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Numanoid
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Postby Numanoid; Thu Mar 16, 2017 10:54 am How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

What kind of system do devs use to keep track of serials/licenses they sell.

For example, u-he must have sold thousand upon thousand of licenses for Zebra over the years

How are those records kept, is it an automated process via vendors like digital river?

But how are then the records updated when a user resell a license second hand to another user. I guess that kind of information will have to be updated manually in the customer database?

And when contacting users about upgrades to a plug users have bought, is that database linked up to a mass mailing system like Mailchimp for example.
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murnau
KVRAF
 
5147 posts since 13 Jan, 2005, from right behind you

Postby murnau; Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:26 am Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

Jesus.. :dog:
Whoever wants music instead of noise, joy instead of pleasure, soul instead of gold, creative work instead of business, passion instead of foolery, finds no home in this trivial world of ours.
experimental.crow
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4982 posts since 9 Mar, 2003, from The Druid Hills

Postby experimental.crow; Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:30 am Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

post-it notes ...
corkboards , pushpins , colored yarn ...
Image
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masterhiggins
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1511 posts since 30 Dec, 2004, from People's Republic of Minnesota

Postby masterhiggins; Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:32 am Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

IBM punchcards.
Numanoid
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Postby Numanoid; Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:37 am Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

This is not intended as a joke thread :wink:

Anybody developing a plug for sale, will also have to think about the customer relations bit.

I have seen little or no discussion/info about this earlier.

So I am curious how this is handled, especially for those plugs where serial authorisation is used. I mean, with iLOK and dongle protection it is easier to see that everything is automated. But that also costs quite a bit.
Last edited by Numanoid on Thu Mar 16, 2017 1:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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nonnaci
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136 posts since 7 Feb, 2017

Postby nonnaci; Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:02 pm Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

I recall there were third-party companies that can handle license/serial management for you online. You basically integrate part of their SDK into their application for making challenge/response type queries. They provide hosting and online interface/page for user to login and manage their account info.
stratum
KVRian
 
1130 posts since 29 May, 2012

Postby stratum; Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:10 pm Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

I have a similar silly question. How do professional preset designers know how many licenses for their presets are sold? 3 options: 1- they do not and trust you 2-they are being paid upfront 3-they have crystal balls.
~stratum~
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FabienTDR
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860 posts since 23 Feb, 2012

Postby FabienTDR; Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:11 pm Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

It's a mysteriously secret process called Book-keeping.

Tax authorities insist on it. Good morning!

You keep this stuff both on paper in folders and in case any DEV still isn't aware in 2017, also databases. ;)
Fabien from Tokyo Dawn Records

Check out my audio processors over at the Tokyo Dawn Labs!
Numanoid
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Postby Numanoid; Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:20 pm Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

FabienTDR wrote:Tax authorities insist on it. Good morning!

That is an important part of it of course, but do they need to be notified when a user sell a license second-hand a couple of years after the original license was bought?

I mean, that is another part of keeping the books, licenses changing hands after they first got sold.
Numanoid
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Postby Numanoid; Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:26 pm Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

nonnaci wrote:I recall there were third-party companies that can handle license/serial management for you online. You basically integrate part of their SDK into their application for making challenge/response type queries. They provide hosting and online interface/page for user to login and manage their account info.

Buying exteral services like that, how much extra cost would that add to a plug, 5-10-20% ?
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nonnaci
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136 posts since 7 Feb, 2017

Postby nonnaci; Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:30 pm Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

Numanoid wrote:Buying exteral services like that, how much extra cost would that add to a plug, 5-10-20% ?


A fraction of a dollar per serial generated.
Numanoid
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Postby Numanoid; Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:33 pm Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

nonnaci wrote:
Numanoid wrote:Buying exteral services like that, how much extra cost would that add to a plug, 5-10-20% ?

A fraction of a dollar per serial generated.

OK, so for a "one man business" it would be most cost-effective to buy external services like you have described, rather than to come up with an own/ad-hoc system for this.
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nonnaci
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136 posts since 7 Feb, 2017

Postby nonnaci; Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:38 pm Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

Numanoid wrote:OK, so for a "one man business" it would be most cost-effective to look for external services like you have described, rather than to come up with an own/ad-hoc system for this.


Well there are risks such as the serial/license company folding, faulty security, faulty integration (possible point of attack). I'd say scope out the competition in that domain to see how long the players last/reviewed by others.
syntonica
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232 posts since 24 Sep, 2014

Postby syntonica; Thu Mar 16, 2017 1:07 pm Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

How many out there roll their own vs. using third-parties?

If I buy a plugin, or any software for that matter, I'd rather see all my money go to the developer instead of the web host, the payment processor, the serial wrangler, the web designer, the Apple/Android store, etc. with crumbs left over for the person who actually does all the work.

Plus, I tend not to trust random internet companies... especially plugin makers! :wink:
JCJR
KVRAF
 
1965 posts since 17 Apr, 2005, from S.E. TN

Postby JCJR; Thu Mar 16, 2017 2:27 pm Re: How do devs keep track of serials/licenses they sell?

It would be hard for a one-man operation to do everything. In an earlier biz-related thread, IIRC Aleksey Vaneev claimed to do "a lot of it" himself so it must be possible.

Before retirement, the folks I worked with had 3+ programmers, several non-programmer media/content personnel, several tech support folks, a business manager, sales/marketing manager + other sales folk, accountant/bookkeeper, a network guy, a web guy, and at least a couple of folks doing duping, packaging and shipping. Everybody had enough to do to stay busy.

Keeping up with customers and registrations and such, there were some programmer tasks related to building registration and such into the apps, plus work performed by sales, tech support and the web guy.

From early 1980's to 1995 I did real dinky small time one man shop software writing and sales. Web wasn't an option back then. It was all magazine ads, mail order or phone sales. I had paper and spread sheet/database records of customers. I found that if sales increased, it meant more time spent duping disks and manuals, stuffing disks and manuals in mailers, answering more phone calls and opening more letters. So for one guy, if sales got "too good" there wasn't any time left for programming.

A web biz wouldn't be quite so bad, but there would still be lots of tasks to do.
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