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What Are the Perils of Choosing the Wrong Pricing Software?

January 18th, 2024 | 12 min. read

By Mark Dwyer

In the fast-paced world of business, effective pricing is like a well-played chess game. It can be the difference between a costly mistake and a checkmate. In today’s digital landscape, businesses of all sizes, from nimble startups to corporate giants, rely on pricing software to navigate this complex terrain. After all, if a 1% lift in pricing can mean as much as an 11% profit bump, then it stands to reason that making the right pricing software choice for your business is an imperative one.

Choosing the wrong pricing software can have profound consequences for your business, regardless of its size. While pricing software providers like Pricefx and others offer cutting-edge AI-informed pricing tools and analytics, it’s important to choose software that is suitable for your unique business needs.

Here is the Catch-22: choosing the right pricing software can lead to strategic triumph, while the wrong one can send you down a treacherous path. In this article, we will look briefly at the different pricing software variants, explore the perils of selecting the wrong pricing software and why finding the right fit for your business is crucial, and importantly, how to make the right choice.

Busting the Enterprise-Only Pricing Software Myth

There is a prevailing misconception that pricing software is exclusively tailored for large enterprises. It’s imperative to recognize that not all pricing software is cut from the same cloth; a spectrum of options exists, each finely tuned to the specific needs of businesses varying in size and complexity. While it is true that enterprise corporations require comprehensive pricing solutions to navigate intricate product catalogs and global operations, smaller and medium-sized enterprises may discover these offerings to be excessively complex and financially burdensome.

For small businesses and startups with more streamlined pricing needs, cost-effective, purpose-built pricing software solutions are available. Some boutique pricing software with less ‘big ticket’ functionality is meticulously crafted to cater to distinct industries, such as online retail, which have specific requirements. These software options are designed to simplify essential pricing processes without inundating users with a multitude of advanced features.

While they might not flaunt the same expansive capabilities as enterprise-focused pricing software like Pricefx, they provide a pragmatic and budget-friendly avenue for businesses to enhance their pricing strategies.

Instead of adopting a one-size-fits-all approach, it’s essential to acknowledge that the pricing software market offers a diverse array of solutions. This diversity enables small businesses to harness the power of data-driven pricing without the complexity and costs associated with enterprise-grade software.


What Can Happen if You Choose the Wrong Pricing Software?


Selecting the ideal pricing software suite for your organization is a substantial undertaking. Pricing is difficult. Pricing is tough. Pricing, above all, is complex and it requires dedication and planning. A company that approaches the decision without due diligence risks facing adverse consequences. To navigate this process effectively, leaders must possess a deep understanding of their company’s requirements, the pricing software provider’s capabilities, and the organization’s financial constraints. This ensures that the chosen provider aligns with the company’s objectives and aspirations.

Despite the availability of general best practices to assist in decision-making, the complexity of the choice means that even with these guidelines, errors can occur. The subsequent section outlines 9 potential pitfalls that can be sidestepped by making a well-informed pricing software selection:


1. Inefficiency in Pricing Operations

Picture this: your small e-commerce business adopts heavyweight enterprise-level pricing software designed for mammoth corporations. It’s like bringing a bulldozer to a game of Jenga. The complexity overwhelms your team, and your once-efficient operations become sluggish. The perils of mismatched software begin with inefficient, time-consuming pricing processes that hinder your growth instead of boosting it.

Small businesses often operate on lean budgets, and every minute counts. On the flip side, enterprise-level software is equipped with advanced features tailored to meet the demands of global conglomerates. Attempting to shoehorn an expansive solution into a smaller-scale operation can result in inefficiencies. What were once straightforward pricing tasks that could be completed in a matter of minutes may suddenly transform into hours-long endeavors, causing frustration among your team and hindering overall productivity.

Of course, it can also work the other way. Using a small boutique online retail pricing software tool for a large global distribution business for example, with hundreds of thousands of customers and millions of products will not cut it either and the pricing insights will be limited as a result.


2. Poor Customer Experience

Pricing software that is not suitable for your business can also result in poor customer experience. If your pricing software is not flexible enough to accommodate different markets, currencies, and customer segments, you risk losing customers due to pricing inconsistencies.

Imagine an enterprise business opting for pricing software that lacks the analytical depth required to nurture complex customer relationships. The strain on customer interactions can be severe. Missed pricing opportunities, inaccurate customer quotes, or inability to offer tailored pricing can erode your relationships and trust with clients.

