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New billing options for your Expensify account!

Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,316 Expensify Team
edited December 2018 in Product Updates

Starting March 1st, Expensify will offer two billing options for users on paid policies. We’re delighted to announce Annual Subscription and Pay-per-use billing so customers can choose the commitment level that is right for them!

Just like today, we will still offer our Collect and Control policies, as well as the option to use Expensify as a free account. If you choose our Annual Subscription option, you will not see a change in the active user price you know and love.

Annual Subscriptions

On an Annual Subscription, you’ll choose the number of active users you’d like to commit to on a monthly basis for the next 12 months. The Annual Subscription is perfect if you have an average or set number of active users during most months of the year.

The highlights:

  • The Annual Subscription is priced at $5/active user for the Team policy and $9/active user for the Control policy.
  • The Annual Subscription is a 12-month commitment, billed monthly.
  • You can update your Annual Subscription to increase the number of active users you want to commit to at any time.
  • Any active user on your policy can fill one of the slots you’ve committed to in your annual subscription, it doesn't have to be the same employee each month.
  • Any active users you have above the number in your subscription will be billed at the Flex price unless you choose to have your Annual Subscription updated automatically.
  • You can reduce or cancel your Annual commitment at any time.
  • Your Annual Subscription is set to automatically renew by default. If you choose not to automatically renew, we’ll let you know when your commitment is about to run out.

Commitment not your thing?

The simple answer is that's perfectly okay, and you’ll want to choose the Pay-per-use billing option.
Pay-per-use billing is right for you if you don't have activity every month or you don't want to commit to a year of service. You can move to an Annual Subscription at anytime if things change.

The highlights:

  • Pay-per-use billing is priced at $10/active user for the Team policy and $18/active user for the Control policy.
  • You will have until March 1st to decide whether you want to switch to an Annual Subscription or remain on Pay-per-use billing. Until that point, your price won’t change.
  • Starting with your March 1st bill the pay-per-use billing price will be slowly phased in to allow you extra time to adjust and decide if you want to switch to an Annual subscription;
    • those with a Control policy will see the per active user cost go up by $0.75 every month until it reaches the new Pay-per-use price point of $18 per active user; this will take 12 months.
    • those on a Collect policy will see the per active user cost go up by $.42 every month until it reaches the new Flex price point of $10 per active user; this will take 12 months.

Choose from three billing currencies

Along with adjusting how we bill, we’re thrilled to say you can now choose to be billed in USD, GBP or AUD.

Based on your desired currency and billing option, you can expect the below active user cost per month.

With an Annual Subscription

  • USD - Collect $5 / Control $9
  • GBP - Collect £4 / Control £7
  • AUD - Collect $7 / Control $15

With the Flex plan

  • USD - Collect $10 / Control $18
  • GBP - Collect £8 / Control £14
  • AUD - Collect $14 / Control $30

If you’re curious about the decision to adjust our billing options, check out this blog post from our CEO David Barrett!

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Comments

  • JuliaJulia Expensify Customer Posts: 143 Expensify Pro

    Why did my comment get deleted? It followed the community guidelines. I guess since my blog post is being screened, I will include my sentiments here. Perhaps my original comment wasn't considered relevant to the conversations since it was mostly applauding the forum admins?

    Julia January 10, 2018 at 12:26 pm
    Your comment will appear after being approved.

    David
    I appreciate your enthusiasm, as well as the transparency behind your business decisions. Are you aware of your customers perception of the most recent roll out with the UI changes? In my opinion, and the community comments will echo this, it was a complete disaster. https://community.expensify.com/discussion/690/a-brand-new-look-for-a-brand-new-year#latest

    There was zero heads up about this from Expensify, and it came at the absolute worst time of the year. How can you expect your accounting clients to feel like you’re in tune with their needs, when you roll out a major change with zero communication while they are not only trying to close out their month, but their entire year?

    Did you consider how your client would feel? What kind of taste in our mouths do you expect us to have right now? I am pulling for you all so bad, but these days it is harder and harder to be #teamexpensify .

