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Digital Business Models and Monetization

IDC's Digital Business Models and Monetization service examines traditional and emerging monetization models, including subscription, usage, consumption, perpetual/maintenance, and outcomes-based pricing approaches. The service identifies disruptive business models and technologies such as cloud services, product to "as a service" (aaS) transformation, price optimization, and monetization enabled by innovation accelerators such as IoT and data as a service (DaaS). In addition, the service analyzes usage, compliance, and subscription business analytics to understand the best practices for tools and processes.

IDC also offers a separate quantitative service called IDC's SaaSPath program, which provides extended coverage of the Subscription Billing space, and is meant to be utilized as a companion program alongside the DBMM CIS. It includes an in-depth look at the mind and journey of buyers, their preferences around pricing, packaging, and purchasing channels, analysis of how companies are approaching and utilizing the cloud for these applications, and detailed vendor rating and comparisons across all major vendors. SaaSPath data is based on a large global survey of thousands of companies across all regions of the world and can segmented by country, company size, IT versus LOB role, industry, and other factors. For more information, please contact Mark Thomason at

Markets and Subjects Analyzed

  • Technologies, emerging trends, and best practices needed to monetize the digital economy
  • The impacts of business model disruption (i.e., SaaS-ification of IT)
  • People, process, and technology strategies for business model success
  • Adoption and optimization of subscription and usage pricing models
  • Digital monetization technologies that track usage and license entitlement (i.e., software, data, IoT)
  • Software monetization models in technology or industry companies
  • Strategies for transitioning to a new cloud software business model
  • Emerging trends for digital business models, including cloud marketplaces
  • Profiles of vendor business models

Core Research

  • Best Practices for Transitioning to Subscription
  • Subscription and Usage Billing
  • Price Optimization
  • Worldwide Software License/Subscription Revenue Forecast
  • SaaS Business Model Metrics
  • Subscription Business Model IDC MaturityScape

In addition to the insight provided in this service, IDC may conduct research on specific topics or emerging market segments via research offerings that require additional IDC funding and client investment.

Key Questions Answered

  1. What technologies and best practices should you use to monetize digital solutions (including usage-based pricing, IoT, and DaaS)?
  2. What disruptive forces are changing software business models, and how will they impact vendors and customers?
  3. How are business models changing considering new technology scenarios and deployment models?
  4. How are companies transitioning to subscription? What are the best practices and strategies to adopt?
  5. What are the technologies and best practices needed to help with optimizing price?
  6. How much of the IT market has moved to a subscription business model? What are the key SaaS business benchmarks?

Related Links

Meet the Experts
Mark Thomason

Research Director