Small businesses might face a separate set of customer relationship perils. They often pride themselves on personal connections with clients. Enterprise-level software may not offer the level of personalization and flexibility required to maintain these relationships. It’s like replacing a friendly neighborhood bakery with a giant corporate chain, where customer interactions become impersonal.

Additionally, if your pricing software is not integrated with your sales and customer experience processes, you may miss out on opportunities to create a seamless and personalized buying experience for your customers.

3. Missed Growth Opportunities

When you are navigating the sea of large enterprise business, you need precision and flexibility. However, opting for basic pricing software as an enterprise business can result in missed growth opportunities. Scalability is vital, and the wrong choice might restrict your ability to expand your product offerings or venture into new markets.

On the flip side, small businesses opting for enterprise-level software can face a different dilemma. The software may be too intricate for their straightforward needs, leaving them overwhelmed. It’s like trying to use a complex, high-powered telescope to spot something right in front of you. The perils include missed growth opportunities due to excessive complexity and an inability to adapt quickly to changes in the market.

4. Implementation & Training Needs – Associated Costs

Investing in enterprise-level pricing software when you are a small business is like buying a mansion for a family of three. The cost of implementation can be astronomical, from hefty upfront fees to extensive staff training. Your resources are stretched thin, and your return on investment takes a hit. It’s one of the most painful perils, with long-term financial repercussions.

Consider the need for training: large enterprises often have dedicated IT teams, whereas small businesses usually don’t have such luxuries. Small businesses find themselves in a conundrum, with costs spiraling to cover the training expenses of their employees or the hiring of outside experts. The price tag is often significantly higher than anticipated.

For those interested in discovering more about pricing software training, check out my recent article by clicking on the image below:


5. Cost and Value Control Challenges

For small businesses, tight financial control is a way of life. Opting for enterprise-level pricing software often results in challenges with cost control. Features that are excessive for your needs can inflate costs, potentially leading to financial instability.

Enterprise-level software is often accompanied by a plethora of features meant to cater to diverse needs. The software’s extensive capabilities can make it challenging to manage expenses, and you might find yourself paying for features you never use.

Conversely, enterprise-level businesses operate on a different scale and often require the enhanced pricing insights provided by more robust and expensive pricing software variants. While these solutions may come with a higher price tag, their value to a global corporation can be immeasurable. The increased pricing functionality, from fine-tuned customer segmentation to reduced pricing update times and optimizing prices at every stage of the pricing waterfall, could potentially translate into adding millions of dollars annually to the bottom line.

Global enterprises deal with intricate product catalogs and multifaceted customer segments spread across different geographic regions. Here, the granular insights and the ability to adapt pricing strategies at a moment’s notice become invaluable. Pricing software that can handle the complexities of an extensive product portfolio while staying responsive to market fluctuations ensures that enterprises stay competitive and maximize profitability. The additional cost is often outweighed by the revenue potential these sophisticated pricing software variants unlock. Small businesses may not need these capabilities, but for global enterprises, they’re often the key to success.

6. Unhappy Workforce

Opting for the wrong pricing software can result in dissatisfied employees. Whether it’s due to excessive complexity or insufficient functionality for your business size, an ill-fitting system can lead to frustration among your team, significantly denting their morale and overall productivity. Unhappy employees can cast a shadow over your entire operation, and their dissatisfaction can have a cascading effect on your business’s financial performance. Integrating pricing software effectively with mainstream CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems, regardless of the company’s size, is vital to streamline workflows and eliminate the kind of duplication that can cause employee frustration.

Regardless of the size of the business, the degree of user adoption among end users and pricing professionals plays a pivotal role in determining both the extent of potential benefits that the newly implemented pricing software can offer and the speed at which these advantages become apparent.

In a small business, where every team member wears multiple hats, it’s essential that tools are user-friendly and intuitive. Opting for software with a steep learning curve can lead to employee dissatisfaction, as they struggle to adapt to the new system. The perils include decreased productivity and higher staff turnover.

In the realm of enterprise-level businesses, user adoption takes on an even greater significance. With a more extensive team and intricate pricing processes, the choice of pricing software can impact user engagement.


