Lower Prices + A New Way to Get More Data Faster from Cubit

Change“Change is inevitable – except from a vending machine.” Robert C. Gallagher

The What
This week, Cubit is rolling out lower prices and a new way to get more planning data faster. In the past, users purchased individual data reports for $249 per report. Now you can get unlimited data reports for as low as $20 per month. Check out the revised pricing page to learn more.

These are big changes for Cubit. Also, the look and feel of the website will be changing later on this week. You can reach us here if you want to yell at us or if you want to get your own Cubit account.

The Why
Cubit got it’s start when Kristen was frustrated by how long it took to get data for NEPA documents like environmental impact statements (EISs) and environmental assessments (EAs). Until a week ago, all of Cubit’s paying users were preparing EAs or EISs.

When Cubit offered $5 unlimited accounts for 2010 to raise money for the oil spill clean up, we assumed that the majority of the users who would sign up for a $5 account would be engineering firms and planners writing NEPA documents. Boy, were we wrong.

Private planning firms, MPOs/COGs, researchers, government agencies, non-profits, college students, professors and economists all signed up for Cubit accounts. In fact, users writing NEPA documents made up a very small, minority $5 account sign ups.

Boy, Did We Feel Dumb!
So here, Anthony and I have spent the past year talking to NEPA planners, marketing to NEPA document preparers, going to NEPA conferences and designing products specifically for NEPA work. And the majority of NEPA folks aren’t nearly as interested or excited about Cubit technology as some of the other groups that jumped on the $5 account offer. Boy, did we feel dumb!

Once we recovered from our surprise, we started asking non-NEPA folks who wanted Cubit accounts questions about what types of projects they were working on, what data they need and how they want to access and pay for Cubit.

What We Learned
A New Way to Get Data: What our non-NEPA users told us is that they’d prefer a model where they could get unlimited data reports. They wanted “a service that I can log into and access whenever” rather than a “buy one report here and one report there when I have a large project that needs data”. The old way of getting data was based on NEPA folks telling us that they wanted individual reports and needed to pay per report so they could charge the price of the report back to the project (don’t worry-we still offer $249 reports if you HAVE to charge the price of the report to a project).

Lower Prices: We heard that non-NEPA folks needed 2 price points: 1. a starting price point for users who have to pay for Cubit out of their own pocket, because “it’s too much of a pain” to get their companies or organizations to pay for Cubit and 2. a full featured price point for companies and agencies that want their employees to have access to Cubit.

In Conclusion
Based on these 3 lessons learned (1. non-NEPA users are even more excited about Cubit than NEPA users; 2. non-NEPA users want unlimited data access; and 3. non-NEPA users need 2 price points), Cubit is changing direction. Now, NEPA and non-NEPA users can get unlimited data for $20 per month or unlimited data plus advanced map features and Word documents for $60 per month. Learn more about prices and sign ups here. And over the next few weeks, we’ll be ripping out the NEPA-focused language and graphics on the website and talking about Cubit from a more general planning perspective.

I don’t want to end this post by saying something trite like “Thanks for your support as we make these changes”. I think “Please forgive our mess” would be more appropriate. So please forgive our mess. It would mean a lot to me if you’d give me a quick thumbs up or thumbs down comment below.

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2 Responses to Lower Prices + A New Way to Get More Data Faster from Cubit

  1. Tam Frager June 9, 2010 at 10:07 am #

    This is great! I’m actually on a big NEPA project, but, as a writer, I keep thinking of other, non-NEPA projects on which I could use some of this data. When my contract ends here , and depending on data sources I have access to in my next position, I just may be subscribing. :)

  2. Kristen Carney June 9, 2010 at 10:48 am #


    That’s exactly what we kept hearing from other folks–that there are other projects out there other than NEPA that need quick demographic data. If there are any data sets that you need for your other projects that is not a part of Cubit already, please let me know.


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