|Is there any way we can get a large quota :)|
|What, 50MB isn't large enough? :)
Whaddya want for free?? :)
We've been (albeit slowly) preparing the system to support larger quotas with the intention of charging for additional disk space.
Although disk space is cheaper these days, it still costs money. We've got capacity for approx. 2000 users at the full 50mb quota, which is our current support target.
Let's say we made a default 200mb quota - four times as much space. To have room for 2000 users again, we'd need 390GB available for users, which means we'd either buy four 500gb drives under our current architecture (PATA RAID-1, mirrored servers... about $1100) or rearchitect our storage (more expensive).
Instead, if we keep the default quota at 50mb and let people pay a small monthly fee for a larger one (say, 200), we could eventually recoup the costs needed for the disk upgrade.
Let's say we have 1000 free users and 150 users with the big quota, each paying $5 a month. we'll be at about 90% capacity - time to upgrade. Take the $650 a month in fees, dock 15% for the merchant fees, $200/mo for our operations costs, and we're left with $250/mo for upgrades. It'll take us 4-5 months to pay for the disk upgrade, which is a while, but it's a whole lot better than the $0/mo we're taking in right now.
I think a small fee like that is quite fair - plus it gives us a lot more incentive to upgrade things at VectorStar when it's not coming out of my beer fund! :)
Tell me what ya think!
|First off I would like like to thank Laird for all his hard work at running this small web hosting site for nothing to its members. There are very few out there that do the same thing. Now about the cost/quota. Easily understood that upgrades cost $$$ and well your not really getting much from members as far as donations and null from advertising ads. Compared to the big businesses that host sites though, I don't really think your going to have many BIG users simply because even for 5$ a month people can get more other places. Examples http://www.top10hostinglist.com/ , these site offer a lot like site building, templates, easy uploading and so on, a lot which at this point you can not offer. As not many really read/reply on these forums, it can be hard to tell how many active members you have and who would be interested in your idea. Personally, the only reason I don't go to a pay per month business is that every month I may or may not be able to pay that amount. Your site offers 50mb free, add free which is great! Now I'm just looking for a little more room without having to pay monthly. Perhaps a couple set upgrades would be nice. Heres what im talking about.
right now you got.
50mb -5G Band = free
Possible added features.
Set Upgrades to the Account that are set for atleast a year. This also makes that their acct does not expire for a year.
Increase Web Space to 75mb - $5
Increase Web Space to 100mb -$10
Increase Bandwith by 5G (up to set limit?) - 10$
Package Deal 1 75mb & ?G Band - $12
Paclage Deal 2 100mb & ?G Band - &15
Standard Plan - 150mb - ?G Band - 3$ per month
Silver - 200mb - ?G Bamd - 4$ per month
and so on...
My idea is to just set a few upgrades that are not monthy but possibly yearly, the upgrades need not be big but the numbers are subject to change and just guessing some numbers without looking into what you got and could offer.
How many users do you have right now? If there is available space this could be tested out before you go out and buying more drives and then not being able to get the money back for them due to people not willing to go for the monthly plans. If 100 people just go for the lowest upgrade of upgrading to 75mb or whatever number your thinking of for $5 and it would last like a year, then that there is 500 more to use towards upgrades. It really comes down to how many would go for it. I would offer some space for money first with what is still available before going out on a limb. With your system based on references only, I don't believe users come in as fast and I don't know how many you have right now? time for spring clean out? =)
Well hope that gives you some ideas and really what I'm looking for.
|Yeah, I definitely like the package deal concept. So far I've been architecting the system to use a "credits" model... Basically a person would buy X number of credits (say, 3000 for $5), and each service would have a daily cost in credits. A service that costs $5/mo would use 100 credits a day.
The system is a little more complicated than a basic subscription, but it allows for a few key capabilities:
This idea certainly isn't original - I stole it from an accounting method commonly used on old Galacticomm BBS systems. :) It's a little odd to get used to, but once you're using it, it really is fantastic.
|I dig it, Laird. You know I'm always up for supporting Vector, even if it'll take me years to use up my credits ;)|