of competitors like PSM and Investoscope. In order to do that, we need to avoid the mistakes they made. Both were short-sighted in their business outlook. If StockMarketEye continues down the same path without thinking about the future, it will also eventually end up the same way PSM and Investoscope did. We certainly don’t want that and we would guess that most StockMarketEye users don’t want that either.

The subscription model is aimed specifically at avoiding that fate for StockMarketEye. It will provide a viable, long-term future for StockMarketEye through a recurring revenue stream that will be the foundation of continuing support, maintenance and future enhancements. That’s good for us, for you, and for all StockMarketEye users.

End User Benefits

With a subscription model, you always have access to the very latest features and fixes. You won’t have to wait for the next major version to have access to new features. We can release features as soon as they are ready, rather than saving them up for months or years waiting for the next major version.

That also means we’ll be able to bring out new features more quickly. There will be less development overhead to worry about, which will improve the speed at which we can get new features into your hands.

And Finally

We understand that some users are strongly opposed to subscription services. However, we think that our conditions are fair (after your subscription ends you still have access to your data and can continue to use most features) and the benefits mean you’ll be able to keep your eye on your investments with StockMarketEye for years to come.