    Announcing such a drastic pricing increase (with only a month to act) after most companies have completed their budgets for 2018 is another example how I feel like you are not in sync with your core user. I’m not talking about employees as users, although we definitely want to keep them as happy as possible too. I’m talking about the people who make the decisions to actually spend money on your product. And we only have until March 1st to decide something as far reaching as this before the pricing impacts us?

    You have a great team behind you, especially within the community forum. But beyond that, it is no secret that your support model is not the most customer centric. You all are growing so fast and beyond your capacity. While you are working to fix all of the tweaks and changes that desperately need to be made, I think it’s only fair that your existing clients get grandfathered in at their old rate on a flex billing option. Unless your intent is to lose your existing clients.

    Why should we pay a premium for a less than stellar product (sorry, your UI changes are a detractor in my book. It is really nothing to use as your jumping board to announce your pricing increase) that we get minimal support on? Your employees are drowning in questions and doing the best they can, but for now, some of my best resources have been other users in the community. I try to pay it forward by commenting and helping other clients and users on what’s worked for us, but I’m having a hard time justifying it anymore.

    If you’d like specific examples on where you can improve your product or support, I’d love to discuss those further with you. I would love to hear your thoughts and response.

    Thanks!

  • RLCCLWRLCCLW Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    Wow this sounds like the old cell phone contracts where they kept extending your contract if you made any changes at all. That is bad business. We are a nonprofit and we spend about $900.00 a month with Expensify if we don't agree to the subscription your doubling the fees per user? I've been disappointed with the lack of customer service in the past, also making changes without notification now strong-arming your customers into a subscription doesn't seem Expensify cares if the retain their loyal customers. We'll be reviewing this to see if continuing with your company is in our best interest.

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,316 Expensify Team
    edited January 2018

    Hello @maasj, thanks for joining us here and sharing your thoughts on the new billing options.

    Non-profit pricing is not something we've considered to date, but we may explore it as a possibility in the future.

    Can you tell me a little more about an average month in Expensify for your team? Do you find that the number of active users each month is pretty steady?

  • maasjmaasj Expensify Customer Posts: 23 Expensify Admirer

    Over the past 6 months we've varied between 46-58 active users. In general you'll find that non-profits don't like paying for things they're not using (unused user accounts). And no one likes it when their price doubles. Reasonable people expect small price increases over time, but doubling is never gonna go down easy. I know that the doubling is happening over 12 months, but the writing is still on the wall.

    So now we need to figure out what level of subscriptions to commit to and then feel frustrated whenever we're over or under that guess from month to month. This unusual method of subscription pricing makes the relationship with Expensify feel somewhat adversarial, like you're out to get us and we're trying to avoid getting conned. :/

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,316 Expensify Team

    Hello @julia and @RLCCLW - happy to clear up any confusion around the new pricing options.

    Our Annual Subscription, which is a year long commitment but still only billed monthly, let's customers lock in the current price they've come to know from Expensify.

    If you don't want to see a price increase, and plan on using Expensify for the foreseeable future, we'd encourage you to analyze the average number of active users you have per month and commit to that number. Circumstances can and will change for some customers, and we'll be here to help if that happens.

    Now, let's take a look at an example if you signed up for an Annual Subscription for 10 active users.

    You should expect to see a monthly billing of $90 for up to 10 active users. It's important to note that we don't bill based on seats and the activity each month can come from any 10 active users on your policy.

    If you were to exceed your subscription size of 10 users, the additional active users would be billed at the $18 Corporate (or $10 Team) rate. To help alleviate the concern of additional users being billed at the Flex price, you can elect to have active users over your subscription amount automatically added to your Annual Subscription.

    If you find that you don't need as many active users as you've committed to, you can also reduce your annual commitment at any time. This subscription helps us to prioritize the future improvements that will benefit the largest number of customers.

    Even though we have set a deadline of March 1st to decide on your billing option, you will not see the new full price take effect on your March bill. Instead you'll see the new price slowly phased in over the course of the next 12 months.

