If you’ve got a Bigcommerce website you should be aware of some upcoming price changes to the price plans that they offer. BigCommerce say that around 80% of Bigcommerce merchants will not see a change in current monthly pricing, or will enjoy an actual decrease. That does of course leave around 1 in 5 merchants facing a raise in their fees.
The reason for the change is historically Bigcommerce plans failed to take into account merchant growth. They say that they have a number of merchants who started off on their basic plan paying $30 a month who have grown their businesses and now turn over $10m-$30m in annual sales. Maintaining service for these users has a cost which far outweighs the fees that they currently pay and according to Bigcommerce reduces their ability to invest in new features for all users.
To address the situation, Bigcommerce will eliminate transaction fees but will introduce an order cap based on the trailing 12 month period. If a merchant grows beyond the order cap then they’ll be automatically upgraded to the next plan.
The Bigcommerce standard plan costing $29.95 will have a 12 month order cap of 500. The Plus plan allows for up to 1000 orders in a 12 month period at a cost of $79.95 and a new Pro Plan costing $199.95 will come with 1000 order increments. There will also be an Enterprise plan with fees and growth adjustments on a negotiated basis.
Bigcommerce point out that since fee calculations are based on a trailing 12 months, seasonality shouldn’t result in merchants being forced to upgrade based on peak sales, only when their business grows to require further investment.
Merchants on Enterprise plans may already have been contacted by Bigcommerce. Other merchants will start to receive communications in Q1 of 2016. If you’ve paid annually for a plan you won’t see a change until your plan expires.
We know that fee changes will always upset those who are facing an increase in their monthly invoices and it’s likely that a proportion of Bigcommerce merchants will face a reasonably large fee hike under the new plans. If that’s you then it’s time to add up the value that you receive from Bigcommerce and consider the alternatives. Whilst any increase in costs is undesirable it may well turn out that sticking with Bigcommerce is still value for money.
A full statement from Brent Bellm, Bigcommerce CEO, is available on the Bigcommerce forum, although you’ll need to register and log in to view it.