Why we are ending Freemium plan

By 6th December 2018 No Comments

Why we are ending Freemium plan.

When we first started Drag, we only had a free plan. It was great.

But, we never thought that getting 100K + installs could be a bad thing for Drag.

Unfortunately, we were wrong.

As we have grown, our users have been experiencing a steady decline in performance. Really simple things like archiving an email or moving an email between columns haven’t always worked and unfortunately, even downtime in being able to access Drag boards.

All around, this feels horrible. Your inbox is your lifeblood, it needs to be available, 24/7 each and every day. How are you supposed to work with your team to support customers, sell or manage your tasks if you can’t even access them?

The reason I am explaining these problems is to be transparent about what’s gone wrong and how we plan to improve things moving forward. We’ve started to make this happen.

Here’s a breakdown.

We don’t know the cost of a free plan

We recently ran some experiments to make Drag only available to paying users. Everything went perfectly. Emails, boards and actions (such as archive, move to folder) were instant, performance was steady and new emails came in quick. There was little not to love. It allowed us to exclusively focus on the features you all need.

We have identified a real challenge in our business model. It turns out everyone loves free (over 100K in fact). But maintaining the free users is impacting the 1000+ that use Drag, in their teams, to support customers, close more deals or manage business-critical tasks.

Balancing both free and paying users quickly takes our existing (and newly added) servers to full capacity. It has been consistently hard to keep up causing slowness, downtime and a sub-standard experience for both free and paying users.

(When you try to do something like archiving or moving to a folder, if it’s slow or returns back to it’s original space, that’s because of this issue).

Focusing on free users (and maintaining servers) stops innovation

We’re a team of 7 (soon to be more!). When something goes wrong, it’s everyone focused exclusively to put out the fires. All of our software engineers, all of our customer support, everything is exclusively focused, not just on finding and solving the immediate issue, but then, having to plan ways to avoid it from happening in the future.

The biggest issue is that when you are fire-fighting, you make zero progress on your product. No innovation, nada!

Instead of being able to focus on email assigning, color-coding, automation rules etc, we have consistently been disrupted by making sure the servers down go down, and serving a huge number of active users.

We are ending our Freemium plan

We have tried for 19 months to scale our freemium model to ensure a great experience for both free and paid users. We don’t think it works for anyone.

Not free users, not paid users and not us.

It means that unfortunately we will be removing our Freemium plan so we can focus exclusively on an exceptional experience for our paying customers.

What does this mean?

Two things:

1. Freemium users can join Drag for $36 / year (Solo plan).
2. From 15th Dec. 2018, Freemium users can join Drag for $60 / year.

Keep an eye out for emails. We’ll send a few reminders to make sure that you don’t miss out on jumping on now.

Welcoming two new engineers from January 2019.
We said we’re growing our team. We will be adding a new QA Software Engineer and Back-End Engineer to our team in early 2019.

Our intention is that removing the free plan and expanding our Engineering team, we’ll be able to spend more time correctly scaling our product to meet the ever-growing needs of our customers.

Thank you

We appreciate every single interaction we’ve had with our customers. You have been exceptional at guiding product ideas and sharing in our vision of becoming the best shared inbox to replace Help Desk, CRM’s and shape a new category in SaaS – Shared Inbox.

A big heartfelt thanks from our entire team.

Nick Timms

Author Nick Timms

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