Quicken Online is Now Free

Quicken is going to the freemium model. They're offering their base service free now to compete against several other free online services and then offering upgrades to more powerful services. Still, for the average user, the free service is good news.

Quicken Online, Inruit's online banking and financial management software is now being offered free.  They're offering their base service free now to compete against several other free online services and then offering upgrades to more powerful services.  Still, for the average user, the free service is good news.

I went to try out the new service and it was easy to open an account.  They then asked me to connect to my bank account and I didn't want to at the moment so I tried to skip the step.  This caused a system error and I was logged out.  I logged in again, went through the same sequence and was logged out.  They obviously need to work out a few more kinks.

Why is Quicken going free?  It's a response to a growing number of companies that are offering free, ad-based online financial management tools.  Some of their competitors include Mint.com and Geezeo.com.  Both of these sites are still relatively small and by launching a free service, Quicken is trying to prevent them from encroaching on its space.

I also imagine they will integrate ads into their offering, providing customers with offers on high yield accounts, credit cards, mortgages, etc. based on a customers transaction history and perceived needs.  The free service also provides a slew of customers who can be upgraded to Quicken's premium offering.  This tactic is fairly common with web services.  Attract the masses with a usable but limited free offering and then upgrade them to the fee-based service.

Sam Cass
Sam Cass: Sam Cass, MBA, JD, University of Texas at Austin. Always a fan of Leonardo Da Vinci.

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