In today’s marketplace, it’s no longer good enough to sell information products for a one-time sale or to sell your services online. Instead, we as online business owners need to think more seriously about adding a reliable source of recurring income to our business model. One spectacular way of doing this is by creating and selling continuity offers to your customers.
Some quick examples of this are your Netflix membership, a monthly shipment of health supplements, a subscription to a Software as a Service (SaaS) and so on.
Let’s go into more detail as to what continuity offers are and why you would want one for your business.
But First, What Are Continuity Offers?
A continuity offer is something that you offer to your customers on a regular basis to which they agree. You can keep charging them for it until they cancel it themselves. Usually, there is a free trial period during which the customer can experience the product or service. They can then choose to unsubscribe and avoid paying later.
There are many types of continuity programs that you can use in your sales funnel to increase your sales. Some of these have are below.
One of the most common continuity programs you will see is the system of retainers. This term is usually associated with lawyers but works for consultants, field experts, and many others. In short, you would be obligated to make yourself available to your clients while you are in a contract with them. In return, they must pay you for this time whether you are working for them or not.
The exact details of a retainer contract vary from one to the other, but it is the perfect way to go if you are in the consultancy field.
Another excellent example of continuity programs is that of subscriptions. Of course, the most common case is that of a cable or satellite television subscription where one pays to access select premium channels not available on standard monthly packages. What your customer subscribes to, might be a service (like lawn mowing once a week) or a product (like a box of books every month).
Depending on your business, this may either go on a for a finite or an infinite amount of time. The subscription model is great to use for if you are providing an educational resource.
These programs offer additional features and services to people who enroll in it. It may be called different names in different businesses, but the idea is the same. If you have a certain number of customers already and you want to make more money while providing more value to your existing customers, you can include a “premium membership” with tons of additional features which makes their lives easier.
However, the hard part is ensuring that the free membership has just enough features to leave them wanting the premium one. We can help you create a membership service that not only speaks more to your customers’ needs but also makes your more profitable so you can expand and serve your customers at an even higher level.
Continuity Offer Terms and Conditions
To keep yourself out of potentially dangerous and costly legal trouble, you will want to announce, clearly and conspicuously, your intent to bill your customers monthly in your promotional materials.
These terms may include the following:
- Telling your customers that they become a member if they accept the initial round of services unless they cancel within the trial period.
- Notifying customers that periodic delivery of merchandise or services will occur, with no further action on their part.
- Describing the products or services that they will agree to buy.
- Whether or not there will be a minimum purchase.
- Notifying the customer about how often they will receive your products or services.
- A detailed explanation of the plan’s billing procedure for each shipment or service period.
- Telling the customer how much time they will have to review “on approval” products before you have to pay for them.
- The terms and conditions of the continuity plan’s return and refund policy.
- Telling the customer how and when they can cancel their monthly membership
- Notifying the customer of the price of the goods or services if they fail to cancel. If applicable, this will include shipping and handling.
Benefits of Continuity Offers
There are several sales models that businesses can utilize. However, the continuity model is one that fits almost all industries and can often guarantee several advantages that these other models can’t deliver. Let’s walk through some of them.
When you are selling a product, usually it is just a one-time sale. On the contrary, when you go for a continuity program, you will keep making money at regular intervals. You can do this for specific products too.
All you have to do is ensure that the customer will need your product again in some time like milk or newspapers. You could also choose to rent out specific products to the customer like musical instruments or vehicles.
People Forget to Unsubscribe
A great reason to go for continuity programs with free trials is that people often forget to unsubscribe to the service. If you have a great product or service, people won’t mind the subscription.
Combine that with the underlying human tendency to forget, and you have the recipe for continuous sales for a long time.
Often, using a sales model that lets you earn only once isn’t the most profitable one. It allows you to break even or get a small profit. On the other hand, if you sell the same resources based on a subscription model, then you can keep making money from it.
You don’t even need to invest much in updating the content. With a decrease in your investment and an increase in sales, your profit margins will rise by a lot.
While selling a product or service, you need to ensure that you get back the money for that instantly and turn a profit. In the case of such continuity programs, you can take your time in getting back the money.
The correct price will not make the customer worry about the recurring payments and allow you to regain your money quickly. Moreover, you can set a lower price for longer subscriptions. This practice will make your customers feel at ease since they will be paying a small price every month, but you will be assured earnings for a long time.
