There's that joke in PaaS about dying as a startup or living long enough to become a content moderator? I have a similar joke about billing systems. You either die a startup with a Stripe API integration or you live long enough to need a monstrosity of spaghetti business logic just to stamp the right number on a customer's invoice for that month, offering next to no product value other than maybe collaborating with marketing.
It’s worse in b2b settings, because sales and marketing will change prices and tiers and plans and rates on a whim for a deal, you’ll have basically a 1:1 relationship of features to customers in the early days.
Variable pricing, rates, plans, tiers, whatever you’re calling it, bubbles into extremely complicated business logic very quickly. Couple that with an already complicated business logic, and then it becomes apparent why it can be a startup killer if it’s not managed correctly.
Honestly, most startups I’ve been at that have wanted to write a billing system should’ve just stuck with manually billing customers once a month because the work hours would have been an order of magnitude less.
Even worse, in a lot of cases it would’ve made more sense to just script that manual billing process rather than Build out the full billing gui and system that business typically requests.
Hindsight is 20/20, and if approached now about this I would take all of this wisdom in to the conversation with me, but then that’s the value in experience.
So if you need someone to build a billing system, then hit me up. I’ll build you the billing system to make you money. Not to look pretty. 💰