Pricing Plans and Plan Templates

The Pricing Editor is designed to help you quickly add Plans or Plan Templates, link them to Aggregations, and configure the exact pricing structure you want to apply for charging end customer Accounts that are placed on your Product Plans - a Pricing is applied to a Plan for a defined period and any Accounts you put on that priced Plan are charged according to the Pricing for any usage they consume during that period. You can use a Pricing Wizard to quickly set up common types of usage-based pricing models.

The decision to price Plan Templates rather than individual Plans or, in contrast, always to price at the level of individual plans will depend on your overall usage-based charging policies:

Before you can start to price Plans for one of your Products, you must complete some prerequisite configuration:

  • Create a Meter for the Product and use the Meter to create an Aggregation.

  • Create a Plan Template for the Product and create at least one Plan based on the Template.

If you open the Pricing Editor for a Product and these prerequisites are not completed, you will not be able to proceed and a pricing readiness guide will show:

When all prerequisites for pricing Product Plans are in place, creating a Pricing for a Plan using the Pricing Editor falls into two stages - setting up and then configuring the pricing:

To meet some billing use cases, negative pricing can be used:

Preparing to price Plans and Plan Templates! We strongly recommend that before you attempt to price up Product Plans or Plan Templates you review Pricing configuration options. See Reviewing Pricing Options for Plans and Plan Templates.

Tips:

  • Seat-Based Pricing? Yes, you can use a Derived Field on a Meter to set up seat-based pricing against an end-customer Account. This type of pricing accommodates changes in the number of users on that Account during the billing period, and adjusts charges accordingly as users are added or removed during the billing period. See Derived Field for Seat-Based Pricing for more details.

  • Pricing Plans with Segmented Aggregations? Yes, you can use Segmented Aggregations to price a Plan and the Pricing Editor is designed to allow you to quickly price by each segment defined - see Pricing Plans Using Segmented Aggregations for more details.

Pricing Plan Templates or Pricing Plans

You can create a pricing for a Plan Template or for any Plans that are based on the template. How you decide to apply pricing for your Products - by creating a pricing at Plan Template level, or at individual Plan level, or both, will depend on your requirements for charging customers for product consumption. The ability to create pricing at the level of both Plan Templates and individual Plans is designed to give you maximum flexibility to best serve those charging needs across a range of products and services. Here are some key points and an example:

  • Key Points:

    • If you create a pricing for a Plan Template, any unpriced Plans based on the template will inherit that pricing.

    • All Plans must be based on a Plan Template. If you create a pricing for an individual Plan, then the Plan pricing will always override any pricing created for the Plan Template on which the Plan is based.

  • Example:

    • Suppose you offer a product at three grades of license - Standard, Premium, and Enterprise - depending on the size of your customer's Organization. Across these three grades of license, you want to charge customers the same rates on usage but vary the standing charge per billed period. To meet this use case, you can price a Plan Template to define usage rates and then create three separate Plans - Standard Plan, Premium Plan, and Enterprise Plan based on the template. Each Plan will inherit the Plan Template pricing that sets charge rates for product usage but you can then apply appropriate standing charge amounts to each of the Plans, which will then override any standing charge applied at Plan Template Level.

Pricing Readiness - Completing Prerequisites

Before you can start to price Plans for one of your Products, you must complete some prerequisite configuration:

  • Create a Meter whose Data Fields collect usage data on consumption of a Product.

  • Create an Aggregation that targets a Meter Data Field and transforms the usage data collected into a pricing metric suitable for pricing the Product.

  • Create at least one Plan Template for the Product and create at least one Plan based on a Plan Template.

If you open the Pricing Editor for a Product and the required configuration to start pricing a Plan is not complete, you won't be able to proceed and a pricing readiness guide shows the shortfall:

In this example, none of the required configuration for pricing has completed. As you start to create and configure the prerequisites, the pricing readiness guide adjusts to track your progress towards completion:

In this example, with the creation of a Meter and Aggregation for the selected Product, progress is marked as 50% complete.

When you have completed all prerequisite configuration for pricing Plans for a Product, the pricing readiness guide will not show when you open the Pricing Editor and select the Product. You can then add Plans and price them - see next step in the Setting Up to Price Plans section below.

Pricing Readiness - Notes and Tips

There are a few things worth noting as you perform the required configuration for starting to Price your Product Plans:

  • Configuration Order:

    • You must create a Meter before you can create an Aggregation.

    • You must create a Plan Template before you can create a Plan.

    • You can complete the Meter/Aggregation configuration first or you can complete the Plan Template/Plan configuration first - there's no precedence imposed.

  • Global Meters/Aggregations. You can create Global Meters and Aggregations, which can be used for pricing Plans belonging to any Product.

