CareCredit - Women's Health April 2024

GNC Adds Telehealth Subscription Tiers as Merchants Rethink Pricing Structures


With subscription merchants increasingly tinkering with their pricing structures to attract consumers of all kinds, GNC Health is expanding its virtual healthcare arm to include three different membership tiers.

The company on Monday (Oct. 23) announced the launch of Basic, Plus and Premier plans, citing PYMNTS Intelligence data that revealed 74% of millennials and 56% of Generation Z patients cancel appointments because of the high cost of treatment.

The tiers include a $34.99/year option, offering free telehealth urgent care, “Virtual Lifestyle Care,” and $0 prescription medications; as well as a $9.99/month option that adds free virtual primary care, among other benefits, and a $39.99/month tier that includes mental healthcare and physical therapy, in addition to family plan options for the latter two tiers.

“We envision GNC Health as a way to broaden our consumer reach and bring people meaningful health and wellness solutions because everyone deserves the opportunity to Live Well,” Allison Bentley, the company’s senior director of strategic programs, said in a statement. “With GNC Health, we’re supporting our consumers’ health and wellness journeys while keeping our core brand relevant and top-of-mind.”

In fact, digital engagement with healthcare and other wellness-related services is on the rise. The PYMNTS Intelligence study “How the World Does Digital: Daily Digital Engagement Hits New Heights,” based on responses from more than 17,000 consumers across 11 countries, showed digital participation in wellness-related activities was up 12% year over year, with health tracking increasing 24%.

To compete in the subscription marketplace, many merchants are finding that they need to offer tiered models to drive adoption and retention across different income groups and financial lifestyles.

On Friday (Oct. 20), Elon Musk posted to X, formerly known as Twitter, that the site will soon launch two new subscription tiers, one that is lower cost and offers premium features and another higher-cost option that, in addition to these features, provides an advertisement-free experience.

Over the summer, many dating apps began adding higher-priced subscription tiers, with additional features such as unlimited swipes that can increase users’ chances of finding a match, and last month it was reported that Tinder is even adding a $499/month option.

In June, Best Buy launched a three-tiered membership structure that includes a free option, a mid-level tier with some perks and deals, and a premium option offering a wider range of services and deals.

Certainly, different kinds of consumers are seeking different things from their subscriptions, as PYMNTS Intelligence’s report “The Impact of Subscription Models on Consumer Choice,” created in collaboration with, which draws from a census-balanced survey of more than 2,100 U.S. consumers, reveals.

The study highlights seven different types of subscriber personas, which vary based on the types of subscriptions they prefer as well as the lifetime value (LTV) they yield. Depending on the type, these LTVs range from $937 to more than three times that — $3,021. Eighteen percent of subscribers, the study reveals, cite cost as the most important reason for subscribing, while 30% cite convenience.

Additionally, the findings indicate that 27% of subscribers hold VIP memberships — upgraded memberships designed to reward loyalty, granting early or special access to products or other loyalty perks unavailable to other members.