Examples of Continuity Offers
You may not realize it, but continuity offers are being used every day all around you; you may be using them yourself. From your computer antivirus to your favorite music streaming app, there are several continuity plans available. To show how versatile these offers are, we have listed some of its applications below.
Media Streaming Services
The days of television and radio are almost over. Everyone is switching to online media streaming services. Be it music or videos, these streaming services are slowly taking over. Netflix, Prime Video, Apple Music, and Spotify are some of the most notable ones in this category.
They typically offer a free trial during which you are supposed to link your card details. Once their free trial period is over, your account gets charged every month. Because these companies have designed these services so well, the user won’t feel like canceling the plan, ever.
Another great business developed around continuity programs is that of educational resources. These resources generally center around content that helps you study or practice. While you won’t be able to use some resources until you subscribe, others might go in the direction of a premium membership. As a free user, for example, you would be able to see the questions, but you will need the premium membership for the answers.
Almost everything in our daily lives needs some or the other kind of maintenance. For example, your lawn may need to be trimmed every week while your car might need servicing every other month.
One significant part about such continuity plans is that people will always need to have their cars serviced or their garden plants trimmed. Thus, there is no definitive end to this subscription, and as long as you provide exceptional service, you will have a never-ending contract with the customer.
Software Solutions or Services
Several online services let you use them for free. However, the number of features that they allow you to use is very minimal. At the same time, it leaves you wanting more features which are available only through the premium memberships and you know it’s worth it.
WordPress is probably the best example here where you must subscribe for more expensive plans to make the most out of it. Grammarly is another service that tempts you to use the premium version.
Another advantage is that you need not have just one premium version, you can have various levels which offer more and more features allowing you to leverage multiple services.
Advantages of Hiring a Professional Team –
Going through this post must have given you some ideas on how you can pivot your business to make more money. However, you must remember that not all continuity offers are successful and generate more income.
Below are just a few reasons to hire a professional team to help with your continuity programs.
Perfect Offers to Best Suit Your Business
As you can see, there are many types of continuity plans, and sometimes many of these can be used for the same industry. However, some of these types would be more profitable than others given the situation.
Your team will help you come up with the perfect continuity that will help your business thrive in this competitive world.
Merely coming up with the offer is not enough, people need to know what you are selling why they should go for it. A professional team will ensure that your subscription options reach the parties that will be interested in it. They will intelligently invest your money using multiple marketing channels, potentially giving you a very high return on your investments.
Setting the Correct Price
A common mistake that people make for their subscription plans is to set the wrong price. Due to this, even if they have a good product, their business fails just because their price point was wrong.
Remember how your charges can be flexible with subscriptions? Experts in the field will be able to tell you at what prices you should market your services to increase your conversion rate.
Ensured Compliance With Applicable Laws
The problem with such continuity plans is that they are usually quite sneaky. Due to consumer protection laws, you are supposed to be rather upfront about such policies. However, putting it out there too bluntly will deter some customers.
Thus, you need a good team who will make sure that your clauses about the continuity program are upfront and well-hidden at the same time. They will make sure you aren’t vulnerable to any legal prosecution because of this.
We at Traffic Champions will ensure that your continuity offers, along with the rest of your sales funnel, are entirely compliant with applicable laws. This way all you will have to worry about is growing your business.
How Continuity Offers Tie Into Your Sales Funnels
A sales funnel is the process that a customer goes through before purchasing a product or a service. It is a technique commonly used by digital marketers to drive their sales. The best part about continuity offers is that it is a combination of all the steps from evaluation to repurchasing in this sales funnel.
The user tests the product during the trial period. While deciding to purchase, they then browse through the various offers that are available. This part is where the magic begins. Often, the users are directly taken to the purchase phase after the free trial ends as they had agreed to this condition before applying. Similarly, they repurchase automatically after a set time, and the cycle continues.
The only way that this cycle will break is if the users find enough time and strength to unsubscribe themselves, which is highly unlikely. Thus, continuity offers speed up the whole sales funnel leading to a massive boost in your revenue.
There are several other ways of adopting your sales funnel. You can take this free sales funnel quiz to see if you have implemented your sales funnels to their highest potential.