    In March, if you choose to stick with the Flex plan and your company is using a Corporate policy, you'd see the active user price billed at $9.75 per. Each month after that the price would increase by $.75 until it reaches the new Flex price point of $18/active user. Because the Flex price increases so slowly, you'll have plenty of time to decide which commitment level is right for you.

    If you'd like to advice on which billing option is right for you and your team, please feel free to email us at [email protected]

  • ShawnKocherShawnKocher Expensify Customer Posts: 19 Expensify Newcomer

    My $5/month/user just doubled to $10/month/user.

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,316 Expensify Team

    Hi @ShawnKocher, welcome. Our Flex pricing option, which is $10/active user, is not in effect yet. You won't see the full $10 per active user cost until next year.

    In the meantime, you can always choose an Annual Subscription in order to retain the $5 per active user cost you already know and love.

    How many active users to you estimate having each month moving forward? If you're using Expensify as a sole proprietor and plan to for the foreseeable future, an Annual Subscription for 1 active user on the Team policy would keep your monthly billing at $5.

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,316 Expensify Team

    Hello @maasj, I appreciate you taking the time to come back to this thread and continue the discussion.

    I did some analysis of your billing history and it looks like an Annual Subscription for 54 active users would be the recommended subscription amount. This number is meant to cover your most common amount of active users, while not bloating your subscription with active users you will never have.

    Let's say that you know you'll have three or for more active users a month this year, if you see an increase in the future you can always decide to add more active users then. If things decrease and you're not using all your active users each month, you can reduce your subscription amount at anytime.

    If you'd like to discuss your account specifics privately, we can do so via email through [email protected]

  • maasjmaasj Expensify Customer Posts: 23 Expensify Admirer

    Hi @Sheena Trepanier, thanks for your help figuring out the new subscription options.

    I'm still confused about reducing the subscription amount. You make it sound like it's no big deal and has no catches.

    The docs say that "You can remove users from your subscription size at any time, but you may be charged an early termination fee if it is past your first month’s billing."

    The word "may" seems awfully vague there.

    Then the next paragraph says, "When you remove users after the first month of billing, you'll be charged the difference between what you have paid to-date on your Annual Subscription and what you would have paid had you been on Flex Billing."

    Hmm..."may" seems to have become a lot more concrete.

    Next, the docs go on to give the example of a full-blown cancellation, but not a decrease.

    Let's discuss a real life example of decreasing the number of subscriptions. Let's say that I subscribe at 54 users like you recommended. Then after 6 months we decrease the number of subscriptions to 49. What's the early termination fee in that situation?

    Thanks for helping myself and others figure out the new pricing system.

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,316 Expensify Team

    Hello @maasj - brilliant suggestion and a real life example is no problem at all. I'm a little underwater in my Inbox at this moment but I'll get the example up on this thread as soon as I can.

  • AndAnd Expensify Customer Posts: 5 Expensify Newcomer

    Is there any way to run any reports as an admin of how many active users we have each month? I may be just missing where to do it from.

  • maasjmaasj Expensify Customer Posts: 23 Expensify Admirer

    To find the number of active users in the past, login to the account that manages the billing. Then select Account Settings -> Billing and then scroll down to the Billing History section. There it should list how many active users you were billed for each month in the Description of each month's bill.

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,316 Expensify Team

    @maasj - As promised, I wanted to share that example with you.

    Let's say that you signed up for an Annual Subscription of 54 users, and for six months you had 54 active users per month. You know that five of those users will not be active for the remaining six months, and decide to reduce your subscription to 49 active users.

    Moving forward, we're going to pretend you were always on an Annual Subscription for 49 active users, and treat those five active users you're removing, as if they were on the Flex plan the previous six months.

    Since you've already paid $9 per active user while you were on your old Annual Subscription of 54 active users, we'd charge you the difference between what you paid and what you would have paid on the Flex plan.

    The math looks like this:

    5 (active users) x $9 (difference between Annual and Flex) x 6 (months) = $270

    After reducing your Annual Subscription, you'd see a charge for the difference and then continue the rest of your subscription at the 49 active user commitment.

    Make sense?

