It’s definitely a surprise! Whether you find it a good or bad one will certainly depend upon your current plan or if you will subscribing starting March 9, 2021.
In an email this morning Announcing Elementor Pro New Pricing Model and Plans, we get the following: “We don’t want to distract you from making awesome websites, we just want to let you know that we are updating our Pro plans. On March 9th, 2021, we will be adding new Studio and Agency Pro subscription plans and updating the Expert plan, to best accommodate our users’ growing needs.” The Elementor community is quite large and I expect a bit of Sturm und Drang as existing customers determine the value of their packages.
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For those not on the email list, or learning and/or evaluating Elementor to use in the near future, there is also a corresponding blog post which covers and expands upon the details in the email, especially support. Announcing Elementor Pro New Pricing Model and Plans (blog): “As you grow as a web creator, you create a larger number of sites for your clients, with added complexity. This is reflected in the level and amount of support you need. To meet these needs, additional requirements to support must be met, such as a larger, dedicated team of specialised (sic) agents, with advanced training. The change to the Expert plan (new 25 sites quota), together with the addition of the new Studio and Agency plans, reflect the means needed to get there.”
There is a bit of confusing messaging around support, “All current users with an active Pro subscription keep the same terms for that subscription.” The current Personal or Plus plans have 24/7 Premium Support, while the renamed plans, Essential and Advanced respectively, only have one-day email support. The confusion is in the following language:
What’s Staying the Same?
– All current users with an active Pro subscription keep the same terms for that subscription.
– Personal and Plus plans are not changing in terms of price and service. They will be renamed Essential and Advanced respectively.
Does that mean the support stays the same for grandfathered customers? Are only Studio and Agency customers getting 24/7?
Update: Some clarification from Elementor, and appreciate the quick reply from Ben Pines, “The Premium support IS 24/7, and now the response is an average of 24 hours. The new VIP support is faster, up to 30 minutes.” So what I am inferring is that previous support was potentially slower so this is an improvement across the board.
Expert, Studio, and Agency Price Anchoring
These reimagined and new subscriptions are very interesting from a business perspective. There is an obvious push to get people OUT of the Expert plan. First, you’re going from 1000 sites to 25 sites. Yup, losing 975 sites! Second, you’re pushed to the Premium Support like Essential and Advanced. That’s a pretty clear one – two punch of we want to move you upmarket. The math tells us at 31 sites you should be on Studio. So you’re going to be forced into jumping to Studio for an extra $300/year pretty quickly. I’m curious if you can purchase two Experts to mitigate some of the expense. Regardless, the original Expert was an immensely good deal. The new Expert is not.
Just as the new Expert is not going to be a great deal for existing customers, Agency is an even worse deal. With Expert today you are pretty much getting Agency (again depending if support is grandfathered). The $800 price hike is huge. I suspect that there are very few customers at the 1000 sites level. There’s the push to get you on the Studio plan.
HelpScout provides us some clarification around what price anchoring is, Pricing Psychology: 10 Timeless Strategies to Increase Sales: “Placing premium products and services near standard options may help create a clearer sense of value for potential customers, who will view the less expensive options as a bargain in comparison.”
There you have it, you’ve been anchored to Studio. Speaking of anchoring, I’m also curious if the price hikes are the first step in setting expectations for a baseline price of a future “hosted Elementor platform.”