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Pro Members? What about the features we already have? [UPDATE] Answered

Ok, so far these are the incentives for becoming a pro member:

Pro Member: PDF Downloads, Allsteps Preference, Rich Media Version, Pro Badge, Digital Patches, Less Advertising, Private Projects, Members-only Forums, Favorites List.

BUT I already have the available: PDF Downloads, Allsteps Preference, Favorites List.

I love these options, and really it's the main reason why I signed up for instructables. If this continues, will I lose those options? Because using the site would become a whole lot less user friendly. Maybe make it for only new members, but it still bugs me that you would remove options, rather than adding more. I guess the main question is, do I have to start bookmarking my 251 favorites on the site, or are we safe from these changes?

All in all, I think it's a mistake to remove options from the users who have helped to make this site what it is today. Also, I would hope that user comments for new enhancements to the site don't just add up to the incentives for going pro, but are made for the people that suggested them.

Don't get me wrong, pro versions are what can keep websites afloat, but sometimes it can go to far to the pont that only hard time members will stay.

If you have any thoughts, please comment below.

UPDATE: Well, this was the final nail in the coffin. The preview time is over. They took away the option to see a larger image that wasn't the main one for the instructables. This was the reason why I signed up, not realizing the other benefits, and it's what makes it possible to proof read my own instructables, and follow others. This has taken the site to a point that it doesn't seem worth it to even log in. I'd say that there really isn't a point for me to make an instructable now if I can't even view it all together, make a backup in case something happened to the sight, or view all of it completely. Thanks instructables.FIX: This happened to me, but now after a few hours it doesn't anymore. It must be sporadic. Instructables is looking into it as a bug, so it's not supposed to happen yet. Sorry for the false alarm.




9 years ago

Just read your update - that shouldn't have happened, sounds like something isn't working right! PM me and we'll identify/fix the bug. I don't want to accidentally screw anyone's ability to view the site.

I agree. I don't think they should have taken away features from normal users, but just added them for pro members.

I don't know about you, but the site seems a lot slower now....

Also, I'm not sure what you mean by the pictures going, I hope you can still access smaller pictures like you used to when you signed up...

Here is the pricing:

1 year ($23.40): $23.40 a year
1 Month ($2.95): = to $35.40 a year
2 Year ($39.95): = to $19.98 a year

(So the 2 year is actually the better value)

Over a two-year period, you have to calculate the amount of interest you would earn on the money you reserved for future pro account payments, and compare that with the total absolute cost. At a 2% APY, I estimate that you would earn $0.48 with a yearly subscription for a total discounted cost of $46.32; for a monthly subscription, $1.38 of interest for a total of $69.42; and $39.95 total cost with no interest for a two-year subscription. The interest rate has to soar to 25% APY to make the 1-year and 2-year subscriptions equal in discounted cost. See my spreadsheet here.

However, this assumes you want, and will use, a full two-year subscription. My guess is that for the majority of people, $6.37 is worth the ability to decide to renew or not after a year. Have you been a member of Instructables for more than 2 years? If not, how do you know you'll want to be a pro member for that period of time?

So, we put the "best value" icon on the yearly subscription because we actually think it's the best value for most users. (The additional patches to give away definitely complicates the matter more, but I'm going to ignore them for the time being.)

Well, it's taking a bit of a leap of faith to assume I have that extra money deposited in the bank and earning a decent interest rate.

To most people, the best value = the least money for the same result. That's certainly my default definition of value. By that definition the one year plan isn't the best value, so even if you have valid reason to label it as such, some people looking at it may think you are trying to pull a fast one.

I recommend that everyone really understand compound interest and the time value of money as soon as they can. It can make a huge difference in your life. I've given my reasons for placing the best value icon on the yearly subscription, and for most people that will go through that page, it is the best value for them. The fact that the best value isn't the lowest absolute monthly cost over a two-year period is exactly why we did that. We're talking about a difference of cents per month!

Well, regardless of the pricing, I just think that it's unfair to remove options from the site, especially after it's been made available to us for so long. I just think that if you want to make a "pro" campaign, you find some better ideas, not take away from what's in place for the incentive. Like I've said, it doesn't really make sense to do it to current members. You take away what made even signing up for Instructables worth while, besides being able to post something. I would love to donate to the site if it needs it to keep instructables running, but me, like many people, may not have enough income at this time to fork over $20 every year. (I personally do not use a bank, because it closed on me. So interest would not take into effect) At this time, people are cutting back, not adding to their bills. I know that everything that you are taking away is not so big that I stop using the site, but the reason why I go so much into the instructable about speeding up computers and others is because I know I can readily back it up in case something was to ever happen. I just would like you to take another look into the matter, and maybe reconsider what is in place.

