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Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: Why should it be free? on 12/08/2013 23:58:40 MST Print View

Justin,

Without adequate revenue, there will be no forums and no website.

It seems that members here who own a business grasp the concept.

Jim Sweeney
(swimjay) - MLife

Locale: Northern California
Really? on 12/09/2013 00:02:55 MST Print View

If the cost to post here is as nominal as $5.00 for a Friend's membership, I'd hardly call that screwing with the forum. That's the cost of a fancy beer, and not even the price of a movie ticket. Kill off the forum? I kind of f..in doubt it -- take a look at the posters in this thread and do the math.

Dave T
(DaveT) - F
hmm. on 12/09/2013 00:06:11 MST Print View

"I sent an email to customer support several months ago before renewing my membership but never recieved anything back."

I am stunned by this news.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Why should it be free? on 12/09/2013 00:06:59 MST Print View

Then how does every other forum pull it off?
I understand needing revenue but charging people just to post is the worst possible way.
I have no problem paying $5 to support the forum but I know that if I was surfing the web and came across an interesting forum site and they were charging $5 to post I would probably leave and never come back.

$5 for a site with inadequate support for it's members.

Edited by justin_baker on 12/09/2013 00:11:27 MST.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Really? on 12/09/2013 00:09:57 MST Print View

" Kill off the forum? I kind of f..in doubt it "


I am shocked! Shocked, I say, to find that hyperbole has been going on in these forums.

Actually, I'd pay *more* money to get rid of some of the adds? But even they don't bother me much.

At any rate $5 keeps out some of the riff-raff ;-)

Edited by millonas on 12/09/2013 00:14:19 MST.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Really? on 12/09/2013 00:12:59 MST Print View

https://adblockplus.org/en/

Dave T
(DaveT) - F
fraud. on 12/09/2013 00:14:04 MST Print View

If BPL hadn't already extracted a bunch of cash from members whilst committing fraud, all these arguments would hold a bit more water.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Why should it be free? on 12/09/2013 01:25:02 MST Print View

"Then how does every other forum pull it off?
I understand needing revenue but charging people just to post is the worst possible way.
I have no problem paying $5 to support the forum but I know that if I was surfing the web and came across an interesting forum site and they were charging $5 to post I would probably leave and never come back.

$5 for a site with inadequate support for it's members."

------

In a sense, every forum has a different business model. Backpacker Magazine vs BPL would be an example. I have seen forums in the past that require a fee to READ posts -- wonder how that works out? At least on BPL you can read the posts and then make a decision if you want to join the community. Whether or not $5 or $109.95 is worth it is up to each individual.

What Ryan J needs to figure out is how much more traffic is driven by free memberships and how does he turn that traffic, which costs money to host, into revenue.

Some sites sell advertising, which Ryan has said he does not want to do as it can bias or infer bias on editorial content. Looks like BPL is using Google AdSense, which probably doesn't generate a lot of money here -- as it would on a site that gets 10's of thousands of hits a day.

So how do other forums pull it off? I guess there is an assumption they are viable businesses. Perhaps the answer is, check your premise.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Why should it be free? on 12/09/2013 01:44:35 MST Print View

@Nick - thumbs up.

@TheShrillOnes You have some reasonable points overall about customer service, or the lack thereof. Perhaps BPL/Ryan could use some of the money and hire someone to answer the emails, especially anything related to membership fees and accounts, at least once a week. Still, no one will (or should) take you too seriously if you start talking about "Fraud", etc. So far I think occasional incompetence is the only thing I see.

You may have to work at it, maybe even much harder than you should, but I'm sure you can get the matter cleared up eventually. But if instead of being constructive you jump straight into the hyperbolic invective, well then you are just making yourself into an internet cliche.

Edited by millonas on 12/09/2013 01:51:43 MST.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
How much is BackpackingLight.com worth? on 12/09/2013 02:22:11 MST Print View

A couple of interesting links. I am not an Internet expert, so I cannot say the information is close to accurate.

From
Worthofweb.com

BPL is worth $94K

BPL has to potential to generate $74K per year in sales (this is revenue, not profit)

BPL generates 411,240 visitors per month (includes multiple visits by individuals)

Another site for traffic
Traffic Estimate

My gardener generates more profit than the revenue potential for BPL.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: How much is BackpackingLight.com worth? on 12/09/2013 08:28:46 MST Print View

"My gardener generates more profit than the revenue potential for BPL."


... made my day.

Thanks.




[and depressing that few will ponder the difference between "profit" and "revenue potential"]

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: How much is BackpackingLight.com worth? on 12/09/2013 08:53:24 MST Print View

"BPL is worth $94K"

Canadian? It is $90K USD now.

LOL!

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - M

Locale: Cascadia
Worth on 12/09/2013 13:10:41 MST Print View

FWIW, those website valuation tools are wildly inaccurate. They use the traffic estimate from Alexa.com (which is based on the 0.001% of web users that have installed their software) and then pretty much just guess from there.

Using that service, the total worth of a website I have is actually very close to the monthly income.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Worth on 12/09/2013 13:29:53 MST Print View

Yes, I mentioned that. However, there is a difference between income, earnings and profit.

So use this formula...

Calculate Net Profit after all expenses, including your wages (time).

Now add back your taxes, amortization expenses, and interest expenses (EBITDA).

This is your earnings.

Now multiply it by a factor for your industry. PR, Advertising, and Media industry is 3 to 6.5

Brock Graves
(gravesbrock) - F

Locale: asheville nc
Update on 12/14/2013 22:33:19 MST Print View

Just an update if anyone's interested.... Ryan emailed me back and we got it all worked out. Thanks Ryan!

Stuart .
(lotuseater) - M

Locale: 40°N,-105°W-ish
Re: Grandfathered etc etc on 12/14/2013 22:46:13 MST Print View

Brock, I'm glad you got it sorted out in a week. Thing is, this should be transparent to members and you should never have had to raise it here. And it's contingent on one person - Ryan - who won't delegate it to anyone and isnt always at the helm.

I'm pissed that I haven't received an official response to my ticket from six months ago. It's not the measly $20 or so. It's the fact that Ryan doesn't have a process in place to fulfill a promise he made to his paying members when the Forum membership was introduced, unless he is physically running the site day to day.

And we know that he isn't doing that because he'd rather be out there in the wilderness, yet he refuses to put in a support mechanism in his absence.

I don't know how much of a stink you had to raise to get this resolved, Brock. My point here is that consistency is key in customer service, and from what I can see, BPL's ownership doesn't understand that yet.

Edited by lotuseater on 12/14/2013 22:57:25 MST.

J P
(jpovs) - F - M

Locale: North Shore
Re: Re: Grandfathered etc etc on 12/15/2013 03:02:35 MST Print View

-

Edited by jpovs on 06/15/2014 14:17:20 MDT.