If you didn’t know, I use WordPress for my blog. Previously I used a super cheap but really quite awful hosting company. Then I move to WP Engine, who are brilliant but expensive. But now I think I have to move hosting companies because the already expensive prices are going up by three times. So I’m looking for advice. Desperately looking for advice. How could I monetise my site? How could I monetise my wargaming hobby? Or where to look for low cost, but good, WordPress hosting.
I’ve been with WP Engine since 2013. I really like them for hosting WordPress compared to lower priced offerings because of their brilliant service.
Unfortunately, they no longer like me. Apparently, for the account I’m on, I breach their limits for both storage and bandwidth. I guess that is the result of being moderately successful in attracting an audience.
Anyway, this week I got a call from one of their account managers. It was civilised conversation. He explained the problem and outlined some options for me:
- Delete content until I’m in the limits
- Pay three times as much
I’m not really keen on either option.
Delete content until I’m in the WP Engine limits
I’m not sure how I’d go about deleting content. I’ve got 1385 posts. That is a lot. Some of my page are, admittedly, transitory and of no lasting interest. But some content generates a lot of interest long after I wrote it. I even have a couple of mini-communities hanging out on particular pages that I created years ago.
And my more recent posts are photo heavy. That is probably what is the real culprit. I’m sure my text only pages have a minimal impact on my storage and bandwidth.
I also have the problem that my content grows. I post once a week but over time that is a lot. 1385 posts, as I mentioned … I’ve been posting since 2001. 20 years.
And I’m way over the limits.
Storage 37 GB from a 20 GB limit
Bandwidth 412 GB from a 200 GB limit
Using incorrect but indicative maths, I’d have to delete half my content. And make sure it was the new photo rich content. Otherwise I’d never get below those limits.
Now there is a chance the clever support folk at WP Engine will be able to help me to optimise my site and get these numbers down. But although very good they are not magicians.
Pay WP Engine three times as much
Actually it is two and a half times as much, but that doesn’t roll off the tongue. Three times as much sounds better.
WP Engine are great, but they start eye wateringly expensive. Already people cannot believe what I pay to run a hobby site. So paying even more is not an option.
I’d love to stay with WP Engine, but I don’t think that is possible unless I can earn money from my website. I thoughts about some options but nothing jumps out at me.
Ads: I’m anti-ads. Say no more.
Amazon: I tried Amazon referrals and in over 10 years I’ve made US$10 which I can’t even benefit from because it is in the US and I’m not. So either I’m doing something wrong (fair chance) or this isn’t the answer.
Any other bright ideas?
Form a wargaming company
I’ve thought about various wargaming company ideas.
Wargaming figures: I’ve toyed with buying a range of figures. But all the main stream theatres/periods I’m intersted in area well catered for. And my other interests are niche and I don’t expect to make anything from this. How many people would, for example, buy figures for the Rif Wars?
Wargaming rules: I give away my rules e.g. the recent Tilly’s Very Bad Day is available for Download (PDF) and the much earlier Twilight of the Sun King. Ironically somebody else is now making money from Twilight of the Sun King – I guess I dropped a ball there. So I’ve never made any money from my rules. Perhaps I could. It goes against the grain.
Crossfire supplements: I have a plan to write some official and commercial supplements for Crossfire. Arty Conliffe, the author, is supportive. Again, I was attracted to this, not because of the money but because it would be good for the Crossfire community.
What do you think?
Return to the wild west of WordPress hosting
I moved to WP Engine because I was not happy with my previous hosting company. They were cheap. But they found ways to sneak extra fees in. The user interface really really sucked. And their service was non-existant. More or less, “You’re on your own buddy.” That is exactly why I decided to pay roughly 15 times as much and go with WP Engine. At which point I discovered it was also really, really hard to extract myself from the clutches of the previous hosting company. Scarred for life.
But now I have to look again at cheaper options. Anybody got some advice? These are my hosting requirements:
Better interface than cpanel
Storage: 37 GB and growing
Bandwidth: 412 GB and growing
Visits per month: Average 27,000 but peaked recently at 35,000.
Appreciate your help on this.