In behavioral psychology this would be considered a negative punishment - removal of something desirable to the user - which is fine, except that they have nothing to be punished for! In that case it's a big demotivator, and can be an added obstacle to the desired outcome (pro signup)

Someone ought to start a forum topic about all the things they spend less than $2 per month on.

. But few ppl do understand compound interest, especially the younger crowd that Ibles attracts. Unless you plan on schooling all potential subscribers in Economics, it doesn't matter what is right. . You have given very good reasons and I don't think any of us are arguing the points. . Wouldn't matter if it were one penny. . . No one is trying to tell you how to run your business, we are only trying to warn you that it looks a little hinkey to those of us without PhDs or enough money to worry about compound interest on a recreational item.

Common folks see the "Save $6 when you go for 2 years". You have immediate savings and value, also reinforces the feeling "this site has been pretty good, it should last that long". That should have been labeled best choice. If you are nudging people toward the 1-year subscription, you get the feeling Robot has plans to jack the price up by next year and force you to ante up the difference. The above explanation I had to look at a couple times and finally figured out to add the interest amount to the discounted cost and divide by two to get the price charged. At first it sounded like the creative accounting that tanked the economy in the first place, regular folks are not into derivatives of a fraction of a cent.

Maybe the fact that regular folks aren't taught how compound interest works in elementary school is what tanked the economy. I see your point about us increasing the price.

Never mind the interest - I bought a two-year membership because I have a bad memory regarding bills, and I am currently in a position to blow 25 quid on something important to me.

This is EXACTLY what I was thinking too....I am still looking for my pp account though

We might lower the price over the next year too. Getting the price right on a service like this right out of the gate is difficult.

Will we lose our data, or is it stored? (as far as favorites)

So is it stored until we sign up? Or does it just remove the option to add more?

So is it stored until we sign up? Or does it just remove the option to add more?

2% APY? If only...the interest rate at my bank, for my account setup, is less than 1%.

. I understand where you are coming from, but I'm afraid many potential subscribers might not read your explanation and think that Robot is being less than straight-forward with the Best Value recommendation. I'm guessing that most potential subscribers don't take lost interest and other "high finance" or will-I-be-here-in-2-years into account. I think Lithium Rain summed it up with "To most people, the best value = the least money".

Only instructables would factor bank interest into best value. Frankly, I'm surprised they didn't take stock market fluctuations and average savings/loss predictions into the equation. Maybe I would put that $23.40 into the stock market, or maybe I'd by a square foot of property!

I couldn't figure out how to incorporate the S&P; into my spreadsheet in less than 10 minutes, so I didn't.

Maybe I'm missing your point, every subscription I've ever seen gets cheaper the longer you agree to subscribe.

Its true, its the best value in these times, because not everyone would pay $40 for a website subscription just like that. $20 sounds more reasonable to a consumer, even if the $40 is the actual better deal. Most peopl dont think this sort of thing through, so I take it they put that there because it sounds more appealing...

No, they didn't. Month-to-month is the worst case for the site itself, because it is the least reliable income. The two-year deal is best for them, as it gives them the most up-front revenue, _and_ it gives them a longer "guaranteed" user base for negotiating ad rates. The discount comparison for the user should be between the 1-year and 2-year memberships. The month-to-month is lower immediate cost for you (if you have limited cash flow), and the higher integrated cost is the extra that you pay for that privilege.

Yeah. They "emptied the cache servers", and they're "filling up".

I don't understand the Show All Steps thing. If it means that all steps are shown on one page, then I still have that, and I don't have a pro account.

I'm done with Instructables after the 3 months. The "Show all steps" was the reason I signed up. Sigh, I thought the point of Instructables was suppose to be an easy (free) way to show other users how to do things they would otherwise not know.

Agreed on the "Show All-steps was a sign-up perk", but I shall never leave until this becomes a Pay-for-all. The moment that happens, I will terminate myself from the system. Pardon some of my odd terms, but I administrate 2 forums: one paid and one unpaid.

About the lifetime sign up thing, that wouldn't work because no one would know how long you'll live for, than your paying for it, even when your dead, and the amount would be very high.

It would be a one time payment, then you don't have to worry about it any more.