Recurring Revenue Series: Jump the Queue with a Front-of-the-Line Subscription Model


Let's face it, no one likes being stuck in a queue. We all want faster or better service. Yet, time and time again we find ourselves waiting, whether it's on the phone, standing in a line, or sitting in a waiting room. Waiting is a problem, as it costs us time, money and patience. So, imagine if you could solve this problem for your clients, and earn recurring revenue in doing so? Let me introduce The Front-of-the-line Subscription Model.

This model involves selling priority access to a group of your customers. It's known as the queue jumping subscription model. In this article we'll show you how this model works, examples of it in-action, and insider tips that will help you decide if it's right for your business.

A Subscription Model that’s not just for the software industry

Recurring Revenue Series: Jump the Queue with a Front-of-the-Line Subscription Model

This subscription model was made popular by the software industry, however it can be used by any organisation with customers that want priority service. Below are some great examples illustrating how this subscription model can work across a range of different industries.


Since it has been a model widely used in SaaS companies, is a good example to start with. They provide all customers with basic level support via email with a two business day turn-around. However, customers who require a faster response time can subscribe to the “premier” success plan for a higher monthly fee. In this plan issues that are deemed as “mission critical” get a one-hour turn-around time. This is appealing to their business clients for whom a few minutes of down-time equates to lost revenue.

Online Retail

Secondly, we can look to Amazon Prime as another great example, this time in the online retail space. In Australia you pay $6.99 per year for Amazon Prime to get free 2 day delivery on domestic purchases, free standard delivery on items under $49, access to Prime Video, Prime Reading, Prime Music and Twitch Prime plus early access to discounts and deals. Amazon prime is one of the most successful subscription services in history, and really all it does is offer people a better service level and a savings on things that they already likely had the intent to buy.

Counselling Services

A third example is ThriveWorks, a counselling and life coaching business. They offer an annual subscription for around $99, allowing subscribers to jump to the front of the queue to see a counsellor about a mental health issue or major life decision. 


Another example, though it's not really a 'subscription service' but more of a priority access service, is offered by Movie World on the Gold Coast. Guests of the theme park have the option to buy a Fast Track wrist band. This gives them access to a dedicated line at selected popular rides, and they offer four one-and-a-half hour windows throughout the day for people to use their wristbands. Additionally, there is an upsell which is the Unlimited Fast Track wristband which gives guests unlimited access to the ‘fast’ queue between 10.30am – 4.30pm.

What’s your view on this type of service? Should you allow people, who can or want, to pay for the opportunity of faster or better service? Would it work in your business?

Here are some scenarios that lend themselves well to this subscription model.

This Subscription Model Is Ideal When You Have…

  1. A relatively complex product or service
  2. Customers who aren't overly price sensitive
  3. Customers for whom waiting in line can have serious or costly consequences

Insider Tips

  • The Front-of-the-Line Subscription Model can be used in conjunction with other subscription models to add an additional annuity stream of recurring revenue.
  • To use this model, it’s important that you already have a good reputation for the baseline service.
  • Ensure you can separate your standard customers and special tier service customers properly.
  • This model is particularly effective to assist small to medium sized businesses that lack in-house resources to get their questions answered.

Is there a way you could provide ‘premium’ or priority access to clients? It’s certainly food for thought, depending on the type of business you have.

As mentioned, the Front-of-the-line Subscription model is the sixth article in our series. In the last few weeks we’ve been making our way through the 9 different models of Recurring Revenue.

If you’d like to catch up on the previous articles in the series you can access them here - The Network Model, The Subscription Box Model, The Content Subscription Model and The Private Club Model. It’s more than likely that you’ll find a subscription model that suits your business.

Why We Love Subscription Models

Recurring streams of revenue, when created well, will feed a business for life. Moreover, we also know that businesses with recurring revenue have a double advantage. They enjoy a steady, predictable stream of income, and this in turn impacts the value of the business.

Why? Because acquirers will pay a premium for the predictability of the income.

Not to mention that reliable, recurring streams revenue can also relieve the day-to-day pressure for making sales, giving you more time and energy for better business strategy and management.

To achieve success, you need to be able to think outside the box. We’ve seen recurring revenue models work in the most unexpected industries, often when people have broken away from the ‘norms’ of their industry. As we continue the series, we’ll continue to showcase examples of these companies.

If you can't wait to read about the rest of the models, we've listed them here:

Recurring Revenue Series: A Guide to Recurring Income – The Network Model

Recurring Revenue Series: Surprise and Delight People with The Subscription Box Model

Recurring Revenue Series: Create Content That Pays with the Content Subscription Model

Recurring Revenue Series: How to Create a Private Club Model

Recurring Revenue Series: Jump the Queue with a Front-of-the-Line Subscription Model

Recurring Revenue Series: The Membership Website Model: Is it Right for You?

Recurring Revenue Series: Simplify Peoples Lives with this Powerful Subscription Model

Recurring Revenue Series: A Subscription Model for Peace of Mind

Recurring Revenue Series: How to Create a Subscription Model That Solves Everyday Problems

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