  • Pricing of Plan Templates and Plans. You can add a Plan Template and price it in the Pricing Editor - any Plans based on the Plan Template will inherit the pricing. However, if you add a Plan to the Pricing Editor that is based on a Plan Template that has already been priced, you can choose to override the inherited Plan Template pricing.

Setting Up to Price Plans/Plan Templates in the Pricing Editor

Before creating a Pricing for Plans/Plan Templates, you must link them with the Aggregations you'll use to price them in the Pricing Editor.

To set up the Pricing Editor for pricing Plans/Plan Templates:

1. Select Pricing>Pricing Editor. The Pricing page opens.

2. In the Product drop-down, select the Product for the Plans you want to price up.

3. Select Add Plans. A Select Plans popup appears and lists the Plans created for the Product.

Warnings!

  • Duplicating Plans. You cannot add a Plan more than once to the pricing Editor. If you've already added a Plan, you cannot select it again on the Select Plans popup.

  • Custom Plans are not shown for selection. The Select Plans popup will only list non-custom Plans created for the selected Product. To price a custom Plan for the Product you must open the Plan Attachment page for the Account the custom Plan belongs to and price the custom Plan from there. See Pricing Custom Plans for more details.

Tip: No Plans exist for selected Product? If you select a Product for which no Plans exist, the pricing readiness guide will show as incomplete. You can then select a Create a plan hotlink text to open the Create Plan page for the Product.

4. Select the Plan or Plans you want to price using the popup and select Confirm. You are returned to the Pricing page where the selected Plan is shown. A warning will show stating that no Pricing has yet been configured for the Plan.

5. Alternatively, if you want to price Plan Templates, select Add Plan Templates. A Select Plan Templates popup appears, which you can use to select Plan Templates you want to price - the remaining configuration steps are the same as for a selected Plan.

Warnings: Duplicating Plan Templates. You cannot add a Plan Template more than once to the pricing Editor. If you've already added a Plan Template, you cannot select it again on the Select Plan Templates popup.

6. If you want to create a new Plan to price, you can do this directly from the Pricing Editor:

  • Select the three-dot button adjacent to Add Plans and select Create Plan.

  • The Plans>Create page opens and you can enter the details of the new Plan. See Creating Plans for more details. When you select to Create Plan, you are returned to the Pricing Editor where the newly-created Plan has been added.

7. Select Add Aggregations. A Select Aggregations popup appears listing the Aggregations created for the Product.

Notes: Selecting Aggregations for Pricing.

  • Available Aggregations: Only those Aggregations belonging to the same Product as the Plan and any Global Aggregations in your Organization are shown for selection in the popup.

  • Duplicating Aggregations: You cannot add the same Aggregation more than once for pricing a Plan and any Aggregations you've already added will no longer be available for selection in the popup.

8. Select the Aggregations you want to use to price the selected Plans. You are returned to the Pricing page, where the selected Aggregations are shown linked to the Plan.

9. If you want to price the Plan using a Compound Aggregation, then select Add Compound Aggregations at Step 7. The remaining configuration steps are the same as when using a simple Aggregation to set up a Pricing for a Plan.

Tip: Notes on Setting Up in the Pricing Editor! Please review the following section when you're setting up to price your product Plans/Plan Templates in the Pricing Editor.

Setting Up in the Pricing Editor - Notes and Tips

When setting up in the Pricing Editor and before you proceed to configure pricings for your Plans/Plan Templates, here are a few useful notes and tips to bear in mind:

  • Plans already show in Pricing Editor? If you have added Plans to the Pricing Editor in an earlier work session, the page will automatically restore to show these Plans. This allows you to continue your work without having to re-add Plans. Restoration of a previous work session occurs across a Console logout/login and across closing/re-opening of your browser. Only if you clear your browser cache will the page not be restored to its earlier state.

  • Pricing shows for added Plan? If an Aggregation has already been linked to the selected Plan, you can edit the Pricing that was previously configured. See Managing and Editing Priced Plans and Plan Templates.

  • Pricing from Plan Template inherited by added Plan? If the Plan you've added to the Pricing Editor is based on a Plan Template which you've already priced, when you add the Plan the pricing will be inherited and shows as a pricing derived from the template. You can then choose to Override Template Pricing. For example:

  • In this example, we've added two Plans to the Pricing Editor and a single Aggregation to price them:

    • Clean Graph Plan 1, which is based on a priced Plan Template and inherits it's Pricing from the Template.

