We changed our pricing model in 2020. Here’s why.

September 1, 2020

Here at Watchful, our mission is to help digital agencies reduce costs while delivering a superior website maintenance service to their clients.

Since our launch in 2012 we have capped Watchful’s monthly fees at $1 per site, with most people paying much less. As of this writing, the average cost for Watchful is $0.74 per site. This will soon change, but only for our new customers.

Existing users can keep their plan

Existing Watchful customers are welcome to keep their current plan and pricing. The changes we are implementing are limited to new customers and will not affect your current fees.

We are committed to honoring our historical pricing for our loyal customers.

Moving to a sustainable business model

When we started Watchful in 2012, many of our costs were fixed. We had a single server with a set amount of bandwidth and processing power. This is no longer the case.

Over the past 2-3 years, we have made a series of internal changes that have improved the performance and reliability of the service many times over. But our costs have become much more dynamic.

For example, we have migrated our entire infrastructure to a scalable, more stable system that bills based on usage.

We have also switched our data storage server (i.e. database server) to a much faster, distributed and self-healing system. While delivering incredible performance around the world, it is 400% more than the cost of our previous database server.

You may have noticed that we have been steadily adding more automated processes and storing more web site activity data than ever before. As noted above, each additional process and piece of data increases our monthly expenses.

Finally, we have been investing in new features and services such as our own in-house backup tool (XCloner). This has increased our ongoing development and support costs.

Notably, the features resulting from all this investment up to now are available to all of our customers.

With this in mind, we are making three changes to help make Watchful a more sustainable company.

Changes to improve sustainability

We are implementing the following changes on October 1, 2020:

  1. New customers will only be offered our usage-based pricing called Watchful Premium. Since our underlying costs to run Watchful are usage-based, we believe that this pay-as-you-go model is a more sustainable choice.
  2. Watchful fees for new customers will be $1.83 /site /month. Bulk discounts will not be offered since our underlying costs are not purchased in bulk and have no discounted tiers.
  3. New features released after October 1, 2020 may require a Watchful Premium plan.

Thank you for your loyalty

Our sincere hope is that using Watchful improves your day-to-day experience when maintaining websites. The very last thing we would ever want is to increase your stress or anxiety, especially during these challenging times.

So we’ve structured these changes to have zero impact on our existing customers. We like to think of this as a thank-you for supporting us early on and sticking with us.