Our mission at Trim is simple: build tools that help consumers avoid financial death by a thousand cuts, perpetrated by corporations that have made a science out of nickel-and-diming their customers with obscure fees and recurring charges.
To date, we’ve helped almost 50,000 users cancel subscriptions that will save them a collective $6 million per year. We’ve used this data to expose some of the worst culprits: credit agencies, gyms and financial institutions all make the bad list of subscription products that are insta-canceled by anywhere from 10-35% of subscribed users on the Trim platform.
But we’ve also been impressed by the “good” subscriptions — the recurring charges that our users review on their Trim dashboard with a smile (we assume) and rarely cancel.
As such, we’re proud to announce our inaugural ranking of the Ten Most Loved Subscriptions in America. These are the ten subscription products that Trim users were least likely to cancel in 2016.
In order to be included on the list, the service in question had to have at least 250 subscribers on Trim. We don’t count recurring payments to utilities (including phone companies) or financial institutions (i.e. credit cards, student loan servicers or mortgage banks) as subscriptions. Note that this ranking is biased towards the preferences of our user base, which skews young (25-34).
We want to do our part to encourage companies selling subscriptions to be transparent, easy to cancel, and provide clear value to their customers. Though it’s not a perfect heuristic, we think a great measure of these qualities is whether or not a customer asks Trim to cancel a subscription as soon as we remind them of it.
To manage your own subscriptions and more, sign up for Trim. For now, without further ado:
The Ten Most Loved Subscriptions in America: 2016
Subscribers on Trim: 11,948
Netflix is the king of consumer-friendly subscriptions. More than half of active Trim users have a Netflix account, and with a miniscule single-digit cancellation rate, it’s clear that Netflix customers don’t plan to give up their access to Stranger Things any time soon.
It’s important to note that not all entertainment or content providers share this level of loyalty: contrast Netflix to Audible, for example, which suffered a cancellation rate more than twice as high among Trim users.
- Steam Games
Subscribers on Trim: 500
It comes as no surprise to see Steam on this list, considering the deep loyalty that many gamers have to the largest digital distribution platform for PC gaming. The launch of Valve Corporation’s first VR headset, the HTC Vive, has probably only increased the product’s enduring popularity with its users.
Subscribers on Trim: 6,844
Spotify is the reigning streaming audio provider on our list. Nearly one-third of active Trim users have a Spotify account, with competitors (YouTube Red, Pandora, Google Music) lagging in both cancellation rate and subscriber count, at least in our sample.
- ADT Security
Subscribers on Trim: 776
The venerable security monitoring and services company holds the number four spot on our list. Our guess is that safety is an “inelastic” good, meaning that folks who have a security system tend to hang onto it, regardless of the cost. Either way, we’re impressed with ADT’s ability to retain their customers — no other security provider came close.
Subscribers on Trim: 724
Given the increasing ubiquity of ridesharing services around the country, millennials (who form the bulk of our users) are less likely to own their own vehicles than any point in history. An intuitive side effect of not owning a car is that you’re much more likely to subscribe to a ride-sharing service like Zipcar, which handily takes the number five spot on our list.
- PlayStation Network
Subscribers on Trim: 680
The PlayStation Network cements its leading status with console gamers, taking the number six slot in our ranking. With blue chip games like Final Fantsy XV that feature multiplayer modes making their home on the platform, and the recent launch of the PlayStation VR headset, we expect a strong showing from PSN in future rankings, too.
- Xbox Live
Subscribers on Trim: 448
Continuing the trend of gaming services with a strong showing on this list, Xbox Live edges into the number seven spot on our ranking. With no shortage of awesome multiplayer content — Overwatch comes to mind — Xbox Live’s prospects for pleasing its subscribers and limiting churn are strong.
Subscribers on Trim: 275
Though there aren’t quite as many Evernote users on Trim, relative to the other subscriptions we track, these users are certainly loyal. With major “content events” like National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) approaching fast, Evernote is poised to build on a strong foundation and demonstrate even more value to its users.
Subscribers on Trim: 1,467
Filling the penultimate spot on our list is Squarespace, which powers websites and landing pages for all kinds of businesses. When you have a dead-simple product that fills a crucial need for a customer, it makes sense that subscribers will stick to the service in question.
- Dollar Shave Club
Last but not least, we’ve got Dollar Shave Club. In many ways the original “subscription” e-commerce business, DSC has maintained fierce loyalty from its customers even as they’ve undergone a recent $1B acquisition by Unilever. In the midst of these changes, we’re optimistic that they’ll maintain the offbeat, customer-oriented excellence that enabled their success.
A hearty congratulations to our winners! If you’ve got questions or comments about this ranking, feel free to post below, or hit us up on Twitter (@ask_trim). Again, if you want to track and cancel subscriptions or appeal silly fees, take a look at Trim here.