Trello have been pretty transparent that they would eventually offer some sort of premium package in the future but they kept adding so many free features that it was getting harder to imagine what kind of features they could actually charge for. The features they are charging here are nice but they aren't real game changers and I thought they had already offered some of them (data export, Google integration).
All that being said, I think Trello is a great product and I'm sure they'll pay for more than a few nights at the pub with this new revenue stream!
1) even though everyone on HN seems to, not everyone in the world knows about Trello.
2) Trello isn't your only competitor. The most popular online project management tool in the traditional, offline world is probably Basecamp. They charge (and make a killing).
3) many people who do know about Trello don't want to use it for one reason or another. Before today the biggest reason I saw was their lack of a monetization strategy, but there are still likely a good number of folks on HN who want something similar but aren't satisfied with Trello.
One potential route for you to take, that I've noticed any time Trello comes up here, is to offer customers installation of ThetaBoard on their own servers.
I think click anywhere to open/close a card would be a huge help. Having two or more cards is confusing and destroys the 'overview' feeling that makes kanban great.
We could use more kanban products anyway – keep it up and monetize!
Double clicking on the background will close all of the cards.
The model that seems to be working for social collaboration software and what Trello has announced, is the majority of user features are free while admin/control features fall into the paid version. Yammer's business model is not too different with admin/control features at the core of the paid version.
Organizations are willing to pay for control while users are less willing to pay for features.
If you can get widespread adoption by free users there's increased pressure on Management to signup for the control features. Someone else coined this as "Enterprise sales by the backdoor".
We're looking at a simliar model with http://www.taskmessenger.com
* edit for spelling
Task Messenger looks slick.
It uses backbone.js models/views, Jquery UI, and some Twitter Bootstrap JS.
Note to other Kanban software developers... features suck. "Features" are the antithesis of Kanban.
That said, though, even Trello isn't as good as a board with Post-It notes attached. Its only real advantage is that Trello is portable.
It is a pain in the butt when a column is at the WIP limit - but that is kind of the point. It forces you to help move blockages before overloading a column.
Too many people building project management tools don't realize that features often just support anti-patterns and having more of them doesn't help.
I believe people building software tools should internalize that a huge part of providing a good solution is helping people get better at their craft & day to day on top of providing the software itself :)
tl;dr - Jira
I often have work that I do offline, and I disconnect the internet so as to avoid having to use willpower to stay away from the internet.
I'm sure they're aware it would be useful, but concluded the number of users it would apply to doesn't justify the effort. But, in case they're considering offline support, wanted to add my anecdote.
I don't necessarily need to access all my boards and cards while offline, I'd like like to be able to add cards or modify cards I had open without losing those changes.
And then some of the changes were not saved, I tested.
Plus a standalone app would be nice too, having it as a separate application outside of my browser window, but I digress.
...how do you do this, or what does it mean? I'd google it myself, but I didn't catch the reference and can't.
Are they targeting smaller businesses?
We have much more flexibility at lower limits.
And really, why should they have a complex pricing model? It's not like Trello is expensive to develop/support/operate. If they can get 10k organizations to buy a $200 license, they make a cool $2M for a not-complex piece of software with a not-complex business model. That's a very high profit margin, and still cheap enough to repel price-based competition (even free).
Some organizations are not only willing to pay more but they will perceive a higher value with paying more.
At the very least why not offer some extended handholding or support for people how have the budget to pay for that?
This idea that everything needs to be free or cheap is not correct. Some people will pay more to be treated differently.
People are happy to pay for things that make their lives easier. Many are willing to pay a lot.
My one gripe (that many people have) is the lack of built-in metrics/analytics on progress. You can hack it together with a combination of the Trello Scrum extension and their API, but it would be great to have it built-in (and something I would pay for).
Do you have some sort of governmental regulation that keeps you from using hosted products?
Unfortunately, some less-progressive companies leave off the last bit and just ban everything.
As opposed to Asana, where I try to stay within the limits of the free offering, because their cheapest paid offering is still expensive at $100/month ( http://asana.com/product#pricing ).
I am surprised they decided to monetize Trello that way rather than selling Power-ups (add module like time tracking to your boards), they would be able to reach a broader market.
Because I run a product that takes some inspiration from the Trello UI (http://weekplan.net), I find it interesting to follow how they monetize Trello. I went with the freemium model with a paid plan (like Evernote) because I want to enjoy the free marketing I get from my free users and it is working ok for me at the moment. I am itching to go the "X weeks trial then have to pay" route as an experiment though as everyone is doing that these days.
Now, the really interesting question will be how much time do they spend adding free versus business features in the coming months? Does free start to get no new features? What makes a feature a business feature over a free feature?
EDIT - Removed my surprise about no backlash since I am geting negative points for it.
"In the future we'll continue to add free features to Trello (there is a lot of exciting stuff in the hopper)—anything that is a common feature, useful to anyone, will be free. We’ll also continue to develop new Business Class features that help large organizations manage Trello, and we may come up with other things to sell to people who are getting a lot of value out of Trello. "
They have effectively created two classes of users which they will support differently. Business is going to get features that the free plan will not. Deciding how they will split their time between the two users bases will be one of their biggest concerns going forward.
In the future we'll continue to add free features to Trello (there is a lot of exciting stuff in the hopper)—anything that is a common feature, useful to anyone, will be free. We’ll also continue to develop new Business Class features that help large organizations manage Trello, and we may come up with other things to sell to people who are getting a lot of value out of Trello. In the meantime, we sure appreciate the cookies!