Amazon’s three plan strategy for customers
Amazon is clearly moving into a new era, and they’ve come up with an interesting new plan for customers (or purchasers, for those who prefer alliteration) 😉 …or rather, perhaps it is three plans.
They are extending this through the different types of content…and let’s take a look at them.
The three plans are this:
- Pay by the item (Piece): these people have Amazon accounts (I’m not counting “no account” as a plan), but make decisions one item at a time. When they want to watch a movie, read a book, or listen to a song, they are willing to pay for it that point
- Amazon Prime (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) members (Prime): they pay (typically) $99 a year, and want to get the most out of it. They certainly may pay for individual items, too, but are generally pretty satisfied with the selection
- Premium payers: they may have Prime (Premium), but they will pay more for even more stuff. 🙂 They’ll lay out more money for other subscriptions
Let’s take a look at how this works for e-books first:
“Pay by the item” folks just buy e-books when they want them. They aren’t Prime members at all…if they pay $0.99 for a book or $9.99, that’s what they pay.
The Amazon Prime members, which Amazon just started really serving with Prime Reading
have access to a rotating set of about 1,000 titles.
For people who will pay more for the most options, they subscribe to
perhaps on top of Prime (which is what we do). That gives them close to one and a half million titles.
Amazon also just introduced
which sets up a similar system for music.
Some people will buy music as they want it.
Others will be Prime members, and will be satisfied with Prime music, which has about 2 million titles (although rumor has it that some songs have moved from Prime Music to the Premium Amazon Music…causing some previously created playlists to have gaps).
Amazon Music Unlimited has “tens of millions” of songs…and you can download music. There are more than 41 million digital songs at Amazon, so this may not be all of them (that will depend in part on the deals they strike with rightsholders), but it will be most of them.
Prime members can pay an additional $7.99 a month (or $79 for the year), non-Prime members by $9.99 (and they don’t show a discounted annual option), and Echo owners can get it at $3.99 a month (for a single Echo device…$14.99 or $149 a month, in the upcoming Family plan).
What about games?
Yet another recent addition for Prime members (see the pattern?) 😉 is Twitch Prime. People can buy games one at a time, take what comes with Prime, or subscribe ($4.99 a month, with other options).
With video, you get pay by the piece, Prime, or pay for additional content through Streaming Partners subscriptions:
It’s an interesting strategy, and I can see it being successful.
For us, we were Piece buyers for a long time. I was, I would say, relatively slow to subscribe to Prime. At the time, the one big advantage was free shipping in two days on many items, and I would do the calculations and think it wasn’t worth it. I was underestimating the convenience factor, and then Prime added all of these other perks!
When Kindle Unlimited was released, we went for it…and have been happy with that. What was available for Prime members then, the KOLL (Kindle Owners’ Lending Library) was just so limited (one book a calendar month), that after a while, I didn’t even pay attention to it. We went from Piece to Premium…but there wasn’t much of a Prime choice. Now that there is, we are staying with Premium (keeping our KU subscription), because, well, I read weird books. 😉 Those tend to be in KU, but not in Prime Reading.
I like music, but feel adequately served by Prime Music. At this point, I don’t see becoming a Premium music family…and we don’t play videogames much (my Significant Other plays Candy/Soda Crush and Scrabble, but I think that’s about it). We’ve been Prime music consumers, and now, even though we’ll probably never use, we are Prime videogame consumers
Let me just ask this for e-books…which one of the types of purchasers are you/the people on your account?
What do you think? What makes your decision (if anything) to pay for a premium subscription? Do you like the recent additions to Prime? Feel free to let me and my readers know by commenting on this post.
Note: this post was updated when the short names for the three plans occurred to me, and to add more content and the poll to it.
Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!
All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?
* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. Shop ’til you help! By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.