Pricing under quality of service uncertainty: Market segmentation via statistical QoS guarantees
This article examines how performance-contingent pricing schemes with long-term statistical performance guarantees can be applied to many IT services. We study two forms of performance-contingent pricing, with rebate proportional to failure rate and fixed rebate for below-threshold performance. We show that threshold-performance contingency pricing can increase both profits and fairness (customers who receive higher benefits pay higher effective price) relative to standard pricing. But an even better solution is to offer a menu of performance guarantees: this can increase the firm's profit and segment the market. Only service providers whose performance level is sufficiently better than the industry standard can benefit from this pricing mechanism.
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