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View Full Version : Merchandising? Bookstore referrals? Ads? Paid subcriptions?



lpetrich
5 Nov 07, 11:34:17 PM
This messageboard is growing rapidly, and it will likely need increased bandwidth and server performance. But all these cost a lot of money. Aside from member donations, there are some additional sources of revenue that we can have:

Ads. Some sites offer the ability to disable ads for anyone with a paid subscription.

Bookstore referrals. IIDB already does that with Amazon, and IIDB's software even has an [amazon] tag for setting up Amazon referrals.

Merchandise. I myself have some experience in that; I helped to set up II's CafePress storefront (http://www.cafepress.com/secularweb), including creating scalable and high-resolution versions of all the artwork.

I am willing to do the legwork for such a site for our messageboard, provided that the logo designers here are willing to send me high-resolution or scalable versions of their artwork, or else work with me in creating such versions. By high-resolution I mean a maximum dimension of 2000 pixels, which will be suitable for T-shirts and the like; the CafePress printing software can easily scale it down for smaller items.

CafePress offers Basic Shop and Premium Shop online storefronts (http://www.cafepress.com/cp/info/sell/shops.aspx); the Basic Shop is free, but an have only one design per item type, while the Premium Shop costs about $7/mo or $60/yr, but can have several designs for each item type.

CafePress's merchandise seems to be reasonably durable, and CafePress offers a wide range of items: T-shirts, hoodies, caps, undies, stickers, fridge magnets, pin-on buttons, clocks, posters, calendars, ...

If you wish to experiment with CafePress, you can go there (http://www.cafepress.com) and create items of your own, without having to open an online storefront.

Special Features for Paid Subscribers. Some sites have such features; here are those that I'm the most familiar with. Note that the price tiers' features are cumulative; each one includes all the previous one's features, except where explicitly mentioned, like increased PM-box or avatar size.

Mystic Wicks (http://mysticwicks.com) has a lot of them. It is the largest neopagan messageboard, comparable in size to IIDB, and it offers several levels of subscription:

Level 0: Free
Avatar: 150*150
PM's: 300

Level 1: $5/mo, $50/yr
Avatar: 160*160
PM's: 500

Access to MW version of I&I forum
Access to "After Dark" adults-only forum
E-mail address: yourname@mysticwicks.com
Username bolded and in color
Can create a MW-hosted blog
Credit in MW-hosted online auctions

Level 2: $8.50/mo, $75/yr
Avatar: 160*160
PM's: 650

Level 3: $10/mo, $85/yr
Avatar: 160*160
PM's: 850

Level 4: $12.50/mo, $120/yr
Avatar: 175*175
PM's: 1000

Level 5: $15/mo, $150/yr
Avatar: 175*175
PM's: 1500

E-mail addresses: yourname@mysticwicks.com and 25 additional ones

Level 6 (Gold): $20/mo, $200/yr
Avatar: 175*175
PM's: 2000

E-mail addresses: yourname@mysticwicks.com and 50 additional ones

Level 7 (Platinum): $30/mo, $325/yr
Avatar: 200*200
PM's 3500

E-mail addresses: yourname@mysticwicks.com and unlimited additional ones


By comparison, the Rational Response Squad (http://www.rationalresponders.com) has a simpler system:

Bronze: $3/mo
Ability to search the RRS messageboard
Access to a theism-free private forum
Technical support

Silver: $10/mo
Free access to all RRS shows
Free access to Rook Hawkins' classes' audio and video

Gold: $25/mo
Free access to all RRS shows and segments
Free advance access to "Rook's Nook" shows
Access to an admin forum for working on the "RRS Academy"

Jacey
6 Nov 07, 07:32:05 AM
Matt,

Lots of people on here, I buy stuff off of Amazon, especially with Jesus Bday coming soon, if you get an Amazon referral account I'll buy through here. Even if it's only a few shekels that's got to help.

Other ideas are good too

Serenipee
6 Nov 07, 07:39:12 AM
Matt,

Lots of people on here, I buy stuff off of Amazon, especially with Jesus Bday coming soon, if you get an Amazon referral account I'll buy through here. Even if it's only a few shekels that's got to help.

