Dear Subscribers and Future Subscribers,

Recently, we’ve gotten some questions about the monthly vs. yearly subscription choices, as well as the differences between commercial and non-commercial subscriptions. To help you make the best choice for you, we’ve put together some information and tips. We hope this information will help answer your questions and make you feel confident about your choices when it comes to your Smarty Symbols subscription!


Plan Options:

Our website offers four subscription options: commercial month-to-month, commercial yearly, non-commercial month-to-month, and non-commercial yearly. You may notice that both the commercial and the non-commercial yearly subscriptions offer significant discounts over their month-to-month counterparts: this is not an accident!

The reduced technology and administrative costs associated with yearly memberships makes it possible for us to “pass on the savings” and offer deep discounts to customers willing to pay the yearly membership fees up front. Thus, individuals who choose to pre-pay by subscribing to the yearly plan save over 50% over people who choose to try out and see if they like the portal.

Our non-commercial month-to-month plan is currently $9 per month, at the end of a 12 months period people who choose this plan end up paying a total of $108/ year. Our yearly non-commercial plan goes for just $45 for an entire year. We offer this great incentive to get people to pre-pay for using our site, which helps us out and with the discounts, helps you out as well.

If you sell products online on portals such as the teachers-pay-teachers website, you will need a commercial license. Our commercial subscription payment options work similarly to our non-commercial payment options: our current rate for the commercial month-to-month subscription plan is $29/month. At the end of a 12 months period, subscribers would have paid $348 per year. For customers who want to pre-pay, we offer a steeply discounted rate of $200 per year.

All memberships include access to the same amazing database of images, our printing center, and our subscriber communities. All memberships include the opportunity to have items you share with us featured on our site, social media channels, or newsletters. We love all our subscribers and want everyone to feel like part of our community!

However, we strongly recommend that unless you are really unsure about whether Smarty Symbols is for you, or you are working on a specific 1-time only project, you take advantage of our super discounted low yearly rates. However, we do understand that paying money up-front for a website that you don’t know much about or how to use can be hard for some people. The month-by-month plans allow you to change your mind at any time without having the burden of that one big payment upfront. We hope this information will help you make the right decision for you!


Billing Questions and Existing Subscriber Questions

If you you are already an existing subscriber, love our site, and want to take advantage of our yearly plan you MUST CANCEL your monthly subscription and subscribe to a NEW plan, which in this case is the yearly plan. We do not offer refunds on what you already paid on previous months on your month-to-month plan. Once you cancel your subscription you will still have access to the website until 30 days from the last payment. For example: let’s say your last payment was on November 10th, 2015. If you cancel on December 1st you will still have access to the website until December 10th. By then you can re-subscribe to the website by creating a new account and paying the yearly fee. You will START SAVING on first day you sign up!

As is standard for all sites or products that offer monthly or yearly payment options, we cannot offer refunds on your time as a your month-to-month subscriber, nor can we credit your month-to-month fees towards your new yearly subscription. to be clear, this is how nearly all subscription plans offered online and offline work. If you paid to have a subscription box sent to your house every month, and chose to pay it month-by-month, you start saving the day you switch to the new plan. This decision is not retroactive.

Companies offer incentives to people who pre-pay for using the website. This is the fair thing to do with everyone! 😉

Switching from Non-Commercial to Commercial:

Here is a third scenario that is related: If you are currently a non-commercial subscriber and would like to start using our images to sell materials online, how do you go about “upgrading” the membership?

The way we offer our memberships, we don’t see each membership as an upgrade from another. They are just four different types of memberships that work for different people depending on their needs. Just because one is cheaper or more expensive than the other, does not mean it is an upgrade. If you wish to start selling your materials online, you must switch memberships by canceling your non-commercial subscription and re-subscribing to the system by selecting the new membership level you want, in this case, the commercial membership.

In sum: We love all our subscribers, and we try to accommodate everyone’s request. However we are not able to apply what you already spent on your month-by-month plan towards your yearly plan, because after all you have taken advantages of the amazing features of our portal for each month you stayed subscribed. Our team hopes that this post helped prospective customers also make their decision about which plan works best for them.


The Smarty Symbols Team