    Okay, now what happens if during those six months, your active user count was less than the new Annual Subscription? Let's do some math on that so you have a clear picture of what happens when reducing.

    For this example, let's say you had 3 months of 49 active users and 3 months of 54 active users. It makes sense that the months you didn't exceed your new Annual Subscription, you wouldn't have to pay the Flex plan price difference right? Good news is you won't pay the Flex plan price difference on months you didn't go over your new Annual Subscription.

    Let's look at the math one last time:

    5 (active users) x $9 (difference between Annual and Flex) x 3 (months you went over your new Annual Subscription) = $135

    As before, you'd see the charge for the difference and then continue your subscription at 49 active users.

  • Nnm2109Nnm2109 Expensify Customer Posts: 2 Expensify Newcomer

    Can someone tell me why have the set number of users? Why not just bill $9/active user per month on an annual sub? Why the annoyance of trying to guess how many active users there will be, and then worrying that the cost will be $18 if we go over? This is really a terribly pricing scheme.

  • WH63WH63 Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    This policy makes the Box, Salesforce, etc look good (which I didn't think was possible). This is entirely too complicated given the varying nature of use of expense reporting by many employees. I get that you want a little more commitment from users although I find it hard to believe people use it once and disappear per David's blog post. How about some monthly min (e.g. 1 - 5 users) and then you get the Annual Price for any remaining users rather than a doubling of price for any additional users? That way you get a commitment and you aren't trying to penalize customers that have a higher or lower than average number of users in a month.

  • crappelcrappel Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    I'm glad we haven't been using Expensify long enough to become reliant on it. I get that the rest of the online app world is doing the whole "pay annually, get cheaper 'monthly' price" thing, but doubling the monthly cost just because we don't commit to a whole year seems ridiculous and greedy.

    I don't mind paying for software, and I understand trying to maintain more predictable revenue, but bully tactics like this make me not want to do business with a company, just as a matter of principle.

    I'll probably start looking for another solution.

  • maasjmaasj Expensify Customer Posts: 23 Expensify Admirer

    Hi @Sheena Trepanier,

    Thanks for the examples of the termination fee costs for decreasing the number of subscriptions. I recommend that you update the help docs to include examples like that. Similarly, I recommend that you explain the "may be charged an early termination fee" language by including info about how it depends on whether your active user account was exceeding your new subscription level or not.

    I still think the new pricing is overly complex, but at least I'm starting to feel like I understand it now. I'm sure that it wasn't your decision and as such you've been placed in the unenviable position of trying to explain and defend someone else's idea. I don't envy your job this week. :)

  • athomas2017athomas2017 Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    What about "Whenever your subscription size is increased, your subscription will extend for a year." We have people coming and going from our company every month. Please explain how the subscription "time" will change when the # of users changes. I understand how the new charges work, don't like it, but understand the how.

  • SallySally Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    I am a little confused by the new pricing structure and from reading other posts, it seems I am not the only one.

    We have about 75 employees and at any given month, 40 to 60 active users.

    Should I be saying 40 active users, but then if I have 41 that month, that person will be $ 18 versus all others at $ 9

    Should I be saying 60 active users, but it may only be 45 therefore I am paying for 60 even though only 45 are using it?

    somehow this doesn't seem right. any assistance would be appreciated

  • JeannieCJeannieC Expensify Customer Posts: 3 Expensify Newcomer

    I see this was asked previously, but it wasn't answered. Is there a way to tell how many active users we had on our policy for a given month? The answer given previously only tells us how many users we were billed for, not how many we actually had. Given this new convoluted pricing structure, people are going to want to be able to reconcile their ACTUAL active users against BILLED users. Because if we go over our number of subscribed users, we are being charged double the monthly rate.

  • maasjmaasj Expensify Customer Posts: 23 Expensify Admirer
    edited January 2018

    @JeannieC, up until this new pricing scheme, billed users == active users.

  • JeannieCJeannieC Expensify Customer Posts: 3 Expensify Newcomer

    @maasj, up until now, yes. But now, we need to be able to determine how many actual active users we have on any given month, since we will be charged extra if we go over

  • maasjmaasj Expensify Customer Posts: 23 Expensify Admirer

    @JeannieC - Oh, I see what you're asking now. Sorry! Good question. I assume that the new invoices will indicate that number somehow. Hopefully...