Other ideas are good too

I buy masses of stuff from them too. The Noodle/Pee household is in.

obliteration
7 Nov 07, 07:59:42 AM
My wife replaced her meth addiction with an amazon one. Count us in.

ETA: I like saying Noodle/Pee...

mmmm Noooooodle Peeeee

Beren
7 Nov 07, 08:19:08 AM
How much of a cut does RnR get from Amazon?

It's like Christmas season. Implement that shit quick.

Jacey
7 Nov 07, 08:36:51 AM
Mom just asked me to update my Amazon wish list Matt, I'll send her through an RnR portal or whatever.....

lpetrich
7 Nov 07, 10:08:20 PM
I'm confused -- does RnR now have Amazon referrals set up or a functioning [amazon] tag?

Turning to CafePress (http://www.cafepress.com) items, I note that most items can have:
* A single picture
* A front picture and an optional back picture

This includes some of the calendars, which have all 12 months on one page.

However, the other calendars have only one month per page, and thus can contain a total of 12 pictures, one per month.

So what sort of pictures might you people want?


Something like meepmork's pictures of Barsik the Cat? Imagine something like a Barsik calendar with a Rants'n'Raves logo on the pictures, with a Barsik picture for each month.


As to CafePress itself, you can set up your own online shop by going to Start Selling Now (http://www.cafepress.com/cp/info/sell/), or you can set up and order custom-made items at Make Your Own Stuff (http://www.cafepress.com/cp/customize/).

A CafePress online shop is searchable within the CafePress site, but CafePress leaves it to the shop owners to promote their wares outside of CafePress.

Serenipee
7 Nov 07, 11:50:07 PM
Come on, Matt. Us people living on the arse-end of the Earth need a little extra time in order to receive the packages in time for Christmas :)

Matt
8 Nov 07, 04:30:50 AM
The problem with many of the options provided is that they require a legitimate company/organization.

Someone's free to start a cafe press store and use our logos, but I can't do it as I'd get hit with having to pay income tax on anything that was collected.


Ditto for amazon. Unless the money is going to a 'corporate' or some other entity's account, I would be responsible for paying income tax on it.

So it's a bit of a rock and a hard spot. Taking donations is just barely skirting the line as it is.

lpetrich
8 Nov 07, 09:13:30 AM
Fair enough. I won't try to create a CafePress online shop for RnR until such legalities have been worked out in some reasonable way.

Which suggests another thing to consider: should RnR be incorporated as a nonprofit organization? And if so, how will its board of directors be chosen? Shall they be the admins? Matt, it looks like you have your hands full at the moment, so if anyone can step in and help out with admin duties and possibly also the legwork and paperwork for incorporation (if we decide to do such a thing), that would be great.

nygreenguy
19 Nov 07, 03:04:13 PM
The problem with many of the options provided is that they require a legitimate company/organization.

Someone's free to start a cafe press store and use our logos, but I can't do it as I'd get hit with having to pay income tax on anything that was collected.


Ditto for amazon. Unless the money is going to a 'corporate' or some other entity's account, I would be responsible for paying income tax on it.

So it's a bit of a rock and a hard spot. Taking donations is just barely skirting the line as it is.

Ill start writing our charter and have my lawyer partner look it over.

Henry-Finland
19 Nov 07, 04:04:15 PM
When you put up your Amazon-subshop, remember us here in Yurop.
I buy through www.amazon.co.uk

This, because then I do not have to pay anything extra like VAT & customs.

Here is an example: "Do Ants have Arseholes?: And 101 Other Bloody Ridiculous Questions" that i would like to buy to one of my friend as a Christmas gift.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Ants-Have-Arseholes-Ridiculous-Questions/dp/0751540412/ref=pd_luc_0210118466804410751540412

I have heard that the % is not bad and that it is easy to put up the account.

I definately buy through RnR-account, if there is the UK-option.
Amazon have also subsideries in Germany and France, but UK - I think - has the lowest prices when you buy books in English.


Henry

Matt
20 Nov 07, 09:03:21 AM
testing:

Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/Nova/dp/B000JLK1EK/
Amazon.co.uk: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Acer-Aspire-Celeron-Super-Multi-graphics/dp/B000VBNKFU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1195574773&sr=1-1