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Ecommerce glossary > Monthly subscription

Monthly subscription

What is a monthly subscription?

In a monthly subscription, a customer enters into an agreement with a business where they pay a recurring monthly fee in exchange for products or services. This might involve a monthly box of physical products, a monthly membership, or access to gated content that renews on a monthly basis. Though monthly subscriptions are among the most popular cadences for subscriptions, many businesses also offer options for a weekly, bi-weekly, or quarterly subscription service. Some businesses also offer annual subscription services, as well as subscriptions on a custom interval. 

What types of monthly subscription boxes exist? 

A monthly subscription box can take many different forms. Some fall under the curation box subscription model, where the merchant selects an assortment of products for monthly delivery. These often take the form of a themed box, such as a monthly summer clothing box, a monthly box of natural beauty products, or a monthly, seasonal box of self-care products. Other monthly box subscriptions may fall under the replenishment model, where the same products—like razors, fresh flowers, or coffee—are sold with each delivery. 

Monthly subscription box success strategies

Regardless of their cadence, the best subscription boxes balance convenience and flexibility with value for their customers. This convenience and value can come in many forms. Some boxes will price their offerings at less than retail value, or offer a “subscribe-and-save” option that provides a discount for recurring purchasers. Other services might include a discount on a customer’s first box, or a free monthly surprise in each delivery. In terms of flexibility, businesses can offer customers options to swap products in their order or skip or reschedule deliveries—strategies that are shown to help reduce churn and increase customer satisfaction.