Frustration, Confusion As Intuit Raises Fee
Credit unions are responding with frustration and confusion over Intuit Inc.'s pricing implementation for Web
"I'm very disappointed with the new policy and feel the pricing structure is not equitable, unfairly taxing smaller financial
Web Connect was introduced in 2001, and financial institutions used the service for free for about a year.
RiverLand CU recently discontinued the service after getting a $3,000 bill for one year of Web Connect from its data processing
Joe Pearson, president of CU homebanking and Web Connect provider Data Management Services Inc. in Boise, Idaho, said his
"Most of the credit unions we talk to are pretty mad about the whole thing," Pearson said. "They feel that it has been bait and
DMS bargained down the annual fee for Web Connect from $3,000 per year to a figure that is signficantly less, savings it says it
An Intuit spokesperson said the policy is not new, and that it has taken pains to inform clients about its strategy and to negotiate a
Company Says CUs Were Informed
"Quicken has been pricing Web Connect for some financial institutions since August 2001," Steve Holoien, Quicken and
Intuit, which owns Quicken and QuickBooks, charges for Web Connect according to four tiers determined by asset size, Holoien
The first pricing tier applies only to the largest banks, whereas the second tier includes the nation's top 50 CUs.
That leaves the third and fourth tiers, where 99.9 % of CUs are priced.
Beaubouef believes that an equitable relationship can only stem from a pricing structure based on number of end-users, instead of
"As it currently stands, basically all but a handful of credit unions will pay the same price, whether they have 10 users or 10,000
"In fact, the $3,000 base price will most likely be too steep for smaller credit unions trying to implement Internet banking,
Most credit unions fall within the fourth pricing tier, maintaining Web Connect under indirect relationships through their data
It's that relationship that may contribute to confusion and frustration over the pricing structure. Some CUs, including Concho
Word Spreads Slowly
"The lowest end of the market is now hearing about it, so it's new to them, but it's not new to us," Holoien continued. "We've been
The lines of communication just don't work, Beaubouef said. "Unfortunately, we were notified of the change in pricing policy via
Pricing is also dependent upon which version of Quicken or QuickBooks the FI is supporting, Holoien said.
"Many of our pricing relationships are tied to the Quicken version and the fact that we're late into the Quicken fiscal year. So
DMS's Pearson said Intuit's pricing approach leaves much to be desired.
"The pricing is all over the place," he said. "Quicken has changed the billing deadline, but they haven't yet turned us into the
"They're shooting themselves in the foot," Pearson added.
Holoien disagrees. "Clients that are staying with us are making a conscious decision that a Quicken customer is worth something