How to reward a customer or a prospect who reports a bug?

I’m trying to come up with valid options to do if a customer or prospect reports a bug in my software.
Currently I have two items only are popping in my mind:

  1. Discounts for products/services.
  2. Free month of products/services.

What would you suggest to add to this list?

Any ideas are highly welcomed.

I wouldn’t (and I don’t). Reward them by fixing actual bugs and implementing actually useful features as soon as you can.


Why don’t you do it? Do you see some issues here?

Logistics. I want to interact with the customer as little as possible. Preferable in a fully automated fashion. Only then I can scale to hundreds and eventually thousands of customers.

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There are always bugs in the software, and encouraging the users to look for them instead of hopefully not noticing them and ignoring them sounds counter-productive.

Also, bugs differ in impact, and you’d have to come up with an impact-based price table, and deal with users who disagree how the bugs found by them are priced.

That’s a whole new business to run on a side!

For the prize money you pay to customers and lost on wasted time, it makes much more sense to hire a skilled QA team somewhere offshore. They will find you the bugs in heaps and at a fraction of the cost, IMHO.


Yeah, it’s difficult to argue with what maximus and rfctr said, but let’s assume the issue is really severe so it prevents the user from using a service which he/she paid for? Say the user paid for 1 month and the service hasn’t been fully working for 1-2 weeks due some long-to-fix bug related to the specific client. I agree that the developer already spent the money for the bugfix, but it seems reasonable to provide some bounty for the client, isn’t it?

That is not a reward situation, but a reimbursement one. A user has paid, the user cannot use due to developer fault, the user gets the money back (full or pro-rated).

We may differ in the word semantics, but IMHO a reward is granted for a dedicated activity (bug hunting in this case), and not for accidental stumbled upon.


I only reward them when they ask for something - provide with free updates or services. In rare cases, send money.
But the main reward is that the bug report is taken into account and the bug is fixed.

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You should have SLA that states what happens if the service is inaccessible. It should also list exceptions when you are not responsible.

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