  • JeannieCJeannieC Expensify Customer Posts: 3 Expensify Newcomer

    I can't imagine who came up with this ridiculous pricing structure, and why? So many companies that use expense reporting extensively, have regular turnover. This pricing structure is horrible for companies like that, and I honestly don't see what it accomplishes other than confusing customers, and making them feel like they're getting ripped off.

    @Sheena Trepanier , with your example of 54 users on an annual subscription, a company would pay $5832 annually. If their turnover is such that they regularly add & lose employees over the course of the year, fluctuating between 50-60 employees but maintain an average of 54 employees, they will be penalized every month they go over, but no credit when they are below. This new pricing structure will net approx $150 in annual revenue, over the current pricing structure, for Expensify for a company like that, but at what cost? Is this really worth it? I predict Expensify will lose that meager annual revenue increase in costs of employees time spent explaining/justifying the monthly billing increases to customers. Not to mention the loss of revenue from customers that find this new pricing structure so offensive they seek out an alternative expense reporting solution altogether.

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,316 Expensify Team
    edited January 2018

    Hello everyone, I hope you all had relaxing weekends.

    Adding to a Subscription

    @athomas2017 - I'm happy to explain a bit about how adding to your Annual Subscription works.

    When you have active users in excess of your Annual Subscription amount, you can choose to have those active users added to your subscription or be billed at the Flex.

    If you choose to add them to your subscription, your subscription amount will increase by the number of active users you had over the current limit. You will also see your Annual Subscription reset from that billing cycle as well.

    For example:

    You sign up in January for 50 active users on an Annual Subscription and commit to that for 12 months. In April you hire 5 new employees and they are now active in Expensify. You decide to add five active users to your Annual Subscription to cover the new employees you hired. When you do this, your Annual Subscription restarts and your commitment will expire 12 months from then.

    Fluctuating active users

    If you have concerns about significantly fluctuating active user counts each month and are not sure how the Annual Subscription would work for you, please reach out to [email protected] We will be able to help you analyze your past billing and active user count, and can offer advice on how to set up your subscription.

    New billing invoices

    With the new billing options comes a new invoice as well! After we run billing under the new billing options and price, your invoice should contain the number of active users you had. You'll also have a breakdown of the billing showing the number of active users billed under your subscription and the number billed at the Flex price.

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,316 Expensify Team

    If anyone would like me to provide examples based on real life billing scenarios, feel free to request them on this thread.

    If you don't mind me sharing our recommendation for the number of active users on your subscription, you can also request that I analyze your billing history and offer advice through this thread.

    Thanks everyone!

  • davemdavem Expensify Customer Posts: 2 Expensify Newcomer

    I have to agree with everyone here. The biggest attraction of Expensify was that we paid only for the users that used it that month. We're a 7 person company, and anywhere from 1-7 people might expense something that month. It was a fantastic model.

    Now either my monthly per user doubles (I know, over 12 months) or I end up attempting to win at guessing averages across the year, which is anybody's guess.

    I'm rather disappointed. The simplicity of your billing structure was perfection. This new structure is brain-stressing, and feels much like a gym membership - the idea that we end up paying for people that never use it.

  • DaveweezDaveweez Expensify Customer Posts: 179 Expensify Aficionado

    Expensify is awesome. Love the new changes you guys have made. I totally support increasing the pricing if that is what you need to do. I understand the billing structure and why you created it. I'm sure my business will be fine with the changes and we can make it work.

    With that being said, I agree with @davem, the billing structure you had was perfection and this new billing structure creates a lot of confusion.But I have seen a lot of pricing structures, and this one is confusing. We all really liked the simplicity of the old structure.

    You guys know your business better than we do, and I hope you have done the calcs that show that this makes sense for the Expensify business and for your customers. I hope that this is just a small blip of confusion, and we will all move on.

    But please know - it is quite confusing

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