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Products and pricing overview

This guide covers how Metronome applies pricing to your customers' usage. Usage-based pricing is based on billable metrics, so if you haven't already, we recommend reading Designing billable metrics first.

Metronome includes a flexible and powerful pricing engine, designed to accommodate the breadth of pricing options you might need. The following lists some of the more common options, but please reach out to your Metronome representative if you need something different:

  • Usage-based and fixed recurring charges
  • Tiered pricing
  • Minimums on metrics and invoice totals
  • Free trials and pricing ramps
  • Credits and custom pricing units
  • Grouping invoice line items
  • Billing in advance or in arrears

The rest of this document describes at a high level the fundamental concepts underlying Metronome's pricing engine: products and plans.

Products and pricing plans

In Metronome, a product is something a customer can buy, along with what metrics and fixed charges are included when pricing that product. A plan specifies what products a customer on that plan has access to, the prices that are paid, and the invoicing cadence.

Products

An example product called "cloud database" might be priced based on a fixed base charge and charges for metered CPU and storage consumption. In the Metronome web UI, such a product would look like this:

an example product in the Metronome UI

By default, products appear on invoices as line items, with their various charges as sub-line items.

Plans

In the above product example, there's no mention of the actual prices a customer will pay to use that product. This is because customers may pay different amounts for the same product. In Metronome, you only specify prices when creating a pricing plan.

Plans can be reused across many customers, or they can be unique to a single customer. For example, you may have a standard pay-as-you-go plan for your self-serve customers as well as a few custom pricing plans for larger enterprise customers, where individual rates have been negotiated.

Plans can refer to multiple products. For example, in addition to the "cloud database" product, a plan might include a product called "premium support" with a fixed recurring charge.

The following is an example preview of a plan in the Metronome UI:

an example plan in the Metronome UI

Assigning customers to plans

When you onboard a new customer, you need to associate them with a plan so that they will be invoiced appropriately. You can do this manually in the Metronome UI from the Plans tab when viewing a customer, or you can use the /customers/{customer_id}/plans/add API endpoint.

Next steps

With an understanding of the core pricing concepts, you're ready to dive deeper into managing products.