    • Clean Graph Plan 2, which is based a Plan Template that has not been priced and we'll have to create a Pricing from scratch for the Plan. Alternatively, you can select the plus icon next to the Plan Template to add it into the Pricing grid and you can then proceed to price price the Plan Template the Plan uses:

  • Create new Plan Template? You can also create a new Plan Template directly from the Pricing Editor in a similar way to creating a new Plan - see Step 6 above - and you are returned to the Pricing Editor with the newly-created Plan Template added and ready for you to price up. See Creating Plan Templates.

  • Using Compound Aggregations for Pricing Plans? If you've selected a Compound Aggregation to price a Plan, then this will be labelled as COMPOUND in the Pricing Editor. For more details on Compound Aggregations, see Creating and Using Compound Aggregations.

  • Using Segmented Aggregation to Price a Plan? If you want to use a Segmented Aggregation to price a Plan, see Pricing Plans Using Segmented Aggregations for details.

  • Removing Aggregations? You can remove an Aggregation from the Pricing Editor only if no active Pricing has been configured for a Plan to which the Aggregation has been linked. See Removing Aggregations from the Pricing Editor.

Creating a Pricing for a Plan

When you have added a Plan to the Pricing Editor and linked it to the Aggregations you'll use for pricing, you can create the exact pricing structure you need for the Plan.

To create a pricing for a Plan:

1. To configure the precise Pricing you want to apply to a Plan using an Aggregation, select Create Pricing. The Pricing page opens:

  • Review Aggregation for Pricing: Shows the details of the Aggregation at the top of the page for your reference as you price up a Plan.

  • Advanced and Wizard Pricing formats: The default format when you open the Pricing page is to use the Advanced Pricing format. From there, you have the option of using a Pricing Wizard format. The Wizard offers four common pricing models, designed to let you quickly set up the core pricing structure you want for a Plan. You can then edit the pricing for other settings, as required.

2. If you want to use the Wizard, select the Switch to wizard button. The page adjusts to show the Wizard options:

  • Note that you can switch back to the advanced Pricing Editor format at any time using the Switch to advanced button.

3. Select the Pricing type you want to use to price the Plan:

  • Single price per unit. This is the default option.

  • Price per unit, with free tier.

  • Tiered pricing.

  • Volume pricing.

For example, select Tiered pricing.

4. Select Next. The page adjusts to allow you to configure a tiered pricing structure:

  • Description. Enter a custom description for usage line items on Bills. (Optional)

  • Use the Start (>), End (<), and Price per unit fields to configure pricing bands.

  • Start and End. Use the calendar pop-ups to enter start and end dates and times for the Pricing.

5. Select Create Pricing. You are returned to the Pricing Editor where your priced Plan using the selected Aggregation is shown. If you want to apply any other available settings to complete the Pricing configuration, select Edit - see Step 6.

6. If you don't want to use the Pricing Wizard, select Switch to advanced. Enter the details of the Pricing you want for the Plan using the selected Aggregation:

  • Start and End. Use the calendar pop-ups to enter start and end dates and times for the Pricing.

  • Description. Enter a custom description for usage line items on Bills. (Optional)

  • Minimum spend. Enter a value for a minimum spend for this pricing.

    • Minimum spend billing. If you want to override the Organization-level setting for minimum spend billing in arrears/in advance, uncheck the default which is set to use the Organization-level setting and use the switch to select to bill Accounts placed on a Plan to which the Pricing is applied in arrears/in advance.

    • Minimum spend description. Enter a custom description for minimum spend line items on Bills.

Tip: Default Usage and Minimum Spend Descriptions? If you omit custom descriptions, then default usage and minimum spend descriptions will be shown for Bill line items- see Bill Line Items - Default Descriptions for details.

  • Usage accumulates for the entire plan contract period. Enable this if you want usage accumulation for the Pricing - see Reviewing Pricing Options for Plans and Plan Templates.

  • Apply as. Select for how you want this Pricing to apply to customer Accounts that you place on this priced Plan. Three options:

    • Debit. The amount calculated using the Pricing is added to the bill as a debit. This is the default setting.

    • Product Credit. The amount calculated using the Pricing is added to the bill as a credit (negative amount), which reduces the bill total. To prevent negative billing, the bill will be capped at the total of other line items for the same Product.

    • Global Credit. The amount calculated using the Pricing is added to the bill as a credit (negative amount), which reduces the bill total. To prevent negative billing, the bill will be capped at the total of other line items for the entire bill, which might include other Products.

  • Pricing Type. Select the type of pricing structure you want to apply for this Plan - five options:

    • Tiered

    • Volume

    • Stairstep

    • Custom Tiered

    • Custom Volume

When you select a pricing type, a text description explains how the pricing will be applied is provided. For more details, see Reviewing Pricing Options for Plans and Plan Templates.

