"And that could very likely lead to them being upgraded to a paid tier" at other firms, he said.
Jackson Hewitt Online maintains that a $25 price guarantee for online tax preparations in future years is a better option for many consumers.
"In our experience, people understand tax prep software has value and are willing to pay reasonable prices for it," Cohen said.
And there's the convenience factor of working with the same company or the same online software brand.
Free is still out there
Jackson Hewitt's pricing goes against some marketing campaigns that push free services. Big names — including TurboTax, H&R Block, TaxAct — continue to offer some online free services.
TurboTax announced a new "$0 Any Way" offer, which the company said will apply to about 60 million filers with a simple tax return. There are no income restrictions.
Last tax season, the company said, more than 17 million people filed their taxes with TurboTax and paid nothing, which was more people than in any year in company history.
This year, TurboTax said it is expanding its free offer, allowing filers with simple returns to file completely free of charge using its different services.
TurboTax said it gives taxpayers with a simple return the choice to do their taxes themselves, get help from a tax expert along the way, or hand it off to a dedicated tax expert to do their taxes for them, for $0.