Insufficient monetization is typically the reason why digital products die.
Since Beeminder can monetize in two forms (derailments and premium subscriptions) it needs to balance these two monetization levers taking into account its mission, ethics etc etc
But one thing is certain: if Beeminder can make more revenue by doing more social good, it should be a no-brainer kind of decision to make.
(more revenue = more devs = more cool features = more users = more productive world = cure for cancer)
By looking at the premium features I can clearly spot two features that, when adopted by users, directly increase derailment opportunities and thus monetization (without being evil!):
Unlimited goals: although it’s a premium feature, it can also be accessed by free users
Automatically trim safety buffer: The less buffer one has, the more prone to derailment this person is.
The case for NOT making “Automatically trim safety buffer” a free feature
The main reason for not making this feature free is if it’s the key feature that makes people upgrade from Infinibee to Bee Plus AND the number of people that take this path is too significant.
The other reason I can see is that this feature might generate a lot of support tickets from free users if it’s complex to set up.
Have you ever considered this from this angle?
p.s.: I’m dying to know the percentage of the company’s revenue that comes from derailments vs from premium subscriptions. And also the breakdown between the multiple premium plans.
p.p.s.: Sorry if I’m sticking my nose where it doesn’t belong. I love the product and have the best of the intentions.