How do you monetize a web application or a web site? What kind of business model makes long term success more likely? These topics are being discussed to death on many web business discussion boards. There are mainly two camps of thought: Cripple the product or provide 30-day trial period then disable it unless user buys it. I call them crippleware and trialware. I don’t like any of these approaches. I believe the best strategy is to only charge users when they are successful.
Like every successful relationship, business and customers need to meet in a middle ground. Both sides must be happy. If one side thinks they are being screwed, they will not like it and will probably leave at the first opportunity. Crippled products or trial versions are bad because one side on the relationship knows that the other side is only in it for the money and does not care about them. You can use these approaches successfully and probably can make more money in the short term, but you will also limit growth of the product.
If you limit the users too early, they will have to stop using the service before they reach to a critical point where they can completely learn and utilize your service. What do you think?