The sophisticated nature of enterprise-focused software can initially overwhelm users. However, it often comes with advanced training and support to facilitate a smoother transition. For large corporations, the initial learning curve might be a worthwhile investment, as the in-depth functionality of such software can lead to significant long-term productivity gains. When correctly adopted, enterprise pricing software can empower a diverse workforce and enhance decision-making through advanced pricing analytics and insights, contributing to a company’s competitive advantage on a global scale.

7. Competitive Disadvantage

In the cutthroat world of business, staying competitive is essential. But choosing the wrong pricing software may leave you at a disadvantage. Your pricing strategies may become outdated, and your competitors surge ahead, gaining a critical edge.

Small businesses aiming for steady growth may be challenged to stay competitive if their pricing software cannot adapt to industry changes. While their competitors implement nimble pricing strategies, small businesses might find themselves at a disadvantage.

This competitive disadvantage transcends business size and is equally relevant to enterprise-level companies. In the global marketplace, enterprise businesses are often tasked with navigating multifaceted industry landscapes. Without pricing software that can promptly adapt to shifting market dynamics, these corporations might encounter difficulties in staying competitive against more agile rivals.

For large enterprises, the ramifications of a competitive disadvantage can be magnified, potentially translating into substantial revenue losses and market share erosion. As such, the ability to implement flexible pricing strategies and respond swiftly to market changes remains a pivotal factor for success, regardless of a company’s size.

8. Lost Business Opportunities

Missed business opportunities are a real peril of choosing the wrong pricing software. Your system’s inability to adapt to new market trends, incorporate customer insights, or seize emerging sales channels or a lack of flexibility to handle ‘exceptions’ in a consistent and timely manner, may result in lost profits and market share.

Small businesses often rely on agility to stay ahead of the curve. When their pricing software lacks adaptability and agility, they can miss out on new business opportunities.

For enterprise-level businesses, the stakes concerning lost business opportunities are arguably even higher. In the expansive world of global enterprise, the potential for profit generation is vast.


Opportunities for expansion, diversification, and capturing new market segments are constant, but only for those who can seize them in a timely and strategic manner. In this environment, choosing the right pricing software becomes a critical tool to harness these opportunities.

If it is unable to adapt to rapidly evolving market trends, swiftly incorporate valuable customer insights, or capitalize on emerging sales channels, an enterprise business can find itself not only losing profits but also surrendering valuable market share to competitors who are better equipped to respond to shifting landscapes.


9.  Innovation Stagnation

Innovation is the lifeblood of many successful businesses. Choosing ill-suited pricing software can hinder your ability to experiment with dynamic pricing models, limiting your innovation capacity and slowing your progress.

Innovation is vital for small businesses, aiding competitiveness. Yet, enterprise-level software can stifle this creative spark (due to workforce or infrastructure limitations), hindering experimentation with new pricing models.

Enterprise-level businesses require dynamic pricing models that can adapt swiftly to ever-changing market conditions and customer behaviors.


However, with ill-fitted pricing software, their innovation capacity might be restricted.


The intricacies of such software might limit their ability to experiment with new pricing strategies and creative approaches, ultimately slowing their progress and stifling the innovative spirit that drives their continued success.

For enterprise organizations, the right pricing software is not just about sustaining current operations, but also about fostering innovation and staying ahead in an ever-evolving business landscape.


The Right (and Wrong) Ways to Choose Pricing Software

Now you know that choosing the wrong pricing software is a path strewn with perils that can impede your business’s growth, damage your reputation, and compromise your competitive edge. The solution? Find the software that suits your business size, addresses your unique needs, and provides room for growth and adaptability. Your journey to pricing success starts with the right choice.

But there are right ways and wrong ways to go about it. Learn about the mistakes to avoid in choosing pricing software this great article below:


And having done so, learn more here about better ways to decide in How to Choose the Right Pricing Software for You.

Happy Pricing!

Mark Dwyer

Solution Advisor in Customer Solutions , Pricefx APAC

Mark Dwyer is a Pricing Solutions Advisor and Consultant. He has accumulated more than 25 years of experience in both hands-on and strategic pricing improvements in medical technology, financial services, construction materials and distribution industries. With an MBA majoring in finance, Mark has also co-authored books on Pricing as well as Team Management. When not delivering upside for his customers, Mark enjoys going to the gym, golf (among other sports) and traveling, and is dedicated to ensuring the ongoing happiness of his family.