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Voluntary Payment

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**Q: How much does CellarTracker cost?**
A: As you probably know, CellarTracker is a free site with a "voluntary
annual payment" model to unlock premium features (e.g. [AutoValuation
automatic cellar valuation] and some [ContentChannels professional scores]).
This is commonly referred to as a "freemium" business model, although
CellarTracker goes further than other sites in merely suggesting the annual
level of contribution based on cellar size. As of December, 2010, these
subscription payments comprise more than 80% of the revenue of CellarTracker
with the balance coming from advertising and affiliate traffic. I last revised
the payment suggestions in January, 2007, but I wanted to give you heads up that
going forward I am tweaking this upward. That said, I want to be VERY clear
about one thing: FREE means FREE. Any data that a user enters is always intended
to be accessible to that user regardless of payment status. And these payment
suggestions are exactly that, just suggestions. Some users choose to pay
$10/year for premium support while others gladly pay upwards of $250/year.
**If you are a long-term supporter and have picked an annual level you are
happy with, then you should feel no pressure to revise that.**
    0-499 bottles:  $36/year
  500-999 bottles:  $75/year
   1,000+ bottles: $150/year
In the spirit of transparency, below is a table showing the historical
suggestions for voluntary annual payment.
|| **Year** || **0-499 bottles** || **500-999 bottles** || **1000+ bottles**
|| 2004 || $20.00 || $40.00 || $75.00 ||
|| 2007 || $30.00 || $60.00 || $100.00 ||
|| 2011 || $36.00 || $75.00 || $150.00 ||
My simple goal is to build and maintain software that you will hopefully be
using decades from now, and I am deeply appreciative for **any** support.
[ CellarTracker Payment Page]
**Q: What are the premium features?**
A: The primary premium feature is [AutoValuation automatic cellar valuation]
based on auction and community pricing data. In addition, premium members can
Please see scores (but not review text) from several [ContentChannels content
channels] including Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar, John Gilman's
View From the Cellar, and Brad Baker's Champagne Warrior. Finally, premium
members do not see banner advertisements.
**Q: What happens if I renew early? How do you calculate the 'due' date?**
A: In short, there is no penalty for renewing early, as the system goes to
great lengths to honor your original term. That said, the system is also very
permissive if/when a user lapses payment. Any subsequent payment from that user
starts a fresh premium period. This is
[ described in detail here].
**Q: What happens if lapse payment? Will I still be able to access my data?**
A: The system is designed to allow user's to always access any data they have
personally entered regardless of their payment status. Some automatically
integrated premium data (professional scores and values) will 'dry up' when
payment lapses, this should have no impact on data that a user has entered.
Accounts with data are never purged except by user request. If you are having
trouble logging in it is for unrelated reasons, as no one is ever 'locked out'
based on payment status etc.
**Q: Why don't you support PayPal?**
A: The short answer is that actually the site does accept payment via PayPal,
although these are processed manually and may require a few hours to be credited
to your account. Simply PayPal to my merchant account which is The longer answer is that the payment system for
CellarTracker, called Payflow Link, is actually owned and hosted by PayPal. It
was originally part of merchant services division of Verisign which PayPal
acquired a few years ago. At the time and subsequently, PayPal has mentioned
that THEY would integrate PayPal into the flow of Payflow Link, but alas that
has never happened.
**Q: Is my online payment secure, and how do you handle credit cardholder
A: Please see my PasswordSecurity our current FAQ for a brief discussion of
CategoryFAQ at

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Edited January 1, 2014 (hide diff)