7. The settings required to complete a Pricing type vary. For example for Tiered, use the Start (>), End (<), and Price per unit fields to configure pricing bands for the Pricing:

  • Negative Values? You can enter negative values for Price per unit, but please review the implications of doing so in the Using Negative Pricing for Plans section below.

  • Decimal Places? For Price per unit, you can enter a value with up to 16 decimal places and preserve precision.

Important: Check on Price per unit! When you are configuring a pricing for a Plan, bear in mind that this depends the Quantity per unit you've configured for the Aggregation used for pricing. For example, if you're using an Aggregation that is derived from a gigabytes Meter measure field and Quantity per unit is set at 500, a Price per unit of $0.25 means that end customer Accounts put on the pricing Plan will be charged $0.25 per 500 gigabytes used.

8. If required, configure Prepayment / Balance overage pricing. If you are setting up a Tiered pricing structure, you can set up pricing for overages on pricing bands. This pricing will then be used to charge for usage if the priced Plan is attached to an Account, the Account has a Prepayment or Balance applied to it, and the entire Prepayment/Balance amount has been consumed:

  • Click Add, the panel adjusts, and you can use the Start (>), End (<), and Price per unit fields to configure overage pricing bands.

Warning: Prepayment Overage Pricing is Restricted!

  • You can set up Prepayment overage pricing bands only if you are setting up Tiered Pricing on a Plan.

  • If you've enabled Usage accumulates over the entire contract period, you cannot set up overage pricing for any Pricing type.

Important: Prepayment / Balance Overage surcharge percentage overrides Prepayment / Balance Overage pricing! If you set up overage pricing on a tiered pricing structure when pricing a Plan that will apply to billing for a Prepayment / Balance and you have also set up overage surcharge percentage when creating the Prepayment / Balance for an Account, any overage usage charges on the Account will be billed at the overage surcharge percentage rate and the Prepayment / Balance overage pricing will be ignored.

9. Select Create Pricing. You are returned to the Pricing page and the pricing structure you’ve configured using each of the Aggregations is shown under the Plan:

  • Note that in this example, the period the Pricing is active for the Plan spans the current date and therefore is shown in the pricing grid as Active Pricing. For details on how to view historic and future pricing for a Plan, see the following section.

Important! Only one Pricing for a Plan using an Aggregation at any point in time. If you try to create a new Pricing for a Plan using an Aggregation and the start and end dates you define means the new Pricing would overlap with an existing Pricing for the Plan that uses the same Aggregation, then you'll receive an error message and won't be able to save the new Pricing. If you receive this error, please check the Pricing Schedule for the Plan/Aggregation for possible conflicts with the Pricing you're trying to set up.

Tip: Editing, Viewing Details, or Deleting a Pricing?

You can do any of these directly from the Pricing Grid:

Tip: Updating Pricing mid-billing period? If you update the Pricing for the change to take effect mid-billing period, then a Bill line item for each change made will be produced for that period's Bill, regardless of the Aggregation method used in the Pricing.

Viewing Historic and Future Pricing on a Plan

If you are working in the Pricing Editor, you can quickly view any historic or future Pricing for a Plan.

To view historic and future Pricing for a Plan:

1. Open the Pricing Editor and add a Plan. If the Start date and End date you've configured for a Pricing does not include the current date and the period the Pricing would be active for the Plan is in the past, then nothing will show under Active Pricing.

2. If any Historic Pricing has been configured, the left-hand arrow next to the Pricing Schedule calendar icon will be active and you can select this:

The Pricing Grid adjusts to show the Historic Pricing:

3. If any Future Pricing has been configured, the right-hand arrow next to the Pricing Schedule calendar icon will be active and you can select this:

The Pricing Grid adjusts to show the future pricing:

If you select the calendar icon, the Pricing Schedule page opens:

For more details on working with the Pricing Schedule, see Viewing Pricing Schedule.

Using Negative Pricing for Plans

When you price a Plan, you can enter negative pricing amounts for Price per unit. Negative pricing is useful if you want to credit your end customers for unused service and issue a bill with negative line items. If you use negative pricing, there are several consequences depending on the other settings for pricing you've used:

  • Combined with Product/Global Credit. If you use negative Price per unit values combined with an Apply as setting of either Product or Global Credit, then a double-negative effect occurs when the bill is calculated and results in a positive bill - just the same as if you had configured the same unit charge rates as positive price per unit values with the Apply as Debit setting.

  • Combined with Prepayments/Commitments Fees. If the Account you attach a negatively-priced Plan to has a Prepayment created and fees are due, then bills will reconcile either way accordingly:

    • If the Prepayment fees due are greater than the negative charges. then a positive bill amount results.

    • If the Prepayment fees due are less than the negative charges. then a negative bill amount results

Next: Pricing Plans Using Segmented Aggregations



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