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Why VWO Engage Charges You For Fewer Subscribers Than You Actually Have

2 Min Read

In the immediate months ahead, VWO Engage is going to be releasing a few important, long-awaited features that will help our customers take full advantage of our product. These features embody what we have most believed in but only articulated recently – to make sure our customers get the most value from VWO Engage.

To illustrate this, here’s something you might not know about us: We charge you for fewer subscribers than you already have.

How and why?

First, the second question.

We charge you that way so that you pay us only for real value created. We do not want to charge you for dormant subscribers – people who once subscribed but will never receive another notification. For example, imagine someone subscribed to your newsletter on his Android phone and then stopped using this phone. He’s never explicitly unsubscribed, yet he will never receive another notification because his phone is permanently switched off. If we keep him on your subscriber list, it would mean you are paying us more for no value created.

We don’t want that to happen. So we solved this.

We call this Ghosting, and our Data Science team built this feature with the specific aim of not charging our customers for subscribers that are not active.

This is how it works: we use statistics to predict which subscribers will never receive a notification. We then mark these subscribers as ghosts, and treat them as an unsubscribe.

Since this is a Data Science feature, it is probabilistic in nature and there can be small amounts of false positives (active subscribers marked falsely as inactive). In spite of this, you won’t lose any subscribers. Even when we mark a subscriber as a ghost/unsubscribe, we will always continue attempting to deliver messages to them. If a message is ever delivered, we will un-ghost them.  Yes, you read that right: Even if a subscriber is a ghost, we keep attempting to send notifications but we won’t charge you until there is an actual impression or a click.

The Ghosting project marks the first step in our long term vision of making marketing delightful for your end-users and more effective for you by understanding your users better with machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Sairam Krishnan
Sairam Krishnan VWO Alumnus
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Shanaz Khan from VWO

Hi, I am Shanaz from the VWO Research Desk.

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