As you may have read yesterday, WHMCS has ended support for owned licenses. For a lot of shops, this is a significant financial hit, given that the cost of moving to a monthly subscription is significantly greater than the cost of paying annual support. Additionally, WHMCS announced a price increase as well.
So will providers now migrate en masse to alternate software? Probably not immediately. Customer management software is the heart of most enterprises, and there are often integrations, automations, and business processes deeply tied to how the software works, which makes moving to a different platform painful.
However, if you’ve decided that WHMCS’s cost is too high for you or if you are looking a new “green field” startup where there is not a lot of legacy work tying you to WHMCS, here’s a brief rundown of alternates for you to take a look at. For comparison, WHMCS pricing is $18.95/mo ($227.40/year) for up to 250 clients, $29.95/mo ($359.40/year) for up to 500 clients, and $44.95/mo ($449.50/year) and up once you go past that, topping out at a staggering $1299.95/mo ($15,499.40/year) if you go unlimited.
Blesta is billing software with a long list of features. It’s not as feature-rich as WHMCS but is certainly more affordable, with a $250 one-time owned, branded option ($39/year renewal) or a one-time $750 perpetual support option. It’s also as cheap as $12.95/mo on a month-to-month basis.
BillingServ was developed by LowEndTalk’s very own @Jord (spoiler alert: an interview is in the works!). It’s cloud-hosted, so there’s no upgrades for you to manage or server to maintain. On the other hand, you have security, availability, and confidentiality considerations. BillingServ is priced at £12/£18/£28 per month for 250/1000/unlimited clients with no branding. You can also get started with a basic £50/year option that is branded for up to 50 clients.
Clientexec has been around a very long time and starts at $11.95/mo, which includes unlimited clients. For $3/mo more you can remove branding. They also have a lifetime single-payment option and a SaaS model.
BillingFox is a new entrant (and one recently discussed on LowEndTalk). Their pricing starts at only $2.99/month for up to 250 customers, and tops out at $10/mo for unlimited customers, with a one-time payment option available as well. Some comments on LET indicated that it still looks a little rough but it’s certainly the cheapest alternative on the list.
Finally, there’s HostBill and Ubersmith, though these are substantially more expensive than WHMCS.
There are some excellent threads on LowEndTalk to read more on this topic: