Written by on

iThemes New Support and Updates Policy

The recent release of our All Access Pass ushered in a new method in how we would offer our club type program as well as some changes to the overall way we provide support and upgrades in the future.  Some of our clients have asked what happens to the previous commitment to the lifetime upgrades and support for purchases before May 2009 and why the All Access Pass only includes one year of each service — we want to be open and honest about the need for change.

iThemes wants to be and is planning to be in business for long term and we want to improve all aspects of our business from themes to documentation to support. One of the biggest situations we currently face is the rapid changes in technology and the growing demand for help as we add more and more themes to the lineup. It is expensive as well as time consuming to produce and support new themes, and in this deteriorated economy, we must change our process in order survive.

Frankly, we’re uncertain how other theme developers will be able to stay in business with such drastic, low prices for the long haul and here’s why …

Lower prices mean more customers. More customers mean more support issues. (As easy as we’ve tried to make it, many will still need help – and we want to provide it!)

But more support load means less time to develop new themes and innovate with new features. (Our team took two entire months just to develop our revolutionary FlexxTheme. Trust me, that could never have happened if we were consumed in support issues.)

In other words, we feel it’s not a great business decision to go that route … and we feel confident in our business plan — great themes, a good selection to choose from, affordable prices, new feature innovations, strong support and showing customers how easy and effective it is to use WP to power your website or blog!

What does this all mean for you?

Currently, we will honor all previous commitments to our clients who purchased products before May 1st 2009 which includes lifetime support and upgrades for no charge.

Those who have purchased on or after May 1st 2009, will only receive support and upgrades for one year from the term of purchase.  Beyond the first year, we will have packages available for a fee for support services or upgrades.

2009 Theme Club Members or people who purchased our larger theme packages such as the Mega or Monster Packages and who upgrade to All Access will have to forfeit the previous terms to get automatic upgrades to this new package and terms.

Please consider this however.

As iThemes continues to produce more and better designed themes, we will eventually retire older/obsolete products thus killing the “lifetime” deal. This wouldn’t be a benefit to clients anymore as at one point we’ll need to discontinue themes. Though we will keep up the existing forum questions, iThemes would not actively answer retired theme support questions or invest in upgrades.

We at iThemes understand that this could be upsetting to some people but if you see the overall reasons to why we must move forward with these changes now, we believe that offering you improved themes and support will be of more benefit later for you personally or your clients.

Please feel free to e-mail us at sales@ithemes.com with any questions or concerns you have and we really do hope you can work with us as we do what’s best for all of us.

Comments

  1. I find it a bit… unsettling… that you would offer a “lifetime” support policy but then retain the option to “kill” the theme support later. Perhaps as a useful compromise position you could offer a huge discount on a newer theme to those who are using a recently “retired” theme. That benefits you because you would receive money from the sale and engenders customer good-will, and it benefits the customer because I know that even if the theme I have gets retired I can for minimal cost go for something new and supported.

    How does that sound?

  2. Norman, thanks for your input …

    It doesn’t mean you can’t continue to use the theme on your sites, just that we wouldn’t be offering or supporting it.

    Can you imagine 5 years from now still trying to support ALL the themes we’ve produced in that time?

    But yes, we’ll always try to work with our customers to provide value … just ask and we’ll definitely see what we can do.

  3. Cory: To be sure, I understand the rationale. I’m just saying that since this is the case, you would make your customers VERY happy if you provided that additional service when you retire a theme. Everybody wins. :-)

    Now, in my case, I’m using Flexx, so I think that one’s going to be around for a long time… :-)

  4. You bet! We’ll do whatever we can (within reason) to do that!!!!

    Thanks for helping us make our business better … in a way that ultimately helps our customers!

    And yes, Flexx should have a long happy life … just this week we added more features to it that original customers didn’t bargain for when they purchased … with more to come.

  5. I really wish we had notice before these sweeping changes were made. It can take weeks to get a customer to make a decision on a theme and receive a payment so I can purchase a theme. This is the second time I have made agreements with a client and then policy changes resulted in a substantial price increase :-(. If I had known of this impending change, I could have warned them of price increase if they didn’t sign up by May 1

  6. I’m about to purchase the All Access package and I want to say that your handling of this matter has helped to convince me to do so. I appreciate your honesty and frankness in clarifying the change and honoring the lifetime agreements. Your explanations are both reasonable and justified. I hope to do business with iThemes for a long time.

    To address the concern about needing to purchase the entire All Access package each year just to access upgrades and support, have you considered an Upgrades/Support package that would not allow new downloads…for say, 1/2 the cost of the package? Just a thought.

  7. Jim, we have considered support-only packages but not sure … by the time your subscription is up we’ll have that finetuned.

    Thanks for these nice comments … it feels good to have customer confirm and validate how we do business. It’s made my day and will our team too!

Respond

×

Ends Today! Save 35% off BackupBuddy with coupon code BACKUPWP35