Subscriptions and Donations

Discussion in 'Site Feedback' started by Rys, Jul 17, 2015.

  1. AzBat

    AzBat Agent of the Bat
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    I'd buy a t-shirt in a heartbeat.

    How about "I spend all my spare time at the Beyond3D forums and all I got was this lousy t-shirt."

    Tommy McClain
     
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  2. BRiT

    BRiT (╯°□°)╯
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    "#AMD: It's what's #Beyond ImgTec".
     
  3. Alexko

    Veteran Subscriber

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    Yeah, for a rainy day, or to buy some hardware for reviews. A t-shirt competition would be awesome, especially since I believe we've got a few professional graphic designers, here.
     
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  4. Rys

    Rys AMD RTG
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    I've refreshed the subscription offerings ahead of a push to try and increase them a bit and I want to discuss the changes, summarise current activity, and talk about the desire for the new push.

    Summaries first:

    As of the time of writing, 38 people (including me, and who make up just 0.4% of the monthly active users) have subscribed over the last 22 months or so. Subscriptions when initially setup were recurring monthly, or one-off yearly (a mistake at setup time, they should have been recurring too). They currently raise $55 a month, and the one-off subscriptions brought in almost $600 that first year. Not bad, given the low running costs we have (only $2000 a year or so).

    As of the time of writing, 29 folks have donated a total of $976 in the last 22 months, which is also not bad given the low running costs. So donations and subscription revenue have helped nicely, hooray! Not bad from just a handful of the forum users contributing anything financially.

    That said, the yearly subscriptions didn't recur and hardly anyone kept it going manually.

    Changes next:

    I've made the monthly recurring subscriptions quite a bit cheaper, starting at $2/month, and I've made the equivalent yearly tier 10 months for the price of 12 in all cases. That means the barrier to entry is much lower ($2/month, down from $5) and all of the monthly tiers are cheaper, but the yearly subscriptions are now more expensive. That's to encourage monthly recurring since it's more affordable in general and makes it easier for me to budget against.

    Desire:

    The elephant in this particular room is the ads. While revising the privacy policy yesterday, I realised that the ads we run are really a net loss across the board and I'd like to eliminate them entirely if possible and have subscriptions cover all of the running costs. The ads are frequently shit and worthless to you, track you and decrease your privacy, make the page load slower, and are often blocked anyway. If we have a bit more money available I can pay to have them turned off in Tapatalk as well, which I'd like to do.

    To cover the site's running costs we need just 80 or so users at $2/month and almost all of the up-front costs are covered. So if just 1% of users subscribe at the lowest tier we break even and the site experience gets better for everyone. That's what I'd like to aim for to start with.

    So I'll be sending something to the site's top 250 or so active users in the next little while, to encourage them to take out a subscription, to see how that works, and we'll take it from there. Being ad-free would be a nice milestone to get to finally.
     
    #44 Rys, Jun 18, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2017
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  5. Rys

    Rys AMD RTG
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    Oh, and there's now also an option to subscribe and donate using Bitcoin, Ethereum or Litecoin. Manually processed, but possible nonetheless.
     
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  6. 3dcgi

    Veteran Subscriber

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    I'm surprised there are that few contributors. You have a donate button at the top menu, but maybe you should add a note to the top of the main forums to make the donation option more visible. Even better would only displaying the notice periodically so people don't tune it out like an ad banner.
     
  7. Ethatron

    Regular Subscriber

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    Li'l bug :D

    Red Subscriber ($2 per month) -> 4.00 USD per month
     
  8. tinokun

    Newcomer Subscriber

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    Hello, I want 2 years of green subscription and to pay with btc, please.
    (Didn't find the option so I assume manual processing means I have to make a post like this, right?)
     
  9. Malo

    Malo Yak Mechanicum
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    Have you looked at moving to someone like Digital Ocean for the servers? I'm moving my site there currently and the perf/$ is insanely good compared to old-style dedicated hardware, with very easy scaling if things get busier. With Litespeed (I know you're an nginx guy), I can get so much performance out of a relatively very cheap droplet.
     
  10. Rys

    Rys AMD RTG
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    Fixed!
     
  11. Rys

    Rys AMD RTG
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    I updated the help pages with BTC instructions but didn't relink it here, sorry about that.

    0.0315BTC to 1H19LB4EejWmbsei6VBaso4YRRYC4Zys3g please! That's at $2515/BTC. Soon as it arrives I'll update your account.
     
  12. Rys

    Rys AMD RTG
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    We used to be cross-hosted over a mix of Linode, DO and Vultr servers but I consolidated to a pair of servers at Hetzner instead for cost reasons, and because I have concerns over DO from a privacy perspective.

    Performance was fine though, and I appreciate their offering from a developer and ease of use perspective.
     
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  13. tinokun

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    Thanks again Rys!
     
  14. Rys

    Rys AMD RTG
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    Thank you, all done!
     
  15. Malo

    Malo Yak Mechanicum
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    I think this is my issue. I have a $20/year recurring but it's not recurring in my Paypal and I can't remove it. Should you remove it from my account manually before I sign up again for one of the new monthly subscriptions?
     
  16. Rys

    Rys AMD RTG
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    You can go ahead and sign up again to a new recurring sub without it interfering with the old one. You'll keep subscriber status and it'll start a new payment setup with Paypal. Thanks for subscribing!
     
  17. tabs

    Veteran

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    I hadn't noticed that I needed to manually redo it.

    By the way how has that Beyond3D Amazon referral link been working out? I've spent a couple K via it. I presume it's still valid?

    I only ask because there's no feedback from Amazon to me letting me know it's worked.
     
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  18. AzBat

    AzBat Agent of the Bat
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    Is this still in the plan? My usage has pretty much went completely to Tapatalk since my work started blocking the site. The ads were not a problem when I was using the Tapatalk Classic app on Windows Phone but I had to move to Android & the ads on that app are so damn annoying I've considered paying for their Pro version(or whatever they require) to get rid of them. I'd rather that money go to you but wasn't sure if they could be turned off for paid subscriptions. Thanks for all the work & considering removing the ads. I was once in your shoes before & have somewhat of an idea of what you're dealing with. It's greatly appreciated.

    Tommy McClain
     
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  19. Rys

    Rys AMD RTG
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    Yes, the plan is to give them their blood money to disable them globally for all Tapatalk users. That'll happen soon.
     
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  20. Malo

    Malo Yak Mechanicum
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    The mobile layout of the theme is very nice, I'd consider getting used to that instead. The less money going to that vile company the better.
     
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