If you want to remain competitive and grow your subscription-based business, manual tasks and processes simply can’t handle today’s complexity. Thankfully, recurring subscription management and billing systems simplify the process, enabling you to monetize your recurring revenue pricing strategies and fuel growth. Before we jump in, let’s define recurring subscription management. Recurring billing is the process of billing your customers (aka subscribers) the right amount on a recurring basis, instead of a one-time transaction. Together with subscription management (the process of managing subscribers and their preferences across the customer lifecycle) you get recurring subscription management.
Usage Data Breeds Billing Complexity
Subscription billing is relatively easy when the recurring charge is the same month after month. This can be:
- Flat-rate pricing – recurring price for a fixed set of features or services
- Basic-tier pricing – multiple plans that contain certain products or features and offered at a set monthly price
- Per-user/per-unit pricing – predetermined monthly price for a specific number of users or units
Simple, right? What happens when your recurring subscription-based company requires usage data to determine monthly charges? When it comes to monetizing usage data, subscription-based companies face a few hurdles. Let’s start with the most basic. Customer usage data is on the rise and fluctuates month to month. For example, who doesn’t use cloud-based storage? At its start, in the late 1990’s, usage was in megabytes and gigabytes, today we’re talking terabytes and zettabytes. Cloud storage requirements continue to increase, as well as fluctuate – making billing for actual usage difficult and time-consuming.
Normalizing Data Is Critical
Next, what if the data that you need to create an invoice comes from different sources? Depending on where the data comes from, you may receive it in a variety of formats. All of which need to be normalized before you can use it to bill your customers. For example, today’s vehicles have a number of sensors such as lane assist, road departure mitigation, collision mitigation braking, etc. Insurance companies are utilizing this data, as well as miles driven to either lower or increase premiums based on measurements such as braking, accelerating, cell phone usage, speed, and how tightly corners are turned. However, since the raw usage data is coming from a variety of sources, it will first need to be normalized and unnecessary usage records will need to be filtered out. It’s only after this process that the data can be routed for rating and billing.
Finally, the Internet of Things (IoT) gave companies across a variety of industries new and billable use cases. For example, a provider of live, in-flight entertainment and connectivity for commercial and private aircrafts uses IoT to monetize broadband satellite device usage and network traffic. All while managing an extremely mobile equipment inventory in real-time.
Regardless of the source or sources of your usage data, capturing usage of your products or services and accurately billing for them requires a billing system that is flexible and agile. Without it, you’ll find it difficult (if not impossible) to fully leverage the data. This means inaccurate invoices, customer dissatisfaction, and uncaptured revenue.
Recurring Subscription Management Success
Let’s return to our example of the company that provides live, in-flight entertainment. With highly flexible, built-in mediation and usage collection capabilities, BillingPlatform is able to rate and invoice multiple dimensions of service data from highly proprietary and specific satellite usage feeds. The configurable data model and application interface allows the in-flight entertainment provider to not only track and report usage data, but manage discrete details about each customer’s device. Not just while in-flight, but also when these devices move from plane to plane or owner to owner. The IoT device data report producse a 360-degree view of all of their products, physical location, and utilization. As you can see, this complete end-to-end recurring subscription management solution dramatically increases business agility, while enhancing and streamlining the management and tracking of mobile satellite devices.
Grow Your Business with Recurring Subscription Management
Successful recurring subscription management requires a monetization platform that is highly agile and flexible. This is a new breed among billing platforms – one that enables subscription management companies to integrate and meter a diverse and ever-evolving dimension of service usage. As well as quickly support new business processes, products, and charging models.
BillingPlatform not only enables recurring subscription management but has successfully helped companies take use case ideas to profitable realization. Our cloud-based platform provides businesses with the agility needed to quickly respond to market trends and launch products, packages, and pricing models in hours – not days! With built-in mediation, you can gather usage data from any source and transform it into real revenue potential. Is your current pricing scheme subscription-based and are you looking to harness a recurring subscription management solution? Then look no further. BillingPlatform provides the ease of transition and onboarding you need to quickly develop innovative metered and usage-based plans. Ready to learn more? Our experts are standing by to answer your questions.