It takes a village of apps to build a successful ecommerce business—it’s virtually impossible to operate any kind of online business without using any sort of third-party apps, tools, or resources to help you execute your workflow. Whether it’s a helpdesk app, social media scheduling tools, or stock photo resources, there are so many tools out there that help merchants run better businesses. In this post, we’re talking about how you can get access to the tools you need to run your online business more affordably—by taking advantage of lifetime deals.
What Are Lifetime Deals?
Lifetime deals are discounts on apps, tools, or resources where you only pay one fee to get access to them for life.
It’s so common these days that software as a service (SaaS) apps charge their users monthly or yearly fees to be able to use their tools, but lifetime deals remove the recurring payment requirements and only charge users one flat-rate fee to be able to access the app for its entire lifetime.
As a customer, the obvious advantage of lifetime deals is that you save a lot of money while getting access to the tools that you need to run your business! For example, we’ve built up our tech stack over time with lifetime deals and if we were to pay for each of the tools monthly it would cost about $5000 per month but because we’ve taken advantage of so many lifetime deals over the years, we pay less than 10% of that.
What it comes down to is that lifetime deals make your life easier. They save you money, they eliminate repetitive bookkeeping responsibilities, and they give you easier access to the tools you need to run your business, which you may not have otherwise been able to access if you had to pay for each tool monthly.
Usually, lifetime deals are offered by smaller, new, solo or more micro SaaS companies to get people using their tools. There are advantages and disadvantages to this, but usually, it’s also new and bootstrapped entrepreneurs who are looking out for lifetime deals so it makes a great match.
Lifetime deals are a beginner-friendly resource for beginner entrepreneurs who usually can’t afford to pay thousands of dollars per month to operate their tech stack so if that sounds like you, then lifetime deals are something you should be looking into!
Keeping that in mind, this also means that lifetime deals might not be suitable for every entrepreneur. Usually, the companies that are offering lifetime deals are just getting started so their tools might have limited functionalities or bugs. This means that they might not last you forever or you might outgrow them, which can actually be a good thing because it means that your business is successful and then you can upgrade to a more Pro Plan on the tool you’re already using or switch to a different app even you’ll have to pay for a subscription. But at least by that point, you know that you use the tool and it’s helpful for your business so you can be more confident in the investment of a paid plan.
Why Lifetime Deals Are Important for Your Business
Taking advantage of lifetime deals can be one of the best things that you do for your business because they can save you a significant amount of money and they can give you all the assets and capabilities you need to run your business to its fullest potential. If you’re running your business on a budget, lifetime deals are an essential service to incorporate into your tech stack.
Let’s discuss the advantages of lifetime deals in more depth.
The Advantages of Lifetime Deals
With lifetime deals, you don’t have recurring bills hitting your credit card every month. You just pay for a tool once and then have access to it for life. This also means that you’ll have fewer bookkeeping entries to keep track of, which if you’re a solo entrepreneur managing your own books, this takes a lot of extra work off your plate!
Plus, lifetime deals are great because you don’t keep paying for those tools that you kind of use sometimes but aren’t an essential part of your workflow. You know those tools that you’ve signed up for and you have a little bit of work saved in them so you don’t want to stop paying for the tool because you’ll lose your work, but you also don’t use the tool often enough to justify the monthly cost of it… Yeah, we get it, we’ve been there too.
Lifetime deals eliminate those “should-I-keep-it-or-shouldn’t-I” feelings because you aren’t paying monthly for the tools! So at least if you purchased a lifetime deal and it turns out that you aren’t using it as much as you thought you might, at least it only cost you $40 total instead of $20 per month, or something along those lines.
Lifetime deals also allow you to invest in tools that could have a significant return on investment (ROI) for your business. If you have a plan for where you see your business growing in the future, you can pick up lifetime deals along the way that will benefit you when you get to that point. That’s something that we’ve done over the years, and it’s helped our workflow massively.
We knew the areas we wanted our business to develop in the future and when a lifetime deal came up that fit our future vision, we picked it up. We may not have used those tools at the moment or we maybe even sat on them for a year or two, but eventually, they became a tool that we needed to run a new part of our business and we had that tool waiting in the wings, ready to use.
One of the final advantages of lifetime deals is that you invest in up-and-coming tools and get to be a part of the development process of the tool. Like we mentioned above, lifetime deals are usually offered by new SaaS companies for new entrepreneurs, so everyone’s in the same boat! The SaaS company needs users to invest in and use their tools to make them better, and entrepreneurs need tools to run their business at a more accessible rate. The trade-off for getting a great price on the software is that the entrepreneur uses the service while the bugs are still being ironed out and new features are being added.
So although most lifetime deal tools will still be very much in the development process, you’ll be able to give the creators feedback to help build the kind of tool that you want to use. Most often, the creators are super receptive to feedback and because they’re usually small companies, they can tailor their development roadmap to fit what their audiences are asking for the most. They usually want to develop their tool to fit exactly what their users are looking for, so in exchange for enduring the development process, you’ll likely eventually end up with a tool that’s a near-perfect fit for your business’ needs.
Where to Get Lifetime Deals
Lifetime deals have become much more popular in the last few years so there are several different places online where you can find lifetime deals available, however, our favorite by far is AppSumo.
They’re the original providers of lifetime deals and they work with lots of great up-and-coming and well-established companies to bring lifetime deals to the ecommerce and tech communities. We’ve been big fans of AppSumo for years and that’s where we source pretty much all of our lifetime deals from.
