From purchaser to subscriber: Subscription business growth6 min readReading Time: 4 minutes
We’ve seen a rise in subscription-based businesses in the last ten years due to the digitalisation of media content, from music to games and magazines. More than ever before, users are prepared to pay a set fee for items or services that they use frequently. This is a new model of consumerism and not just for clubs and gyms but also for knowledge-based industries. But what does it take to grow your subscription business? What drives subscription business growth?
In this guide, we’ll look at what a subscription business is, what its benefits are and examine how to grow a successful one while preventing churn.
What is a subscription business?
A subscription business model is when the product or service provided is offered to a customer regularly. That means that the same product or service will be delivered to the same customer each month, week, day, or at other recurring intervals. There are many industries in which subscription models make sense. Some of the most common include meal kits, beauty and skincare products, online courses, and apps.
Subscription business growth
According to Zoura, the subscription economy grew more than 435 percent in the past decade. Online subscription businesses have grown more quickly than traditional businesses by at least 5 to 8 times.
According to Juniper Research, the global market value of the subscription economy is projected to grow from $224 billion in 2021 to $275 billion in 2022. That’s almost a 22% increase, and that number could be even higher if companies start making more products available for subscription.
Advantages of subscription based pricing
Converting one time sale customers to recurring revenue
One of the biggest reasons to adopt a subscription-based business model is because it allows you to turn one-time sale customers into long-term subscribers. These subscribers are much more likely to stick with your product or service over time, which means you’ll see an increase in recurring revenue.
Reduced churn rate
Your customers are less likely to cancel their subscriptions because they enjoy having access to what they need regularly. This means that once someone signs up for a subscription with your company, they’re going to stick around longer than if they were just making one-off purchases from you all the time. That gives you more time and opportunity to keep earning money from each customer, which means higher profits! And maintaining a current customer is usually five times cheaper than acquiring a new customer.
Higher Customer Lifetime Value
When you’re selling products or services one-off, your focus is on attracting new customers at a low cost per acquisition. When you sell subscriptions, you’re focusing on retaining existing customers. Over time, the average amount they each spend (the customer lifetime value) will grow.
More upsell opportunities
When you offer subscriptions, you create opportunities to upsell customers to better plans or products. This can be as simple as offering a more expensive plan with more features. It could also include bundling complementary products together to create subscription packages that are more valuable than the sum of their parts.
Predictable revenue stream
One of the biggest advantages of a subscription service is the predictability of your revenue stream. With the help of reliable software and tracking tools, you’ll be able to keep track of how many customers pay for your services each month. As long as your growth rate is consistent, your revenue should remain steady too. This makes it easier for you to predict your future revenue streams and plan accordingly.
How to turn your customers into subscribers
Have a clear sign-up call to action
Your customers will need a very explicit invitation to join your mailing list. Don’t make them guess what they should do. For example, use the words “Join our email list” and include a box where they can input their email address.
Offer incentives for people to subscribe (and to stay subscribed!)
People love freebies! So give them an incentive for signing up, like a free trial of your service or a discount on their first purchase with you. This is especially helpful if your product has a high price point because it helps people get used to using it before committing fully. Another way is by creating content that can only be accessed by subscribers, like an exclusive blog or video series.
Now you have subscribers, you’ll need to work hard to keep them. It’s the same as acquiring a subscriber, incentives and free periods are proven to keep customers coming back for more.
Create a sense of urgency and scarcity
Try offering a discount or other incentive on a limited-time basis. That way, customers will be able to see how much they could miss out on if they don’t sign up now! They might not feel as ready if they have time to think about it. Tell them they need to act fast!
Collect email addresses at checkout
Add an option at the checkout on your website that asks users if they want to receive special offers via email. This works exceptionally well if you’re also offering a discount as part of the email signup process.
Use social media to gain subscribers
With a few lines of code, you can create a widget that will let people sign up for your mailing list right from your Facebook page or Twitter feed without even going off social media! It’s easy for them, making the subscription process streamlined and straightforward.
Follow up with customers post-purchase
If someone has just made a purchase from your store, they’re primed for the offer of a subscription. You can set up an email automation that starts when someone makes a purchase and sends them an email asking them to subscribe in exchange for 10% off their next purchase.
Offer more value
Customers who have subscribed for a while might start thinking that they’re getting less than they should be for their money. It’s up to you to prove them wrong! Give them access to exclusive content, or add new features whenever possible so that your customers will always have a reason to stick around. Apple, for example, has done an excellent job at making its customers feel like they are getting more value for their money.
A lot of businesses are moving towards offering subscriptions for their services. This makes for a more stable income stream than relying on one-off sales. There are many different kinds of subscription models and pricing structures available, but what matters is that the business knows how to get people to sign up and grow their subscriber base in the future.
How Upzelo can help
Don’t let your customers slip through the cracks. Find out how Upzelo, a customer retention platform, can help you prevent customer churn and increase LTV! Book a demo with us today or get in touch with us directly.