How Can Non-Techy People Identify That Software Companies Charge Them Based on What Is Necessary?

When a cashier rings up your bundle of apples at the grocery store, it’s easy to spot when there’s an inaccuracy. For individuals who utilize a software company, how can they be sure they are charged the correct amount? This can be even more intimidating if the person doesn’t feel as though they are tech-savvy. Some people who are tech-savvy weighed in to help give confidence to anyone who is questioning their software bill. Keep reading to find out what they suggest.
Matt Goren

Matt Goren

Head of Marketing, Tom's Key Company.

Identify Core Software Needs

For those who might not be too tech-savvy, figuring out whether you’re paying for essential software features or just shelling out extra for unnecessary add-ons can feel like navigating a maze. One practical tip is to start with a bit of role-play: imagine you’re going minimalist with your tech needs. Ask yourself, “What are the absolute core tasks I need this software to perform?” Write those down.

Then, look at the software package you’re considering and match its features against your list. If there are a bunch of bells and whistles that aren’t on your “essentials” list, you might be veering into add-on territory. Another savvy move is to check out reviews and forums online. See what other users (especially those with similar needs to yours) are saying.

Often, you’ll find candid discussions about whether certain features were worth the extra cost or not. Plus, this can be a great way to discover alternative software options that might offer a better fit for your needs without the fluff. Remember, the goal is to pay for what you’ll actually use, not for a fancy feature list that looks good on paper but doesn’t really benefit you.

Assess Cost-Benefit of Add-Ons

Oftentimes, the basic features provided by software will meet most of your needs. When evaluating if an add-on suggested by a software company is a must-have, pinpoint the task that it will simplify or optimize and consider its overall benefit to your business or personal needs.

Demos can help improve your decision-making, so I advise taking advantage of them to understand how the recommended add-ons can help you. Additionally, analyze the cost of the add-on in relation to the revenue it brings in, or the money it saves you or your business.

Clooney Wang

Clooney Wang

CEO, TrackingMore.
John Frigo

Jon Morgan

E-Commerce Manager, Best Price Nutrition.

Research and Compare Features

A practical tip for non-tech-savvy individuals is to thoroughly research and compare the software’s feature list against your actual needs and usage patterns. Look for reviews, or ask for recommendations from peers in similar industries or roles.

This approach can help you identify whether the software includes essential features that align with your requirements, or if it’s padded with unnecessary add-ons that inflate the cost without adding value to your specific context.

Demand Full SaaS Visibility

A big red flag that a SaaS provider might be overcharging you is if they don’t prioritize visibility. In the world of software and SaaS management, visibility is crucial. You can’t manage what you can’t see.

Some providers out there only offer partial visibility. They settle for a “good enough” understanding of your SaaS usage and setup. When you don’t have a thorough look at everything, those blind spots can leave your organization vulnerable to financial losses, security breaches, and compliance issues. Full visibility is essential to understand what’s in your software portfolio, identify areas for optimization, ensure your environment is secure, and stay compliant with regulations.

A well-known analyst firm predicts that organizations without central management of SaaS lifecycles are five times more likely to encounter cyber incidents. They also suggest that companies could be overpaying by as much as 25% because of a lack of visibility. It’s important not to overlook any aspect of your SaaS usage. Don’t settle for a provider that doesn’t offer complete visibility.

Precious Abacan

Precious Abacan

Marketing Director, Softlist.
Madison T

Madison T

E-Commerce Manager, My Supplement Store.

Review Pricing Tiers and Lists

One practical tip for non-tech-savvy individuals to discern if software companies are charging them for essential features or unnecessary add-ons is to carefully review the product’s pricing tiers and feature lists.

By understanding their specific needs and comparing them with what each pricing tier offers, individuals can identify whether they’re paying for functionalities they don’t need and opt for a more cost-effective solution.

This is a crowdsourced article. Contributors' statements do not necessarily reflect the opinion of this website, other people, businesses, or other contributors.