We love AppSumo because they offer a great lineup of SaaS tools and apps that we actually want to use for our business, plus they have a great return policy so if a deal isn’t working out for your business within 60 days you can return in for a full refund. Plus, because AppSumo has such a large audience, each tool that runs a lifetime deal on their platform usually integrates easily with the other tools that have been offered on AppSumo before because the AppSumo audience (known as “Sumolings”) basically demands it.
This is great, because if you’re using a lot of tools from AppSumo’s lifetime deals, then they’ll usually all integrate with one another, making your tech stack run more smoothly!
AppSumo usually has several lifetime deals available at one time, and they launch new ones frequently. It’s also worth keeping an eye out for what they have available during the Black Friday/Cyber Monday time because they usually have a bunch of especially great deals then. We always check out what they roll out for BFCM!
Considering Lifetime Deal Purchases
Just because you see a lifetime deal available, it doesn’t always mean you should snatch it up. So which lifetime deals should you snatch up—what should you look out for?
Below are the top criteria you should think about when considering lifetime deal purchases.
Audit Your Existing Tools
Think about the tools in your tech stack and what you already have and what’s missing. What isn’t working well? What needs to be upgraded? Are there any gaps in the capabilities that you need from your tools? What might you eventually need?
Auditing what you already have in your tech stack can shine a light on what you need to add to improve your workflow and it can also make clear what you don’t need to add if you have it already.
Vetting Lifetime Deals
It’s rare, but since the companies offering lifetime deals are new, sometimes they do go under in less than a year. It’s not something we see often, but it can happen. To protect yourself as much as possible from investing in a company that may go down in the near future, make sure to look at their product roadmap to see what they’re planning for the future and the general direction of the company.
It’s also helpful to look at reviews and comments sections on AppSumo or wherever you see the lifetime deal being offered or on independent review sites just to see what other users have to say. The Lifetime Tech Deal Fans Facebook group is a good place to reference lifetime deal reviews specifically because the group there is pretty knowledgeable and they often grill the founders in Q&A sessions.
Like we mentioned above, roadmaps are a hugely important indicator of the company’s intended growth and progression and are important to take into consideration when looking at potential lifetime deals to buy into. Not only because they will give you an idea of the company’s longevity and how forward-thinking they are, but they will also give you a good understanding of whether the tool will grow in the same direction as your business or not.
Since the tools are usually in their beginning stages, they will undergo a lot of transformation as they grow and develop into a better tool, so looking at the product roadmap gives you an idea of where that development is going to happen so you can make an informed decision as to whether it’s still going to be the right tool for your business after changes and updates have been made. In most cases, the tool will grow and be even better for your business than it was on Day 1, but just consult the product roadmap to be sure that will be the case.
For example, here’s a product roadmap from SocialBee—which is a tool that offered a lifetime deal through AppSumo—so their users can see what features are in the development pipeline.
What Kind of Lifetime Deals Should You Add to Your Tech Stack?
So now that you know what lifetime deals are, why they’re useful for your business, where you can get them, and what you need to look out for when choosing lifetime deals—which lifetime deals should you actually add to your tech stack?
Well, it will depend on what’s important to your business’ tech stack—every business will have different requirements—but a great starting point for any business is to get lifetime deals for your essential tools.
If you’re using certain tools because you need their functionality to operate your business, then try and get tools with similar functionalities as lifetime deals so you don’t have to keep paying monthly or yearly to use the service. This can save you a lot of money over the course of your business’ life.
Here are the types of tools we recommend most businesses try to find lifetime deals for:
- Helpdesks: Every business needs a way to communicate with their clients and customers, and usually it’s through email. A helpdesk tool is something that you’ll have for the entirety of your business’ life, so it can be a massive cost if you pay for it monthly or yearly. See if you can find a lifetime deal for a helpdesk that offers even just basic features and check out their product roadmap to see how they plan to evolve over time.
- Marketing Tools: Whether it’s email marketing, social media marketing, or whatever kind of marketing your business does, getting the marketing tools you use with a lifetime deal can ensure that you’re running lean campaigns.
- Credits for Stock Photo/Video/Audio Services: If using stock photos, videos, or audio is important for what you do then getting a lifetime deal of credits to use at a stock source can be super helpful. Stock up (no pun intended) on credits and they can keep you going for a long time!
- Security Tools: Usually, you won’t regret investing in anything that’s going to protect your business, and security tools are often something that you commit to for the course of your business’ life, so it’s a bonus to only pay for it once and then get access to it forever. Look for VPNs, firewalls, backup services, etc. Our How to Bulletproof Your Online Store article gives more ideas for security tools you can implement into your business’ tech stack.
- Photo/Video Editing: Most businesses these days need some kind of photo or video editing tools to create content for their website or socials, so if that’s important to your business then you’ll want to look for tools to remove backgrounds from product photos, image compression tools to optimize your website photos, or video editing software to make great content.
- Link Shorteners: These are a pretty common tool that most businesses need these days to keep links looking tidy whether it’s on your social profiles or when using affiliate links, and since it’s a standard business tool you’ll use year after year, it’s a good idea to find a lifetime deal for link shortening tools.
If you hadn’t heard of lifetime deals before, we hope you have a good understanding of what they are now! They’re one of those things to just keep an eye out for while you’re running your business because you can save some hard-earned cash if you find ones that work for your business.
Remember to evaluate your existing tech stack to see what kind of tools you need or ones you could update, and try to find lifetime deals for tools that you can use instead! After all, you’re going to need tools to help you run your business so if you can save some cash while doing so, it’s a win-win situation.